Degree Programs

Master of Arts in Christian Education (M.A.C.E.)

Charlotte & Richmond Campuses

The purpose of the M.A.C.E. degree program is to prepare you to become a professional educator in Christian congregations or other educational settings. Graduates serve in various capacities and ministerial settings: churches, camps, schools, non-profit organizations, conference centers, and ecclesial governing bodies.

Our newly redesigned M.A.C.E.1 program is 36 credit hours, making it possible for you to complete your degree in just 2 years in our Richmond and Charlotte programs and 3 years in our Blended Learning Program.

Students take courses in biblical studies and theology (9 hours), as well as educational theory, educational practice, and faith formation (9 hours). Supervised ministry work (6 hours) and an integrative mentored project (3 hours) help draw together classroom studies and practical experiences. Students can also pursue special interests through elective courses (9 hours).

If you would like more information about the M.A.C.E. degree, contact our Admissions office at 804-278-4222 in Richmond or 980-636-1662 in Charlotte.

Master of Arts in Christian Education
  • Admission

    • Candidates for the M.A.C.E. program normally must have received a bachelor’s degree (B.A. or B.S.) from a four-year college or university accredited by one of the regional accrediting agencies in the United States or hold an equivalent educational credential from another country.

      An interview with a member of the faculty is required. There are three ways in which you may interview: in person on either campus, by Skype, or by phone. Please contact Sheridan Taylor, Admissions Assistant, at 804-278-4221 or by email at staylor@upsem.edu to arrange your interview.

  • Residency & Time Requirements

    • The M.A.C.E. program ordinarily requires a minimum of two years of full-time study on the Richmond campus. On the Charlotte campus, the M.A.C.E. program ordinarily requires two years of part-time study.

  • Course Requirements

      • Bible (6 hours)
        • BIBL101 – Biblical Interpretation – Old Testament
          • The Bible department has approved BIBL110 or BIBL210 to fulfill this requirement in 2017-2018.
        • BIBL102 – Biblical Interpretation – New Testament
          • The Bible department has approved BIBL120 or BIBL220 to fulfill this requirement in 2017-2018.
      • Theology (3 hours)
        • THEO101 – Theology I -OR- THEO201 – Theology II
      • Supervised Ministry (6 hours)
        • SVCE101 – Christian Education Internship I
        • SVCE201 – Christian Education Internship II
      • Education Core (9 hours)
        • Educational Theory (choose one)
          • EDTH110 – The Teaching Ministry of the Church
          • EDTH210 – Models of Teaching
          • EDTH220 – Contemporary Theology & Education
          • EDTH310 – Theory for Education in Religion
          • EDTH320 – Spiritual Theology & Christian Education
        • Faith Formation (choose one)
          • FTHF110 – Ministry with Children and Families
          • FTHF111 – Nurturing Child & Adolescent Spirituality
          • FTHF120 – Adult Religious Education
          • FTHF130 – Digital Culture & Spirituality
          • FTHF210 – Faith & Human Development
        • Educational Practices (choose one)
          • EDPR110 – Curriculum & Resources for Christian Education
          • EDPR120 – The Christian Life
          • EDPR130 – Community Engaged Teaching & Learning
          • EDPR131 – Christian Teaching & the Public Realm
          • EDPR210 – Teaching the Bible
      • General Electives (9 hours)
        • Students may choose 3 general elective courses from among Union courses.
      • Integrative Project (3 hours)
        • PROJ101 – Christian Education Integrative Project
      •  Total 36 hours
  • Blended Learning Program

    • The course structure seeks to accommodate the busy schedules of adults with careers and families. The time required to complete the M.A.C.E. through the Blended Learning Program will vary depending on several factors: how many classes are taken each term, enrollment status, and whether transfer credit from another institution is accepted. The minimum time required to complete the M.A.C.E. through the Blended Learning Program is ordinarily three years of continuous enrollment in two courses per term, the maximum number of courses per term allowed.

      The fall term includes 11 weeks of study at home starting in September and running through mid-December, with a 6-day period of classes on the Richmond campus in October. The spring term follows a similar pattern from mid-January through April, with classes on the Richmond campus for a 6-day period in late February or early March. Attendance at all class sessions during the on-campus periods is required of all students enrolled in courses each term.

Master of Divinity (M.Div.)

Charlotte & Richmond Campuses

Students come to seminary for the M.Div. degree program in search of knowledge, skills for ministry, and a profound experience in community of the gospel’s liberating power. Graduates of the Master of Divinity program serve in various capacities and ministerial settings: churches, camps, hospitals, schools, non-profit organizations, conference centers, and ecclesial governing bodies. UPSem has a placement rate of 92% within the first 12 months. (Facts & Figures)

Beginning in Summer 2017, we will offer two pathways to the Master of Divinity degree. Biblical languages will no longer be required to complete the degree. However, the biblical languages will still be available to students who choose, or are required by their denomination, to complete those courses. The degree program, with or without the languages, will be 81 credit hours.

Financial aid is available for M.Div. students on both campuses.

Master of Divinity
  • Admission

    • Candidates for the M.Div. program normally must have received a bachelor’s degree (B.A. or B.S.) from a four-year college or university accredited by one of the nationally-recognized regional accrediting agencies in the United States, or hold an equivalent educational credential from another country.

      An interview with a member of the faculty is required. There are three ways in which you may interview: in person on either campus, by Skype, or by phone. Please contact Sheridan Taylor, Admissions Assistant, at 804-278-4221 or by email at staylor@upsem.edu to arrange your interview.

  • Residency & Time Requirements

    • The M.Div. program ordinarily takes at least three years to complete on the Richmond campus, or five years on the Charlotte campus.

  • Course Requirements - English Exegesis

      • Bible (12 hours)
        • BIBL110 – Old Testament I
        • BIBL120 – New Testament I
        • BIBL210 – Old Testament II
        • BIBL220 – Old Testament II
      • History, Theology, Ethics (15 hours)
        • HIST101 – History I
        • HIST201 – History II
        • THEO101 – Theology I
        • THEO201 – Theology II
        • ETHC101 – Introduction to Christian Ethics
      • Preaching & Worship (6 hours)
        • PRAW201 – Introduction to Preaching and Worship
        • Preaching and Worship elective (from set of approved P&W electives)
      • Pastoral Care (3 hours)
        • Choose one Pastoral Care course (indicated by a PCAC course number).
      • Christian Education (3 hours)
        • Choose either one Educational Theory course (indicated by an EDTH course number) or one Faith Formation course (indicated by a FTHF course number).
      • Church in the World (6 hours)
        • Choose two Church in the World courses (indicated by a CITW course number with some exceptions; email the Registrar’s Office for a full list).
      • Supervised Ministry (6 hours)
        • SVMN101 – Supervised Ministry Internship I
        • SVMN201 – Supervised Ministry Internship II
      • Elective courses (30 hours)
        • Students may choose 10 general elective courses from among Union courses.
      •  Total 81 hours
  • Course Requirements - Hebrew/Greek Exegesis

      • Bible (12 hours)
        • LANG110 – Hebrew I
        • LANG120 – Greek I
        • LANG210 – Hebrew II
        • LANG220 – Greek II
      • Bible (12 hours)
        • BIBL201 – Old Testament I
        • BIBL202 – New Testament I
        • BIBL301 – Old Testament II
        • BIBL302 – Old Testament II
      • History, Theology, & Ethics (15 hours)
        • HIST101 – History I
        • HIST201 – History II
        • THEO101 – Theology I
        • THEO201 – Theology II
        • ETHC101 – Introduction to Christian Ethics
      • Preaching & Worship (6 hours)
        • PRAW201 – Introduction to Preaching and Worship
        • Preaching and Worship elective (from set of approved P&W electives)
      • Pastoral Care (3 hours)
        • Choose one Pastoral Care course (indicated by a PCAC course number).
      • Christian Education (3 hours)
        • Choose either one Educational Theory course (indicated by an EDTH course number) or one Faith Formation course (indicated by a FTHF course number).
      • Church in the World (6 hours)
        • Choose two Church in the World courses (indicated by a CITW course number with some exceptions; email the Registrar’s Office for a full list).
      • Supervised Ministry (6 hours)
        • SVMN101  -Supervised Ministry Internship I
        • SVMN20 1- Supervised Ministry Internship II
      • General Electives (18 hours)
        • Students may choose 6 general elective courses from among Union courses.
      •  Total 81 hours

Master of Divinty/Master of Arts in Christian Education (M.Div - M.A.C.E.)

Charlotte & Richmond Campuses

Students in this program plan to make Christian education a significant part of their ministry, whether or not they seek ordination.

Dual degrees graduates serve as associate pastors of Christian education, youth ministers, hospital chaplains, campus ministers, camp and conference directors, “solo” pastors with a full range of responsibilities, and in other roles.

Master of Divinty/Master of Arts in Christian Education
  • Admission

    • Candidates for the M.Div./M.A.C.E.  program normally must have received a bachelor’s degree (B.A. or B.S.) from a four-year college or university accredited by one of the nationally-recognized regional accrediting agencies in the United States, or hold an equivalent educational credential from another country.

      An interview with a member of the faculty is required. There are three ways in which you may interview: in person on either campus, by Skype, or by phone. Please contact Sheridan Taylor, Admissions Assistant, at 804-278-4221 or by email at staylor@upsem.edu to arrange your interview.

  • Residency & Time Requirements

    • Students may earn both a Master of Arts in Christian Education degree and a Master of Divinity degree (M.Div./M.A.C.E.) in four years on the Richmond campus, or five to six years on the Charlotte campus.

  • Course Requirements - English Exegesis

      • Bible (12 hours)
        • BIBL110 – OldTestament I
        • BIBL120 – NewTestament I
        • BIBL210 – OldTestament II
        • BIBL220 – NewTestament II
      • History, Theology, & Ethics (15 hours)
        • HIST101 – History of Christianity I
        • HIST201 – History of Christianity II
        • THEO101 – Theology I
        • THEO201 – Theology II
        • ETHC101 – Introduction to Christian Ethics
      • Preaching & Worship (6 hours)
        • PRAW201 – Introduction to Preaching and Worship
        • Preaching and Worship elective (from set of approved P&W electives)
      • Pastoral Care (3 hours)
        • Choose one Pastoral Care course (indicated by a PCAC course number).
      • Education Core (4 courses- one from each of the three subcategories plus one of your choice) (12 hours)
        • Educational Theory (choose at least one)
          • EDTH110 – The Teaching Ministry of the Church
          • EDTH210 – Models of Teaching
          • EDTH220 – Contemporary Theology & Education
          • EDTH310 – Theory for Education in Religion
          • EDTH320 – Spiritual Theology & Christian Education
        • Faith Formation (choose at least one)
          • FTHF110 – Ministry with Children and Families
          • FTHF111 – Nurturing Child & Adolescent Spirituality
          • FTHF120 – Adult Religious Education
          • FTHF130 – Digital Culture & Spirituality
          • FTHF210 – Faith & Human Development
        • Educational Practices (choose at least one)
          • EDPR110 – Curriculum & Resources for Christian Education
          • EDPR120 – The Christian Life
          • EDPR130 – Community Engaged Teaching & Learning
          • EDPR131 – Christian Teaching & the Public Realm
          • EDPR210 – Teaching the Bible
      • Church in the World (6 hours)
        • Choose two Church in the World courses (indicated by a CITW course number with some exceptions; email the Registrar’s Office for a full list).
      • Supervised Ministry (12 hours)
        • SVMN101 – Supervised Ministry Internship I
        • SVMN201 – Supervised Ministry Internship II
        • SVCE101 – Christian Education Internship I
        • SVCE201 – Christian Education Internship II
      • General Electives (30 hours)
        • Students may choose 10 general elective courses from among Union courses.
      • Integrative Project (3 hours)
        • PROJ101 – Christian Education Integrative Project
      •  Total 99 hours
  • Course Requirements - Hebrew/Greek Exegesis

      • Languages (12 hours)
        • LANG110 – Hebrew I
        • LANG120 – Greek I
        • LANG210 – Hebrew II
        • LANG220 – Greek II
      • Bible (12 hours)
        • BIBL110 – Old Testament I
        • BIBL120 – New Testament I
        • BIBL210 – Old Testament II
        • BIBL220 – New Testament II
      • History, Theology, & Ethics (15 hours)
        • HIST101 – History of Christianity I
        • HIST201 – History of Christianity II
        • THEO101 – Theology I
        • THEO201 – Theology II
        • ETHC101 – Introduction to Christian Ethics
      • Preaching & Worship (6 hours)
        • PRAW201 – Introduction to Preaching and Worship
        • Preaching and Worship elective (from set of approved P&Welectives)
      • Pastoral Care (3 hours)
        • Choose one Pastoral Care course (indicated by a PCAC course number).
      • Education Core (4 courses- one from each of the three subcategories plus one of your choice) (12 hours) 
        • Educational Theory (choose at least one)
          • EDTH110 – The Teaching Ministry of the Church
          • EDTH210 – Models of Teaching
          • EDTH220 – Contemporary Theology & Education
          • EDTH310 – Theory for Education in Religion
          • EDTH320 – Spiritual Theology & Christian Education
        • Faith Formation (choose at least one)
          • FTHF110 – Ministry with Children and Families
          • FTHF111 – Nurturing Child & Adolescent Spirituality
          • FTHF120 – Adult Religious Education
          • FTHF130 – Digital Culture & Spirituality
          • FTHF210 – Faith & Human Development
        • Educational Practices (choose at least one)
          • EDPR110 – Curriculum & Resources for Christian Education
          • EDPR120 – The Christian Life
          • EDPR130 – Community Engaged Teaching & Learning
          • EDPR131 – Christian Teaching & the Public Realm
          • EDPR210 – Teaching the Bible
      • Church in the World (6 hours)
        • Choose two Church in the World courses (indicated by a CITW course number with some exceptions; email the Registrar’s Office for a full list).
      • Supervised Ministry (12 hours)
        • SVMN101 – Supervised Ministry Internship I
        • SVMN201 – Supervised Ministry Internship II
        • SVCE101 – Christian Education Internship I
        • SVCE201 – Christian Education Internship II
      • General Electives (18 hours)
        • Students may choose 6 general elective courses from among Union courses.
      • Integrative Project (3 hours)
        • PROJ101 – Christian Education Integrative Project
      •  Total 99 hours

Master of Theology (Th.M.)

Richmond Campus

The purpose of the Th.M. degree is to provide an additional year of academic preparation beyond the Master of Divinity degree for Christian leadership in pastoral and educational ministries, or in preparation for further graduate work.

Master of Theology graduates have an advanced understanding of a focused area or discipline in the context of general theological study.

Master of Theology
  • Admission

    • Applicants for admission to the Master of Theology program must hold a bachelor’s degree, or its equivalent, from a four-year college or university accredited by one of the nationally recognized regional accrediting agencies or the international equivalent, and must have received a master’s degree in an appropriate discipline from a seminary or university accredited by the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada or its international equivalent.

  • Residency & Time Requirements

    • All enrollments in the Th.M. program must begin in the fall term and the degree is normally completed in one academic year.

  • Course Requirements

    • All Th.M. students will successfully complete at least 30 semester hours, including a Th.M. thesis or summative project, and an oral exam based on their thesis or their summative project. Some Th.M. students may choose to concentrate their studies in a particular field (e.g., New Testament, American Christianity), while others may draw upon the resources of various departments.

  • Th.M. Faculty Advisory Areas

    • Th.M. studies are coordinated by the student’s faculty advisor and the director of graduate programs. Th.M. faculty advisors and their areas of interest include:

      Samuel L. Adams
      Death and the Afterlife
      Ancient Judaism and Early Christianity
      Wisdom Literature
      Wealth and Poverty
      The Bible and American Politics
      The Dead Sea Scrolls

      Samuel E. Balentine
      Ethics of Knowledge
      Morality and Moral Systems
      Art, Science, and Religion
      Apocalyptic Theology

      Katie Geneva Cannon
      Womanist, Feminist, and Mujerista Liberation Theologies
      Codes of Ethics in Slave Narratives
      Intersectionality and Praxis of Freedom
      African American Theological Ethics
      Indigenous African American Spirituality and Ethics
      Germinal Liberation Methodologies
      Aesth-ethics: Religion, Art and Social Justice Activism

      John T. Carroll
      (on sabbatical in Spring/May 2019)
      Gospels
      Parables of Jesus
      New Testament and Contemporary Ethical Concerns
      Theology and Ethics of Paul’s Letters

      Stanley H. Skreslet
      Missiology

      Richard W. Voelz
      Preaching and Youth
      Contextual Preaching and Worship
      The Image of the Preacher

      Karen-Marie Yust
      Digital culture and spirituality
      Children, youth and/or emerging adult faith formation
      Intergenerational Christian formation
      Christian education in a post-Sunday School world
      Educating public theologians in an interreligious and multicultural world

Certificate in Nonprofit Management (Post-baccalaureate graduate certificate)

Richmond Campus

Students in our master’s programs also may participate in the nonprofit management certificate program offered through the L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs at Virginia Commonwealth University. In the program, students gain knowledge and skills in nonprofit governance, management, fundraising, and program development and evaluation that they will need to become leaders and change agents in this rapidly growing sector.

Our reciprocity agreement with VCU means it is very easy for students to take these courses and they do not have to pay extra. VCU’s financial arrangement with UPSem covers the costs, so there’s no need to contact VCU’s business or admissions offices. Just register for the class through the UPSem Office of the Registrar.

Certificate in Nonprofit Management