Pathways Online Courses

Pathways Online Course Program

Pathways online courses are offered to provide educational preparation toward leading a congregation as a Commissioned Ruling Elder (CRE).  Courses are open to all, and one does not need to be pursuing to become a CRE in order to participate. Courses aim to enhance knowledge and discipleship, and each course includes live (synchronous) class meetings as well as asynchronous (at-home) assignments. Note: class meetings will not be recorded.

Online registration will open July 2022.


Phase I (Foundational) Core Courses

  • Biblical Interpretation – August 29 – October 20, 2022
  • Reformed Theology – November 7 – December 12, 2022
  • Church History – January 10 – February 14, 2023
  • The Christian Life – February 28 – April 4, 2023
  • Mission & Evangelism – April 18 – May 23, 2023


Phase II (Practical Ministry ) Core Courses

  • Polity & Administration – September 13 – November 1, 2022
  • Teaching the Bible – October 27 – December 8, 2022
  • Pastoral Care – TBD
  • Worship & Sacraments – TBD
  • Preaching – April 27 – June 1, 2023


Additional Course Info:

  • Dates: September 2022 to May 2023
  • Leaders: Union Presbyterian Seminary faculty and experienced practitioners
  • Standard Registration: $150 per course
    • Late Registration: Within two weeks of the first class meeting date, tuition increases by $25 per course.
  • CEUs: 3.0 per course
  • For: Open to all, including those desiring to become Commissioned Ruling Elders as well as church and community members who want to further their education and discipleship
  • In addition, we offer a self-directed New Testament Survey course, which is online with pre-recorded lectures and quizzes.  See below for more information. (Old Testament Survey expected to be available in Summer/Fall 2022)


Course sizes are limited. If a course reaches maximum registration capacity, a waiting list will be started. Tuition cost per course is $150. Each course will include a required text, not included in course tuition. Note: within two weeks of the beginning of each course, the tuition increases by $25 per course.

Online registration will open July 2022.

After you register for Phase I or Phase II core or elective courses, the course syllabus will be sent to you prior to the first class meeting. The online class meeting link will be shared within the course syllabus.

The full schedule of the online courses, along with instructor bios and course descriptions, can be found on the registration page by selecting the appropriate tabs, such as Course Instructors and Schedule of Courses, on the header bar of the registration summary page.


Bible Survey Courses – self-paced to complete at your own pace on your own timeline. Click here for program information on the Bible Survey courses. After you register for the Bible Survey course, you will be sent a login and password to begin the self-paced New Testament Survey course.

  • New Testament Bible Survey course – available now – Click here to REGISTER (for the NT Bible Survey Course only)
  • Old Testament Bible Survey course – expected to become available Summer/Fall 2022
  • Cost per online Bible Survey course is $150.


Why Pathways? To assist presbyteries in training women and men to be Commissioned Ruling Elders, AND to offer quality educational opportunities for church members and lay leaders in an affordable and accessible way, the Leadership Institute offers online courses for:

  • Those seeking to become Commissioned Ruling Elders (CREs) take four Foundational Courses in the first year and five Practical Ministry Courses in the second year.  Please consult with your presbytery on their particular requirements, as these courses are taken in consultation with your presbytery or denominational office to provide educational experiences toward becoming a CRE.
  • Church members and lay leaders interested in taking any or all of the courses offered; it is recommended that the four Foundational Courses be taken before others.
  • Some courses are approved to meet the requirements for those seeking to become a Certified Christian Educator (CCE)