Certificate Programs


Perkins School of Theology offers certificate courses in the following areas:

Christian Education & Children's Ministry

Youth Ministry

Spiritual Direction (Formation)*


United Methodist Certification:

Certification is The United Methodist Church's method of recognizing that an individual has met the required standards for academic training, experience, and continuing study necessary to achieve and maintain professional excellence. To earn certifications, candidates enroll with the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry (GBHEM), complete five* certification courses, and complete further steps with their annual conference Board of Ordained Ministry in cooperation with the GBHEM.

Additional information about UMC standards and requirements is available from the GBHEM section on certification

Students who are beginning certificate courses and intending to earn a certification need to complete the paraprofessional enrollment form found here, prior to their first certificate course.

Students who have finished their course work need to complete the paraprofessional application form found here.

*GBHEM recognizes the Certificate in Spiritual Direction (CSD) as fulfilling four of five courses needed for UM Certification in Spiritual Formation. Students in the Spiritual Formation track will take one additional course, United Methodist Studies. All other course requirements for this track will be met by completing the Certificate in Spiritual Direction program. The CSD program consists of eight hybrid courses that can be completed in three or more years. Past graduates of the CSD program who wish to apply for the UM Certification in Spiritual Formation may take the UM Studies course, then proceed with applying for certification through GBHEM. For more information on how to apply to the CSD program, see the website or contact the Spiritual Direction office at (214) 768-3664 or spiritualdirection@smu.edu.

Application & Registration

Applications for 2021 will be accepted beginning Spring 2020. 

Both new and returning certificate students must complete the application to register. You only need to complete one application per year for access to all certificate courses offered, including UM Studies. After approval of your application for certificate courses, you will be sent a link for course registration. Registration opens August 2020.

See below for pricing and schedule information.

You will receive registration information upon approval of your application. Registration closes November 19, 2020.

Early Registration (August 21 - September 25, 2020) $899 per course
Regular Registration (September 26 - October 26, 2020) $979 per course
Late Registration (October 27 - November 18, 2020) $1,059 per course
Parking Permit (price varies depending on course selections)

$15 if on campus Jan. 7 to 9 

$25 if on campus Jan. 10 to 15

$40 if on campus Jan. 7 to 15

CEU Certificate(Continuing Education Units) $15

Refunds for cancellations received in writing by December 10, 2020 will be granted, minus a $50 administrative fee. Cancellations received after December 10 are subject to full billing.