UM Certification Programs

United Methodist Certification

United Methodist Certifications in Ministry Careers are for Christian educators, youth workers, and musicians who seek to serve the church with excellence. Certification is the 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. Perkins School of Theology offers several certifications as part of its degree programs. We also offer United Methodist certifications and other certificates either for credit or not for credit.  Details regarding certifications related to degree programs may be found under degree programs. Additional information regarding UMC certifications and other certificates are found within this section.

Perkins offers courses in the following certification programs:  

** We are pleased to announce GBHEM has recognized that the completion of Perkins Certification in Spiritual Direction program will fulfill four of five courses needed for UM Certification in Spiritual Formation. Contact the Spiritual Direction office for more information, 214.768.3664 or

2020 HYBRID COURSE - United Methodist Studies
The United Methodist Studies course will provide a one-stop-shop introduction to Methodist history, theology, and polity in a hybrid format (half online and half in-class) in order to deepen students’ understanding of and appreciation for Methodism today. This course is perfect for personnel in a United Methodist local church, for teachers of United Methodist confirmation classes, and for new and longtime members in United Methodist churches. United Methodist Studies is also a required course for students enrolled in a United Methodist Certification track.

UMC Certifications
Certification is available to laypersons, ordained deacons and elders, and diaconal ministers who meet the standards set by the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry of The United Methodist Church. Additional information about UMC standards and requirements is available from the GBHEM section on certification.

Candidates complete five certification courses, providing academic experience in professional or paraprofessional tracks. Candidates are certified by their annual conference Board of Ordained Ministry in cooperation with the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry.

Registration for certification courses on the professional track requires an earned Bachelor's degree as a prerequisite. Candidates for certification on the professional track receive academic credit for coursework. Each course earns two hours of credit. Credits are generally not applicable toward current Perkins graduate degree course requirements. Persons on the paraprofessional track receive certification credit through the General Board, but do not receive academic credit.

Apply Now
After approval of your application for Certification courses, you will be sent a link for course registration. Both new and returning Certification students must complete the application to register. You only need to complete one application per year for access to all Certification courses offered, including UM Studies. Please apply below.