Doctor of Ministry Degree

Program Description

The Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.) degree program at CTS is an advanced course of study for those engaged in professional ministry broadly understood.  The program provides leaders with an opportunity to integrate their experience in ministry with advanced academic study and develop new skills for more effective ministry.

Course Work

The D.Min. degree program requires the successful completion of 30 credit hours of course work.  Three seminars (9 credit hours total) are required of all D.Min. students; the remaining seven courses (21 credit hours) are elective courses chosen by the student in consultation with his or her advisor. 

Ordinarily course work in the D.Min. program is completed through regularly offered, week-long intensive seminars offered on the CTS campus. Each course includes at least eight weeks of preparation before, and four weeks of independent study following the seminar.

Course work may also be completed through independent study with a CTS faculty member; adaptations of advanced course work in other CTS degree programs; courses taken at another ATS-accredited D.Min. program; and immersion study experiences related directly to the student’s area of focus and approved by the CTS D.Min. Director. Strict guidelines govern these alternative ways of completing D.Min. course work.

Project in Ministry

The D.Min. degree also requires the successful completion of a Project in Ministry (PIM) under the direction of a CTS faculty member. The Project must be of publishable quality, exhibit solid academic research, and include mature theological reflection on the practice of ministry.  Candidates for the D.Min. degree must successfully complete an oral defense of the Project before a committee of three readers, ordinarily members of the CTS faculty.

Areas of Focus and Faculty Resources

The D.Min. program at CTS offers four areas of focus, or “tracks:”

  • Preaching and Worship
  • Pastoral Care (not a licensure program)
  • Transformational Leadership
  • Biblical Studies for Ministry

Though members of the full-time, regular faculty at CTS may share in the teaching responsibilities, most courses are taught by affiliate faculty who are scholar-practitioners recruited specifically to teach in the D.Min. program.  All will have terminal degrees in ministry and related disciplines, and demonstrated excellence in religious leadership.

Length and Cost of the Program

Ordinarily students are able to complete the course work for the D.Min. degree in three and a half years.  All requirements for the degree—including the Project in Ministry and its defense—must be completed within six years of matriculation.

The cost of the D.Min. program for those matriculating in 2015-2016 is $13,000, payable in four equal annual installments of $3,000 due by September 1 of each year and $1,000 at the time the student submits his or her Project in Ministry. The cost of books and expenses related to participating in the week-long intensive seminars (housing, meals, and travel) are not included in the cost above, but economical arrangements can be made through the seminary.

Application Prerequisites

Successful applicants to the CTS D.Min. program will meet all of the following minimum pre-requisites:

  • An earned M.Div. or its educational equivalent from a theological school accredited by the Association of Theological Schools.  (Note: CTS defines “educational equivalent” to mean at least 72 hours of graduate study, including substantial coursework in Bible, history and theology, and the arts of ministry);
  • At least three years of experience in ministry broadly understood, and active employment in ministry at the time of application;
  • A cumulative grade point average in all previous academic work of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale; and,
  • For applicants whose native language is other than English, proficiency in the English language as demonstrated by a score at least 90 on the internet-based Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or a 600 on the paper-based exam.


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