Diploma in Christian Studies

Course Overview

Level Level 6
Credits 120 credits, 8 papers
Hours of study required 150 hours per paper
Duration 1 year full time (up to 3 years part time)

Strategic Purpose Statement

This programme is a 120 credit programme. The purpose of this qualification is to provide Christian churches and their agencies with people who are able to operate as senior administrators and leaders, and/or as managers.

This qualification is stranded in order to recognise the specific knowledge and skills required in a variety of roles and contexts ranging from the administration of a parish, teaching Religious Education or holders of other roles of responsibility in integrated Christian schools as defined in the Private Schools Integration Act (1975), to managers of church organisations.

Graduates will benefit by having a qualification that recognises their advanced evaluation, research, leadership, administration and strategic management skills and knowledge; enhancing their employment opportunities, and/or ability work in a voluntary capacity in Christian churches and their agencies.

This qualification is targeted at individuals who are ready for positions of managerial and senior leadership positions in a variety of roles. This qualification is also targeted at those who want to further their theological studies at undergraduate level; or for current practitioners, such as teachers of Religious Education, who want to upskill in a particular area of Christian ministry.

Graduates will be able to apply in-depth theological and biblical skills and knowledge to inform managerial and strategic decisions; is responsible for leadership and may supervise others.

Programme Structure

To complete the Diploma programme, a student has to complete five compulsory papers and three papers from one of the four strands. Students may complete within one year full-time or up to three years part-time.

Diploma in Christian Studies (DipCS, Level 6)
5 Courses (15 credits each) 2 BS + 1 MS + 1 PS + 1 TS
Endorsement in Children and Youth Ministry
1 Recommended + 2 Electives
45 Credits
Endorsement in Womens Ministry
1 Recommended + 2 Electives
45 Credits
Endorsement in Diaconal Ministry
1 Recommended + 2 Electives
45 Credits
Endorsement in Methodist Leadership
1 Recommended + 2 Electives
45 Credits
Entry Requirements

Students must have met the entry requirements for a Level 6 programme. To enter the Diploma in Christian Studies programme, a candidate must have at least one of the following:

  • Completed NCEA level 3
  • Earned an IELTS (academic) score of 6.0 or higher
  • Completed the Diploma in Methodist Studies with a B grade average or higher
  • Held an undergraduate degree or higher from a recognised institution
  • Be a Ministry student formerly received by the Methodist Conference.


Graduate Profile
Graduates will be able to:

Analyse and apply an in-depth understanding of theology and biblical foundation in operational or research contexts


Evaluate, review and respond to the pastoral, specialised and ethical responsibilities required of defined church ministry settings


Apply management or administrative capability and leadership in a Christian ministry environment to make strategic decisions in a specified context


Critically reflect on personal faith journey and professional development to refine own practice.

Graduates with the Biblical Studies strand will also be able to:


Research and critically evaluate the application of diverse biblical disciplines, methods and textual analysis to inform and develop a Christian community.

Graduates with the Theology strand will also be able to:


Research and collate information on theological and relational topics as they apply to New Zealand’s unique cultural communities, service organisations and society at large.


Critically evaluate strategies that contribute to effective management and leadership in specified contexts.

Graduates with the Māori Studies strand will also be able to:


Critically evaluate the application of Te Tiriti o Waitangi princples and taha Māori


Apply a set of strategic management and leadership practices to specified groups in defined contexts.

Graduates with the Pastoral Studies strand will also be able to:


Integrate information of specific groups and apply skills to the specific role of pastor to critically analyse performance.


Identify opportunities that contribute to effective spiritual worship and pastoral care practices.

Education Pathway

This qualification may lead to entry and credits in related undergraduate degrees.

Employment Pathway

Graduates will have the skills and knowledge to work in senior administrative and leadership positions or as managers in a variety of occupations in Christian churches and the wider church-affiliated sector, missions, non-governmental and not-for-profit organisations. Positions include workplace and Parish Administrators; teachers of Religious Education or holders of other roles of responsibility in integrated Christian schools; Pastors; and Ordained Ministers in some faith denominations.

Apply for the Diploma in Christian Studies today!