New Zealand Certificate in Christian Studies

NZQF Level: 5
NZQF Credits: 60 credits
Duration: One Semester (full-time)
Intakes: February & July
Study Options: Onsite, distance, part-time, full-time, block courses

Dip your toes into theological study.

Enhance your church or ministry involvement and start your theological study journey with this short four-course programme.

The New Zealand Certificate in Christian Studies is the perfect starting point if you are wanting an initial theological qualification or perhaps you would like to augment your
church or ministry work with some introductory theological study. It can be completed in one semester full-time or a longer period part-time.

You can choose from a range of ministry, bible or theology courses to equip you to focus and reflect on biblically informed practices and explore a range of theological topics. Through a practical placement you will also be able to practice ministry and mission and reflect on it, guided by a Carey tutor.

You can gateway to further study in the Diploma or Bachelor’s degree.

Programme Outline

The programme of study is equivalent to one semester (full-time) totalling 60 credits comprising of:

MF501 – Reflective Field Education (15 credits)


MF505 – Contextual Theological Praxis (30 credits)

AND at least one of the following:

  • MM561 – Introduction to Pastoral Care (15 credits)
  • MM564 – Worship: Then and Now (15 credits)
  • MM572 – Foundations of Youth Ministry (15 credits)
  • MM581 – Mission of God (15 credits)
  • MM565 – Children’s Ministry (15 credits)

AND any of the following courses to make up the remaining credits (if any):

  • MB521 – Thinking Theologically (15 credits)
  • MB526 – Insights into Church History (15 credits)
  • MB532 – Introduction to the New Testament (15 credits)
  • MB531 – Introduction to the Old Testament (15 credits)
  • MS510 – Te Ao Māori (15 credits)
  • MM677 – Family and New Zealand Society (15 credits)

For more information on each course view the Course Descriptions.

For a full list of courses view our Academic Schedule of Courses.

Programme Objectives

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

Apply church ministry and religious leadership practices using broad theological and biblical foundational knowledge to explore personal faith and provide group direction.

Explore personal and community faith as lived through experience of a ministry programme including the evaluation of that programme.

Develop and evaluate a ministry programme for a specific purpose integrating Christian ministry practice with a broad and sometimes in‑depth biblical and theological knowledge base.

Entry Requirements

Admission to the New Zealand Certificate in Christian Studies is open to full-time and part-time New Zealand students and full-time International students.

General Admission

In order to gain admission all applicants must have achieved one of the following:

  • National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA), with a minimum of 42 credits at Level 3 or higher on the National Qualifications Framework, and
  • A minimum of 8 credits in English at Level 2 or higher, 4 credits of which must be in reading and with the remaining 4 in writing.
  • A grade of C or higher in each of the three subjects in New Zealand University Entrance or Bursaries and Scholarships (NZUEBS) examinations.

For full information (including Special Admission) please see the Academic Regulations and Calendar 2020.

International student admission requirements, including English language requirements, can be found here.

Transfer to other Carey Programmes
Any courses completed for credit while enrolled in the New Zealand Certificate of Christian Studies may subsequently be transferred to another Carey NZQA accredited qualification.

What is the cost?

See our full Fees Schedule for costs

When are courses taught?

View our 2020 Timetable


Note: The Schedule of courses in the Academic Regulations and Calendar indicates the planned cycle of what courses will be offered in which years.

However, please note that due to timetabling constraints and lecturer availability some courses may not be offered as planned.

Course selection and advice is provided via the Academic Registrar to ensure that your programme of study meets the requirements of the qualification you are enrolled in.


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Studying applied theology at Carey has given me a greater understanding of God’s mission in the world. It has equipped me with the tools to play my part in that mission—using graphic design to serve God.