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Core Subjects

GEN4121 Theological Orientation

This course lays a foundation for postgraduate studies at SATS and exposes the student to the following aspect: The history of SATS, Theological research and writing skills, e-learning, research tools, theological sub-disciplines, and research models, levels of postgraduate studies and their implications for life and ministry. By the end of this course, you will be able to:
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the history and foundational principles of SATS, as well as of some of the people involved in establishing and growing the institution.
  • Access and use SATS’ online services.
  • Overcome common obstacles, manage time, master general elements of research, and apply them to your own studies.

MIN5121 Ministry Practicum 1

The course Ministry Practicum 1 is the practical component of one of the Practical Theology electives in the MDiv programme. It is designed to run parallel to the latter and to facilitate practical application of, as well as theoretical reflection on its contents. For that reason, it does not require additional reading material. The practical ministry is done under qualified supervision that includes formal and informal assessment. By the end of this course, you will be able to:
  • Design and conduct tasks in a selected field of Christian ministry
  • Describe and assess expressions of Christian ministry in the selected field
  • Demonstrate the ability to integrate theory and practice related to a specific field of Christian ministry
Course Outline The course consists of a practical project requiring about 120 hours. This includes planning, conducting, assessment and reporting components, all done in close interaction with a qualified supervisor. Required Reading Not applicable.

MIN5122 Ministry Practicum 2

Ministry Practicum 2 is the final course of the MDiv programme and is designed to help you integrate the various parts of the course into a practical ministry plan. This plan should be framed within one of the Practical Theology options you have selected and will be a continuation of work done in your Ministry Practicum 1. Ministry Practical 2 requires you to apply knowledge and skills obtained in the Church and Society courses, building on a thorough and accurate assessment of the community where this ministry would take place and seeking close cooperation with other Christian ministries in that community. The plan should also provide evidence of thorough reflection on and application of biblical and theological perspectives that are central to the envisaged ministry. The expectation is that you should be entrusted with the opportunity and responsibility to help shape Christian ministry in that specific setting. This usually flows from solid relationships with other Christians that have been built over time. If you are new to the area and/or the ministry, you might have to find a clear mandate from one of the local ministries. The planning process is done under guidance of a suitably qualified supervisor. By the end of this course, you will be able to:
  • Determine and assess the needs of a community for a particular type of ministry.
  • Identify a Christian community suitably positioned and willing to respond to the identified needs.
  • Obtain the necessary mandate and support from a Christian community for a new ministry initiative.
  • Develop a contextual ministry plan in close cooperation with key stake- holders.
  • Faciltate the implementation and assessment of a ministry plan.
Course Outline The course consists of a multi-faceted planning process done under supervision. It comprises the following aspects:
  • Connecting with your supervisor
  • Identifying the community within which the ministry will take place
  • Determining and assessing the ministry needs of the selected community
  • Identifying the Christian community that will serve as the basis for the intended ministry
  • Developing a contextual ministry plan in close cooperation with key stake- holders
  • Initiating implementation and assessment of the ministry plan
Required Reading Since it consists mainly of the application of what has been learnt in the other courses of the MDiv programme, this course does not require extensive additional reading. The following resources are added: Fuder J 2014. Neighborhood Mapping: How to Make Your Church Invaluable to the Community. Chicago: Moody Publishers. Mucherera TN. Lartey EY (eds.) 2017. Pastoral Care, Health, Healing, and Wholeness in African Contexts: Methodology, Context, and Issues (African Practical Theology). Eugene: Wipf and Stock. Osmer R 2008. Introduction to Practical Theology. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans. Root A 2014. Christopraxis: A Practical Theology of the Cross. Minneapolis: Fortress Press. Smith KG 2013. Integrated Theology: Discerning God’s Will in Our World. South African Theological Seminary Press.

RES5600 Structured Master’s Thesis

This course will introduce you to the discipline of theological research, setting you on the exciting journey towards writing a theological thesis based on your theological interest. The course will help you choose a research topic, taking it through the various phases of the final thesis. You will be equipped with the skills for the academic writing, advanced research, argumentation and the effective use of theological resources. By the end of this course, you will be able to:
  • Develop your theological interest into a workable and focused research concept.
  • Develop your research concept into a full research proposal under the guidance of a supervisor.
  • Demonstrate competence in the various stages of writing, advanced research, argumentation and effective use of theological resources.
Course Outline
  • Unit 1: Research Concept Development
  • Unit 2: Research Proposal Development and Submission
  • Unit 3: Research and Theological Writing of Thesis
Required Reading Asumang A 2014. Biblical Studies. In B Domeris and K Smith (eds.), A Student’s A-Z of Theology: Evangelical Theology in Outline, pp. 53-77. Johannesburg: SATS Press. Bevans SB and Schroeder RP 2011. Constants in Context: A Theology of Mission for Today. New York: Orbis Books. Das R 2015. Connecting Curriculum with Context: A Handbook for Context Relevant Curriculum Development in Theological Education (ICETE). Cumbria: Langham Global Library. Domeris B 2017. Choosing a Research Topic. Unpublished article. Johannesburg: SATS. Ducklow P n.d. Appreciative Inquiry: A Paradigm Shift for Social Systems. Online article. Accessed from:, 2017-04-28. Malherbe J 2017. Church and Society. Unpublished article. Johannesburg: SATS. Mouton J 2001. How to Succeed in your Master’s and Doctoral Studies: A South African Guide and Resource Book. Pretoria: Van Schaik Publishers. Peppler CL 2014. Systematic Theology. In B Domeris and K Smith (eds.), A student’s A-Z of Theology: Evangelical Theology in Outline, pp. 255-265. Johannesburg: SATS Press. Peters T 2000. GOD – The World’s Future: Systematic Theology for a New Era (2nd ed.). Minneapolis: Fortress Press. Shaw IJ (ed.) 2015. Best Practice Guidelines for Doctoral Programs (ICETE). Cumbria: Langham Global Library. Shaw IJ 2015. Handbook for Supervisors of Doctoral Students in Evangelical Theological Institutions (ICETE). Cumbria: Langham Global Library. Smith KG 2008. Academic Writing and Theological Research. Johannesburg: SATS Press. ________ 2013. Integrated Theology: Discerning God’s Will in our World. Johannesburg: SATS Press. Tapela B, Büscher B, Maluleke L, Twine W, Steenkamp C 2009. Guidelines for Negotiating Social Research in Communities Living Adjacent to Transboundary Protected Areas: Kruger National Park. Johannesburg: University of Johannesburg. Thomas EC n.d. Appreciative Inquiry: A Positive Approach to Change. Online article. Accessed from:, 2017-04- 28. Tucker R 2014. Practical Theology. In B Domeris and K Smith (eds.), A student’s A- Z of Theology: Evangelical Theology in outline, pp. 236-253. Johannesburg: SATS Press. Vyhmeister NJ and Robertson TD 2014. Your Guide to Writing Quality Research Papers: For Students of Religion and Theology. Grand Rapids: Zondervan. Willis R 2008. Appreciative Inquiry: A Transformational Leadership Strategy. Online blog. Accessed from: inquiry-transformational-leadership-strategy/, 2017-04-28.