Specialized Study Options

The Master of Arts in Christian Formation program provides specialized areas of training that reflect the many ways in which you can follow God's call to ministry. Customize your course plan with a concentration in student and family ministries, small group and discipleship ministries, intercultural ministries, formation and soul care ministries, campus and student development ministries or interdisciplinary studies.

Campus and Student Development Ministries

The campus and student development ministries specialization is designed to equip you with the foundational skills and knowledge to work with students in higher education environments.

This M.A. Christian Formation degree program track requires nine credit hours and includes these courses:

  • MIN-518: Foundations of Student Development
  • MIN-553: Sociology of Adolescence
  • COU-520: Child and Adolescent Counseling

Formation and Soul Care Ministries

The formation and soul care ministries specialization will teach you to conduct counseling consultations, interpret professional standards of counseling ethics and state a personal philosophy of counseling that will help create a framework for holistic pastoral care.

This M.A. Christian Formation degree program track requires nine credit hours and includes these courses:

  • COU-500: Counseling Philosophy
  • COU-510: Consulting
  • COU-521: Marriage and Family Counseling

Intercultural Ministries

The intercultural ministries specialization prepares you to work in a multicultural setting or help lead a missions program at your local church. The classes will help you develop a philosophy and practice of mission that is informed by biblical, theological and cultural perspectives. Further, you will discuss the history of such work and the contemporary demonstrations of how the church is engaged with global mission.

This M.A. Christian Formation degree program track requires nine credit hours and includes these courses:

  • MIN-567: Missional Church: Church and Culture—Past and Present
  • MIN-660: Cultural Intelligence: Multicultural Understanding
  • MIN-667: Urban and Local Development: Exegeting Our Own Communities

Interdisciplinary Studies

Our interdisciplinary studies specialization is intended to offer you the most flexibility as you pursue your ministry goals. The three courses that make up this specialization are any three courses that we offer at Grand Rapids Theological Seminary. Remember that some classes have prerequisites that must be completed before taking the class.

Small Group and Discipleship Ministries

The small group and discipleship ministries specialization is designed to equip you with the foundational skills and knowledge to serve in the local church or as an assistant or associate pastor of a focused or specialized ministry area (e.g., small groups, discipleship, women's ministries, missions).

This M.A. Christian Formation degree program track requires nine credit hours and includes these courses:

  • MIN-630: Small Group Ministries
  • MIN-643: Educational Ministries for Adults
  • Choose one of the following:
    • MIN-534: Evangelism and Discipleship Ministry
    • MIN-554: Theology of Women in Ministry
    • MIN-567: Missional Church: Church and Culture—Past and Present
    • COU-532: Counseling Women through the Life Cycle
    • COU-612: Group Counseling Techniques

Student and Family Ministries

The student and family ministries specialization prepares you to pursue youth ministry. The classes will help you identify and develop skills necessary for communicating biblical truth to the next generation. In addition, you will evaluate teaching and learning theories in order to craft a distinctly Christian philosophy of educating youth.

This M.A. Christian Formation degree program track requires nine credit hours and includes these courses:

  • MIN-553: Sociology of Adolescence
  • MIN-641: Theology of Youth Ministry
  • COU-520: Child and Adolescent Counseling