The Doctor of Ministry in Congregation and Family Care program is designed for pastors and ministry staff of churches as well as for those carrying specific responsibilities in the areas of pastoral care and counseling and spiritual formation. Persons in the program will explore the most common spiritual, mental health, and relational issues encountered in ministry; plan appropriate strategies of care and guidance for those issues; attain insight into how their own spiritual, mental, emotional, theological, and cultural formation affects their ministries; and practice contextualization and theological reflection with regard to issues of human need and pastoral care.

Earning the Doctor of Ministry in Congregation and Family Care degree requires completion of 48 semester credits and the completion of the Mid-Career Assessment Process. In addition to the thesis process, concentration courses, and elective courses, all persons in the program will take 18 credits of required courses: Personal Well-Being & Ministry Effectiveness; Integral Research and Writing; Thesis Proposal Foundations; and Thesis Proposal Workshop.


  • Marriage and Family Studies (FS) for persons wishing to focus primarily on developing their skills for effective care with individuals and groups
  • Pastoral Care and Counseling (PC) for persons wishing to focus primarily on the care of both the pastor/leader and the community to which they minister
  • Spiritual Formation (SF) for persons wishing to focus primarily on developing their own spirituality and their capacity to lead in processes designed to deepen the spirituality of individuals and groups
  • Generalist (G) for persons not wishing to select a concentration. It consists of three required courses, two courses in CFC, one elective, one theology course, and a thesis project in an area of choice.

Degree Requirements

Doctor of Ministry: Self Directed Programs

Doctor of Ministry students are required to complete 7 Class Units (3 credit course plus a 3 credit course project) and a Thesis Project.

Core Requirements
GS001Graduate Research Seminar0
Integral Research & Writing
and Integral Research & Writing: Project
Personal Well-Being and Ministry Effectiveness
and Personal Well-Being and Ministry Effectiveness: Project
Thesis Proposal Foundations
and Thesis Proposal Workshop
Concentration, Theology, and Elective Courses See Footnote: "Conc. Notes" for more details
Concentration Course6
& Concentration Course Project
Concentration Course6
& Concentration Course Project
Bible/Theology Course6
& Bible/Theology Course Project
Elective Course (from any concentration)6
& Elective Course Project
Thesis Project Courses and Requirements See Footnote: "Thesis Notes" for more details
GS991Thesis Project A Pass/Fail3
GS992Thesis Project B Pass/Fail3
GS993Thesis Project C3
Oral Defense, Final Editorial Revisions, & Colloquium0
Mid-Career Assessments
TL005Doctor of Ministry Assessments 10
Total Credits51
Conc. Notes
  • These courses are student’s choice based on course offerings and personal interest. Generalists can take any course within their track to meet the two concentration class unit requirement.
  • Students are encouraged, but not required, to take at least one fully distance (DI) online content course.
  • Students can waive only one project course for any concentration, theology, or elective class unit.
  • Students may not waive project courses for core required class units.
  • Students are allowed to take only one independent study for any concentration, theology, or elective class unit. Students may not do an independent study for core required class units. Additional fees apply and additional paperwork is needed.
  • If a student fails to complete a project course in a succeeding term of the Content/Intensive course, they will follow the same process as an independent study, subject to fees, as the faculty may not be available at a later date.
  • Students must attend the intensive portion of intensive courses to receive a passing grade.
Thesis Notes
  • The student must meet all of the thesis deadline submissions and requirements, as listed in the current version of the student manual (section 6). 
  • Students who want to work on their thesis longer than 3 terms, can remain in extension status for up to a total of 6 years in the program
  • All M.Div. Equivalency courses (if required at admission) must be complete by the student’s oral defense the year of intended graduation. All official transcripts must be sent to the D.Min. office.
  • Students will automatically be registered for Thesis Project courses once they complete Thesis Proposal Workshop. They will also automatically be registered in extension status once they have completed 9 Thesis project credits until graduation.

48 semester credits are required for graduation in the DMIN program.  The student is responsible to meet all graduation deadlines and requirements.