Online Second BA in Christian Education Leadership with DCE Certification

We rejoice in your considering whether God is calling you to enter DCE Ministry in the LCMS. There is much work ahead, and we want to ensure that you are well prepared not only for your entry into ministry, but also for your time of studies. The following FAQ’s will help guide you as you work your way through the program.


  • When are classes held online?
Theology classes (THL) are typically held 6:30 pm – 9:20 pm PST on either Monday, Tuesday, or Thursday. Courses may include asynchronous online components. Keep in mind these start times are Pacific Standard Time. DCE courses are typically during the afternoon (PST) and include a combination of real time and asynchronous study.
  • What equipment will I need to attend online classes?

Recommendations from Blackboard on what is needed to best interface for live sessions in Collaborate:

  • 256 MB RAM; 20 MB free disk space
  • Internet Access - 28.8 kbps speed or above (Broadband connection highly recommended)
  • Soundcard with microphone and headphones (A headset with microphone/headphones with muting capability)
  • Webcam
  • What classes are offered on campus? Am I required to come on campus?

Every other June, DCE 450 Counseling for Ministry is taught on campus as a summer intensive. Additionally, the DCE program offers two week long courses that students may take on campus. (Every student is required to attend at least one on campus summer intensive as part of their program requirements.)

  • What is considered full-time for Second BA students?

Full-time status for the Online Second BA is 12 units of course work each semester.

  • How many classes should I take at a time?

We recommend that you not take more than three courses per semester. Please keep in mind your employment and family responsibilities when you work with us to design your course plan. We want to ensure that you receive the best education possible while allowing you to make good progress toward completion each semester. As you work with our staff and faculty on your course plan, please keep in mind the potential late nights that may come with our courses.

  • What are the key sites where I can find information on classes, books, and other items?


  • How will pre-internship fieldwork be handled?

Fieldwork is to be completed in your home congregation under the support and supervision of your pastor or other commissioned church staff. Time is spent as a class each month discussing your ministry experiences - what you are observing or leading in your congregation - as well as reflecting on selected readings for your ministerial formation and your internship preparation.

  • How will my internship be handled?

If you are already on staff or volunteering at an LCMS congregation in DCE type ministry, your internship usually can take place there. If you are not already on staff, our director will work with you to find the best internship site possible. The variables that we take into account when selecting your internship site include: family needs, ministry skill set, and church/staff personality. Our goal is to place you into a situation where you are most likely to succeed. If you are geographically restricted for any reason, we will do what we can to accommodate you; however, we cannot guarantee a site will be available at that time.

  • If I am already on staff at my church, can internship be waived or reduced?

If you’ve been employed full time at your church five years or longer in a DCE related role, you are eligible to be considered for a reduction in the duration of your internship from 12 months to 6 months. This again is at the discretion of the program director and based on the nature of work that was done in the role. A 6-month internship is the LCMS minimum standard and cannot be further reduced.

  • Am I able to seek my own internship site?

Yes, unlike traditional undergraduate students, we understand there may be family variables that impact your internship placement and require greater flexibility. If you are able to initiate local conversations or have contacts that are reasonable to leverage to assist in your internship placement, we will gladly work with you. If you do not have local contacts, keep in mind that the more geographically mobile you are, the better a potential match we are likely to find for you from the churches that have applied with us.

  • When does internship begin?

When all course work has been completed. Course work that has been waived due to prior academic work at another institution is considered complete and will not prevent internship placement.

  • When will I be eligible for a call?

When internship requirements have been successfully completed, you are then eligible for your first call. Interns spend 2-3 days at CUI each January for a ‘reflection conference’ which includes additional details.

Admission and Registration

  • How do I get started?

To begin the application process contact Carrie Donohoe, Christ College Program Coordinator, at [email protected] or (949) 214-3389.

  • How do I register for class?

Students will receive a form sent via email from Carrie Donohoe that must be signed and returned. After the initial enrollment you will register using MyRecords (https://myrecords.cui.edu). The registration process begins July 1 for the Fall semester (Aug-Dec), Nov. 1 for the Spring semester (Jan-May), and April 1 for the summer term.

  • How is my prior academic work applied toward certification?

All prior academic work should have been documented in the form of official transcripts during the application process. Courses accepted as credit toward certification are noted in your file and in your course plan.

  • What is the purpose of my course plan and can it be amended?

A course plan is a guide for faculty, staff, and students to keep track of your program in your program. The course plan is built around the schedule of available classes and your desire as a student for the timing of the completion of your course work. At times students over-estimate how much work they can handle. If you find that the work load is too great for you or if for other reasons you need to change the pace of your studies, please let us know. We will be happy to adjust your course plan.

  • When do student loans have to be paid back?

Generally there is a grace period of 6 months before loans need to begin being paid back, but when you complete exit counseling with financial aid, more details will be shared based on your lenders.

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