Skip to main content

Master of Arts in Christian Ministry and Leadership (Biblical and Pastoral Ministry)


The Master of Arts in Christian Ministry and Leadership with a concentration in Biblical and Pastoral Ministry prepares you to be an effective teacher and preacher of God’s Word. In a culture that's growing in biblical illiteracy and less engaged with Scripture, churches need preachers who can teach from the Bible in clear and compelling ways, helping people grow in their love for God and his Word. This degree equips you for that task.

Through this program you’ll be taught and mentored by highly sought professors who are skilled and knowledgeable in expository preaching. You’ll receive rigorous training in how to prepare and deliver a sermon — covering multiple genres and styles, all built upon a foundational knowledge of either Greek or Hebrew. And you’ll benefit from courses designed both to prepare you for practical ministry and encourage personal spiritual transformation.

  • Preach with Power to Reach People Today. Behind every good message is a skilled preacher who has spent hours of preparation in the Word and in prayer. This program will sharpen your ability to communicate God’s Word by providing the skills you need to deliver a sermon that is biblically accurate, clearly communicated and relevant to your audience. Learn how to preach from various genres in a variety of styles. With in-class opportunities to preach, you’ll receive vital feedback from experienced faculty as well as classmates in training.
  • Deepen Your Knowledge of the Scriptures. At Talbot, you will receive a broad-based biblical and theological education and develop exegetical skills for your in-depth study of the Word. This program is specifically designed to provide the knowledge and training you need to teach and apply Scripture — including the option to learn either Greek or Hebrew and practical guidance in how to most effectively use scholarly commentaries and online study tools.
  • Learn from Renowned Faculty in the Field of Homiletics. The program’s faculty members are widely recognized for their preaching and expertise in teaching. They are well-known in scholarly circles and also highly sought as speakers at conferences and churches throughout the nation. Passionate about preaching and effectively communicating the Word of God, our professors empower future preachers to make an impact by offering meaningful feedback, clear teaching and wisdom from their decades of experience.
  • Prepare for a Lifelong Calling. “Ministry burnout” is an all-too-common challenge for those called into Christian ministry. To guard against this, Talbot’s M.A. programs focus on your spiritual transformation and equip you to approach ministry as a marathon, not a sprint. As you experience spiritual transformation in your own life and grow in spiritual, emotional and relational health, you will be ready to lead and grow other disciples with a rooted faith in a culture that is constantly changing.
  • Launch into Ministry With the Tools You Need. This M.A. degree is highly comparable to the Master of Divinity, but with fewer required courses and only one language, it is more efficient and affordable, especially for those seeking to launch into ministry roles that do not require an M.Div. With growing ministry opportunities in and outside the church, this program is ideal for those serving in varied roles but desiring knowledge of the biblical languages and skills in preaching and pastoral care.

For more reasons to choose Talbot School of Theology for your education, see the Why Talbot? page.

Show More

Yes! Tell Me More!


What will I study as a Master of Arts in Christian Ministry and Leadership (Biblical and Pastoral Ministry) student?

Talbot School of Theology’s Master of Arts in Christian Ministry and Leadership programs include a core of biblical and theological foundation courses, the Spiritual Formation Core, an area of practical ministry specialization, internships and elective courses. The biblical and pastoral ministry concentration also includes a biblical language and exegesis. You will have the opportunity to select either Greek or Hebrew as part of your curriculum.

Some of your courses include:

Pastoral Ministry (TTPT 602)

A study of a pastor's call, purpose, and role in ministry. Special attention will be given to providing leadership in worship, music, ordinances, weddings, funerals, and hospital and home visitation. Notes: Required of M.Div. (Pastoral and General Ministries, Christian Education, Evangelism and Discipleship, Spiritual Formation) students, and M.A.C.M.L. (Preaching and Pastoral Ministry) students. Grade Mode: A.

Spiritual Formation, Vocation, and the Disciplines (TTSF 504)

A theological and experiential exploration of the believer's vocation and the various 'callings' in the Bible as it relates to the general call of loving God and neighbor, a training in righteousness and conformity to Christ's image. Explores the panoply of spiritual disciplines sanctioned by the Bible and developed throughout Church history in order to enter deeply into one's calling. This learning takes place in a cohort group and includes various modalities of learning. A retreat component is included with this course. The retreat focuses on various spiritual disciplines and one's relation to the various calls of God in one's life, particularly one's personal call to ministry. Notes: Required of all Talbot students not in a Spiritual Formation academic program. Grade Mode: C, N.

Evangelism and Disciple-Making Strategies (TTPT 510)

This course explores biblical principles for evangelism and discipleship in order to determine the most relevant strategies and practices for individuals and churches to evangelize and disciple in their local context. Note(s): Required of Master of Divinity (Evangelism and Discipleship) and Master of Arts in Christian Ministry and Leadership (Ministry and Leadership); option within Master of Divinity (Spiritual Formation) for two of five course selections; option within Master of Divinity (Pastoral and General Ministry) for two of four course selections; option within Master of Arts in Christian Ministry and Leadership (Biblical and Pastoral Ministry) for one of two course selections. Grade Mode: A.

Admissions & Deadlines

As a Christian institution, Biola seeks to admit applicants whose backgrounds clearly demonstrate scholarly aptitude, a commitment to the historic Christian faith, personal character and integrity, and a positive service-oriented motivation toward their field of study. Biola does not discriminate on the basis of the applicant's race, color, sex, socio-economic status, disability, or national or ethnic origin.

Education and GPA Requirements

  • You must have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution by the time you plan to start coursework at Biola, with a minimum grade point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale).
  • Note: If you do not meet the degree or GPA requirements above, you may still be considered for admission. Please contact the Office of Graduate Admissions office at If you are an international student, contact

English Proficiency Requirements

  • If English is not your first language, you are required to display your English proficiency before admittance into a Biola University graduate program. See “English Proficiency” in the application steps section below.

Application Deadlines

  • Fall Semester
    • General: July 1
    • International Students
      • On Campus: June 1
      • Online/Hybrid: July 1
  • Spring Semester
    • General: November 1
    • International Students: October 1

Visit Biola

Explore our sunny Southern California campus in person or virtually. Learn more about your program of interest and the admissions process by scheduling an appointment with an admissions counselor.

Visit Biola
Virtual Tour

Meet Your Admissions Counselor

If you have more questions about the program, admissions process or Biola in general, schedule a phone call or send an email to your admissions counselor.

Graduate Admissions Counselor

Photo of Chris So
Chris So

Text or Call: (562) 784-7064
Book a Phone or Virtual Appointment

International Graduate Admissions Counselor

The Office of International Admissions serves students who are not citizens or permanent residents of the United States.

Book a Phone or Virtual Appointment

Application Steps

  1. Complete and submit the online application

  2. Submit a non-refundable $65 application fee

  3. Submit supplemental application materials through your online application portal:

  4. Official Transcripts

    • Submit all official transcripts from previous academic institutions.
      • Request official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended.
      • If enrolled at the time the application is filed, be sure to request transcripts of work finished to date and final transcripts upon completion of your course of study.
      • Transcripts will be considered official only when a) mailed directly from the institution to Biola, b) sent electronically through an approved vendor or c) physically delivered in an untampered envelope sealed by the institution. Final approval for admission is contingent on receiving an official transcript.
        • Mail transcripts to:
          Biola University Office of Graduate Admissions
          13800 Biola Avenue, La Mirada, CA 90639
    • Note for International Students: All international transcripts need U.S. grade equivalencies noted (i.e. GPA on a 4.0 scale). If your transcripts do not show U.S. grade equivalencies, you must have them evaluated by a credential evaluation agency like SpanTran (Biola Discount), World Education Services (WES) or Foundation for International Services (FIS). Be sure to choose "course by course report" and have SpanTran/WES/FIS send them directly to Biola University via online portal or post (13800 Biola Ave, La Mirada, CA 90639) in order to be considered official.

    Two Reference Letters

    • Pastoral reference
    • Character reference (someone in a leadership role in your life)
    • Note: Additional instructions can be found in the online application.

    Two Essays

    • Christian testimony
    • Vocational testimony
    • Note: The essay prompts can be found in the online application.

    English Proficiency (required for non-native English speakers)

    • Evidence of English proficiency is required for all students to support student success. Proficiency must be shown through one of the methods described below:
      • Minimum test score on a qualifying standardized test
        • TOEFL: minimum score of 90 iBT
        • IELTS: minimum score of 7.0
        • Duolingo: minimum score of 125
      • A degree (bachelor’s, master’s or doctoral) issued by an institution where English is the medium of instruction.
        • Official written communication from the institution (Registrar, Controller of Examinations Office, or Undergraduate College)
        • Official degree statements or transcripts may be accepted given English is stated as the medium of instruction
        • Official catalog verification
        • Note: For universities from non-Anglophone countries, further language assessment may be required.
      • Completion of the English Language Scholars (ELS) with passing status on the ELS's final exit exam, which must be approved by the ELS Director in collaboration with the academic program committee. An updated TOEFL or IELTS score may be used at the end of a term to test directly into the graduate program for the following term.
      • Qualify for English Language Scholars (ELS), which allows students who do not meet the minimum TOEFL, IELTS or Duolingo scores to still enroll in their graduate degree program. Students would be taking academic English courses concurrently with the graduate degree program courses. 
        • Students eligible for ELS will be assessed by the ELS Director to determine the total number of academic English courses to take while enrolled in their graduate program courses. The following are the scores needed to qualify for ELS: TOEFL iBT 81 / IELTS 6.5 / Duolingo 110–124.
        • Note: Students must be admitted to the graduate program first to be considered for ELS.


    Additional Forms


    Things to Note

    • Track your application status at any time. You do not have to complete the application in one sitting. You can complete a portion and finish at a later time. Your information will be saved. When you apply, to guarantee confidentiality, you will be asked to create a user name and a password, and will receive a personalized identification number. Track your application status by logging in to the online application.
    • Official documents presented for admission or evaluation become part of the student’s academic file and normally cannot be returned or copied for distribution.
    • International students who will be studying on campus are required to apply for an F-1 student visa. For more information, visit

Tuition and Financial Aid

Biola is committed to help make your studies affordable — each school offers different scholarship, grant and loan opportunities to help finance your education.

Cost Per Credit (2024‑25) $704
Full-time Tuition Per Term (Estimated) Based on 9 credit courseload$6,336
Part-time Tuition Per Term (Estimated) Based on 3 credit courseload$2,112
Total Program Tuition (Estimated) Based on total program credits and 2024‑25 cost per credit$40,832



On Campus: You'll study in person at Biola University's campus in Southern California.

Hybrid (On Campus and Online): This program includes a blend of course formats, including online and in person at Biola University's Southern California campus.

Total Credits

Every program at Biola University features rigorous academics, biblically integrated curriculum and vocational preparation.

Cost per Credit

This is the cost per credit; total tuition costs for each term will differ for part-time and full-time students.

Standard Completion Time

This indicates the standard duration of this program. Completion time may vary depending on transferred coursework and preferred courseload.


Biola University is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission. Additional accreditations may apply to specific programs.