The DMin program requires 27 semester hours of course work (which includes from 21 to 24 hours of prescribed and elective courses and from 3 to 6 hours of independent study courses), plus a 3-hour applied research project related to the student's ministry. The program normally requires at least four years of study.
Normally, three prescribed courses must be taken by all DMin students: DM101 The Ministry Leader, DM102 Applied Research Project Development Seminar, and DM103 The Applied Research Project. Some cohorts fuse the leadership and/or research components into the selected cohort. In addition, students normally complete at least one independent study course, DM901 Independent Study. Course descriptions for these and other DMin courses may be found in the Course Descriptions section of this catalog.
All courses are six months in length, but include only one or two week residence on the main campus. During the preresident months, students read and interact with course material. After the course meets for the resident week, students complete an assignment that is appropriate to their ministry. DTS alumni are allowed to audit the resident portion of a course as space permits. Registration for summer DMin courses must be completed by March 15, and registration for winter DMin courses must be completed by September 15. Electives in the various areas of concentration are listed in the "Course Description" section of this catalog.
All work leading to the Doctor of Ministry degree must be completed in no less than three and no more than six years from the time of matriculation. A minimal grade of B- must be received in every course credited toward graduation and also on the applied research project.
Additional information on DMin policies and procedures is given in the Doctor of Ministry Handbook.
Transfer of Credit
Transfer of up to 10 hours of doctoral-level credit may be applied toward the DMin degree if those hours constitute equivalent work. Normally only courses taken after receiving an MA, MDiv, ThM, STM, or equivalent degree can be credited toward the DMin degree. Requests for transfer of credit should be directed to the director of DMin studies. Plans to take other courses for transfer credit must be approved by the DMin committee prior to taking the course.
Admission to Candidacy
Students may be admitted to candidacy for the DMin degree by action of the faculty only after these requirements have been met: (1) completion of all residence requirements leading to the degree; (2) the satisfactory completion of a minimum of 21 semester hours of coursework; (3) evidence of proven Christian character; (4) effectiveness
in Christian ministry; and (5) adherence to the following doctrines: the authority and inerrancy of Scripture, the Trinity, the full deity and humanity of Christ, the spiritual lostness of the human race, the substitutionary atonement and bodily resurrection of Christ, salvation by faith alone in Christ alone, and the physical return of Christ.
Students applying to candidacy for the DMin degree must also provide a written letter of reference from the local church or organization where the student is serving, endorsing the student’s ministry.
Students must be admitted to candidacy before they can register for DM103 The Applied Research Project. Six of the 9 hours that remain for completion of the degree can be taken concurrently with DM103 (3 hours).
Applied Research Project Requirements
The applied research project is the student’s major research project in the degree program. It must be directly related to his or her ministry and must make a significant contribution to the field of professional ministry as well as to the student’s personal life. The project normally should deal with some aspect of communication, administration, nurture, leadership, or Christian education. The length is to be appropriate for the subject as judged by the student’s advisers.
If the applied research project is not completed within the first year after enrolling in DM103, then the student will be required to register for DM105 Applied Research Continuation each summer and winter term until project completion.
Details on the procedures and deadlines for the topic approval, proposal, and first and final drafts of the applied research project are available in the Doctor of Ministry Office as well as in the DMin Handbook.
Candidates for the DMin degree must have completed 27 semester hours of course work and the 3-hour applied research project along with any other requirements that may have been assigned. The completion of minimum requirements does not automatically qualify a student for the degree. The candidate must evidence to the satisfaction of the faculty proven Christian character, ability and acceptability in Christian ministry, and adherence to the following doctrines: the authority and inerrancy of Scripture, the Trinity, the full deity and humanity of Christ, the spiritual lostness of the human race, the substitutionary atonement and bodily resurrection of Christ, salvation by faith alone in Christ alone, and the physical return of Christ.
Diplomas will not be awarded, transcripts issued, or placement assistance provided unless all financial obligations to the Seminary and/or the student loan program are current.