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Christy Gilliam




Graduate Certificate

NNU’s fully online Graduate Certificate Program is designed for laypersons who want to explore a particular facet of the Christian tradition or for clergy who want to further their studies in one particular area of interest.

A person taking notes in a notebook on their lap.
  • Choose from seven different Graduate Certificates at a pace that fits your lifestyle
  • 16 semester credits that can be completed in as few as 9 months for certificate completion
  • Fully online
  • Federal financial aid and NNU’s zero-interest monthly payment plan are available to all who qualify

About NNU’s Graduate School of Theology Certificate Programs

The Graduate Certificates offered by NNU’s Graduate School of Theology may be of interest to individuals for their own personal or professional development who presently desire something other than a full academic degree program. Graduate Certificates empower students to focus in a particular area of academic study at a pace that fits their schedule. Depending on the certificate selected, students may complete one or two eight-week courses per semester.

Graduate certificates are offered in:

  • MISSIONAL LEADERSHIP (2 certificates)
  • SPIRITUAL FORMATION (2 certificates)
  • YOUTH, CHILDREN & FAMILY MINISTRY (2 certificates)

Graduate certificates may also be attractive to prospective students who are considering a graduate degree and may later wish to transfer their graduate certificate coursework into that particular degree track. For instance, if you complete our Graduate Certificate in Missional Leadership, you could transfer these four courses into our Master of Divinity or Master of Arts in Missional Leadership at a later date. Likewise, those who have already earned a graduate degree may find a graduate certificate helpful in focusing their study in a particular discipline beyond a previous degree.

Certificate details

$575 per credit, with discounts available

Additional Information


Certificate in Wesleyan Studies
Can be completed in as few as 21 months.

After completion of PRTH6000. OnRamp Program Orientation (0), students will complete the following courses and lab:

  • PRTH6000L. Personal Development Lab (0)
  • BIBL7290. Grounded in the Living Word: Scripture and the Christian Life (4)
  • CHIS6290. Founded on Embodied Tradition: Church History and the Christian Life (4)
  • PHIL7290. Reflecting on Character: Philosophy and the Christian Life (4)
  • THEO6290. Engaging with Prophetic Voices: Theology and the Christian Life (4)

16 Required Credits

BIBL7290 – Grounded in the Living Word: Scripture and the Christian Life (4 credits)

This course explores the dynamics and power of Scripture in spiritual formation, personal transformation, and the Christian life. A key aspect of this course is an understanding and development of biblical hermeneutical principles and practices that focus not only on the biblical text’s content but also on its potential effects as part of the church’s Scripture. In addition to learning about life with God from Scripture, successful students can gain competence in listening to the spirit of the text, move from informational reading to transformational reading, and learn to engage Scripture in ways that grasp and change one’s being and doing.

CHIS6290 – Founded on Embodied Tradition: Church History and the Christian Life (4 credits)

This course is designed to provide an historic underpinning for the practice of ministry in the Wesleyan tradition. Emphasis is placed on Wesley’s theological sources (Early Church, Medieval, Reformation, Anglican), his theological methodology, his theology of spiritual formation, and his ability to engage his cultural context. Particular attention is given to how students can pursue personal and social holiness, and develop effective and dynamic missional approaches to leadership.

PHIL7290 – Reflecting on Character: Philosophy and the Christian Life (4 credits)

This course explores Christian ethics from a philosophical perspective. Students engage in biblical, theological and philosophical reflection, study dominant approaches to ethical thinking, and examine contemporary moral problems. Particular emphasis is placed on developing critical reflection skills, rather than finding answers to various ethical questions. This course also facilitates a deeper understanding of character formation and sharpens one’s discernment as to how theological and philosophical reflection helps shape Christian practice.

PRTH6000 – OnRamp Program Orientation (0 credits)

This course orients the student to the resources, procedures, electronic operations, and expectations of the program, and also includes the completion of the California Psychological Inventory (CPI), which students will discuss in PRTH6000L, as well as a required criminal background check. Grade of Pass/Fail.

THEO6290 – Engaging with Prophetic Voices: Theology and the Christian Life (4 credits)

Students reflect theologically on life and ministry by exploring various sources of theological reflection. In particular, dominant themes and figures in contemporary theology are explored, especially voices and perspectives that are often overlooked. In this exploration, students compare and contrast distinctive characteristics of Wesleyan theology, including various understandings of holiness, with issues found in contemporary theology. This course explores issues of holiness and justice and how the Church can better live into the reign of God for all and not just those in power.

NNU’s Graduate School of Theology is accredited by The Commission on Accrediting of The Association of Theological Schools. The following degree programs are approved by The Commission on Accrediting: Master of Divinity; Master of Arts in Pastoral Ministry; and Master of Arts in Leadership & Formation with specializations in Missional Leadership; Spiritual Formation; and Youth, Children & Family Ministry.

Since 1930, NNU has been continuously accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges & Universities, the same respected accrediting body that validates other leading educational institutions across the Pacific Northwest.

Meet Our Faculty

Before I enrolled, I assumed that online education would leave many gaps in student, professor, and colleague interaction and therefore learning, but I was wrong. The online atmosphere offered deep, meaningful, and even transformational discussion.
Kalyn Vogelmann

Master of Divinity in Missional Leadership