Anderson, Indiana

AU SOT one of seven seminaries nationwide to offer online professional ministry degree

Thu, 2013-10-03 09:58 -- univcomm
October 3, 2013

The Anderson University School of Theology received accreditation approval from the Association of Theological Schools (ATS) to offer the professional ministry degree, the Master of Arts in Christian Ministry, 100 percent online. The SOT is one of only seven ATS schools approved for this professional degree to be 100 percent online.

The School of Theology also received approval on August 26 from the ATS for the academic degree for the Master of Arts in Christian Ministry to be offered 100 percent online. Currently, there are over 100 schools offering this degree. This will change the current structure of the program in that online students will no longer be required to attend classes on campus for one week. The SOT also received approval to offer their MTS program online, giving the student the option of completing the program online or residentially.

Dr. David Sebastian, dean of the School of Theology, says the online programs will allow students to be better served and believes this is a new opportunity to reach more students.

“Our goal to make theological education accessible and affordable is becoming a greater reality,” said Sebastian.

John Aukerman, director of distance education and outcome assessment, is the professor directing both of these programs, and states this step is reaching the needs of students. “There have been many students that have expressed interest in our program, but could not complete it because it was not online. With these changes, we are meeting the needs of these students,” said Aukerman.

With the changes being made to the program, Aukerman believes professors will be adding content to amp the learning students will experience. Since students will no longer be traveling to AU’s campus every semester, students will be losing the personal relationships that are built with professors.

“To accommodate for that change, we are hoping to plan a week, in which, students can choose if they want to come to campus. During that week, we are hoping that we will have seminars, videos and discussions students can take part in to build relationships with their professors,” said Aukerman.

Classes through the online MACM and MTS degrees will start to be offered in January 2014 with admission processes in the works. To apply to the School of Theology, visit anderson.edu/sot/online.

— Allison Kohl is a senior from Springfield, Ohio, majoring in communication arts. Kohl is writing on behalf of the Anderson University Office of University Communications.

Anderson University is a private Christian university of about 2,600 undergraduate and graduate students in central Indiana. Anderson University continues to be recognized as one of America's top colleges by U.S. News and World Report, The Princeton Review, and Forbes. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, music, nursing, and theology.