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Central Institute of Theological Studies

Master Certificate of Studies Program

A Place for Scriptural Research and Accountability 

Central Institute of Theological Studies 





Christian Studies                   Theology             Ecclesiastical History   




I.              Advanced Certificate of Studies from CITS 

         All applicants must submit official transcripts showing completion of a Advanced Certificate of Studies.

         All applicants must submit a photocopy of their actual certificate.

         All such documents must be submitted with the applicant’s initial application.


II.            Permission from Dean of Academic Affairs to enroll in program

         All applicants must submit a signed letter addressed specifically to the Dean of Academic Affairs, stating their intentions to study at the Central Institute of Theological Studies in a Master Certificate of Studies Program, and which one of the above listed disciplines they we be studying.

         All applicants must submit a minimum of two notarized letters of reference. One should be from someone who can testify in writing to the applicant’s academic history. One should be from a religious leader (pastor, deacon, elder, bishop or clergy) attesting to the applicant’s religious, and or faith based convictions.

         All such documents must be submitted with the applicant’s initial application.  


      III.  Completion of all five study steps listed below


a).  Attend Four (4) Master Certificate Level Courses

         Two of these courses must be attended in person

         Two of these courses can be self study courses purchased through the Central Institute of Theological Studies. See our catalogue for available courses.

         In certain critical situations, exceptions may be made to the above requirements regarding attendance. Each situation will be personally evaluated by the Dean and course instructors.


b). Compile and teach a standard certificate level course of studies

       This may be either an intensive style lecture course or self study course. The student must work with their CITS mentor closely to develop this course of studies. 

         The course must consist of a minimum of six hours of lecture or a written study guide that is at a minimum of 3,000 words in length.

         The course topic must be approved by the chair of studies in that discipline of study.

         The course can be taught at CITS or another approved institution .If the course is taught at another approved institution, proof that this course of studies has been taught will be required through either a video or audio copy of the lectures accompanied with a formal printed and highly detailed outline.


c). Spend a minimum of eighty clock hours in church or para church ministry

         The specific venue (location) must be pre-approved by the Dean of Academic Affairs

         The time must be served under an approved director or mentor at that particular ministry. Particular forms will be supplied by CITS for the approved director or mentor to complete for the applicant. 

         The mentor or director must sign all of the required forms.

         An approved mentor / director may be one of the following: A local pastor of a congregation; an associate pastor assigned to specific ministries within a congregation or outreach project; a director of a para church ministry such as a homeless shelter / inner city mission / specific need supplier such as clothing, food or medical/dental; a clinical researcher or counselor involved in a faith based practice on a full time basis. Other options may be considered upon making a request in writing to the Dean.  


d). Four Exhaustive Literature Reports

         A minimum of four detailed written reports must be submitted in print and digital format to the CITS on books from the approved book list.

         These reports must be a minimum of Two (2) pages of double spaced text in 12 point Times New Roman font. They will be graded for accuracy of content and quality of presentation. Doctoral students are required to use Turibian style for writing these reports.     

         The selections must be approved by chair of studies in that discipline. The following are a list of approved books for such reports. (Other options may be considered for approval)  


Bridge Over Troubled Water James Bell (Wheaton, Illinois Victor Books) 1993


Compassionate Leadership Ted Engstrom(Ventura,California, Regal Books) 2006


Concise Dictionary of World Religions John Bowker (New York, Oxford University

Press) 2006   


Death – The Trip of a Lifetime Greg Palmer (San Francisco, Harper Publishing) 1993


Fabricating Jesus Craig A. Evans (Downers Grove, Illinois, Intervarsity Press) 2006


Finding Organic Church Frank Viola (Colorado Springs, David C. Cook Publishers)



Foundational Kingdomology Joel L. Getts (Dayton, Ohio Physchbayte Publishers) 2008


Grief Counseling J. William Worden (New York, Springer Publishing) 2009


I Still Believe Kurt Bruner (Grand Rapids Michigan Zondevan) 2005


Judas and the Gospel of Jesus N.T. Wright (Grand Rapids Michigan Baker Books) 2006


Lost Christianities Bart D. Ehrman (New York, Oxford Press) 2003


Pagan Christianity Frank Viola (Colorado Springs, David C. Cook Publishers)



Religion and Empire  Richard A. Horsley (Minneapolis, Augsburg Press) 2003


Systematic Theology Wayne Grudem (Grand Rapids Michigan Zondevan) 1994


Testament - The Bible and History John Romer (Old Saybrook, CT., Konecky &



The Creed Michael Bauman (Nashville,Tennessee, Thomas Nelson Publishers) 2002


The Great Thoughts George Seldes (New York, Ballantine Books)1985


The Myth of a Christian Nation Gregory A. Boyd (Grand Rapids Michigan Zondevan)



The Prince Niccolo Machiavelli (London, Folio Society) 2006 (other publishers are acceptable)


The Problem of Pain C.S. Lewis (San Francisco, Harper Publishing)2000 (other publishers are



e). Composition of Research Paper

         All Master Certificate candidates must compose a minimum of 5000 words in a written dissertation in Turibian style writing. The completed document must be submitted in print and in digital format.

         The topic of the paper is to be approved by Dean of Academic Affairs prior to the Master Certificate candidate composing it.  


Central Institute of Theological Studies



The tuition is free for the Master Certificate of Studies Program includes all of the necessary school forms, paperwork processing, regular access to instructors and the Dean of Academic Affairs, and the applicant’s final official transcript (one copy)If you would like an actual diploma, please make a donation of any size to help cover the costs. Candidates are encouraged to participate in the semi-annual graduation ceremonies.


CITS will not provide; 

  • Travel expenses for the student to attend intensive courses, interviews or graduation.
  • Books and other reading materials that the student will need to purchase to complete requirements.
  • Personal supplies and for the classroom and any needed personal study materials.
  • Personal apparel and / or regalia for graduation ceremonies. 


Central Institute of Theological Studies

Master Certificate of Studies Student Application




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Please print and send completed application to :

Central Institute of Theological Studies

P.O. Box 750491  Dayton, Ohio   45475

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Central Institute of Theological Studies


P.O. Box 750491 Dayton, Ohio 45475