Diploma and Masters students typically carry a 18-27 hour load per year. Depending on individual initiative and personal circumstances, most students can complete their Diploma or M.Div in 3-3 1/2 years. Professional Doctoral Studies require approximately three years. Research Doctoral Studies allow up to six years, but most students complete the program in 3-4 years. Southern seeks to serve all current and incoming students with academic advising through our Office of Student Success.