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Master of Divinity - FAQ
Frequently Asked Questions for the Non-Traditional MDiv Degree
How long does it take?
While you can go at your own pace, the overall schedule is structured around a 6-year time frame. This means that you would need to maintain an average of at least 18 hours per calendar year. While this is a recommended pace, you are free to go slower or faster depending on your life circumstances.
6-yr Summer Schedule
What would the overall schedule look like?
There are many paths to the completion of the MDiv. degree. We have created several tools to help you plan your particular path. These tools include an MDiv. map, a 6-year schedule of summer classes, and a course menu. Please note that the core courses rotate on a 6-year cycle and the practical theology rotate on a 4-year cycle.
Degree Map | MDiv Course Menu | 6-yr Summer Schedule
When and how can I begin? How much of my summer will this take?
Once admitted, the increased flexibility makes it possible for someone to begin any calendar day of the year that RTS is open! You may elect to begin with a Virtual course. The Virtual Campus Registrar will be happy to assist you, call 800-227-2013, email@example.com. Be sure to check out our “Insider Tips” for advice on which classes to get sooner rather than later.
Or, you may start off with summer courses in order to plunge in and gain momentum. You can take as few or as many as you wish over the summer term. The main thing to remember is to maintain a pace of at least 18 credits per year to stay on a 6-year track. We are scheduling courses and their requirements to maximize both your time and energy: they are usually compacted into one- or two-week blocks. What could be better than a trip to sunny Florida for a time of passionate theological engagement while squeezing in a bit of beach time or a trip to see a certain mouse?
Insider Tips | Upcoming Summer Courses
Where would I stay during the summer courses?
Our Transitions Coordinator, will be glad to assist you in discovering housing options, churches near the campus, even great places to shop and eat. As a networker of resources and needs, the Transitions Coordinator helps find leads on opportunities within our immediate RTS community as well as in the wider Orlando church community. They can even help connect you to potential roommates to make staying in town more affordable. Contact the Transitions Coordinator at OrlandoCommunity@rts.edu.
How much does it cost? What kinds of financial aid are available?
Planning ways to finance the cost of your seminary education can be a worrisome task. God offers very real comfort through the words of the Apostle Paul, who writes: “ My God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19, NIV). If God has called you to seminary training you can begin this preparation process, resting in the promise of His faithfulness to provide for all your needs.
At RTS, we have maintained a policy of keeping seminary costs as low as possible; in fact, roughly two-thirds of the actual cost of tuition is already underwritten through the generous gifts of many donors who are committed to preparing men and women for ministry. Consequently RTS is as affordable or more affordable than other comparable seminaries.
RTS generously awards substantial funds each year in financial aid to qualified full-time students (24 or more credit hours per academic year for the Summer MDiv.). Many different grants and scholarship funds are available; such as the Basic Grant, Minister’s Family Grant, Campus Ministry Grant or Church Partnership Program. In addition, we have several Partnership relationships with various ministry organizations which substantially reduces the tuition rate per hour whether you take one class or go full-time.
Tuition & Fees | Financial Aid
Is this MDiv. Degree accredited?
The RTS Orlando MDiv. is both regionally and nationally accredited. What’s changed is the increased flexibility in how you complete the degree. Now you can take advantage of our summer courses (in combination with Virtual classes) to move at your pace like never before. (The RTS Catalog offers more detailed information about our accreditation.)
Will RTS faculty teach the courses?
The faculty at RTS is acknowledged year after year for outstanding instructional skills and scholarship. Our professors bring a wealth of educational knowledge and experience from prestigious institutions such as Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Cambridge, Oxford, Duke and others. They have also been shaped by extensive ministry experience. Virtual as well as extension site courses are taught by our top-notch faculty. So you can rest assured that Summer MDiv. courses will continue that tradition.
To discover our community of formative faculty, click here.
What kind of formative experiences are involved?
The MDiv. program involves many formative experiences, starting in the classroom. Expect our faculty to challenge your hearts as much as your minds! More is involved, however, in being shaped into a minister of the Gospel, a process requiring growth in knowledge, skills, and character. Significant aspects of spiritual/professional growth occur in the context of ministry, which is the impetus behind our requirement of at least 400 hours of mentored ministry experience followed by a field education processing class.
A combination of work, worship, and play are involved in the learning process in which a community participates. We know you have your own local and church communities, and they serve this purpose. Nevertheless, while you stay with us during the summers, we will connect you to each other, to the faculty, and to the Lord through times of recreation, fellowship meals, and chapel services.