Web Site: http://seminary.bethel.edu/
Type: General
Relative Cost: Mid-Range
Tuition: $11,730
Size: Mid-Sized
Students: 300
Faculty:
Reputation: Well Known
Denomination: Baptist General Conference

Serving students in the southwestern United States, Bethel Seminary San Diego is situated on a beautiful campus in Southern California. Currently, the seminary occupies a 20,000 square-foot seminary building that house offices, classrooms, a student center and expanded library facilities with more than 80,000 volumes. Its 300 women and men represent a wide diversity of ages, cultures, vocations, and denominational backgrounds  making the seminary experience valuable in ways beyond the classroom.

Although Bethel Seminary is affiliated with Converge Worldwide (Baptist General Conference), they also serve students from more than 50 other denominations. Dr. John R. Lillis is the Dean and Executive Officer of Bethel Seminary San Diego and has served in those positions since 2001. Under his leadership, enrollment has increased dramatically, the number of masters degrees offered has nearly doubled, and the school has added a doctoral degree program.

HISTORY

In 1977, Bethel Seminary broadened its ministry and opened a campus in San Diego, California. Using the facilities at College Avenue Baptist Church, Bethel Seminary began offering courses that would eventually lead students to degrees in the Master of Arts (Theological Studies), the Master of Arts in Applied Ministry, the Master of Arts in Christian Education, the Master of Divinity, and the Master of Arts in Marital and Family Therapy. San Diego is geographically and spiritually positioned because it is a community of ethnic diversity, burgeoning growth, enormous spiritual need, a large concentration of military personnel, and proximity to Mexico – factors offering unlimited opportunities for cross cultural ministry experiences.

THEOLOGY AND ACADEMICS

Bethel Seminary San Diego is dedicated to providing outstanding theological education in an environment that embraces human diversity and celebrates godly wholeness. Biblical studies, theological learning, ministry preparation, and personal discipleship are all embraced by a commitment of strategic contextualization for life in every society. Bethel’s roots are in the Pietist movement which sets the school apart from some other baptistic or evangelical groups.

Master of Divinity Program

Bethel Seminary’s Master of Divinity program is designed to guide students in a process of growth through cognitive studies, skill courses and experiences, self-assessment measures, counseling and community life that leads to self-understanding and spiritual maturity. Bethel Seminary seeks to graduate people who have knowledge and experience of the Christian faith, who give evidence of emotional and spiritual maturity, who relate to others with integrity, who possess skills for ministry and who meet the educational requirements for ordination.

For the Master of Divinity program, Bethel Seminary San Diego offers two different program options:

  • Residential Program: Offers classes during the afternoon and evening; some courses are available in week-long, intensive formats or online.
  • InMinistry Distance Program: Bethel Seminary’s distance program is the nation’s first fully accredited seminary distance learning program. Through this program, it makes the Master of Divinity degree available to all nonresident students who currently serves in ministry positions. The InMinistry program blends online coursework with on-campus intensive classes. Students are only required to attend courses on campus twice a year which involves two one-week intensives during each session.

A key component of M.Div. program is Greek and Hebrew studies to help students understand the language foundation of Christian texts. All M.Div. students are required to take biblical language track in either Greek or Hebrew, or they can choose the combined Greek and Hebrew track. A minimum of 144 quarter credits is required for graduation in the M.Div. program.

The Master of Divinity curriculum includes supervised ministry experience. During the second year, the student is engaged in an initial church practicum. The third year requires local church leadership and supervisory experience.

Master of Divinity (Traditional Greek & Hebrew Track) – 144 Credits

  • Required Courses – 108 Credits
    • Students are required to take courses such as Hermeneutics, Elementary Greek I and II, Intermediate Greek, Hebrew Language I and II, Intermediate Hebrew, Systematic Theology I, II and III
    • Concentration Courses and Electives – 24 Credits
    • Supervised Ministry and Other Requirements – 12 Credits

Master of Divinity (Traditional Greek Track) – 144 Credits

  • Required Courses – 108 Credits
    • Students are required to take courses such as Hermeneutics, Elementary Greek I and II, Intermediate Greek, Systematic Theology I, II and III
    • Concentration Courses and Electives – 24 Credits
    • Supervised Ministry and Other Requirements – 12 Credits

Master of Divinity (Traditional Hebrew Track) – 144 Credits

  • Required Course – 108 credits
    • Students are required to take courses such as Hermeneutics, Elementary Greek I and II, Intermediate Greek, Systematic Theology I, II and III
    • Concentration Courses and Electives – 24 Credits
    • Supervised Ministry and Other Requirements – 12 Credits

For the complete list for the Master of Divinity Degree Plan, please check Bethel Seminary’s Academic Catalog.

Student Reviews:

  • “We have brilliant professors. Student body count of around 250 (as of 2011). Ridiculously friendly staff. And like the other reviewer, the library really is nice and quiet. There’s even a prayer room if you need some time with Jesus before freaking out about your midterm–or life, whichever comes to mind first. We have a FANTASTIC Marriage and Family Therapy program and dispatch very equipped and reputable graduates into the world that needs them. Coupled with equipped M.Div and other seminarian students, we’re going to save the world…” – Andy P.

 

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