Director: Jonathan Kim, PhD

Domestic DMin Chief Coordinator: William Donahue, PhD

Korea-based DMin Chief Coordinator: Peter Lee, PhD

Purpose of the DMin Program

The DMin is a 4-year, 30-hour degree program, focused on bringing missional renewal and impact to the student’s ministry setting. It is a hybrid model, combining content delivery with ministry-based field work toward completion of each course and learning the competencies for coursework as required for the degree. It is designed to equip pastors, missionaries, church leaders and para-church leaders with skills, strategies, and theology for solving complex and challenging problems in pluralistic and post-Christendom contexts. This DMin Program is offered domestically in Bannockburn, Illinois, as well as at our Korea DMin location in Seoul, South Korea.

Korea DMin Program

Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (TEDS) has established a full extension site to offer the Doctor of Ministry program at Torch Center for World Mission in Seoul, Korea. The program structure and requirements are the same as those offered at the Bannockburn campus, except that the entire program is offered in the Korean language and the program as a whole has been adapted to address the cultural and ecclesial contexts in South Korea.

Program Outcomes

There are five desired outcomes for students in the DMin Program.

  1. The Student will develop INCREASED LEADERSHIP CAPACITY evidenced by the ability to thrive in current ministry contexts and increase the scale and scope of ministry effectiveness, responsibilities, and opportunities.
  2. The Student will practice INTENTIONAL THEOLOGICAL INTEGRATION evidenced by the ability to engage one’s cultural context with advanced theological acumen and critical thinking.
  3. The Student will engage in IN-DEPTH CONTEXTUAL ANALYSIS demonstrating the ability to identify and frame crucial ministry issues and outline potential solutions.
  4. The Student will utilize INNOVATIVE STRATEGIC PLANNING evidenced by the ability to create and develop key ministry initiatives and achieve desired ministry goals.
  5. The Student will experience greater INTIMACY WITH CHRIST evidenced by a growing love for God and others, deepening one’s personal spiritual maturity.

Structure of the DMin Program

The DMin uses a Hybrid Model, where credits toward the degree are earned in content sessions as well as in the field, as students complete coursework and learn competencies for ministry in each course. The program is divided into three main phases, during which students make progress toward completion of 30 semester hours for the degree. These phases are described below.

Phase 1 – Assessments, Research & Missional Renewal – 9 hours

In Phase 1 students will process pre-work and assessments, reflect on personal ministry and leadership, evaluate ministry context and culture, set program goals, become skilled in basic research methods, and learn the core values and theology for bringing missional renewal into the ministry.

Phase 2 – Ministry Focus & Missional Strategies – 15 hours

During Phase 2 coursework, field work and the project proposal will address a student’s specific ministry context, strategy and goals. Competencies learned here are designed to bring missional renewal to the areas of leadership, strategy, change management, disciple-making, communication and evangelism.

Phase 3 – Major Project Completion – 6 hours

In Phase 3 students will finalize ministry research, complete ministry-focused strategic plans, and finish writing the Major Project. This written project includes the learning from coursework, research, and field work that has been completed. The project serves as a robust strategic plan for change and missional renewal in the student’s ministry context, continuing well beyond the completion of the DMin degree. It is submitted and evaluated at the Oral Presentation.

Program Competencies to be Learned in Courses

As courses are completed, credits are accumulated toward the 30-hour degree. The following competencies are learned in courses in the program for completion of the degree. How these are learned will vary, and will be described in the course offerings for courses each semester. Our goal is to integrate learning in content-delivery formats with in-ministry field work as much as possible.

Competencies Learned in Courses for the DMin Program – Students will be able to:

- Assess their leadership style, experience and philosophy

- Utilize research methods for cultural and ministry analysis

- Understand missional renewal in light of current ministry thinking

- Articulate a missional theology

- Design communication strategies to convey missional thinking and practice

- Identify resources for engaging people with the mission

- Assess ministry cultures and generational realities in ministry

- Define characteristics, methods and metrics for making and multiplying disciples

- Create strategies to witness for Christ in post-Christendom and pluralistic cultures

- Become a change agent who can launch missional renewal initiatives

- Utilize missionally-focused planning tools and resources appropriate to their ministry

- Design ministry structures that effectively support missional engagement

- Develop metrics that assess the effectiveness of missional practices and progress

- Grow deeper intimacy with Christ using spiritual practices, individual and corporate

Course Scheduling & Delivery

The DMin utilizes peer learning, self-directed learning, field-based learning and coursework. Each year classes are held on the Bannockburn campus in March (Spring semester) and the end of July (Summer session). In the Fall, students take advantage of a more flexible schedule, and may focus on a Guided Research project, or may combine a ministry conference with coursework in a wrap-around format, approved by the Director. We also partner with our PhD program at TEDS for courses in Educational Ministries and Intercultural Studies. In addition, we use synchronous learning, where class content is delivered using Zoom or a similar platform, while at the same time other students are in a classroom on campus.

Whether taken on-campus or virtually, courses may consist of a variety of in-class learning components, field work and/or the submission of artifacts or practices needed to demonstrate learned competencies. It is expected that students attend July classes each year in person when possible, since some of the formational and other experiences are delivered then.

Military Chaplaincy Course Format

Typically up to 12 hours of credit is accepted for Chaplaincy Training completed in a student’s particular program. The remainder of the credits needed for a DMin are earned according to the guidelines described herein, and with approval by the DMin Director. Contact the DMin Office for specific details for admissions based upon the branch of service associated with the Chaplaincy.

DMin Admissions

TEDS DMin Program abides by ATS guidelines stating applicants should have completed a Master of Divinity degree or other acceptable master's level qualifications or equivalent. In addition, we expect an applicant to have at least three years of full-time ministry experience in a leadership role or similar capacity, preferably after completing the MDiv or equivalent education and ministry experience. Ministry experience in pastoral and leadership roles will be assessed by the Director and the Professional Doctoral Committee (if required) to determine if, and how much, credit will be accepted toward requirements for admission.

Application Deadlines and Review Dates

Applications are reviewed three times per year; fall, spring and summer. In each case, a completed application file is required before final action is taken to admit a student to a doctoral program. DMin students may begin their studies during any of the three sessions. Deadlines for receipt of completed application files are:

Program Application Deadline
Fall Admission June 15
Spring Admission October 15
Summer Admission February 15

The application review process begins immediately after the deadline and normally takes three weeks. Subsequent to the review process, applicants are notified by letter of acceptance or denial of admission.

Application Procedures

In addition to the application form, credentials that are required of all doctoral applicants are outlined in the application instructions in this catalog.

The Admissions Committee may grant admission on the basis of the required credentials alone, or it may request the applicant to submit additional materials. If admitted, the new doctoral student is required to submit a nonrefundable tuition deposit to confirm acceptance of admission.

If the Admissions Committee denies an applicant admission, the applicant may send a letter of appeal to the Admissions Office, which must be received no later than ninety days following the date of the Admissions Committee decision.

Admission Requirements

Applicants for the DMin program are required to

  1. Possess a Master of Divinity degree or other acceptable masters level qualifications from an accredited school that maintains academic standards similar to those of TEDS. (Other acceptable masters level qualifications are defined as an earned ministry or theology-related masters degree, including at least 72 semester hours of graduate study in areas closely parallel to TEDS MDiv curriculum. Typically, this should include at least 12 semester hours of Old Testament, 12 semester hours of New Testament, 12 semester hours of Systematic Theology, 3 semester hours of Church History, and 33 semester hours of electives. For those with less than 72 hours having exceptional credentials and significant ministry or leadership experience, credit may be given for teaching or ministry experience. Students lacking prerequisites may be admitted with some deficiencies that must be removed by completing appropriate master’s coursework or equivalent study or research, as approved and completed at TEDS, or through an accredited seminary. Deficiencies must be removed before earning 15 credit hours toward the degree.
  2. Have earned a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) for all master’s work. For students who have not achieved a 3.0 the DMin Director, with input from the Professional Doctoral Committee, will assess the student’s preparation and capacity to handle doctoral level studies at a graduate institution.
  3. Have had at least three years of consistent full-time ministry experience, preferably after receiving the Master of Divinity degree or its equivalent. Exceptions may occasionally be made by the DMin Director on the basis of full-time ministry experience demonstrated prior to receiving the MDiv degree.
  4. Have met, if an international student, the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services regulations in obtaining an F-1 (student) visa. This requires additional admissions information and paperwork. International applicants whose first language is not English must also submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). NOTE: Residential International F-1 visa students often must take 9 hours of credit each Fall and Spring semester to maintain visa status. The DMin is NOT a residential program, and does not offer 9 hours of doctoral courses each semester. Students are responsible to take any additional non-DMin courses they need at the Masters or Doctoral level in order to fulfill their visa requirements.
  5. Are expected to own a laptop computer (or similar portable device) and be proficient with current word processing and other essential applications. 

Special Instructions for International Applicants

All international DMin program students, including Visiting DMin students and students from Canada, are now required to enter the United States with an F-1 visa. DMin residential students (i.e. living in or near Bannockburn and taking semester-length courses) must comply with the same visa requirements as other program residential applicants (see Admissions section).

DMin nonresidential students (i.e., commuting to the Bannockburn Campus on a course-by-course basis) must also obtain an F-1 visa. Students who enter the United States to pursue the Doctor of Ministry degree without the F-1 visa potentially jeopardize their ability to complete the degree and reenter the United States. F-1 visas will remain valid as long as reentry into the United States for the purposes of study occurs at least once every five (5) months. A new visa will be required if reentry does not occur within this time period.  Hence, full-time program participation for DMin international nonresidential students is defined as taking at least one course (or equivalent credits earned) in each of the three semesters (Fall, Spring, Summer) per year.

DMin Candidacy Requirements

Admission to the DMin program does not guarantee acceptance into candidacy for the degree. Candidacy will be granted when the student has demonstrated the ability to complete all degree requirements as evidenced by the following:

  1. All prerequisite deficiencies (if any) have been removed.
  2. Twenty-four semester hours of coursework, including MN 9550 and the Research Series starting with MN 9990, have been completed with a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0.
  3. The student’s proposal for the DMin Major Project has been approved by the Human Rights in Research Committee, the Project Committee, and the Program Director.
  4. The student has demonstrated writing skills appropriate to doctoral work and to the successful completion of the Major Project.
  5. The student has demonstrated proficiency in the integration of course work and ministry.

DMin Graduation Requirements

The following general graduation requirements apply to all Doctor of Ministry students at TEDS:

  1. Evidence of a working knowledge of the content of the English Bible.
  2. All students are expected to give evidence of consistent Christian character, a concern for others, and a sincere commitment to Christ such as to qualify for Christian service.

The following 30 semester hours are required of those planning to receive the DMin degree:

  1. The completion of at least 24 hours of credit in doctoral coursework and satisfying all coursework requirements, with a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale). No more than six semester hours of credit may be derived by transfer from non-TEDS Doctoral Programs Ph.D. or DMin), and only three transfer hours will be allowed if a student also completes a three-hour Guided Research project. Only one Guided Research project is allowed while in the program.
  2. The completion of the DMin Major Project, including a successful oral presentation. Major Project research constitutes six hours of credit. All requirements for the degree must be completed within four years from the time of matriculation. If requested, six years may be allowed for those serving in overseas assignments. If degree requirements are not completed within the allowed time limits in effect at matriculation, an extension may be requested through the program director. A continuation fee will be charged for each six-month period in which the degree requirements remain incomplete. Continuation fees may be waived at the recommendation of the Professional Doctoral Committee in extenuating circumstances. The entire program, including any approved extensions, must be completed within 10 years from the first course taken. Beyond 10 years, earned course credits begin to drop off, and courses will need to be repeated.
  • A student who fails to pay the continuation fee must do the following
    1. Write for reinstatement to the Doctor of Ministry Office
    2. Pay the fee for the time of absence from the program
    3. Resubmit application for the Major Project topic if such had previously been approved
    4. Apply to the Professional Doctoral Committee for an extension of time to complete the program, providing a new target date for graduation.

DMin Curriculum Phases

Students must complete 30 semester hours of work as follows:

Phase Content Focus Hours
Phase 1 Missional Renewal, Research & Assessments 9
Phase 2 Ministry Focus & Missional Strategies 15
Phase 3 Major Project Completion & Oral Presentation 6
Total Hours 30

DMin Course Categories

Except for Required Courses and Major Project Courses,  course descriptions vary depending on the faculty, assignments associated with the course, and course content. Course descriptions will be available in the syllabus and on the website. NOTE: Credits earned per course may include a combination of in-class time, field work required, artifacts to be submitted, or other components

MN 9100 Preaching Courses

MN 9200 Strategic Leadership Courses

MN 9300 Pastoral Ministry and Care Courses

MN 9400 Missional Engagement Courses

MN 9550 Missional Leadership in Today's Church  (Required)

MN 9800 Spiritual Formation Courses

MN 9990 Research Methods  (Required)

MN 9991 Major Project Research (6 hours)

MN 9992 Major Project Extension (0 hours)

Structure of the DMin Program

The DMin uses a hybrid model, where credits toward the degree are earned in each course through a combination of in-class work, as well as projects in the field, as students complete coursework and learn competencies for the subject matter in each course. The program is divided into three main phases, during which students make progress toward the completion of 30 credit hours for the degree. These phases are described below.

Phase 1 – Assessments, Research & Missional Renewal – 9 hours

In Phase 1 you will process your pre-work and assessments, reflect on your personal ministry and leadership, evaluate your ministry context and culture, set program goals, become skilled in basic research methods, and learn the core values and theology for bringing missional renewal into your ministry.

Phase 2 – Ministry Focus & Missional Strategies – 15 hours

During Phase 2 your coursework, field work and project proposal will address you specific ministry context, strategy and goals. Competencies learned in each course here are designed to bring missional renewal to the areas of leadership, strategy, change management, disciple-making, communication and evangelism.

Phase 3 – Major Project Completion – 6 hours

In Phase 3 you will finalize you ministry research, complete your ministry-focused strategic plan, and finish writing your Major Project. This written project includes the learning from your coursework, research, and field work you have completed. The project serves as a robust strategic plan for change and missional renewal in your ministry context, continuing well beyond the completion of the DMin degree. It is submitted and evaluated at your Oral Presentation.