Doctor of Ministry

Overview: Advanced Ministry Theory & Practice

The Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.) degree is an ideal professional and terminal degree for those who serve the church in congregational or pulpit ministries, institutional or military chaplaincies, counseling ministries, missions agencies, parachurch organizations, or other ministry settings where advanced leadership skills are essential. You will be renewed spiritually and professionally as you gain new critical and analytical thinking tools to address your greatest areas of need in ministry. You may choose to study online, with minimal residencies, or completely online as you earn your doctoral degree in ministry. Regent's D.Min. program is among the first in the nation to receive approval by the Association of Theological Schools to offer the degree completely online, with no residency. This is part of a groundbreaking experimental program offering you the full quality of an ATS-accredited Doctor of Ministry degree with the flexibility to complete it from nearly anywhere in the world. With an emphasis on senior-level leadership tools and the transforming power of the Holy Spirit, Regent's online D.Min. Program – in either format – will help you take your ministry to the next level.

Length: 36 credit hours. Students typically complete this doctorate-level seminary program in three to five years.
Format: The D.Min. program is offered in two formats: 1.) Online with no residency requirements or 2.) Modular with residency requirements for three core classes. Students choose their desired format in advance, during the application process, and may begin their program in August, October, January, March, May, or June. All work for the Online D.Min. program can be completed online. Work for the Modular D.Min. program requires travel to campus three times for a period of five day for each of three core classes, with the rest of the work done online.
Important Links: Faculty | Apply Now | Tuition | Financial Aid
Features: The online Doctor of Ministry degree program is available in five concentrations.

As you investigate online seminary colleges in pursuit of your higher calling, make sure Regent University is on your list. Just use the Important Links section above.

In June 2016, the ATS Board of Commissioners approved a three-year experimental online Doctor of Ministry program, permitting online instruction to fulfill residency requirements.

Program Outcomes

Graduates of this program will:

Realize personal formation and spiritual maturity, and align your calling with your core values and best gifts.

Build advanced understanding of the nature and purposes of ministry.

Retool your purpose through visioneering, leadership and management skills for greater impact.

Enhance competencies in ministerial analysis and skills.

Explore and present new knowledge about the practice of ministry, with a Spirit-led global and prophetic focus on reaching the lost.


The program begins with transformational courses that build upon one another sequentially throughout the year. You will complete assignments including readings, reflection exercises and ministry audits through Regent's Blackboard learning management system. For students who opt for minimal residencies, your on-campus sessions for modular courses will be retreat-like seminars designed to foster spiritual refreshment, personal growth and new learning. They feature small-group interaction, student presentations, guest experts, and time for self-reflection . Following the on-campus modular courses, you will complete post-reading assignments and exercises designed to integrate and apply what you have learned. The online Doctor of Ministry model, in either format, allows for a truly global experience as you may complete all of your studies from nearly anywhere.

Once all course work is completed, students demonstrate what they have learned through the Integrative Exam. Students complete a Mid-course Profile illustrating their growth in the program, and present a dissertation proposal to the faculty on their dissertation committee. After passing this oral examination, students become a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree and complete their dissertation work. Over a period that generally lasts one to three years, students design, develop, execute, and complete their dissertation project, capturing that experience in a written dissertation. The dissertation portion of your doctoral work, including your dissertation defense, requires no on-campus residency, and can be done from a distance.

Core Courses
DCOR 700 D.Min. Leadership Profile (Orientation) 2 credits
DCOR 701 Leader's Life & Values 4 credits
DCOR 702 Vision, Mobilization & Management 4 credits
DCOR 703 Leading, Spiritual Formation & Renewal (Retreat) 4 credits
DCOR 704 Prophetic Leadership & Redemptive Focus 4 credits
Concentration Courses 9 credits
Integrative Examination/Ministry Project Proposal 3 credits
The integrative examination is a culminating exercise in which students demonstrate scholarly, professional, practical and spiritual integration of the D.Min. experience. To fulfill this requirement, students prepare a five to seven page reflective exercise based on a series of questions provided. Students also submit a ministry project/dissertation proposal. The proposal is equal to chapter one of the dissertation.
D.Min. Project 3 credits
Students identify a problem in ministry and propose solutions. The ministry project is a specialized application of the curriculum to the student's ministry context. The project may be scheduled to occur over several months after the student's coursework is completed.
D.Min. Dissertation 3 credits
After students have collected, interpreted and evaluated the ministry project sufficiently, they begin writing the dissertation. Using the skills and materials provided in the prerequisite research component of the D.Min. orientation course, students write and defend a publishable dissertation about their ministry project.
Read course descriptions and more detailed program information in Regent's academic catalog.


Christian Leadership and Renewal

Everything rises and falls on leadership. Becoming an effective leader who can accurately discern vision, mobilize others to fulfill that vision, and act as a catalyst for renewal is vital for your ministry. This concentration focuses on the nuts and bolts of effective leadership and addresses some of the critical topics, advanced skills and complex issues commonly faced by ministry leaders. The following courses are offered for this concentration (choose three): Developing the Leaders Around You, Pentecostal Leadership, Creative Ministry, Leader's Calling, and Community and Advanced Ministry Communication.

Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE)

The demand for highly trained professionals in the field of institutional chaplaincy continues to grow at a significant rate. The roles of these chaplains involve crisis intervention, personal and family counseling, and pastoral care in settings that have life and death intensity.

Because of the highly applied nature of a chaplain's role, Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) opportunities have been created by various accredited institutions that offer supervised on-the-job training for chaplains. The D.Min. program works with these CPE opportunities to capture the value of this applied and rigorous training in a professional doctoral concentration which accepts up to nine credit hours of CPE equivalent study.

Our doctoral program will accept one successfully completed CPE unit (400 hours) through an accredited agency as the equivalent of one 3-credit-hour class for this concentration. All nine credit hours of this concentration can be satisfied by transferring in three successfully completed CPE units.

Community Transformation

Most of the world's population now lives in major urbanized areas. This trend continues to grow, as cities now exceed 20 million in population and become more diverse in culture, religion and need. The Apostle Paul always went to the larger cities to establish new churches, and he harnessed the power of the gospel to transform whole cities. This degree concentration focuses on effective multicultural ministry in an urban setting to produce social and community transformation. The following courses are offered for this concentration: Multiethnic Leadership, Leading Community Transformation, and Contextualized Ministry Seminar.

Military Ministry

The battlefield puts demands and stresses on people which are unlike any other environment. The chaplain faces life and death in his or her ministry on a regular basis, and must possess the advanced skills, critical care and intervention strategies, and personal resources to deal with demanding ministry. This type of intensity is unforgiving, and requires the highest levels of skill, training, and formation available to fulfill the calling.

This concentration is committed to equip the men and women who serve their country in various branches of the armed forces as chaplains. While the Master of Divinity degree is the degree that opens the door for service in military chaplaincy, many branches of the military are encouraging their chaplains to upgrade their education to include a Doctor of Ministry as the preferred terminal professional degree. We work with the United States Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard and their Reserve forces to make doctoral-level professional training possible. We also work with Canadian, British and other forces to shape their chaplains into effective leaders and ministers on the battlefield.

This concentration also works with the various armed forces to integrate Joint Professional Military Education (J.P.M.E.), Military War College training and other advanced military training for advanced standing toward this concentration. Up to 6 credit hours can be transferred into the program, based on individual evaluation of transcripts, and applied toward this professional concentration.

Ministry Leadership Coaching

The nuts and bolts of effective ministry leadership is the leader's ability to select, train, equip and deploy other leaders for ministry. This concentration explores the paradigm of ministry leadership coaching to facilitate this process. Leadership coaching is a highly relational method for forming ministry leaders that can be used as a rapid deployment strategy in your context of ministry. Its focus helps you learn foundational coaching for healthy relationships, life focus, and for a variety of specific leadership training needs. The following courses are offered for this concentration: Foundations of Ministry Leadership Coaching, Leadership Coaching for Life Focus, and Ministry Leadership Coaching Seminar.

Mark Batterson, D.Min. '12

Mark Batterson, D.Min. '12

Lead Pastor, National Community Church

"It was the beginning stages of the D.Min. program that really helped define my leadership gift and lay a foundation for what the Lord has done. It gave me the practical tools that I needed."
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