Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.)

Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.)


The Doctor of Ministry degree offers pastors, missionaries and other church leaders an opportunity for professional and personal growth. It is designed to enhance one’s knowledge and skills in the practice of ministry. Students will have the opportunity to interact with recognized church leaders, to explore new ministry perspectives, to evaluate their ministry, to increase their vision and to crystallize their understanding of the purpose and goals of ministry.

The program is composed of 30 credit hours involving 6 hours of core courses, 9 hours of cognate courses, and 15 hours of either a thesis project or portfolio coursework. 

Program Learning Outcomes

The student will be able to:

  • Construct a theological foundation that interacts with precedent literature to evaluate ministry.
  • Evaluate a ministry idea or context demonstrating advanced observation and analysis.
  • Develop a research project to address a specific ministry objective.

Program Specific Admission Requirements

In addition to the general admission procedures, applicants to the Doctor of Ministry degree program must meet the following specific requirements:

  1. Official college transcripts (sealed, unopened copy or via a direct electronic transcript system). Applicants must possess an accredited master’s degree related to the student’s ministry setting or vocational calling with at least a 3.0 GPA. Their education must include at least 18 graduate hours total of Bible, theology, or ministry-related classes, which demonstrates a student’s readiness for advanced professional doctorate. These include classes such as apologetics, Bible, church history, discipleship, evangelism, global studies, homiletics, leadership, and theology.
  2. The John W. Rawlings School of Divinity requires you to submit a Professional Vita showing significant ministry experience consistent with the mission of the school, and readiness for study in an advanced professional doctorate.
  3. Statement of Purpose (300-word minimum) detailing:

    • your vocational or ministry calling

    • your vocational or ministry goals

    • a key ministry problem you feel needs to be addressed in today’s culture, which is appropriate to an advanced professional study.

  4. An Ecclesiastical endorsement indicating the agreement of the church (or employing organization) with your participation in the Doctor of Ministry program. The endorsement letter must be signed with pen (no typed signatures allowed) and can be faxed, mailed, or scanned and emailed as an attachment.
  5. Submit the John W. Rawlings School of Divinity Questionnaire (login required).

  6. Applicants whose native language is not English must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), or an approved alternate test of English proficiency:

    • International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

    • International Test of English Proficiency (iTEP).

Applicants must earn a minimum score of 80 on the Internet-based TOEFL, a 3.9 on the iTEP, a 6.5 on the IELTS, or an equivalent score on an approved alternate test for all graduate degree programs. Applicants who have an earned degree from a college or university in the U.S. or other English-speaking country or school may have the TOEFL requirement waived by the Office of Graduate Admissions. Alternatively, applicants who complete the levels of English-as-a-Second-Language (ESL) instruction indicated below at one of two schools will have the TOEFL requirement waived. Students will have their application held until transcripts from one of the below schools are received.

Advancement to Candidacy (D.Min.)

Candidate status is granted when all admissions criteria have been met, 24 hours of coursework have been completed, and a formal introduction for the thesis project has been submitted.

Seminary Continuation Fee

Students enrolled in the D.Min. program who are unable to take classes during a semester will be charged a $30 continuation fee. Students who remain inactive for more than three semesters will be automatically dropped from the program and will be required to reapply in order to be readmitted to the program.

Thesis-Project Enrollment Policy

Once students enter the thesis-project phase of their degree, they must maintain continuous enrollment (Fall and Spring semesters mandatory, with Summer terms optional) until they complete all degree requirements. If they do not, they will break enrollment, and they will be required to apply for readmission if/when they wish to resume the pursuit of their degree. They will have to complete their degree under the Degree Completion Plan (DCP) in effect at the time of their readmission.

  • Christian Scholar
  • Church Counselor
  • Church Planter
  • Community Chaplain
  • Director of Next Generation Ministries
  • Discipleship Pastor
  • Evangelist
  • Lead/Associate pastor
  • Pastoral Counselor
  • Preaching Pastor
  • Seminary Professor
  • Senior Church Administrator
  • Senior Pastor
  • Small Group Pastor
  • Student Pastor
  • Teaching Pastor
  • Worship Leader
  • Youth Pastor
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