MASTER OF ARTS IN SPECIALIZED MINISTRIES
The Southwestern College Professional Studies Master of Arts in Specialized Ministries program is designed for those who want to hone their skills in working with youth and young adults. This nondenominational, Wesleyan online Master of Arts in Specialized Ministries program is ideal for working or aspiring youth ministers who are called to lead others through the doctrines of the Christian faith. Our online Master of Arts in Specialized Ministries course curriculum includes Studies of the Old and New Testament, Theology, Survey of Church History, and more. The program uses non-traditional formats that are well-adapted to the needs of contemporary learners.
Why Choose Specialized Ministries at SC?
Recently ranked as one of the Best Colleges for Online Learning, Southwestern College offers quality online degrees to adult learners. With courses taught by expert faculty and access to a variety of student resources, SC learners are provided with the tools and flexibility needed to succeed in their education while preparing for professional advancement.
- Diverse curriculum
- Nonprofit, regionally accredited
- Receive the same diploma as traditional students from our physical campus
- Complete and submit graduate application forms
- Provide current resume
- Submit two professional letters of recommendation (at least one from a current or former employer)
- Turn in one-page personal essay
- Submit an official transcript from a bachelor’s degree-granting institution. Official transcripts must be received within 8 weeks following the start of class.
Core Major Requirements
SMIN501: Introduction to Ministry
This course will explore several themes that are foundational to ministry including the notions of call, conversion, prayer, and leadership in the church. Learners should be prepared to engage the practical dimensions of spiritual formation and to apply them to a variety of social scenarios.
SMIN503: Studies of the Old Testament
This course provides an introduction to the literature and history of ancient Israel with special attention given to the thirty‐six books of the Hebrew Bible. Ancient and Near‐Eastern texts will be considered in light of the context that they provide for understanding early Judaism. Attention will be given to how to utilize Old Testament Scriptures in a variety of church and para‐church ministries.
SMIN505: Studies of the New Testament
This course provides an introduction to the 27 books that constitute the New Testament. This course will take into account the Jewish and Greco‐Roman milieu in which the New Testament developed. Attention will be given to how to utilize New Testament Scriptures in a variety of church and para‐church ministries.
In this course, learners learn to link scriptural, historical, and theological sources in order to both create and understand theological constructs for youth ministry. Attention is given to how context (race, class, gender, other) shapes theological convictions.
SMIN509: Survey of Church History
This course provides a survey of the social, institutional, and intellectual history of Christianity. Topics will investigate how various church traditions give shape to ministry.
SMIN596: Practicum in Specialized Ministry Part I
The practicum involves real work experience in a ministerial setting. Established practicum settings include working at the United Methodist reporter and the campus ministries office on the main campus of Southwestern College. Practicum experiences can also take place in other ministry settings.
Approval forms are submitted prior to the Practicum Part I course start date and includes the description of the work to be undertaken during the Part I and Part II schedule, evaluation criteria, and the off‐campus supervisor, and the supervising teacher.
SMIN597: Practicum in Specialized Ministry Part II
This course is a continuation of the Practicum Part I and is required to be scheduled consecutively with SMIN 596. The practicum involves real work experience in a ministerial setting.
Emphasis in Youth & Adult Ministry
SMIN530: Theology of Youth Ministry
This course provides a survey of root convictions regarding the action of God in the lives of young people. The course will follow the standard systematic categories in theology and challenge students to consider how content in each category gives shape to youth ministry.
SMIN531: Ethical Issues in Youth Ministry
This course provides a survey of legal and ethical concerns affecting youth leaders: boundary awareness, sexual ethics, counseling referral, rights to privacy, crisis response and management. This course will take a case study approach.
SMIN532: Faith & Formation in Developing Adults
Learners study the relationship between psychological development and doctrines of the Christian life as they apply to youth and developing young adults. The course will cover topics such as entry into the Christian faith, the role of the church in spiritual formation, the role of theology in shaping discipleship and the importance of mentoring in faith formation in the years ranging from teen to young adult.
SMIN533: Program Design & Development in the Local Church
This course provides an introduction to, and practice in, designing and developing a youth ministry in the local church. Attention will be paid to context (i.e. urban, rural, suburban and geographic or regional characteristics), theology of youth ministry, and practical challenges such as fundraising, budgeting and accounting procedures.
LEAD570: Leadership for the Future
Participants will learn to identify trends, implement change initiatives, maximize resources, and develop a response to changing workforce dynamics. This course provides a thorough foundation in the methods used when leading project initiatives.
Applicants are required to submit:
- Complete the specific program requirements for the master’s program
- Have an overall grade point average of 3.0, with no grade below a C (2.0)
- Complete a minimum of 30 credit hours
All degree requirements are subject to change. Please see Southwestern College Professional Studies Catalog for the most current degree requirements.