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Education ministry doctorate among Midwestern’s ATS approvals

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (BP)–Several new degree programs, as well as course offerings via the Internet and a Tulsa, Okla., extension site, have been approved for Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary by the Association of Theological Schools.

The ATS Commission on Accrediting reported its approval of Midwestern’s proposal for a doctor of educational ministry (D.Ed.Min.) degree in mid-June, following a review during the commission’s May meeting in Pittsburgh.

Louis C. Willard, ATS director of accreditation and institutional evaluation, reported that the commission voted to grant preliminary approval for the D.Ed.Min. with the stipulation that an additional faculty person be added in the second year of the operation of the program.

Robert Vaughan, director of doctoral studies at the Kansas City, Mo., seminary, responded, “We’ve already expressed our commitment to this program by hiring an instructor whose emphasis is in childhood education.” Vaughan said he receives inquiries on a daily basis from people wanting to enter the new degree program.

With a new group of students entering the D.Ed.Min. program this fall, Vaughan said, “Their work in this program will give them the opportunity to review what’s current in the education field and its impact on Christian education today.”

In a separate action, the commission granted preliminary approval for Midwestern to offer the master of arts (M.A.) degree, which will allow for specializations in biblical archaeology, biblical languages and counseling. Students could enter those degree plans this fall.

Midwestern also is expanding its extension offerings to include classes in Tulsa, Okla., following ATS approval, with courses available this fall.

Online courses were approved by ATS, permitting up to one-third of a degree program to be completed via the Internet. Midwestern’s Computer Assisted Seminary Education (CASE) program began offering Old Testament Survey II and Theology I classes Aug. 15. Exposition of James will be taught during the January term. And spring online courses include Introduction to Pastoral Care and Counseling and Educational Administration.

“Online students benefit from the same master’s-level seminary courses taught to regular on-campus students,” explained interim academic dean Gary Smith. By offering courses online, students outside the Kansas City area and around the world will be able to access theological education without leaving their ministry settings.

Two groups of people are welcome to enroll in CASE classes at Midwestern, Smith explained. Those who have been called by God to some area of ministry and desire a master’s degree to develop the knowledge and skill to serve effectively can earn up to 30 hours of credit through the CASE program. Individuals desiring a continuing education experience to enrich their lives with new knowledge can also enroll in CASE classes, he said.

For more information on any of Midwestern’s new programs, call the enlistment office at 1-800-944-6287.

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  • Tammi Reed Ledbetter