Diploma in Theological Studies


The Diploma in Theological Studies offers a basic diploma program (not an accredited degree) in theological studies for mature persons who have not completed a formal undergraduate degree.

Online Theological Education

Central’s Diploma in Theological Studies can be completed 100% online.* We use video-conferencing to facilitate synchronous class sessions on Monday, Tuesday, or Thursday evenings (central time zone) in which students interact with the professor and fellow students. Each class meets one night per week. Students near the site where a class is being offered can join the professor in the room for class time if they would like, but most students attend the synchronous sessions virtually from around the United States. These synchronous sessions are paired with asynchronous learning activities that offer students flexibility to pursue their studies on their own time.

It is never easy to balance seminary studies with family, work, church, and other obligations. Students have to make sacrifices in order for it to work, but Central’s evening synchronous session schedule and online format make it possible for most students to maintain their full-time jobs while earning their Diploma in Theological Studies.

*International students must attend classes in person.

A Creative, Empowering Approach Designed for the Evolving Definition of “Ministry”

Central’s diploma program is designed to help you craft a ministry that is unique to your own vocational or entrepreneurial goals.

It will equip you with a new, empowering vision of ministry so that you can become a transformative agent in the emerging global Christian community.

A Dynamic Curriculum In Step with The Evolution of Global Christian Identity

Achieving academic mastery of core theological and scholarly learning alone is not enough to sustain a successful ministry.

At Central, the signature theological “pillars” of formation, interpretation, contextualization and performance are woven together with contextual ‘threads’ that bring contemporary relevance to the learning outcomes of each and every course you will take. “Threads” include subjects like racial diversity, cross cultural understanding, social justice, environmental theology, sexual identity, religious pluralism, creative expression and more.



A total of 48 credits will be spread over 3 academic years.  Each academic year will include three terms, and each term will be 12 weeks.  Term names are based on the rhythm of the Christian calendar:

Following the three year degree plan, students beginning in the revised curriculum will take the classes in the order below:

 First Year

First Term

F-FM401: Foundations for Seminary Studies (2 credits)
P-CR401: Creativity in Public Ministries (2 credits)
C-CH401: Christian Heritage I (3 credits)

Second Term

I-IN401: Biblical Interpretation (3 credits)
C-CH402: Christian Heritage II (3 credits)

Third Term

I-HB411: Hebrew Bible I (3 credits)
P-CM401: Media for Ministry Development (2 credits)
P-CM402: Interpersonal Skills (2 credits)

Second Year

First Term

I-HB412: Hebrew Bible II (3 credits)
F-TH411: Theological Foundations I (3 credits)

Second Term

I-NT421: New Testament I (3 credits)
F-TH412: Theological Foundations II (3 credits)

Third Term

I-NT422: New Testament II (3 credits)
F-ET421: Christian Ethics (3 credits)

Third Year

First Term

F-CC431: Caring Ministries (3 credits)
X-CL401: Contextual Learning – Formation (3 credits)

Second Term

P-CM411: Homiletics (3 credits)

(Diploma students will add a 1 credit Capstone during this term – Diploma program ends)

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