MASTER OF DIVINITY

The Master of Divinity is a professional degree that is intended to train Christian leaders that are inclined for applied Christian living and ministry.

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The Oxford Institute’s Master of Divinity program seeks to train Christian leaders that are inclined for applied Christian living and ministry. The University’s Master of Divinity program is an 84 credit hour program designed as a general ministry professional degree. Holders of the degree are prepared for advanced professional degree programs such as the Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.) offered by other institutions.

Program Learning Outcomes

The outcomes of the M.Div. program are to prepare graduates to,

  1. Demonstrate mastery of the advanced skills necessary for instructing and developing faith in themselves and others.
  2. Apply current, research-based models of ministry with a recognition of the church’s presence in diverse settings.
  3. Have explored major historical developments of the Christian church, including both doctrines and practices.
  4. Demonstrate an advanced understanding of the spiritual and personal traits necessary for ministry.

The Oxford Institute’s M.Div. graduates are educationally prepared for the following possible careers as a minister, Bible teacher, or other church leader.

Time Allowance & Financial Costs

The M.Div. program includes spirituality, biblical content, meaning, exegesis, and ministerial activity. The projected completion time is forty-eight months of full-time uninterrupted study. The cost for students who reside in the 35 developed countries listed under Financial Information is a one-time $25 registration fee and a tuition charge of $450 per quarter. Tuition and fees are guaranteed for only two (2) years. Allowing for a modest increase in tuition, students residing in one of the 35 developed nations may expect to pay $8,125 if they present no transfer credit and complete the M.Div. within 48 months or $13,750 if they extend their studies over 72 months. Textbooks and other resources are available online in an electronic format, without cost to the student. Any purchase of hard copy books is totally optional.

To meet these objectives, OI courses are designed to provide an orientation to basic world views, the biblical text, the science of interpreting the biblical text, the setting for ministry in multicultural situations, and principles for Christian ministry.

The program features three components: a general foundation for the work of ministry, field-based experience, and in-depth academic training. The Oxford Institute curriculum is structured to help distance-learning students acquire field experience in their own location, which is normally different and far distant from the U.S. field of ministry. The curriculum is not organized around a question or theme peculiar to a given culture, but is more universal in scope. Issues, which are current in the American context, may not be the peculiar issues which The Oxford Institute is equipping its students to face. The issues of most concern to the personnel at The Oxford Institute are those which are defined by the New  Testament. While they include some of the same cultural items, they also include broader, global concerns, such as (1) the deity of Jesus in the face of Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu, or Traditional beliefs, (2) biblical vs. secular ethics, and (3) living as a Christian in an environment dominated by Communist or Muslim ideology.

Admission to the Master of Divinity

  1. Submission of an official transcript that indicates completion of a bachelor’s degree (minimum 120 credits with appropriate general education courses) or higher degree from an accredited or nationally approved institution.*
  2. Completion of 15 credits of Foundations courses (MRS 622, M 1, M 2, M 3, and M 4) with a 3.00 grade point average.
  3. Submission of all required activities, papers, and forum postings associated with the Foundation courses.
  4. Pass two (2) qualifying examinations.
  5. Satisfaction of all financial obligations to the University.
  6. Submission of a TOEFL score of 550 or above or acceptable substitute (80 iBT, 6.5 IELPS, 58 PTE score) by students whose native language is not English or whose undergraduate degree is not in English.

*In the event a student cannot, for reasons beyond his/her control, submit official documentation of having completed the bachelor’s degree, he/she may appeal to the Registrar and state the reasons. The Registrar and Chancellor will review the appeal and make a judgment as to how the requirement may be satisfied.

Students may enter the M.Div. directly, if they hold a bachelor’s degree and a major in any discipline, provided the institution is accredited by an appropriate commission or agency and the degree represents a minimum 120 semester credits with 30 credits in General Education and a Grade Point Average of 3.00 or above.  Applicants holding an accredited graduate degree are exempt from this stiulation.  The number of admissions granted to students presenting an unaccredited degree are limited.  When admission is granted, the student will be placed on academic probation unless six (6) graduate credits are earned with a 3.00 G.P.A.

An applicant having completed the B.R.S. at The Oxford Institute with a G.P.A. of 3.00 or above may be admitted automatically upon application, unless there is some circumstance that makes admission problematic. Students who complete the B.R.S. with a G.P.A. lower than 3.00 will be reviewed, but they are not guaranteed admission. If they are admitted, it will be on academic probation and with the stipulation that the first six credits have a minimum 3.00 G.P.A. If the student fails to achieve a 3.00 G.P.A. on the first six credits, he/she shall be suspended from the degree track and may not be readmitted unless a 3.00 G.P.A. is attained, provided the student chooses to take additional courses.

Those who do not hold the B.R.S. from OI may register and begin work immediately with MRS 622. However, formal admission into the M.T.S. program will come after a review of the of the applicant’s official credentials, the completion of 15 credits (MRS 622, M 1, M 2, M 3, and M 4) with a 3.00 G.P.A. or higher, and satisfactory scores on two qualifying examinations.  Once admission is gained, the above mentioned credits will apply toward the M.Div. degree.  It is to the student’s advantage that proof of the bachelor’s degree be submitted immediately after registration. Unless formal admission is granted, the student shall be considered a non-degree seeking student. Once formal admission is granted, the student is assigned to the M.Div. curriculum. Courses which have been completed will count toward the degree.

B.R.S. graduates from OI who have credit for BRS 100/BRS 16.6 should substitute a course of their choice for MRS 622.  Credit cannot be granted for MRS 622 when credit has been awarded for BRS 100/BRS16.6.

If the student presents a three-year Bachelor of Theology or similar degree or diploma, the student may be admitted to the master’s program only after completing the 30 approved credits. However, in this instance, a bachelor’s degree will not be awarded, as the credits are considered “leveling” work.

Transfer Credits.

Students who enter the M.Div. with graduate credit and/or graduate degrees in religious or related studies from an accredited institution, may transfer up to 30 semester credits toward the M.Div.  Students who have completed other graduate degrees at OI are accorded the same privilege.

Required Courses

The 84 semester credits required for the M.Div. must be distributed in the following manner:

18 creditsFoundations
MRS 622A Search for Spirituality
M 1Critical Introduction to the Old Testament
M 2Critical Introduction to the New Testament
M 3Systematic Biblical Doctrine
M 4Biblical Hermeneutics
M 11Critical Analysis in Biblical Studies
12 creditsMinistry
M 12Ministry
M 13Worship
M 16Family Counsel
M 606Missions
12 creditsConcluding Courses
MRS 633Being Christian in a Secular Environment
MFI 5Church and Society
M 14M.Div. Service Project
M 17Research and Writing
42 creditsElectives (6 credit minimum from each category)
MRS 100sBiblical Backgrounds
MRS 200sHebrew Scriptures
MRS 300sGreek Scriptures
MRS 400sChurch History
MRS 500sTheology
MRS 700sComparative Religions
M 15Communicating the Gospel (free elective)
Pass one graduate proctored comprehensive exam

The final Grade Point Average must be a minimum of 3.00 on a 4.00 scale on the credits used for the degree. If a student reaches the end of the curriculum with less than a 3.00 G.P.A., he/she may take additional courses to substitute for courses with a “C” grade.

* Students having taken BRS 100 (or 16.6) at the undergraduate level should substitute an elective for MRS 622.