The Doctor of Philosophy in Practical Theology is both a theological field and a discipline.
It is a way of doing theology that begins with a practical concern from experience,
from what God is doing in people’s lives, the church and the world today. In our own
day, this approach to theological understanding and action is expressed in many ways,
including practical theology and its focus on a theology of action that carries Christian
witness further toward the fulfillment of God’s promises.
The Ph.D. in practical theology program is built on a rigorous two-year of full-time
pre-candidacy studies that emphasize deep theological formation, skills in method
and methodology, and engagement with the lived experience of the church today. The
program offers a collaborative educational approach that seeks to form a community
of learners at the highest level, engaging theological and allied disciplines in critical
conversation. Students are trained to produce original research that will launch their
careers as scholars, educators and transformational leaders.
University and seminary faculties and administrative positions
Highly trained and able high school teachers and leaders
Serve as pastors or teaching pastors
Professional consultants for churches and related organizations
Positions of leadership in church organizations and church-related organizations
The School of Ministry is all about equipping. We equip passionate young people with
the earthly tools and spiritual perspective needed to create positive change in the
world guided by the Word of God. We promise a connected, engaging and fulfilling learning
experience that will equip you to use your gifts for His Glory. Our programs prepare
students through expert instruction in Bible, theology, history and real-world ministry
skills. PBA’s multi-cultural, multi-denominational environment is the perfect to prepare
our seminary students for dynamic gospel ministries in an ever-changing world.
As a student studying in any of the graduate programs offered in the School of Ministry,
you’ll wade into an ocean of diverse learning opportunities designed to prepare you
to positively impact lives.
Gain specialized training in ministry
Experience spiritual growth with a deeper understanding of God and His Word
Practice your ministry abilities through internships, practicum experiences and field
Learn in a supportive community
Program’s key differentiators:
This is the only Ph.D. in Practical Theology (PT) offered by our faculty in theology,
biblical studies, and ministry. Our unique focus gives students an extraordinary depth.
We do “all PT all the time” without distraction. We have no other doctoral program
specialization in theology, biblical studies, or ministry. Other institutions that
offer the Ph.D. in Practical Theology offer other doctoral specializations and relatively
few courses and attention to practical theology.
We define PT using both definitions, which is atypical and gives students many more
options. We approach practical theology as both “theologizing from the practice of
the arts of ministry” and “a point of entrée into the entire theological enterprise
from the standpoint of praxis.” This gives space for student interest and engagement.
We encourage and support a wide range of specializations.
Our students come from all over the world and represent a wide range of Christian
traditions. We are thus both “intercultural and interconfessional.” This creates exciting
conversations and leads to new insight for doctoral learning community members as
they work within their particular context while learning from their colleagues. This
is especially appropriate for practical theology since the emphasis is on practice,
not dogmatic theological debates. Intercultural and interconfessional conversation
is a must for quality scholarly production and this is uniquely part of the seminar
We train our students to present at academic conferences from their very first semester.
We run an academic conference at the end of each semester and coach our students for
success from the start.
Students can petition for permission to pursue study on a distance basis by participating
live in the precandidacy courses, which are offered Mondays and Thursdays 5-9pm ET,