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Doctoral Programs at Virginia Theological Seminary
Doctoral education at Virginia Theological Seminary is unparalleled in its integration of interdisciplinary academic rigor, an unflinching challenge for personal growth, and demanding expansion of skills and habits for the sake of transformational leadership.  

     

Summer Residencies & Online Seminars

VTS Doctoral Programs emply a hybrid learning model of intensive Summer residencies and online seminars.

Summer Residency
Each summer, VTS’s doctoral students gather for three weeks of study and reflection. The beautiful 80-acre campus of VTS provides a place set apart from the demands of full-time ministry to focus on learning and enrichment. The summer residencies have three core aspects, consistent with VTS’s ethos: learning, worshipping, and living in a community. Students form lasting relationships with fellow students in their cohort and across varying doctoral tracks.

Online Courses
Throughout the year, students engage in online integrative courses which entail specific engagement with a ministry context, in conversation with both theology and social sciences.

Doctor of Ministry

Students in D.Min. tracks complete pre-thesis coursework in two years over three summer residencies. Classes consist of two basic types: Seminar courses and integrative courses. Seminar courses follow a hybrid learning model, combining online education with in-class time during summer residencies. Online integrative courses entail specific engagement with a ministry context, in conversation with both theology and social sciences. The capstone of all our doctoral programs is the thesis, a substantive work of action-reflection scholarship based upon rigorous examination of a ministry context and robust engagement with academic disciplines.

Doctor of Educational Ministry

The Doctor of Educational Ministry empowers Christian leaders equip, strengthen, and deepen their ministry. It is oriented toward professionals who hold a master’s degree in a discipline related to D.Ed.Min. studies rather than a Master of Divinity.
 
The D.Ed.Min. requires three years of pre-thesis coursework across four summer residencies. Courses follow a hybrid learning model, combining online education with in-class time during summer residencies. The capstone of all our doctoral programs is the thesis, a substantive work of action-reflection scholarship based upon rigorous examination of a ministry context and robust engagement with academic disciplines.

Doctoral Tracks

Our doctoral programs begin with a question: What vision does God give us for transforming lives, communities, and cultures? Because every baptized Christian carries out a distinct expression of that vision, we offer varying program tracks oriented to varying ministries. Each track puts theological and biblical resources into conversation with developmental, organizational, and social scientific learning. Our doctoral students focus on their specialized track while sharing knowledge across all tracks. 

Click here to learn more about each area of focus of the doctoral program.

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  • Doctoral Library Services

    Students enrolled in a degree program at VTS have access to all of the resources of the Bishop Payne Library, whether on campus or at a distance.
     
    While on Campus
    • Each student will be issued a photo ID card that also acts as your library card through the patron barcode attached to the back of your ID.
    • While in residence, students may check out up to 75 items at a time. These items are checked out for a four-week period with the option for two four-week renewal if there are no holds on the item.
    • Once the student has left the campus, items can be returned via U.S. mail or UPS. The items will be checked in upon arrival using the postmarked date.
    • The library reserves the right to recall an item if it is needed by another student or for a course reserve. You have five days to return a recalled item.
    • We have recently had some problems with distance students not returning materials. Please honor the community covenant by sharing resources.  You will need to return your books and clear any outstanding fines before enrolling in the next class session. 
     
    While away from Campus
    • The library will ship you items via UPS. Each package will contain five items at a time, up to your limit of 75 items total. The library will pay the cost of shipping items out while the patron pays for return postage.
     
    Library Catalog
    • The library catalog is available at any time at http://librarycatalog.vts.edu.
    • Patrons may access their library accounts from the catalog page.
    • On the right side of the page, under “My Library”, click on “My Account.”
    • Enter your last name (ex. Smith) and the full library barcode from your library card (ex. BVTS0000000000). The barcode must include all digits, but no spaces, and is case sensitive.
    • Once access to your record has been attained, you are able to see what items you currently have checked out and renew items that are eligible for renewal. Item eligible for renew are those that have not been renewed yet, on or before the due date, with no outstanding fines.
    Electronic Resources
    • While enrolled as a student, you have access to the library’s electronic resources, including ATLA Religion, EBSCO’s Philosophy and Religion collection, and Psych Abstracts, among others. These databases can be found at http://vts.libguides.com/eresourcesBysubject.
    • If you are trying to access resources away from campus, the system will need to validate you as a currently enrolled student. To do this, you will be asked to enter your full name and your library barcode.
    • Many of the articles in these databases are full-text so that you will be able to get access from anywhere.
    • To gain access to articles that are not found full-text but are available at the Bishop Payne Library, notify the library through paynelib@vts.edu and the staff will copy and send the article to you at a charge of five cents per page.
    Interlibrary Loan
    • While on campus, a student may request items that are not owned by the Bishop Payne Library through interlibrary loan. These items must be used within the library while the student is in residence.
    • Due to the nature of the interlibrary loan system, books are loaned from one library to another. Therefore, the borrowed items cannot be mailed to a third party.
    • Interlibrary loans that are photocopies will be mailed to you.
    Remember:
     
    Please feel free to contact us with your research questions by phone at 703-461-1733, by e-mail at paynelib@vts.edu or by fax at 703-370-0935.
     
"We believe that God’s Spirit is ever enlivening the Church, fostering wise, skillful, and faithful leaders, to empower the church to hear anew the calling of God’s Spirit."
-The Rev. Ross Kane Ph.D.,
Director of Doctoral Programs
     

Summer 2020 Residency
June 22 - July 10, 2020

Applications Available for Summer 2021 Residency
October 15, 2020

Application Deadline for Summer 2021 Residency
January 10, 2021

Summer 2021 Residency
June 21- July 9 
 
Applications Available for Summer 20222 Residency
October 15, 2021

Program or Application Questions? 
703-461-1863
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