Christian Leadership

Master of Arts | 30 Credits


The discipline of Christian leadership synthesizes the biblical and temporal mission of an organization within its practical realities. Effective leadership understands the confluence of philosophy and practice. This program is designed to engage that dynamic, with a balanced dose of organizational philosophy and practical skill development. Engage the integrated learning approach of this program from your existing professional position or within a mentored internship context.

Christian Leadership (M.A.)

In these times of rapid cultural and economic change, effective Christian leaders must be able to maintain focus on the mission… and they must focus the attention of various stakeholders on a common vision, mobilize people in pursuit of that vision, and facilitate the execution of strategies that accomplish the mission. This is a tall order. It requires extraordinary leadership.

The purpose of ACU’s Christian Leadership masters program is to provide a high-quality educational experience for graduate-level students interested in enhancing their ability to provide excellent leadership that mobilizes an organizational team and equips them to accomplish the mission for which the organization exists.

Courses of Study

  • Interpretive Study of Biblical Discipleship
  • Leading in Active Learning Environments
  • Spiritual Disciplines in Leadership
  • Orgs as Learning Communities
  • Organizational Communication
  • Strategic Thinking
  • Developing Dynamic Teams
  • Governance & Admin of Nonprofit Orgs
  • Financial Mgmt of Nonprofit Orgs
  • Risk Mgmt of Nonprofit Organizations

“As an overseas missionary already involved in leadership, pursuing a degree had nothing to do with prestige. I wanted to become a better leader. I wanted to know how to face the challenges and seize the opportunities that lay before me. The leadership degree was a perfect fit.

Rather than a “one size fits all” approach to learning, the professor individualized the content for what I was currently facing. Regular conversations gave input from across the globe. Assignments were ministry projects that I already had, simply enhanced to deepen the learning. Rather than my studies pulling me away from ministry, they pulled me deeper into ministry. My life and ministry will never be the same.”

-Kyle (Leadership)

Integrated Experience-Based Approach

Most of our Christian Leadership students are already working in a professional leadership role in a ministry organization, in a nonprofit organization or in a professional business context. The balance, typically younger students that have just completed an undergraduate degree, choose an internship as the context for their learning.

We’ve carefully crafted the program and course learning objectives to engage the range of soft skills (personal leadership, mission-driven leadership, strategic thinking and team development) and hard skills (governance, finance, risk management) that are the fabric of organizational leadership in any context. The program is designed to develop measurable competency in each skill set. Using our proprietary experience-based approach as a framework, we custom-build each student’s learning inputs, processing challenges, and project-oriented deliverables to make the most of their professional role as the primary learning context… and its beneficiary. The learning process intentionally engages the student’s work role not as a competing distraction, but as an opportunity for deeper focus and learning.

What About You?

Since 2011, our Christian Leadership students have applied our integrated approach to OVER 70 UNIQUE PROFESSIONAL CONTEXTS (i.e. camping ministry, youth ministry, urban ministry, active duty military, public speaking, university administration, high school education, relief work, local church leadership, government, intercultural missions and more on four different continents.  Our proprietary Learning Blueprint allows you to grow core leadership skills right where you are… applied to the specific challenges there.

“The Christian Leadership program has been an ideal way for me to earn my Masters while living internationally (with lots of travel thrown in the mix), and the most applicable education I’ve ever received. Every class has directly related to what I am experiencing in leadership on the field. Each semester results in a real-life application that implements what I’m learning while also adding tools that advance our ministry. The integration is huge!

The style of the material and the professor’s experience as a ministry mentor allow the program to walk alongside me as I become a better equipped and more effective leader. Each question or challenge I have on the field is now filtered through what I am learning and I am able to quickly apply solutions… or at least seek potential direction… as I apply the coursework. Simply put, our ministry is propelled forward because I am going through this program. “

-Stephanie (MA, Christian Leadership)

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