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Courses in Area I: General Theological Studies
Portal Courses
PC 500 Interpretation Matters

This course provides an introduction to the practice of interpretation of texts and their communities in history and culture, with a focus on the Hebrew Bible and the New Testament.  We will give attention to learning the content of the Bible, developing skills for responsible interpretation, and exploring ways in which Biblical interpretation is effective in addressing issues in church and world.

PC 550.44 Context Matters

This course introduces students to the careful analysis of historical and cultural contexts as a fundamental aspect of researching the past and exploring contemporary settings. It functions as a prerequisite for all Phase II history of Christianity courses.

Syllabus - Fall 2016, taught by Ellen J. Blue, Peter Anthony Mena
PC 600 Conversation Matters

This course invites students to practice, and reflect on, theological conversation, and to do so with care and insight. Drawing on the disciplines of practical and systematic theology, students will gain skill in following and analyzing arguments, identifying and developing their own voices and theological proposals, giving constructive feedback on theological proposals of others, and using practices of reading and ethnography to attend to how communities and histories shape those theological proposals in particular contexts. This course functions as a prerequisite for all Phase II theology courses and many Phase II practices of theological leadership in communities courses.

PC 600.44 Conversation Matters

online version of PC 600

PC 650 Vocation Matters

This course provides an introduction to the practices of developing and sustaining vocation, including issues of ministerial identity and professional ethics.  We will give attention to historical and contemporary models for ministry, ordination and leadership, spiritual practices, and ethical theories that will enable students to develop their own image for ministry and a professional code of ethics, both of which can serve as a continuing guide for responsible practices of ministerial leadership.

PC 650.44 Vocation Matters

online version of PC 650

Theological Reflection Groups
TRG 501 Foundations for Theological Thinking

Small theological reflection group drawing on vocational stories to explore the nature and practice of theological reflection, with particular attention to critical thinking in seminary and ministry contexts. To be taken by all master's students early in program, in Phase One and concurrently with at least one portal course. Graded on a Pass/Fail basis.

Syllabus - Fall 2016, taught by Bill Inglish
TRG 501.44 Foundations for Theological Thinking

online version of TRG 501

Syllabus - Fall 2016, taught by Deb Phelps
TRG 502 Foundations for Theological Writing

Small theological reflection group employing a workshop approach for the practice of seminary writing, as well as various forms of public theological writing. To be taken by all master's students early in program, in Phase One and concurrently with at least one portal course. Graded on a Pass/Fail basis.

TRG 502.44 Foundations for Theological Writing

online version of TRG 502

TRG 503 Foundations for Theological Praxis & Reflection

Small theological reflection group focusing on the theological praxis and reflection based in a case study model. To be taken late in program, in Phase Three, after completing a minimum of 60 semester hours of credit for MDiv students or 30 semester hours for MAMC students. Graded on Pass/Fail basis.

TRG 504 Foundations for Theological Advocacy

Small theological reflection group emphasizing theological advocacy and sustained practice of ministry, including a group project as public theology. To be taken late in program, in Phase Three, after completing a minimum of 70 semester hours of credit for MDiv students or 36 semester hours for MAMC students. Graded on Pass/Fail basis.

Syllabus - Spring 2017, taught by Gerald Davis
Supervised Year in Ministry and Clinical Pastoral Education
CPE 500 Clinical Pastoral Education Part I

Clinical Pastoral Education I is an extended parish-based course intended to meet the standard requirement for one half unit of certified ACPE training. The design of the course is based on the action-reflection peer learning model of experiential education. Students will engage in critical reflection in order to gain greater self-awareness, ministerial identity and effective ministry skills. Through the use of verbatim case studies, didactic instruction and individual/group supervision by certified ACPE supervisor, progress towards specific Level I learning outcomes will be achieved and evaluated. Prerequisites for the course include completion of the middler assessment course, a standard ACPE application easy, an interview and approval by the program supervisor. The course may be open to special students who meet the ACPE application criteria. At least three all-day class sessions are scheduled in addition to the regular Monday class meetings.

CPE 510 Clinical Pastoral Education Part II

Clinical Pastoral Education Level I is an extended parish-based course intended to fulfill the requirements of a one-half unit of certified ACPE training. Like CPE I, this course will continue to engage students in the action-reflection model in order to gain deeper levels of self-awareness and ministry skills. Students will continue to reflect using verbatim case studies, didactic instruction, and peer-learning activities. Evaluation by supervisor and students will assess progress towards completion of Level I outcomes as they are defined in the current ACPE Standards manual. At least three all-day class sessions are scheduled in addition to the regular Monday class meetings. Prerequisite: CPE 500.

SYM 505 Supervised Year in Ministry I

Students will learn the essential habits of paying attention to particular issues within a ministry context. Focusing on self-awareness, disciplined theological reflection, ecclesiology, and effective ministry practices will be examined for their contextual appropriateness. Various methods for theological reflection on contextual issues will be demonstrate. Finally each student will be asked to present written materials demonstrating their growing awareness and skill development for contextual ministry. Class size is limited. Prerequisites: all four Portal Courses and submission of required paperwork to the director of supervised ministries.

SYM 505.44 Supervised Year in Ministry I

Online version of SYM 505

Syllabus - Fall 2014, taught by Ron Robinson
SYM 510 Supervised Year in Ministry II

This course will focus on ministry as community organization and cross-cultural mission, while continuing the disciplined theological reflection developed in the SYM 1 course. Students will acquire the leadership skills necessary for engaging congregations in purposeful involvement in contexts outside the walls of church life. Additionally, students will develop the discipline and habit of theological reflection in cross-cultural settings. Each student will be required to partner with a local community service organization (or if the church already has such a partnership or service project of their own) for part of the ten hours already required of the program. The student will present in class written materials from their community service project for in depth theological reflection about the importance and meaning of doing ministry in a cross-cultural (contextual) setting. Class size is limited. Prerequisites: All four Portal Courses, SM 505, and submission of required paperwork to the director of supervised ministries.

Syllabus - Spring 2017, taught by Ron Robinson
SYM 510.44 Supervised Year in Ministry II

Online version of SYM 510

Syllabus - Spring 2016, taught by Ron Robinson
Researching & Writing
IP 800 Integrative Paper Symposium

A group course, under the direction of a faculty member, for discussion of the process and results of individual integrative paper work. This course is normally taken in the student's last semester of the MTS program.

RW 500 Orientation to Research

This course will provide instruction on how to find, evaluate, and cite research resources in the PTS library and through online access. Hands-on instruction in the use of the computer for research will be emphasized. Students will bring an actual assignment from a course they are currently taking and utilize the instruction in this course to help them gather the resources to complete that assignment. This class is offered tuition free and is graded pass/fail. Enrollment is limited.

RW 550 Orientation to Master's Thesis

This course will provide an introduction to the process of writing a master's thesis (either MDiv or MTS). In a workshop format, each student will develop a thesis topic and a plan for the research and writing of the thesis. Instruction will also be provided on the style form for writing a thesis. Highly recommended for all students who plan to write a thesis in the near future or are in the process of writing a thesis. At the student's option, the one hour credit for the course may be counted toward the 6-hour thesis credit.

RW 600 MTS Integrative Paper Research & Writing

Individual research and writing under faculty guidance. This course is normally taken in the student's last semester of the MTS Track I program.

RW 650 MTS Thesis Research & Writing I

Individual research and writing under faculty guidance. This course is normally taken in the student's next to last semester of the MTS Track II program.

RW 660 MTS Thesis Research & Writing II

Individual research and writing under faculty guidance. This course is normally taken in the student's last semester of the MTS Track II program.

RW 750 MDiv Thesis Research & Writing I

Individual research and writing under faculty guidance. This course is normally taken in the student's next to last semester of the MDiv program.

RW 760 MDiv Thesis Research & Writing II

Individual research and writing under faculty guidance. This course is normally taken in the student's last semester of the MDiv program

RW 800 Thesis Symposium

A group course, under the direction of a faculty member, for discussion of the process and results of individual thesis research. This course is normally taken in the student's last semester of the MDiv or MTS program.

Launch Courses
LC 600 Capstones in Theological Leadership

In a collaborative learning environment, students will develop a project based on a topic related to their own interests within the intersection of theological studies and leadership practices. They will also teach this material to other students enrolled in the course. Drawing upon themes and skills of previous coursework, attention will also be given to the ethics of leadership within communities of faith and justice, theological reflection models, leadership theories, emotional intelligence, enduring vocational issues, and other matters of significant interest to class members. This course should be taken in one of the last two semesters of the degree program. Satisfies Launch Course requirement in Phase III. Prerequisite: completion of Supervised Year in Ministry for students in the MDiv or MAMC; completion of 28 hours in the MA(SJ).

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