MA in Intercultural Ministry Leadership

The Master of Arts in Intercultural Ministry Leadership degree is designed to equip you, the leader, in today’s missions movement. Whether you will be serving on the front-lines as a missionary, working to develop national leaders, or serving as a strategic sender, this degree will help you accomplish your goals.

At the end of your degree you will:

  • Internalize and practice the spiritual disciplines that form the godly character necessary for transformational leadership.
  • Understand current issues and trends in global leadership.
  • Become aware of how differences in worldview and culture shape perspectives and practice in leadership.
  • Make effective use of the tools and methods available to leaders for understanding, shaping, and influencing the culture of the organization they lead.
  • Understanding the value and methods of collaborative relationships in intercultural settings.
  • Be able to cast vision and create a strategic plan in an intercultural leadership context.
  • Understanding how to develop leaders in an intercultural setting.
  • Have learned the skills and tools necessary to become a lifelong leader.

There are 2 different tracks you can take to accomplish your MA in Intercultural Ministry Leadership:

The Course Track is designed to be more content based and focuses on how you can implement the content your learning in the classroom immediately.

The Thesis Track is designed for those who want to further their education after an MA or teach at an advanced level. The thesis track is also beneficial for those interested in ministering overseas because some countries only acknowledge master’s degrees with a written thesis (for instance, Brazil).

Intercultural Ministry Leadership Core Classes - 2 Classes

Biblical Foundations of Leadership
This course is a study of key principles of intercultural leadership arising from a number of biblical passages and characters. It is tempting to impose generally accepted western leadership principles upon our understanding of how notable biblical characters exercised leadership. This course, however, will not follow that path. In addition to challenging teaching, with western and non-western perspectives, this course will provide considerable opportunity for reflection and interaction with fellow students and the instructor in the principles of intercultural leadership. (3 Credits)

Jesus as Leader
This course will examine key areas in which Jesus laid a foundation for intercultural leadership. It will particularly emphasize: guiding the student to study foundational issues related to servant leadership; and focusing on Jesus and the specific ways in which he modeled leadership for his disciples as well as for us today. As Jesus did in the first century, the student may find that much of his style of leadership runs countercultural to leadership theory and practice today. (3 Credits)

Spiritual Formation for Leaders
This course examines spiritual principles and examples that can be utilized in intercultural spiritual leadership. The student will study how God develops leaders, the essential qualities needed for spiritual leadership, and how to be successful and finish well as a spiritual leader. In addition, it will also address how to avoid common pitfalls that leaders encounter. Opportunities will be provided for personal evaluation and practice in one’s cultural context. (3 Credits)

Intercultural Ministry Leadership Electives - 4 Classes

You can choose any of the following 3 classes to fulfill your elective requirements:

Exploring Organizational Culture
This course will examine the tools and methods used to explore organizational cultures. It will focus on the key concepts of Ethnography, Cultural Hermeneutics, and Qualitative Research and the value they play in helping a leader to shape and influence an organizational culture. (3 Credits)

Comparative Cultural Leadership
Leadership styles, influenced by widely contrasting worldviews and cultural patterns, can differ markedly from culture to culture. This course will provide students with valuable perspectives on their own leadership views and styles as they compare various cultural expressions of leadership. (3 Credits)

Lifelong Leadership Development
This course explores the nature of lifelong Christian leadership development. It will help the student become a more effective leader by developing long-term vision and strength-based skills in order to be the leader that God envisions him or her to be. This course incorporates a project that focuses the student on creating a lifelong leadership development plan in the context of his/her ministry goals. (3 Credits)

Issues and Trends in Global Leadership
This course will explore the current issues and trends in Global Leadership. It will look at what current issues are obstacles for leading in a global setting and possible solutions to effectively overcoming these boundaries. The course will also explore some recent trends that have had major implications for leadership development and the role the West plays in overcoming or further inhibiting leadership growth and development. (3 Credits)

Intercultural Leadership Development
This course will address the theory and practice for effective intercultural leadership development. It will consider biblical principles of leadership and how western leadership principles can translate into a nonwestern context. Special attention will be paid to the role of collaborative leadership and intercultural communication, and their value in effectively developing leaders. (3 Credits)

Collaborative Leadership
This course is designed to introduce both a theoretical and practical framework for collaborative leadership. It will provide opportunities to integrate both a practical and theoretical framework and will be valuable in assisting students in achieving collaborative relationships in a cross-cultural context. This course incorporates a 1 credit practicum in addition to the 2 credits of course work.

Cultural Innovation and Change
This course will look at change, how it is impacting local culture and how that change impacts ministry within the culture. Cultures throughout the world are changing, adapting to internal needs and external circumstances. The course will also look at the bigger picture of globalization and the placement of local cultures and worldviews within emerging predominant worldviews

Vision & Strategic Planning
This course will examine how leaders can use creative processes to develop shared vision, communicate it to internal and external groups, and translate it through strategic planning processes into action. Leading theories of vision and strategic planning in organizations will be examined,

General Electives - 3 Classes

Our general electives requirements are designed to fit your needs. We have a large selection of courses that you can choose from.

You can download our course description to see all of our courses.

Intercultural Studies - 2 Classes

You can choose any of the 2 classes to fulfill your Intercultural Studies requirements:

Cross-Cultural Communication
Communication is complex; cross-cultural communication is even more complex. This course first lays a foundation of theory in the field of intercultural communication. It overviews many elements and processes involved in the sending and receiving of messages within intercultural contexts. It then addresses issues in communication that students must be aware of, including 15 factors affecting cross-cultural communication, communication competence models, cognitive social learning concepts, perception, categorization, attribution, and cognitive complexity. The course wrestles with the implications of these for effective ministry and how to implement training to develop these competencies.

Intercultural Interaction
This course will explore the factors that serve to facilitate or impede communication within one’s cross-cultural context. The student will be able to learn the difference between perceived communication and the reality of what cultural communication consists of and apply the principles to help him or her communicate more effectively.

Applied Cultural Anthropology
This course looks at the universals of culture from the perspective of a missionary, using theory, research, and case studies to help missionaries think about issues and processes of cultural adaptation/contextualization they must work through. As an applied course, this is meant to be practical, its concepts and principles integrated into cross-cultural ministry. (3 Credits)

Applied Church-Planting Models and Methods
Lessons from evangelistic and church-planting models from around the world are compared to identify strengths and weaknesses of each, and how to personally develop a contextually effective method from the insights gained. (3 Credits)

Contextualization in Missions
Every church exists in some cultural and sociological context. Yet missionaries tend to plant churches that function like their home-culture churches. It is essential that the church be both biblically sound and culturally viable. Contextualization is an essential concept and a necessary skill. However, contextualization is fraught with controversy over degree of contextualization and how contextualization in various contexts is undertaken. These issues will be considered and a theory and model for a biblically and missiologically sound approach to contextualization developed. (3 Credits)

Bible & Theology - 1 Class

Dynamics of Kingdom Ministry
This course gives students a personal and Kingdom-oriented theology of ministry, demonstrating God’s heart and passion for the world through Scriptures. How mission fits into the extension and promotion of the Kingdom of God is studied, including the power and resources of the Kingdom, the centrality of the Kingdom in proclamation, and the final victory of the Kingdom over Satan and all his kingdom as mission works towards the culmination of this present evil age and the inauguration of the eternal Kingdom of God, the reign of the King, Jesus, and the role of the glorious people of God in all of these events. The course is intensely practical, each student working through how a Kingdom worldview should transform life and ministry. (3 Credits)

Bible & Theology - 1 Class

Dynamics of Kingdom Ministry
This course gives students a personal and Kingdom-oriented theology of ministry, demonstrating God’s heart and passion for the world through Scriptures. How mission fits into the extension and promotion of the Kingdom of God is studied, including the power and resources of the Kingdom, the centrality of the Kingdom in proclamation, and the final victory of the Kingdom over Satan and all his kingdom as mission works towards the culmination of this present evil age and the inauguration of the eternal Kingdom of God, the reign of the King, Jesus, and the role of the glorious people of God in all of these events. The course is intensely practical, each student working through how a Kingdom worldview should transform life and ministry. (3 Credits)

Intercultural Leadership - 2 Classes

Biblical Foundations of Leadership
This course is a study of key principles of intercultural leadership arising from a number of biblical passages and characters. It is tempting to impose generally accepted western leadership principles upon our understanding of how notable biblical characters exercised leadership. This course, however, will not follow that path. In addition to challenging teaching, with western and non-western perspectives, this course will provide considerable opportunity for reflection and interaction with fellow students and the instructor in the principles of intercultural leadership. (3 Credits)

Jesus as Leader
This course will examine key areas in which Jesus laid a foundation for intercultural leadership. It will particularly emphasize: guiding the student to study foundational issues related to servant leadership; and focusing on Jesus and the specific ways in which he modeled leadership for his disciples as well as for us today. As Jesus did in the first century, the student may find that much of his style of leadership runs countercultural to leadership theory and practice today. (3 Credits)

Spiritual Formation for Leaders
This course examines spiritual principles and examples that can be utilized in intercultural spiritual leadership. The student will study how God develops leaders, the essential qualities needed for spiritual leadership, and how to be successful and finish well as a spiritual leader. In addition, it will also address how to avoid common pitfalls that leaders encounter. Opportunities will be provided for personal evaluation and practice in one’s cultural context. (3 Credits)

Leadership Electives - 3 Classes

You can choose any of the following 3 classes to fulfill your elective requirements:

Exploring Organizational Culture
This course will examine the tools and methods used to explore organizational cultures. It will focus on the key concepts of Ethnography, Cultural Hermeneutics, and Qualitative Research and the value they play in helping a leader to shape and influence an organizational culture. (3 Credits)

Comparative Cultural Leadership
Leadership styles, influenced by widely contrasting worldviews and cultural patterns, can differ markedly from culture to culture. This course will provide students with valuable perspectives on their own leadership views and styles as they compare various cultural expressions of leadership. (3 Credits)

Lifelong Leadership Development
This course explores the nature of lifelong Christian leadership development. It will help the student become a more effective leader by developing long-term vision and strength-based skills in order to be the leader that God envisions him or her to be. This course incorporates a project that focuses the student on creating a lifelong leadership development plan in the context of his/her ministry goals. (3 Credits)

Issues and Trends in Global Leadership
This course will explore the current issues and trends in Global Leadership. It will look at what current issues are obstacles for leading in a global setting and possible solutions to effectively overcoming these boundaries. The course will also explore some recent trends that have had major implications for leadership development and the role the West plays in overcoming or further inhibiting leadership growth and development. (3 Credits)

Intercultural Leadership Development
This course will address the theory and practice for effective intercultural leadership development. It will consider biblical principles of leadership and how western leadership principles can translate into a nonwestern context. Special attention will be paid to the role of collaborative leadership and intercultural communication, and their value in effectively developing leaders. (3 Credits)

Collaborative Leadership
This course is designed to introduce both a theoretical and practical framework for collaborative leadership. It will provide opportunities to integrate both a practical and theoretical framework and will be valuable in assisting students in achieving collaborative relationships in a cross-cultural context. This course incorporates a 1 credit practicum in addition to the 2 credits of course work.

Cultural Innovation and Change
This course will look at change, how it is impacting local culture and how that change impacts ministry within the culture. Cultures throughout the world are changing, adapting to internal needs and external circumstances. The course will also look at the bigger picture of globalization and the placement of local cultures and worldviews within emerging predominant worldviews

Vision & Strategic Planning
This course will examine how leaders can use creative processes to develop shared vision, communicate it to internal and external groups, and translate it through strategic planning processes into action. Leading theories of vision and strategic planning in organizations will be examined,

General Electives - 1 Class

Our general electives requirements are designed to fit your needs. We have a large selection of courses that you can choose from.

You can download our course descriptions to see all of our courses.

Thesis - 5 Classes

Each student will have a faculty advisor assigned while the student is taking the Research Methods course who will advise while the student is looking at research design, doing preliminary literature research, and developing a bibliography. The advisor will help the student clarify the thesis proposal which must be accepted by the thesis committee. Students then write their thesis using accepted thesis format, footnoting, and bibliographic methods following the Turabian format. When the faculty advisor feels the thesis is ready for submission, the committee will receive the thesis from the student for evaluation. Thesis grading is on a pass/fail basis.