How does the course work in practice?
The course is delivered using a blended learning approach that makes the most of studying both in-context and in-community:
- Mentoring in your local church – all our students should be involved with their local church (not necessarily in a paid ministry role), and study with their minister or mentor’s support. Students on specialist tracks may have a mentor who is not necessarily their local church pastor, though we will still insist on a clear linkage with the student’s local church.
- Independent study – students need to set aside 10-12 hours for individual study per week for 36 weeks (September to June), which includes online study, reading and assignments, and a weekly contribution to a moderated blog.
- Tutor group and peer support – students are members of a tutor group of five to seven students, under the oversight of a Crosslands tutor, drawn from across different years of study.
- Seminar days (five per year)- each module in the course culminates with a written assignment (the writing of which is included in the 10-12 hours per week above). Assignments are presented and discussed in tutor groups during seminar days, led by the group’s tutor. These happen five times a year. Whilst we encourage students to attend in person wherever possible, those in more remote locations are able to participate virtually (via Zoom or similar).
- Residential Intensives – all students participate in three residential intensives three times a year: one week in the Autumn, a weekend in Jan/Feb, and a further week in early Summer. The residential time includes teaching delivered by faculty, interaction with current theological issues, and fellowship across the staff and student community. They are also an excellent opportunity for students on specialist tracks to spend time together as a group, as well as an opportunity to influence other students to think more deeply about the place the specialism has in the life of the church. Students are normally required to attend residentials physically, though virtual arrangements are in place for exceptional circumstances.
What qualification can I earn?
Students who register on and successfully complete our four year Masters programme, will be awarded an MA in Christian Ministry (Mentored) from SouthEastern Baptist Theological Seminary. Those who complete our three year programme will receive a Crosslands certificate as evidence they have completed the programme.
Do I need an undergraduate degree to enrol for the Masters?
Not necessarily. Applicants for the four year Masters programme should normally have a Bachelor’s degree (in any discipline), but where applicants don’t meet the normal entry criteria , there are two other possible routes to Masters accreditation:
- Applicants may enrol on the Crosslands unaccredited programme, demonstrate their ability to achieve the necessary academic standards during their first year (by achieving strong grades and meeting other participation and completion requirements), and then transfer onto the MA programme. For more information speak to the Academic Registrar.
- New applicants who don’t have a Bachelor’s degree but who want to be enrolled directly onto the Masters programme from the outset may be accepted if they can demonstrate that they have the aptitude, experience or other prior qualifications which indicate they are likely to succeed in achieving the standards for Masters’ accreditation. In addition to the application form the applicant will be required to:
- provide a personal statement detailing the experience and/or prior qualifications which they believe makes they suitable for the programme;
- provide contact details for a referee (usually their church leader or similar) who can testify to their ability to engage effectively with material of a reasonable academic standard and to organise themselves sufficiently to meet the course requirements;
- submit a 3,000 word paper typical of an assessment set on the course to be graded by a Crosslands faculty member; and
- participate in an interview.
We will also be seeking evidence that the applicant has the necessary time and mentor support available to enable them to succeed in studying at Masters’ level.
Are there exams to take?
No. Passing the Crosslands Seminary course involves achieving a pass mark for all the graded assignments each year, and meeting all the requirements for participation, including residential attendance (in person or, in some cases, virtually) and seminar days with your tutor through the year. In the event that you miss one of these elements for an unavoidable reason, there are ways to catch up, but you will have to provide evidence that you have done the required catch-up work.
Can I study Biblical languages with Crosslands?
Crosslands regards the study of biblical languages as very valuable, especially for those whose future role is likely to include significant responsibility for teaching God’s Word. Yet in a part time, in-context training programme some students may not have the need, aptitude or time available to reach a meaningful level of proficiency in biblical languages. So, whilst biblical languages are not a mandatory part of the core curriculum, we are in the process of introducing flexible biblical language study options. Students enrolling on our MA programme already have the opportunity to audit biblical language courses (i.e. take courses without assessment or accreditation) through SEBTS in addition to the core Crosslands curriculum, at a cost of US$50 per module. We are currently working with SEBTS to extend this further, including ensuring that students completing modules are awarded credit. Here are some practicalities to consider if you are considering whether you might study biblical language modules:
- You will need to factor in approx 8 hours’ additional study time over 16 weeks for each module that you take (up to 4 modules in total) over and above the usual weekly study hours.
- Unless you have a very strong academic background or significant extra time available for study, we recommend that you do not take language modules at the very outset of your studies. You can begin a module in the second half of your first year, or in later years of study.
- Taking the courses with assessment and accreditation, if and when this is available, will incur a higher fee – approx £300 per module.
If you would like to receive more information regarding the study of biblical languages, please indicate this preference on your application form and we will ensure you are kept up to date as opportunities develop. This is not a commitment to take these modules but allows us to plan and ensures that you are kept informed.
Does it matter where I live?
No. We have students enrolled on our Seminary course from all around the UK, across Europe, and beyond. We encourage physical participation as far as possible, but also offer a virtual hub for those students for whom travel to residentials or seminar days in the UK would prohibit them from studying with us. A good internet connection is needed for residentials and seminar days. Each seminar day is scheduled within a given two week window, but each tutor will agree specific dates and times within that window to suit the needs of their own group. Note that the timing of Seminar days are usually scheduled to fit within the working day of a UK or European time zone.
Who can join the Virtual Hub?
We value meeting physically for our residential weeks and seminar days wherever possible, recognising the way this deepens relationships and enhances learning in community, and continue to expect this as the default for the majority of students. However with a growing number of students based outside of the UK and Europe, including those involved in cross cultural mission and ministry abroad, we do provide the possibility of fully-remote study through our Virtual Hub. If you have a strong case for fully remote learning, please set out the reasons for this in your application.
How do I decide whether to enrol for one of the Specialist tracks?
The specialist tracks are deeply and closely connected to the core Seminary programme. Far from being ‘Theology lite’, the tracks offer the same theology, to the same depth, but with an eye to how particular themes or issues might have particular relevance or resonance in different ministry roles, with the help of experienced specialist ministry practitioners. You can find out more about the different track options and how they work in practice here:
If you have a vague interest in a particular specialism but prefer to follow the core programme, you will still be able to engage informally with staff and other students who share your interest, you will have visibility of specialist discussion topics, and you may be able to choose a specialist assignment topic on occasion (by agreement with your tutor).
Are the weekly study days fixed?
No. Whilst the dates for the three residentials are fixed (and these are known three years in advance), your weekly study schedule is entirely flexible to suit your work pattern and family life. The dates for seminar days in your tutor group each take place within a given two week window, but the specific dates are worked out and agreed by the tutor with their 5-6 students well in advance, so you can plan these in a way that fits with other commitments.
Where would my tutor group be?
For students on the core programme we aim to assign each student to a tutor group that is located geographically close to you but this cannot be guaranteed. Your tutor would be a theologically engaged church leader involved in gospel ministry. For those on specialist tracks, tutor groups may be more geographically dispersed and may therefore be more likely to meet virtually for seminar days. The Crosslands team works with students to find the best possible fit, within the constraints of tutors’ location and group numbers.
How much does the course cost?
- The MA accredited course fee is £3,750 (€4.300) per student per year for 4 years.
- The unaccredited course fee is £2,650 (€3,025) per student per year for 3 years.
- The Virtual Hub fees are £3,500 (€4,000) per student per year for 4 years for MA and £2,400 (€2,725) per student per year for 3 years.
This includes the cost of all course materials and tuition and SEBTS registration (for MA students) as well as residential accommodation and meals. It does not include the cost of set texts (recommended budget £100 – £150 per year, depending on how you choose to purchase or borrow books) or travel to the residentials or seminar days. MA students also receive access to the SEBTS online library and access to audit additional courses at very low cost as part of their SEBTS registration.
Do I have to pay extra for the residential accommodation?
The cost of the residential accommodation is included in your fees. However, the cost of travel to and from the residential is not included in this, but the dates are known well in advance so that you can plan the cheapest form of travel or arrange to share transport with other students.
Is there a scholarship I can apply for to help me with funding?
Unfortunately Crosslands does not have a scholarship fund.. However, we are happy to send you a fundraising pack to help you plan how to raise support and explain what you will be doing to potential supporters, so you may be able to raise your own support.
I’m interested… what do I do next?
Talk this through with your senior pastor and/or others who help you think about your discipleship and formation. It’s also vital that you talk it through with family members who might be affected by your decision to take on a study programme, to make sure you can see clearly how you will manage the residential weeks, seminar days, and weekly study hours alongside your other commitments.
Get in touch with the Crosslands team early on too – email us to let us know you’re considering enrolling (it’s helpful for our planning to know that), and keep asking us questions as you think of them. We like it when potential students ask questions because it means they’re thinking through the practicalities carefully – and we know from experience that makes it more likely to work out well if and when they decide to go ahead.
Find more information about specific ministry tracks: