The Sem Pond

Certificate Programs available in:

Calvin Theological Seminary is offering Certificate Programs to provide an opportunity for church staff, volunteer ministry staff and other interested people to enhance their understanding and training. These are not degree programs, but courses of study intended for ministry and personal enrichment. The courses being offered in the Certificate Programs are graduate level courses that are also offered as part of other degree programs at CTS.

Application Requirements

To participate in a Certificate Program you need to be a high school graduate. You will need to submit a completed application form (pdf), any transcripts of post-high academic work, a complete pastoral recommendation form (pdf), and a $25 application fee. All materials should be submitted to the Admissions Office.

Calvin Theological Seminary
3233 Burton SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49546
Phone: 1-800-388-6034
Fax: 616-957-8621

Certificate Program Curriculum

All Certificate Programs share a common core of classes you will be required to complete.

Core Curriculum: All Certificates (credit hours in parentheses)
Logos (1)
Hermeneutics (1)
Bible Survey (3)
Christian Theology in Reformed Confessions (3)

Note: those students who do not intend to serve in a Reformed tradition may take an approved substitute.

In addition to the Core Curriculum, you will take a series of courses in an area of specialization to complete your Certificate Program.

Certificate in Ministry (15 credit hours)
Gospel Communication (2)
Discipleship & Teaching: Evangelism & Cross-Cultural Ministry (2)
Foundations in Educational Ministry (3) or Introduction to Ministry (3)
Certificate in Church Planting (14 or 15 hours)
Basic Training in Church Planting and Renewal (2)
Contextual Training in Church Planting and Renewal (2)
Introduction to Ministry (3), Discipleship and Teaching in North American Culture (2) , Discipleship and Teaching: Evangelism and Cross-Cultural Ministry (2) or Apologetics (2)
Certificate in Youth Ministry (14 hours)
Youth and Family Ministry (2)
Contemporary Youth Culture & Intergenerational Ministry (2)
Curriculum Design & the Teaching-Learning Process (2)
Certificate in Worship (15 hours)
History of Christian Worship (2)
Theology of Worship & the Sacraments (2)
Forming Worshiping Communities (2)
Choosing Music for Worship (1), Proclaiming Texts Using the Arts (1) or Leading Congregations in Prayer (1)
Certificate in Missions & Evangelism (15 hours)
Discipleship & Teaching: Evangelism & Cross-Cultural Ministry (2)
Christian Engagement with World Religions (3)
Apologetics (2) or 2 credits of electives in Missions and Evangelism
Certificate in Educational Ministries (15 hours)
Foundations in Educational Ministry (3)
Discipleship & Teaching in North American Culture (2)
Curriculum Design & the Teaching Learning Process (2)
Certificate in Pastoral Care (15 hours)
Introduction to Ministry: Forming Communities of Disciples (3)
Pastoral Care as Dying & Rising with Christ (2)
Spiritual Direction (2), Prayer Ministry (2), or Youth and Family Ministry (2)
Certificate in English Bible (16 hours)
1 OT Bible Course (3)
1 NT Bible Course (3)
Discipleship and Teaching in North American Culture (2), Kingdom of God (2), the Sermon on the Mount (2) or any English Bible course (2 or 3)
Certificate in Theology (17 hours)
Systematic Theology I and II (6)
The Church in Historical Context Survey (3), the Church in Historical Context I (3), or the Church in Historical Context II (3)

Advanced Placement

You may be able to gain advanced placement for prior study, knowledge or experience in Bible and Theology. Advanced placement means that you have gained competence equivalent to one or more of the courses listed below.

The following courses are available for Advanced Placement. Study Guides and more information may be found here.

  • Bible Survey
  • Christian Theology in Reformed Confessions

Student competence is demonstrated by way of a written exam and evaluated by faculty. If granted, advanced placement reduces the number of CTS credit hours needed to complete one’s program.

Additionally, a student may choose to demonstrate competence in a specialized ministry course through the submission of a portfolio that shows graduate level learning. A maximum of two credits can be earned through portfolio assessment.

Continuation and Transfer requirements

Continuation in a Certificate Program requires a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.3. During or upon completion of a Certificate Program the completed course work can be transferred into a Master’s program at CTS, if the admissions requirements are met.


The cost per credit hour for Certificate Program courses can be found on the Tuition Rates & Fees page.