DCE Specialist Diploma Program

Concordia’s Director of Christian Education Specialist Diploma Program will help you learn innovative, creative ways to help young, middle-aged and adult learners see their faith journeys as relevant, real, fulfilling and fun.

Throughout your coursework you will develop an advanced understanding of ways to make the most of and manage small and large group dynamics. You will emerge as an excited, energetic leader who challenges "we've always done it that way" thinking.



The DCE Specialist Program is designed for those students who have completed their undergraduate coursework and are only seeking DCE certification. Courses taken for graduate credit may also be applied toward a master's program.

General Requirements

Admission to the Program

  • Students must have a bachelor’s degree. (Persons without an education degree may need additional education courses.)
  • Students must submit the following admissions materials:
    Undergraduate transcript of grades
    DCE Specialist application form
    Three recommendations (one from home pastor or DCE)
    1,000-word autobiographical statement
    Qualifying interview approval letter
  • After the admission materials are submitted, students will complete an admission interview on the Concordia campus. Following the interview, students will be given several learning goals and the proposed plan of study will be developed.

 Course Requirements

  • Must have completed a minimum of 27 hours of theology or their equivalent in the following areas: Biblical—12 hours (Rel 121, 131, an interpretation course, THEO 450); Doctrine—9 hours (THEO 361, 362489); Practical—6 hours (THEO 385, 482, 487).
  • Must complete other course requirements as outlined in the proposed plan of study. It is likely that the remaining courses will not exceed 21 hours beyond those required in No. 1
  • Internship in a parish for one year (unless extensive prior experience suggests a shorter internship) for 30 credit hours or equivalent parish experience.

*For course descriptions see undergraduate and graduate catalogs. NOTE: Undergraduate courses will not count toward a graduate degree.