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The policies that are specific to the Doctor of Ministry Program are below. Please also see the Academic Policies for Graduate Programs.
Certificate of Advanced Pastoral Studies
Course Schedule - Academic Year
Final Requirement Completion and Registration
Leave of Absence
Ministry Project Oral Examination
On-Campus Classroom Requirement
Students who are forced to miss a class session should contact the faculty member teaching the course to make arrangements to complete any coursework. In no case may Doctor of Ministry students miss more than one and a half day-long sessions per course per semester (in courses that meet on the D.Min. schedule for five days in a semester) and still successfully complete the requirements of the course.
Regularly enrolled students who have successfully completed all Colleague Seminar requirements and the six elective courses and who, by their own decision or that of the faculty, do not proceed to the Ministry Project phase of the program, or to the final examination of the Ministry Project, may apply to the Academic Policy Committee for the Certificate of Advanced Pastoral Studies.
The course schedule is designed to accommodate the needs of persons engaged in full-time ministry, some of whom travel considerable distances. Students come to the campus once every three to four weeks to participate in the Colleague Seminar on Monday and an elective course on Tuesday, otherwise referred to in the Seminary community as “D.Min. Days.” During the academic year, Doctor of Ministry courses meet from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Mondays and 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. on Tuesdays. Most courses are offered on a two-year cycle. Doctor of Ministry students are also welcome to take courses offered on other schedules that are designated with a 600 course number.
Students in the Doctor of Ministry programs who have completed all courses required for their degree must enroll in their final project within two regular semesters. Students who are at this stage and wish to defer working on their final project may postpone enrolling in their final requirement and take advantage of the Program Continuation provision (see Program Continuation Fee in the Academic Policies for Graduate Programs) for no more than one semester. Students may choose to register for three credits for each of two consecutive regular semesters. Students requiring additional semesters to complete the final project beyond the semester(s) in which they have registered for the final requirement credits must pay the program extension fee (see Program Extension Fee in the Academic Policies for Graduate Programs.) If a student finds they cannot proceed with the final project within these time frames due to serious life difficulties, they must, after consulting with the faculty advisor, request a leave of absence from the Academic Policy Committee in order to be considered for an exemption from this requirement.
Students in the Doctor of Ministry degree program are graded as follows: High Pass, Pass, Low Pass, and Fail. Students who receive two “Low Pass” grades or below will be evaluated by the Academic Policy Committee to determine their suitability for continuing in the program. The enrollment of any Doctor of Ministry student receiving two “Fail” grades shall be terminated.
Doctor of Ministry degree candidates are awarded their degree in a special ceremony ordinarily held in the recipient’s ministry setting. Doctor of Ministry graduates are also recognized at Hartford Seminary’s annual graduation ceremony.
Students who find it necessary to interrupt their planned program of study due to serious life difficulties (medical, family, employment, etc.) may request a leave of absence by submitting a petition through their faculty advisor to the Academic Policy Committee. This petition should include reasons for seeking a leave and a schedule for resuming study. When the Committee has made a decision, the student will receive a letter informing her or him of the decision. Leaves are not granted for more than one academic year. All requirements for the Doctor of Ministry degree must be completed within six years. (Students who are recipents of federal financial aid should refer to the Financial Aid section of this Catalogue for additional leave of absence stipulations.)
Students who have not received an approved leave of absence, registered for a course or paid a program continuation fee or program extension fee (see Academic Policies for Graduate Programs for descriptions of these fees and the policies governing them) for four consecutive academic semesters will be removed from the program with notification. A student who has been inactive within this period may reactivate by petitioning the Academic Policy Committee and paying any unpaid tuition or fees within 30 days.
All course work must be completed, all grades reported to the Registrar, and all financial obligations to the Seminary must be met before ministry project oral examinations may be taken. Students planning to schedule their final oral examination must contact the Executive Assistant to the Dean at least four weeks prior to the proposed exam date and must complete the final oral examination checklist before the exam may be scheduled.
Hartford Seminary requires that at least 18 credits of the 36 required for the Doctor of Ministry degree be taken in courses taught in the classroom on the Hartford Seminary campus. This allows for up to half of the credits required for the degree to be taken in a combination of the following formats: off-site courses, on-line courses, independent study, transfer credits, travel seminars, and final project.
Students in the Doctor of Ministry program are allowed to count three doctoral level credits taken at another accredited institution toward the elective requirements for the Doctor of Ministry degree. These credits may be from a course taken within 10 years prior to enrolling at Hartford Seminary or can be taken during the course of a student’s program. However, a course taken at another institution while a student is enrolled at Hartford Seminary must be pre-approved by the student’s advisor and the Dean (students must complete the Transfer Credit Pre-Approval Form). If the student’s final project involves an area of expertise that is not covered by the faculty of Hartford Seminary, and a course in this area is available at another accredited institution, the student may petition the Academic Policy Committee to take an additional 3 credits off-site and transfer them back in toward elective credits. A convincing case must be made that a second off-site course is critical to the successful carrying out of the student’s final project.
Hartford Seminary is committed to providing our students with the tools they need to successfully complete our program. One service we offer is writing assistance. Writing assistance services may consist of individualized work with a Writing Consultant or group workshops. Writing assistance is available to all matriculated students upon request, and at no charge. Writing assistance may also be recommended to newly admitted students by the Admissions Committee, or recommended to enrolled students by the Faculty. Further information about these services is available from the Dean’s Office.