The program seeks to prepare religious leaders from a variety of faith communities to serve in diverse contexts, and who will continue to learn and grow in the lifelong practice of ministry.
The MDiv program requires registration for three full years of scholastic residence, with the completion of a minimum of 28 courses distributed across the Divinity School's areas of study. To acquire a broad foundational knowledge about religion, the program provides a sequence of studies that requires the student to (1) establish a breadth of competence in religious studies; (2) develop a thorough understanding of scriptural, historical, and theological foundations for ministry; and (3) integrate this classical program of learning with rigorous and reflective practice.
These requirements or equivalent courses in other traditions are most often completed during the first year of study:
1) The master's-level introductory course, Introduction to the Study of Religion, required for all first-year master's program students
2) Theology in the Public Square
3) Introduction to the Hebrew Bible or a comparable course in the writings of the student's tradition
4) Introduction to New Testament or a comparable course in the writings of the student's tradition
5) Introduction to Theology or a comparable course in the writings of the student's tradition
6) Participation in the weekly reflection seinar for first-year students, Introduction to Ministry Studies: Colloquium
7) Acquisition of basic skills in New Testament Greek, Biblical Hebrew, Sanskrit or Quranic Arabic, usually completion of two-quarter sequence of grammar instruction in the fall and winter quarters, followed by a course in scriptural exegesis employing the language.
These requirements or equivalent courses in other traditions are most often completed during the second year of study:
1) The Arts of Ministry: a three-quarter sequence of Worship and Preaching, Pastoral Care and Counseling, and Community, Leadership, and Change.
2) Three quarters of field education in a religious community, including successful completion of the practicum, Practice of Ministry I and II, which meets weekly across the entire second year.
3) One course, selected in consultation with the instructor and the Director of Ministry Studies, for which the student submits a constructive theological paper; to be completed before participation in the Senior Ministry Project seminar.
These requirements or equivalent courses in other traditions are most often completed during the third year of study:
1) Completion of the Senior Ministry Project, including enrollment in the Senior Ministry Thesis Seminar in the winter quarter. The project consists of two parts: a) a thirty-five page thesis in practical theology, b) the oral presentation of the project in an appropriate public forum that includes ministry students, members of the Committee on Ministry Studies, and wider audiences, as appropriate.
These requirements may be completed at anytime across the three years of the MDiv residence:
1) At least two courses in the History of Christian Thought and History of Theological Ethics sequences, or two courses in the History of Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, or the tradition to which a student belongs.
2) At least one course in History of Religions, Religion and Literature, Philosophy of Religion, Anthropology and Sociology of Religion, or a course in a religious tradition other than the student's own.
3) An additional unit of approved and supervised fieldwork.
Ministry courses are denoted in our online registration system with the letters CHRM.