Apr 16, 2024  
2020-2021 Catalog Volume XXX Ver 2 
2020-2021 Catalog Volume XXX Ver 2 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Ministry, Doctor

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The Doctor of Ministry degree program is designed to prepare students for effective ministry leadership as reflective practitioners with foundational theological, theoretical, and practical knowledge. Graduates will be better able to serve and lead in ministry with demonstrated skills in biblical intepretation, theological reflection, communication, leadership, counseling, and spiritual direction. The program requires satisfactory completion of 99 total quarter credit hours (45 hours beyond the MA Ministry program) and is designed to be delivered in eleven consecutive quarters (5 quarters beyond the MA Ministry program) for full-time students. Part-time students may enroll in a minimum of one class per quarter. Admission to this program may occur at each online term.

The mission of the Doctor of Ministry degree program is to provide students with advanced theological, theoretical, and practical knowledge required by the growing demands of religious leadership. Building on the foundation of the MA in Ministry or other graduate programs in theology and ministry, graduates are equipped to provide executive level leadership in ministry as “reflective practitioners” with a demonstrated ability to reflect theologically on the practice of ministry and to articulate their understanding for the benefit of others as mentors, coaches, or trainers. 

Students interested in the Doctor of Ministry program are required to confer with an admissions representative and complete an application. The following items are required for consideration of admission:

  • completed online South College application,
  • official transcripts from each regionally or approved accredited institution of higher education attended for earned bachelor’s and graduate degrees,
  • evidence of earning a M.Div. or MA degree in biblical, theological, and ministry studies with at least 54 quarter hour credits (36 semester hour credits) from an accepted accredited institution,
  • evidence of a minimum overall GPA of 2.75 earned in the bachelor’s degree and 3.00 for a graduate degree, and
  • interview with the program director.

Students with graduate degrees in biblical, theological and ministry studies totaling fewer than 54 quarter hour credits (36 semester hour credits) will need to complete additional coursework in the Master of Arts in Ministry program to in order to achieve the required number of credits for admission.

Conditional Admission
Students with a graduate GPA of less than 3.00 may be considered for conditional admission. If they achieve a GPA of 3.00 or higher after the first quarter, they may be admitted as regular enrolled students.

International Student Admission
International students may be citizens of the United States with foreign academic credentials, permanent residents of the US, or non-resident students who must study from their home country. South College cannot issue paperwork for students in the Doctor of Ministry program to obtain a student (F-1) visa.

In order to be considered for admission, international students must meet the admissions requirements for the Doctor of Ministry program, subject to the following:

  • Official College and/or University Transcript(s): Official transcripts (written in English or translation, if not originally in English) of students’ college or university work must be sent directly from the college or university to the Admissions Office at South College. If original documents are not available, certified copies will be accepted. The certification must clearly state that the degree completed is equivalent to a two-year graduate degree from a North American institution.
  • English Language Proficiency Documentation: Since all instruction, reading, and research in the Doctor of Ministry program is in English, it is essential that all international students be able to understand and speak English fluently. In light of this, the college requires for graduate admission a paper-based TOEFL score of 575, computer-based TOEFL score of 233, or an Internet-based TOEFL score of 90 for students whose native language is not English, or whose primary language of instruction on the undergraduate level was not English. A student’s TOEFL requirement may be waived if he or she is enrolling in a bilingual cohort or has scored above the minimum score for acceptance on either the GMAT or GRE.

It is highly recommended that international students applying to South College submit an application at least four months prior to the desired date of enrollment.

The Doctor of Ministry program will be completed primarily via an asynchronous online format using Canvas as the learning management platform that provides flexibility to accommodate schedules of working ministry leaders.

The Doctor of Ministry program is a cohort-based program. Students are admitted to a specific cohort and take the Seminar and Issues courses prescribed for the cohort. The cohorts and corresponding Seminar and Issues Course currently available include:

  • Pastoral Ministry: MIN6220 Seminar in Pastoral Ministry; MIN6320 Issues in Pastoral Ministry
  • Community Ministry: MIN6223 Seminar in Community Ministry; MIN6323 Issues in Community Ministry
  • Worship Leader: MIN6224 Seminar in Worship Ministry; MIN6324 Issues in Worship Ministry
  • Youth and Family Ministry: MIN6225 Seminar in Youth and Family Ministry; Issues in Youth and Family Ministry

While students should plan to take all courses with their cohort, they may take remaining courses with another cohort if necessary.

A South College online orientation introduces students to instructions for accessing South College email and Student Portal accounts, a review of candidates’ roles and responsibilities in an online asynchronous format, and a discussion and review of South College learning resources and student services.

The Doctor of Ministry degree is designed to equip ministry leaders with advanced theological, theoretical, and practical knowledge needed to provide executive level leadership in their specific ministry settings. Graduates can become “ministry mentors” who are proficient in articulating practical theological perspectives, analyzing, and describing problems and opportunities in their setting, and using research to develop and implement solutions and initiatives that reflect knowledge of best practices.

  • Goal 1: Students demonstrate reflective practice by integrating theological reflection with the practice of ministry and articulating it for the benefit of others.
    • ​Objective 1.1: Students articulate the biblical foundation for the practices of ministry related to their specific callings.
    • Objective 1.2: Students address the theological issues generated by the practice of ministry.
    • Objective 1.3: Students are equipped to teach and mentor emerging leaders within their field of ministry.
  • Goal 2: Students engage practices of personal and spiritual growth that promote longevity in ministry.
    • Objective 2.1: Students demonstrate mature understanding of their unique skills and gifts, strengths, and weaknesses.
    • Objective 2.2: Students articulate the ethical standards of ministry leaders in their settings.
    • Objective 2.3: Students model sustaining personal and spiritual practices.
    • Objective 2.4: Students articulate a sustainable professional career trajectory.
  • Goal 3: Students practice ministry skills required by advanced levels of leadership and responsibility.
    • Objective 3.1: Students practice the skills of effective conflict mediation and reconciliation.
    • Objective 3.2: Students demonstrate an advanced level of leadership in individual, small group, and large group/organizational settings appropriate to their calling.
    • Objective 3.3: Students identify and address challenges and opportunities in their ministry settings.
  • Goal 4: Students utilize research in ministry and analysis of information to guide decision-making and problem-solving.
    • Objective 4.1: Students conduct research using digital and print resources and locate resources that inform analysis and decision making for their ministries.
    • Objective 4.2: Students develop a ministry initiative that addresses a specific need or opportunity in their ministry settings.


The Doctor of Ministry program is offered Online.

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