MA in Educational Ministries

36 credit hours | 2-3 years

Why study Educational Ministries at TEDS?

The Master of Arts in Educational Ministries (MA/EM) equips men and women in congregational or parachurch leadership for collaborative ministry engagement, and for formational teaching and learning of others. Graduates currently serve as church educators and administrators for all ages, education or staff pastors, church administrators, Christian school teachers, parachurch or university staff persons, or are pursuing doctoral educational studies.


In addition to the requirements for general admission, you’ll need the following:

  • An undergraduate major in educational ministries or its equivalent that includes a minimum of 30 hours in educational ministries, Bible / theology, and social science studies; or
  • An undergraduate major or its equivalent with exposure to educational practice in the church, in parachurch / other Christian organizations, or in the public education arena; and
  • Leadership experience in educational practice.

Alternatively, some applicants may not meet the above ideal admission requirements, but possess the following and are encouraged to apply to the MA in EM program, or the Educational Ministries Certificate: 

  •  Intensive or extensive life experience with educational practice in the church, parachurch, other Christian organization, or in the public education arena (generally five-plus years of full-time experience) 
  • Non-formal or informal preparation for theological study in educational ministries at the graduate level (theological education in a church or parachurch environment) 
  • Demonstrated academic ability through evaluation and interview by the EM Department (personal interview encompassing demonstrable skills, character, knowledge, and critical thinking) 


Our program will help you by focusing your coursework on three themes in educational ministry: Congregational Life (family, age-specific and inter-generational ministry), Collaborative Ministry Engagement (leadership, small groups, teams), and Formational Learning (formational discipleship, teaching, and learning). You will focus on one or two of these themes in your coursework and capstone projects, but will substantively engage all three themes throughout your degree. 

You can take this degree entirely through TEDS Online, in person at Trinity, or through a mixture of both. 


Bible and Theology Core (12–13 Hours)

Course Title Credits
ID 5000 Biblical Theology and Interpretation 3 hours
ST 5201 Theology I: The God of the Gospel 3 hours
ST 5202 Theology II: The Gospel of God 3 hours
OT 5000
Old Testament Introduction 4 hours
NT 5000 New Testament Introduction 3 hours

Educational Ministries Core (6 Hours)

Course Title Credits
EM 5200 Educational Ministries (or EM 5100) 2 hours
EM 5125 Teaching and Learning 2 hours
EM 5210
Christian Leadership  2 hours

Congregational Life Focus

Course Title Credits
EM 5541 Youth in the Congregation
EM 5560 Adults in the Congregation
EM 5576 Marriage and Family Enrichment
EM 6100 Intergenerational Ministry in the Church
EM 6270 Building Community in the Church
ES 7524 Children in the Congregation
ES 7535 Nurturing Families in the Church
ES 7550
Local Church as System
ES 8211 Teaching Others to Teach
ES 8235 Ministry with Aging Adults

 Collaborative Ministry Engagement Focus

Course Title Credits
EM 6100 Intergenerational Ministry in the Church
EM 6270 Building Community in the Church
EM 6275 Developing Healthy Spiritual Leaders
ES 7550 Local Church as System
ES 7815 Change, Power, and Conflict 
ES 7830 Developing Collaborative Teams
ES 8258 Online TEaching and Learning
ES 8425 Theological Education
ES 8605 Historical Religious Educators and
the 21st Century

Formational Learning Focus

Course Title Credits
EM 5510 Children Formation and Journey
EM 6260 Small Group Process in Ministry
EM 6265 Building Ministry Teams
EM 7550 Local Church as System
ES 7560 Program Planning Dynamics in
the Local Church
EM 8240 Intergenerational Education
ES 8255 Models of Non-Traditional Education
ES 8710 Social Intelligence and Leadership 
ES 8715 Appreciative Inquiry

Participants consult with the EM faculty adviser to focus concentration courses around an educational area of contextual and personal interest. 


Throughout your program, you will participate in field-based and collaborative learning community activities in order to develop a robust EM Portfolio, which will culminate in your Capstone experience. Consult with department faculty to determine the nature of your Capstone experience based on your ministry goals and prior experience.

Course Title Credits
EM 7465 MA (Educational Ministries Capstone) 0–4 hours
Suggested Interdepartmental Courses

You are encouraged to consider the following courses in other departments that may be applicable to the EM Concentration depending on your area of interest. Work with your advisor to determine which courses are appropriate for your interest area.

Course Title Credits
CH 5051 History of Christianity I 4 hours
CH 5052 History of Christianity II 4 hours
CM 6510 Human Growth and Development 3 hours
CO 5210 Counseling Skills Training 3 hours
CO 6530 Child & Adolescent Counseling 2-3 hours
CO 6575 Parent Education 2 hours
HM 5000 Theology & Methodology of Biblical Preaching  
ID 6500 Understanding the Social and Cultural Contexts of Ministry
ME 5001 Foundations of Evangelism 2 hours
ME 5175 Evangelistic Bible Study: Mark
ME 6610 Anthropology for Ministry
ME 6660 Christian Community Development
ME 6963 Principles of Discipleship
ME 7215 Teaching the Bible in Intercultural Settings
ME 7710 Contextualization
ME 8215 Teaching Across Cultures
ME 8815 Ethnicity: Modes of Inquiry and Analysis
NT 5100 English Bible (various books)
OT 5100 English Bible (various books)
OT 5050 Geography of Bible Lands
PR 5600 Christian Faith and Contemporary Challenges 
PT 5100 Spiritual Formation for Ministry
PT 6300 Intro to Chaplain Ministries 2 hours


Student Learning Outcomes

The MA in EM will enable participants to:

  • Critique educational practices and experiences with renewed theoretical and educational understanding
  • Ground their educational thinking in a strong biblical and theoretical base
  • Integrate educational theory with Christian character and formation
  • Link their educational framework within a contextualized ministry practice
  • Identify and articulate a leadership philosophy and implementation strategy within an organizational system

MA in EM Residency and Online Course Delivery

MA in EM courses are available in several modes: on the Deerfield campus in semester long, short-term weekly modular, weekend, and summer formats; online where the entire program may be completed; at approved extension sites; some independent study work; and conference or on-site wrap-a-rounds. Program participants may “mix and match” blending instructional modalities in any fashion accessible to them in consultation with their faculty adviser. Not all courses are available in all modes or during all semesters.

While Deerfield-based course work provides the largest course selection, the MA in Educational Ministries is available entirely online with courses rotating through a two to three-year cycle. All Bible and theology, and educational ministries Core courses are available online, as are an adequate number of EM Concentration courses in order to complete the MA in EM degree. Online participants are encouraged to join the Deerfield campus community for one or two short-term modular or weekend classes as their schedule allows and courses are of interest.

Further, as an Educational Ministries Department we are committed to thoughtful and collaborative delivery of online education. Our intention as an EM Department is to state and practice the following Online Teaching Values:

  • We purpose to equip servants for gospel work unable to locate to the home campus
  • We facilitate learning among geographically dispersed and diverse program participants
  • We intend to maximize a learner’s contextual field experience
  • We collaborate learner to learner, faculty to learner, and learner to ministry colleagues
  • We endeavor to create a community of learners mutually contributing to the learning of others; each person has a responsibility to the learning community
  • We use technology as a tool to enhance and enable and minimize inhibition

MA in Educational Ministries: Core Values

Advanced Standing in the Educational Ministries Department

Advanced Standing of not more than nine semester hours may be granted in the MA in Educational Ministries program and not more than three semester hours in the Certificates on the basis of prior academic work in a formal or non-formal context. Such work shall be assessed by the Educational Ministries Department in light of the stated program objectives with evidence of knowledge, competence, and skills aligned with the degree program. Advanced standing with credit is not granted on the basis of ministerial or life experience. After consultation with the EM program adviser, petitions for advanced standing should be submitted to the department chair subsequent to completion of the first program course and prior to enrollment in the third semester. See the EM Department for details.


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