Master of Divinity (MDiv)

The Master of Divinity (MDiv) program is Calvin Seminary’s top-enrolled program, designed to prepare you for diverse ministry opportunities, from pastoral ministry to chaplaincy to missions.

Master of Divinity (MDiv)

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What Is an MDiv?

A Master of Divinity (MDiv) degree is a comprehensive theological degree forming a solid foundation to build upon for a lifetime of ministry.

What Can I Do with an MDiv?

The following are just some of the vocational and ministry paths that an MDiv can prepare you for:

  • Pastor
  • Youth pastor or youth director
  • Worship pastor or worship director
  • Ministry pastor or ministry director
  • Worship pastor or worship director
  • Parachurch ministry leader
  • Denominational ministry leader
  • Nonprofit leader

Our Master of Divinity Curriculum

Your home for a Reformed MDiv. Explore the kingdom of God in a streamlined program that is cohesive and applicable to your ministry.

There are two ways to study Greek and Hebrew at Calvin Seminary. Students can take two 3-credit courses (Fall & Spring semesters), memorizing grammar and vocabulary, with the goal of being able to translate text with a low level of help from resources. This option is for those who plan advanced study above the MDiv level. Another option is to take one 3-credit course, where students learn to translate the text with the help of a digital tool to help them with grammar and vocabulary. This option is for those who are headed toward parish ministry.

MDiv Credit Hours & Classes

The MDiv at Calvin requires 87 credit hours.

600 hour In-Context Learning Assignment (4)

200 hour Cross Cultural Learning Assignment (2)

3 years of participation in Formation Groups (3)

Context (2)

Gospel (2)

Calling (2)

Person (2)

This course introduces students to the theology and message of the Old Testament. Emphasis falls upon the Old Testament as a witness to the Missio Dei, Israel’s covenantal vocation, as well as on fundamental theological themes like covenant, divine presence, kingdom, and eschatology. The course will also introduce students to the Old Testament’s literary shape and general historical setting. Finally, the ‘Mission of God in the Old Testament’ encourages students to articulate the OT’s importance for ministry and theological thinking in the context of the Church.

We will survey the grand story of the missio Dei in the New Testament. We will explore the mission of God to redeem and restore God’s fallen world, including themes such as the image of God, covenant, blessing, suffering, community, and shalom. We will make connections to contemporary ministry issues such as creation stewardship, self-identity, gender relations, anti-racism, immigration, economic justice, etc.

Interpreting the Old Testament for Today’s World (3)

Interpreting the New Testament for Today’s World (3)

Grammar Tools for Hebrew (3)

Grammar Tools for Greek (3)

Systematic Theology I (3)

Systematic Theology II (3)

The Story of Christianity I (3)

The Story of Christianity II (3)

Ethics and the Christian Life trains students in a Christ-centered understanding of the moral life, which it presents as the practice of following Christ in obedience, love, service and suffering, as individuals and as the church, witnessing to the gospel in every area of life. It prepares students to practice, teach, and apply this Christ-centered ethic in various contexts of ministry.

Pastoral Care (3)

Worship (2)

Preaching (2)

Evangelism and Discipleship (3)

The Gospel in a Multicultural and Multifaith World (2)

Leadership in Ministry (2)

The process of spiritual formation is intentionally engaged so that habits developed through theological education will form students holistically for ministry.

Any combination of electives (15)

CRC History - Only for CRC (2)

CRC Polity - Only for CRC (2)

Reformed Confessions - Only for CRC (2)

On Campus & Online

Get your Master of Divinity in Michigan! Our residential option allows you to learn in our newly remodeled smart classrooms alongside your peers and mentors. Experience true community, below-market housing (optional), and a vibrant city at your fingertips.

You can also choose to complete your MDiv mostly online with hybrid learning. The hybrid option allows you to complete your studies mostly online, with the exception of two required, on-campus intensive weeks each year-one week in the fall and one week in the spring.

Reformed Tradition

Calvin prepares students in the Reformed tradition of the Christian faith. Our teaching and formation grow from a shared understanding of God’s Word as articulated in the Reformed confessions. However, you do not need to be a member of the CRCNA, nor seeking ordination in the CRCNA, to complete an MDiv (or any academic program) at Calvin.

Vocational Formation & Contextual Learning

In addition to their classroom work, MDiv students work closely with the Vocational Formation Office and are placed in a contextual learning context in order to enrich their studies and provide them on-the-ground experience. These placements, which are based on the student’s ministry and vocational interests, are assigned early in a student’s program, often within the first year.

Explore the Vocational Formation Office

Finishing Your MDiv

How Long Does an MDiv Take?

The MDiv program at Calvin Theological Seminary is designed to be completed in 3–4 years.

Is an MDiv a Terminal Degree?

A terminal degree is the highest degree in one’s field. While doctorate-level programs (for example, PhD, DMin) are available from some theological schools, the MDiv is generally regarded as the terminal degree for pastors.

Paths to Ordination

As a ministry of the Christian Reformed Church in North America (CRCNA, or known more colloquially as the CRC), Calvin is the preferred seminary for preparation for ordination as Minister of the Word in the denomination. Our MDiv program includes all the required elements to become a candidate for minister of the Word.

How to Apply

A significant number of our students have not formally studied religion and theology prior to attending seminary. Students come from a range of educational backgrounds, from the sciences to the arts and humanities.

Financial Aid & Tuition Assistance

Calvin Seminary offers a wide range of scholarships and other financial assistance. In fact, in recent years, nearly $1.5 million in scholarship funds were awarded annually.

Application Requirements

Admission Deadlines

Applications are generally accepted on a rolling basis, but international students are encouraged to apply as early as possible to coordinate travel and immigration logistics.

The following are general application deadline guidelines:

Fall Term

  • Priority Scholarship Consideration: March 1
  • International Students: June 1
  • North American Students: July 1

Spring Term

  • November 15

Summer Term

  • April 1

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

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Start your MDiv journey today.

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Meet Your Faculty

Faculty at Calvin Theological Seminary carry out the seminary’s mission as inspiring thought leaders, invested teachers and mentors, and committed followers of Christ.

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Student Stories

Past graduates have applied their learning to a variety of ministry-based opportunities. Here are some of their stories.


Academic Support

In addition to contextual learning, the Vocational Formation Office offers students other forms of support, including formation groups with peers, vocational mentors, and assessment tools to help students identify and cultivate their strengths.