Master of Applied Theology

LEVEL 9   |   120, 180, 240 CREDITS   |   1-2 YEARS FULL-TIME (part-time available)

STUDY OPTIONS: Onsite, Online, Distance


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Programme Outline

Do you love learning and want to explore theology to a higher level? Do you want to engage in focused research that addresses questions important to you and your context? Or are you looking for an academic pathway to doctoral study? Then enrol in our Masters of Applied Theology. Climb higher, see further and resource the church for the sake of Jesus and his ministry in this world.

The Master of Applied Theology is for pastors and other Christian ministry and missional practitioners who have high levels of curriculum knowledge, research skills and leadership capacity. It also serves as a pathway to advanced masters or doctoral study through one of our partner institutions, Otago University and AUT.

“Our Masters degree is a chance for you to go deep into a research question that is important in your ministry context. If you are interested in joining us, we’d love to talk with you more about how we can walk alongside you to do research that really matters.”

Dr Christa McKirland, Lecturer, Carey Graduate School

Programme Structure

There are three different entry points into the Master’s programme depending on prior qualifications and experience:

    • The 240 credit Masters is the normal starting point for those with an undergraduate theology qualification.
    • The 180 credit entry point may be suitable for those with an undergraduate qualification AND with significant Christian ministry leadership experience, allowing a shorter pathway to the Masters.
    • The 120 credit, thesis-only entry may be the best option for those with a postgraduate theology qualification (which must include an appropriate course in research methods).

For the 180 and 240 credit options, the programme comprises of Research Methods in Applied Theology and the remainder of the credits from the following options. (Select the Course Name to view the course description.)

and either of the following:

To see which courses are currently available, check this year’s timetable.

Graduate Outcomes

Upon completion graduates will be able to demonstrate the following attributes:

  • Ability to critique scholarly publications in Applied Theology
  • Demonstrate critical skills in the interpretation of Biblical texts, demonstrating sound theological evaluations.
  • Critically reflect on current societal issues from informed Biblical and theological perspectives.
  • Critically evaluate contexts and identify strengths, weaknesses and suggest possible ways forward to better meet the needs of communities.
  • Work collaboratively with (and within) communities to achieve learning and research outcomes.

Entry Requirements

Admission to the Master of Applied Theology is open to full-time and part-time New Zealand students and full-time International students.

General Admission

An applicant will normally have completed one of the following:

  • a recognised undergraduate degree in theology or Christian ministry with a grade point average of B in courses of the undergraduate
    programme at Levels 6 and 7 (or equivalent) or,
  • a professional or other qualification which, in the judgement of the Academic Director, can be recognised as equivalent to a bachelor’s degree in theology or Christian ministry.

An applicant who does not meet these requirements but who has completed a recognised undergraduate degree in a discipline other than theology or Christian ministry may be admitted as a candidate following successful completion of a bridging programme of study as determined by the Academic Director.

For special admission and International student admission requirements (including English language) view the Academic Regulations and Calendar.

Transfer from other Programmes

Students who have completed courses at other institutions may be eligible for cross-credits or recognition of current competency.


Fees are inclusive of 15% GST, but do not include the Student Services Fee, course books, travel and health insurance, or living costs. In addition to the tuition fees, there is a Student Services Fee of $100 per 30 credit course.

Domestic Student $2040.00 per 30 credit course
International Student $5376.00 per 30 credit course
Audit (interest only, not for credit) $640.00 per 30 credit course

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Key Information for Students

Compare qualifications and academic information across different New Zealand institutions.

Photo of Ken Keyte for quote

“Ten years into pastoring, I wanted to upskill theologically. Part-time postgraduate study at Carey fanned into flame my love of scripture, and of applying it to pastoral leadership.

While studying, I discovered Michael Gorman’s work on cruciformity, which has transformed my ministry into a practice based on four patterns: faithful obedience, self-giving love, power through weakness, and transformative hope. My studies with Carey gave me this cross-shaped framework to base my ministry upon.”

– Ken Keyte, Graduate, Master of Applied Theology

Ready to make a difference?