Master of Divinity

COMPREHENSIVE PREPARATION FOR A LIFETIME OF FAITHFULNESS

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Program Snapshot

84 Credit Hours 28 Classes
3 Years to Complete
$310 Per Credit Hour Learn more
On Campus
or
Online Learn More
Next Start Date June 3
Explore M.Div. Options

Southern Seminary's Master of Divinity is the best way to prepare for ministry. Our M.Div. will equip you to know the Bible, deepen your theology, and serve Christ, wherever he may call you.

You will learn from a faculty who lead as scholars in the academy and serve as ministers in the church. Our faculty equips students with the knowledge, skill, and character necessary for effective public, personal, and evangelistic ministry.

The M.Div. is for pastors and missionaries, counselors and educators, worship leaders and ministers, and all who aspire to a lifetime of faithfulness.

3 Reasons to Study the M.Div.

at Southern Seminary

1

Our Trusted Faculty

Southern’s world-renowned faculty are brilliant scholars, experienced pastors, and seasoned theologians with hundreds of years of experience teaching and preparing ministers of the gospel. Among all the considerations for selecting ministry training, one stands above the rest: choose a faculty.

2

Comprehensive and Effective Curriculum

Southern Seminary’s M.Div. program is comprehensive and effective, providing you with the knowledge and skills you need for a faithful and impactful ministry. With 63 hours devoted to core of Bible, theology & ministry studies, Southern prepares you to be the theologically prepared pastor, leader, counselor, or teacher the Church needs.

3

Our Confessional Community

Southern Seminary is a community of faith and learning, and with over 13,000 graduates in the last 30 years, the Southern community is unlike any other. You will build relationships that will support and encourage you as a student and throughout your lifetime of faithful ministry.

The simplified M.Div.

84 Credit Hours


Biblical Studies

21 Credit Hours


9 Language & Interpretation

6 Old Testament

6 New Testament

Theological Studies

21 Credit Hours


9 Theology

6 Church History

6 Ethics and Apologetics

Practical Studies

21 Credit Hours


9 Preaching & Public Ministry

6 Personal Ministry

6 Evangelistic Ministry


21 Credit Hours of Electives across all Disciplines

These 21 hours may be used to pursue Graduate Certificates or electives of interest

Graduate Certificates

Students pursuing the Southern M.Div. may also seek multiple Graduate Certificates using their elective hours.


Advanced Master of Divinity


Students with a robust selection of bible or theology courses in their bachelor’s program, or graduates of Boyce College are invited to consider the Advanced M.Div.

MDiv + MBA Program


Obtain a valuable ministry and marketplace degree through a transfer agreement with Southern Seminary and Union University.


Study in Louisville and Save


Residential M.Div. students now pay only for the first 9 hours per semester and may take up to 15 hours at no additional cost. Students can now save up to 40% on tuition by completing their courses in person.

The Residential M.Div. Tuition Reduction may not be combined with other SBTS tuition reductions. If you have any questions regarding your expected tuition cost, please contact Admissions at admissions@sbts.edu.

Prepared to Lead

Southern’s M.Div. provides the foundation for ministry.

View upcoming courses, course descriptions, and faculty on our Public Course List.

Biblical Studies
Course Number Description Credit Hours
22400 Beginning Greek 3
20400 Beginning Hebrew 3
22100 Biblical Hermeneutics1 or 3
22440 Introduction to Greek Exegesis: 1 John1 or
20440 Introduction to Hebrew Exegesis: Ruth1
20200 Introduction to the Old Testament I 3
20220 Introduction to the Old Testament II 3
22200 Introduction to the New Testament I 3
22220 Introduction to the New Testament II 3
Theological Studies
Course Number Description Credit Hours
27060 Systematic Theology I: Theological Prolegomena, and the Nature and Works of God 3
27070 Systematic Theology II: Christ, Salvation, and the Holy Spirit 3
27080 Systematic Theology III: Baptist Theology of Scripture and the Church, and Eschatology 3
25100 Introduction to Church History I 3
25120 Introduction to Church History II 3
29250 Survey of Christian Ethics 3
28700 Christian Apologetics 3
Practical Studies
Course Number Description Credit Hours
30000 Christian Preaching2 or 3
45400 Christian Teaching
30020 Preaching Practicum2 or 3
40200 Introduction to Biblical Worship
40080 Christian Leadership 3
34300 Biblical Counseling & Personal Ministry of the Word 3
40301 Pastoral Ministry2 or 3
45260 Discipleship Ministry
32100 Personal Evangelism & Devotion 3
32960 Introduction to Missiology 3
Electives
Course Number Description Credit Hours
Electives Across All Disciplines3 21
  1. Students will choose between 22100, 22440, and 20440. Note that elementary language must be taken before a syntax.
  2. 30000, 30020, and 40301 are reserved for men.
  3. Students may pursue Graduate Certificates using elective hours.

Learning Outcomes

Southern’s M.Div. prepares you for a lifetime of faithfulness by equipping you with the knowledge, skills, and character to serve the church and advance the gospel around the world.

  • Students will be able to demonstrate a growing, Christlike character and a sense of God’s calling to ministry.
  • Students will be able to understand the Christian worldview and have a global vision for fulfilling the Great Commission.
  • Students will be able to demonstrate significant knowledge of the Bible, interpret Scripture’s original meaning, and apply Scripture to contemporary situations.
  • Students will be able to display a biblical vision for ministry and lead with humble authority.
  • Students will be able to preach/teach Scripture clearly and passionately so as to engage the mind and move the heart.

Frequently Asked Questions

Have questions? Our dedicated team of admissions counselors is here to help every step of the way. Here are some answers to common questions.

Professors dressed in graduation robes walking into chapel for Convocation

Southern’s M.Div. is the gold standard in theological education including courses in theology, history, evangelism, preaching/teaching, and more.

In addition, students pursuing the M.Div. can complete one or multiple Graduate Certificates that will prepare graduates for specialized areas of local church or para-church ministry.

Students with an accredited bachelor’s degree (in any field/major) are eligible to apply for the Southern M.Div.* It is not required that applicants have an academic background in biblical or ministry studies.

Click here to learn more or start your application.

*The Advanced M.Div. has differing admissions requirements.

Graduate Certificates allow you to pursue specialized ministry training en route to your M.Div.* utilizing elective hours (it will not increase the length of the degree).

Standard Graduate Certificates are 9 credit hours. Advanced Graduate Certificates are 18 credit hours.

Earned certificates will appear on a student’s transcript upon graduation.

*Students who already hold a M.Div. may pursue stand-alone Graduate Certificates.

The Southern M.Div. allows students 21 hours of unrestricted electives.

Students who pursue one Graduate Certificate will utilize 9 of these 21 elective hours. Students who pursue 2 Graduate Certificates will utilize 18 of 21 elective hours.

Note that an Advanced Graduate Certificate will utilize 18 of 21 elective hours.

Yes. Students with previous divinity credit may be able to transfer their credit into programs at Southern Seminary. See our Transfer Credit page for more information.

Only masters-level credit may transfer into the M.Div.

Transfer credit cannot count towards Graduate Certificates.

Yes. Students who have an accredited Bachelor’s degree in bible, theology, or Christian ministry may qualify for:

Corey Abney preaching

In their own words

“During my time at Southern Seminary, I learned how to study the Bible, how to apply it accurately, and how to preach it with passion. I also grew as a ministry leader, learning valuable leadership principles that I still rely on today. Southern equipped me for life and ministry in ways that no other place could, and I am forever grateful.”

Corey Abney

In their own words

“Southern Seminary deepened my love for God and His Word, equipping me to radiate the Gospel’s transformative power with compassion and conviction, enriching my teaching to point others to the glories of Christ.”

Anna Kinde
Preacher preaching

In their own words

“My pastor, who graduated from Southern Seminary, spoke so highly of Southern and of how he was trained theologically – and that’s what I wanted too. My time at Southern developed in me strong disciplines for study, a deeper theology, and a greater depth in my ability to study the Bible.”

Brandon Sutton
Major Jeremy Caskey praying

In their own words

“I have used every class I had ever taken at Southern in my ministry as a military chaplain: from hermeneutics to homiletics, from counseling to intercultural communication, missions, evangelism, and all the rest. While nothing can ultimately prepare us for the spiritual warfare that rages in this world (Eph 6:12), Southern Seminary equipped me for the upward call in Christ Jesus (Phil 3:14), pointing me to the fact that his grace is sufficient, his power is made perfect in weakness (2 Cor 12:9).”

Major Jeremy Caskey
United States Air Force

Faculty include:

Thomas R. Schreiner

James Buchanan Harrison Professor of New Testament Interpretation and Professor of Biblical Theology

Andrew T. Walker

Associate Professor of Christian Ethics and Public Theology

Ayman S. Ibrahim

Bill and Connie Jenkins Professor of Islamic Studies

Abraham Kuruvilla

Carl E. Bastes Professor of Christian Preaching

Stephen J. Wellum

Professor of Christian Theology

Resources as a Southern Seminary student

Academic Support

Access academic advising, writing assistance, language tutoring and more as a Southern Seminary online or on-campus student.

Flexible Course Options

With multiple course delivery options you’ll find classes that fit around your schedule.

  • 100% online degrees
  • Main campus courses
  • Hybrid campus intensive options

Financial Aid

We are committed to making your education affordable. Our Financial Aid office can connect you with institutional & outside sources of aid.

A Faculty You Can Trust


Learn from renowned scholars and church leaders who are committed to faithfully teaching God’s Word.

Meet the Faculty

Are you ready to become a pastor, counselor, or church leader who is Trusted for Truth?

Get Started Today.

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Apply now for summer or fall studies

Classes begin in June & Aug.