Master of Arts in Ministry | IBCS

Master of Arts in Ministry

The Master of Arts in Ministry program provides graduate-level preparation for those who desire the next level of growth in their ministry in serving others. 


Mentored for Ministry Through an Advanced Degree

Are you finding yourself serving in an area of ministry and desiring the next steps of growth? Or perhaps God is calling you to serve Him in a new ministry. Have you considered the value a master's degree could add to your own personal effectiveness in serving others?

The Master of Arts in Ministry degree prepares you with the same emphasis in mentoring for ministry that you will find in our undergraduate programs. This master's degree is available in both in-person and live online formats.

When you enroll in the Master of Arts in Ministry program, you can choose from three concentrations:

Christian Service
  • If you want to be able to serve the Lord more effectively in the church and in the world, but you are not certain of a specific direction, the Christian Service concentration might be the right option for you. In addition to the core classes, an advisor will help you customize your program with electives such as Bible, theology, education, music, and practical studies.
Church Music
  • The value of a scriptural understanding of music is essential to how people view the worship of God. The Church Music concentration provides emphases in music proficiency, theology of music, and ministry principles of music. In order to achieve full candidacy status in the program, you must show proficiency in one of the five principal areas: conducting, piano, voice, instrumental, or composition.
Pastoral Ministry
  • If you are seeking further preparation and development for pastoral ministry or its equivalent, the Master of Arts in Pastoral Ministry concentration could be your next step. This program provides core classes in Bible, theology, and fundamental ministry practice, while also featuring instruction in pastoral competencies such as preparation and delivery of Biblical messages and counseling. This concentration will give you basic pastoral ministry preparation that will benefit you while you serve under a seasoned leader and is an excellent springboard into deeper and more comprehensive training. If you qualify for the IBCS M.Div. program, you can apply all of your M.A.Min. courses, except for the capstone project, toward the M.Div. course requirements.
  • Because the New Testament teaches that pastoral leadership is the responsibility of men (1 Tim. 2:12; 1 Cor. 14:34), the Pastoral Ministry concentration is open only to male students.

All of these concentrations give you a solid foundation of Bible, theology, and ministry courses and will also allow you to focus on ministry preparation that is best suited to God’s calling in your life.

Program Prerequisites

In order to be accepted into the Master of Arts in Ministry program, there are certain prerequisites that must be met:

  • Admission to the M.A.Min. program requires an approved bachelor’s degree.
  • Admission to the Church Music concentration also requires an audition (live or recorded), which shows adequate proficiency in your area of musical expertise.

Program Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the Master of Arts in Ministry program, you will be able to do the following:

  • Recognize and articulate theological values according to a thoroughly Biblical and historically Baptistic position.
  • Communicate Biblical truth clearly and effectively, whether in print or in speech.
  • Develop relevant answers to current ministry problems and issues.
  • Serve and lead in the local church with administrative, relational, and spiritual adeptness.

Future Ministry Opportunities

With the Master of Arts in Ministry degree, you’ll be better prepared for the ministry opportunities the Lord has in store for you. You will put into practice what you are learning in the class as you continue to serve in your ministry. Here are just some of the options you will be more equipped for after completing a Master of Arts in Ministry:

  • Senior or associate pastor
  • Missionary
  • Camp ministry leader
  • Sunday school teacher
  • Lay leader
  • Faithful Christian in secular employment
  • Bible teacher at school or home

Program Requirements

Christian Service Concentration
Church Music Concentration
Pastoral Ministry Concentration
Course Hours
BI 500 Old and New Testament Survey 2
BI 512 Hermeneutics 2
EN 620 Research and Writing 2
PR 651 Discipleship and Mentoring 2
PR 653 Philosophy of Ministry 2
TH 601 Prolegomena and Bibliology 2
TH 602 Trinitarianism 2
Course Hours
Approved Electives 16
PR 630 Capstone Project 2
Course Hours
Church Music Requirements
Applied Principal in conducting, voice, piano, collaborative piano, piano pedagogy, instrumental, or composition* 4
MU 521 Biblical Foundations of Church Ministry 2
MU 552 Hymns as Theology 2
MU 573 Church Music Internship 2
Church Music and General Electives**
MU 542 Church Music Writing and Arranging 2
ED 581 Teaching General Music 2
MU 621 Advanced Keyboard Skills 2
MU 671 Advanced Songleading 2
MU 672 Graded Choirs 2
MU 501 Computer Music Notation and Publishing 2
Approved General Electives 4

*The applied principal instruction will be two semesters (2 credits each).

**The student will choose eight (8) total electives: four (4) credits from the list above of church music electives and four (4) approved general electives.

Course Hours
HI 533 History of Fundamentalism 2
PR 652 Evangelism and Cross-Cultural Issues 2
PR 671 Expository Preaching 2
PR 672 Homiletics 2
PS 500 Theology of Counseling 2
Approved Electives 6
PR 630 Capstone Project 2
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Learn how our faculty mentor for ministry


David Shumate, J.D., Ph.D.

Dr. David Shumate came to know the Lord while in Harvard Law School through the witness of a Christian classmate. After graduating from Harvard, he earned his M.Div. from Bob Jones Seminary. Currently he serves as the Academic Dean for both the undergraduate and graduate programs at IBCS.

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