The Graduate School of Theology offers three theological degrees designed to prepare students for more effective Christian service and ministry:

Master of Arts

The Master of Arts in Christian Scripture is a 36 semester hour degree that enables students to read and interpret the Bible in the original languages of the texts. The MA is typically completed in 2 years for full-time students or 4 years for part-time students. Students will engage in rigorous academic research working from relevant primary and secondary sources that address specific issues in the field of biblical studies. The MA concludes with a thesis.

MA Curriculum (36 hours)

Each student will be required to complete a total of 36 hours for the Master of Arts in Christian Scripture, as follows. All requirements must be completed for graduation.

1. Information Literacy (3 hours)

Every student will take MN500 Introduction to Graduate Studies within the first nine hours of the program. This class introduces the student to HCU staff, faculty, and resources, program policies and expectations, and the craft of research.

2. Language (12 hours)

A foundational aspect of the critical approach to scripture encouraged by the MA is knowledge of the original language(s) of the Hebrew Bible and/or New Testament. The program does not require previous knowledge of these languages, but at least 12 hours of coursework will focus on mastering one or more of these languages. Students with no previous language training will choose one of the biblical languages (Greek or Hebrew) and take two elementary courses and two advanced reading courses, all focusing on building the student’s proficiency in the selected language. These courses are:

NT501 Greek 1
NT502 Greek 2
NT601 Greek 3
NT602 Greek 4

OR

OT501 Hebrew 1
OT502 Hebrew 2
OT621 Hebrew 3
OT647 Hebrew 4

Students who already have an elementary knowledge of Greek or Hebrew (equivalent to one full year of study) upon enrollment have several options for fulfilling their 12-hour language requirement:

• Take four advanced courses in the language previously studied.
• Take four courses (two elementary, two advanced) in the biblical language not previously studied.
• Take two advanced courses in the language previously studied and use the other two required language courses to acquire an elementary knowledge of another relevant language (e.g., one of the biblical languages, Latin, or Coptic).

3. Introductions to to the Bible (6 hours)

Every student will take both of the following courses:

  • OT 611 Introduction to the Old Testament
  • NT 612 Introduction to the New Testament

4. Theology (3 hours)

Every student will take TH611 Scripture and Theology, or an approved TH course.

5. Biblical Text (6 hours)

Every student is required to take the following two courses on the biblical text. Each course may be repeated for credit.

  • OT512 Old Testament Textual Studies
  • NT511 New Testament Textual Studies

6. Independent Biblical Research (5 hours)

The MA thesis will demonstrate the student’s competency in the interpretation of Christian Scripture (TH700 Thesis). The student will be assigned to a professor for guidance through the process.

7. Comprehensive Exams (1 hour)

All MA students will take a series of comprehensive exams in TH717: (1) a written exam in Biblical Studies with a language exam in Greek or Hebrew, (2) completion of the capstone portfolio, and (3) an oral defense with the three members of the comprehensive exam committee entailing (a) discussion of insufficient elements of the written exams, (b) evaluation of the capstone portfolio, (c) demonstration of the relevance of the thesis to
select student learning objectives, (d) any areas of interests of the committee related to student experience in the program.

Master of Ministry

The Master of Ministry is a 36 semester hour degree that prepares persons for service and leadership in  ministerial settings by introducing the nature and practice of ministry, engaging Scriptural and theological  foundations, and encouraging the formation of the minister. The MMin is designed for flexibility,  emphasizing choice in coursework to fit the contextual needs and vocational interests of the student. This  program is designed for those seeking a first professional ministry degree, for those seeking an additional  degree after a period of absence from graduate education, or for those seeking a pathway toward the  MDiv. The MMin is typically completed in 1.5–2 years for full-time students or 4 years for part-time students.

MMin Curriculum (36 hours)

The 36 semester hour degree is composed of six major divisions: Information Literacy, Practice of Ministry,  Texts and Contexts, Specialization or Electives, Formation for Ministry, and Capstone Assessment.

1. Information Literacy (3 hours)

Every student will take MN500 Introduction to Graduate Studies  within the first nine hours of graduate studies.

2. Practice of Ministry (6 hours)

Every student will complete 3 credit hours in Ministry (Courses with  prefix MN) and 3 credit hours in Counseling (courses with prefix CN).

3. Texts and Contexts (9 hours)

Every student will complete 3 credit hours in New Testament (courses  with prefix NT), 3 credit hours in Old Testament (courses with prefix OT), and 3 credit hours in  Theology (courses with prefix TH).

4. Ministry Formation (8 hours + 3 units)

Students will complete coursework in Spiritual Formation  (MN532) and Human Formation (CN542), field work in a semester of supervised ministry  experience under the mentorship of an approved supervisor (MN707), and 3 units of spiritual  formation (SF877, SF878, SF879).

5. Capstone Assessment (1 hour)

MMin students will take a series of comprehensive exams in TH707:  (1) a four hour exam addressing various components of the program of study, (2) completion of the capstone portfolio, when necessary, and (3) an oral defense with the three members of the  comprehensive exam committee entailing (a) discussion of insufficient elements of the written  exams, (b) evaluation of the capstone portfolio, when necessary, (c) demonstration of the relevance  of field education to select student learning objectives, (d) any areas of interests of the committee  related to student experience in the program.

6. Specialization or Electives (9 hours)

Students will choose between 9 credit hours of elective credit  or a specialization in one of 7 areas: Congregational Leadership, Homiletics, Pastoral Counseling,  Youth Ministry, Christian Theology, Old Testament, New Testament.

Master of Divinity

The Master of Divinity is a 75 semester hour comprehensive degree that thoroughly trains qualified  individuals for Christian ministerial leadership in a congregational setting. The MDiv is the first theological  degree required for admission to the Doctor of Ministry degree, and the recommended degree for  preparation for admission into advanced research-based theological degrees such as the Master of  Theology, the Doctor of Theology, or the Doctor of Philosophy. Additionally, the MDiv is the required  degree for service as a chaplain in the United States Armed Forces.

MDiv Curriculum (75 hours)

Each student will be required to complete a total of 75 hours for the Master of Divinity. This is composed of four major divisions. All four divisions must be completed for graduation.

Students will develop a holistic ministry plan that specifically addresses the needs of  a Christian community or communities while basing the program upon the student’s rigorous academic  research. The student will implement relevant primary and secondary sources, case studies, etc. that  address specific issues or concerns in the field of ministry and Christian service. The study will be specific  to the student’s primary area and will be developed with the profession in mind. The results of this research  will be presented to the faculty as the student’s practicum.

Information Literacy (3 hours)

MN 500 Introduction to Graduate Studies

1. Our Religious Heritage (30 hours)

Our Religious Roots I: Tools (9 hours)

NT 501 Greek 1 OR OT501 Hebrew 1
NT 502 Greek 2 OR OT 502 Hebrew 2
NT 601 Greek 3 OR OT 621 Hebrew 3
NT 602 Greek 4 OR OT 647 Hebrew 4

Our Religious Roots II: The Texts (12 hours)

OT 611 Introduction to the Old Testament
NT 612 Introduction to the New Testament
OT 512 Old Testament Textual Studies
NT 511 New Testament Textual Studies

Our Religious Roots III: Theology & History (3 hours)

TH 611 Scripture and Theology

2. Contextualizing our Religious Heritage (12 hours)

HBI/NT 551 Methods of Biblical
MN 606 Seminar in Small Church/Limited Resource Ministry
NTTH 542 The Moral Vision and Ethics of the NT
NT 664 Early Christian Missiology
OT 516 Limited Resource Dynamics in Ancient Israel

3. The Spiritual Formation of a Leader (3 hours + 7 units)

MN 532 Spiritual Formation: Discipline and Discipleship
SF 888 Spiritual Formation Retreat
SF 889 Spiritual Formation for Mdiv 1
SF 890 Spiritual Formation for Mdiv 2
SF 891 Spiritual Formation for Mdiv 3
SF 892 Spiritual Formation for Mdiv 4
SF 893 Spiritual Formation for Mdiv 5
SF 894 Spiritual Formation for Mdiv 6

4. Praxis in our Religious Heritage (29 hours)

Ministering within our Religious Heritage 1 (6 hours)

CN 502 Solution-Focused Counseling
CN511 Seminar in Conflict Resolution
CNMN 602 Special Issues in Ministerial Counseling
CNMN 501 The Ministry of Counseling

Ministering within our Religious Heritage 2 (6 hours)

MN 502 Biblical Preaching
MN 511 Congregational Health and  Ministry
MN 522 Family Life Ministry
MN 531 Biblical Leadership
MN 521 The Ministry of Teaching

Electives (12 hours)

Elective 1
Elective 2
Elective 3
Elective 4

Practicum in Ministerial Leadership (5 hours)

MN 700 Practicum

Comprehensive Exams (1 hour)

TH 727 Comprehensive Exams