Perkins Offers “Master of Arts in Ministry” Degree, Expands Student Options

Perkins School of Theology/Southern Methodist University has changed the name of the “Master of Church Ministries” (C.M.M.) degree to “Master of Arts in Ministry” (M.A.M.), and added three new tracks including social justice, Christian spirituality, and evangelism and mission. The goal of the program is to increase students’ knowledge about the church and its ministries and to foster their ability to work meaningfully and creatively in a specialized area of ministry.

The M.A.M. includes two specialized ministry tracks previously associated with the C.M.M., while adding three new options:

1. The Christian Education track is intended primarily for those preparing for professional leadership as directors or as ministers of Christian education.

2. The Urban Ministry track is intended for those preparing to work in community ministries in urban and peri-urban settings.

3. The Theology and Social Justice track

is intended for those preparing to lead ministries in congregations, communities, the public realm, and other creative situations addressing systemic injustice.

4. The Christian Spirituality track is intended to prepare graduates to engage and reflect critically on Christian Spirituality and to walk with others in ministries of spiritual formation.

5. The Evangelism and Mission track is intended for those preparing to lead congregations and Christian organizations to engage in evangelistic ministries and missional outreach.

All five tracks share a common core of required courses in theology, Bible, church history and the social context of ministry, with additional specialized requirements and a supervised internship appropriate to the area of specialization. The program provides the basic educational requirements for ordination as deacon in the United Methodist Church.

The M.A.M.—a two-year degree program—is one of several curricular and scheduling steps taken by Perkins to make coursework and degree programs more accessible to a variety of prospective students. Students may now choose from daytime or evening classes, enter more easily in the spring and summer terms, and transfer more online hours from other ATS accredited schools. 

Other degree programs offered by Perkins include the Master of Divinity, Master of Sacred Music, Master of Theological Studies, and Doctor of Ministry, as well as the Ph.D., in cooperation with The Graduate Program in Religious Studies at SMU’s Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences. For more information about the M.A.M. and other degree programs at Perkins, visit