Church Leadership

Where can a Christian go for a Christian perspective on leading and managing within church organizations and ministries and at the same time learn more about the Bible and Christian ministry? The answer is Oakwood University’s Church Leadership degree.

Church Leadership is designed to enable those whose lives and interests are intertwined with church and religious pursuits to obtain a four-year degree in their area of primary interest. Furthermore, the strategic thinking and planning skills they develop in the program can be invaluable in other areas of work and professional life.

The degree is offered in a blended online format in order to combine the benefits of onsite learning with the convenience and flexibility of online learning.

Church Leadership Credit Requirements

  • General Education

    • Orientation Seminar (1 hour)
    • Computer and Health (5 hours)
    • Humanities (15 hours)
    • Natural Sciences and Mathematics (9 hours)
    • Social and Behavioral Sciences (9 hours)
    • Religion (6 hours)
    45 hours

  • Electives

    41 hours

  • Church Leadership Credits

    42 hours

  • Total Hours

    128 hours


Click the tabs for each course to read a detailed description. Or click here to print the complete list of courses and descriptions for the Church Leadership degree.

LD 300 Foundational Theories of Leadership Principals

This course explores a range of historical and contemporary theories of leadership. It engages the students in acquiring knowledge of leadership principles in the area of the definition and meaning of leadership, expectations for and functions of a leader, and qualifications and skills essential for effective leadership.

LD 310 Communication Strategies in Leadership

Effective communication is one of the most important aspects of successful leadership in any organizational context or venue in society. In this course, emphasis is placed on a knowledge and understanding of communication models, practices, strategies and techniques illustrating and referencing historical and contemporary leaders in the context of leadership.

LD 320 Applied Leadership in Organizational Change

This course focuses on the expectations and implementations of the leader’s role and responsibility in facilitating and managing organizational change and the organizational climate with application in business, community, government, or religious or social organizations. Topics explored include diversity, ethics, organizational behavior, power and influence, motivation, politics and stake holder relationships.

OM 305 Group & Organizational Dynamics*

OM 305 is a study of group behavior and how group functioning affects organizational effectiveness. Emphasis is placed on decision-making and conflict resolution. Students develop strategies for effective and productive group management and for determining which tasks are best handled by a group or an individual.

PY 201 Psychology of Religion

This course is a study of the psychological aspects of religion and an analysis of several systems in psychology from a Christian perspective, using the writings of Christian authors.

PY 331 Group Dynamics

Group Dynamics is a study of the dynamics of groups, with special emphasis being placed upon patterns of leadership, solidarity, cohesion, conflict, accommodation, and cooperation.

RB 411 Old Testament I*

This is an introductory survey of the Old Testament books from Genesis to Esther. The messages of each book are explored in light of their historical, geographical, literary, and theological contexts. Special attention is given to issues of interpretation and methodological approaches, laying the groundwork for the Christological interpretation of the Old Testament.

RG 203 Foundations in Biblical Spirituality

An introductory course exploring a personal relationship with God and developing a meaningful Christian witness. Emphasis is given to a strong devotional life not only on the personal but also spirituality on corporate and social levels.

RP 231 Personal Evangelism

Personal Evangelism is an introduction to Christian discipleship, with an emphasis on developing skills for practice, students examine biblical and theological foundations of discipleship as demonstrated in the ministry of Christ. Emphasis is given to the development of interpersonal skills for witnessing. Students learn to prepare and present Bible studies and train laity for discipleship. Field education is required.

RP 341 Biblical Preaching I

The course is an introduction to the biblical and theological foundations, principles, and methods of Christ-centered preaching. Students review biblical hermeneutics for application to preaching. Attention is also given to personal preparation, sermon development and delivery, and biblical preaching in the Seventh-day Adventist and Black traditions. Special emphasis is placed on Christ as the content of biblical preaching.

RP 431 Christian Ministry I

RP 431 offers an examination of biblical, theological, and historical foundations of Christian ministry and their relevance to professional issues in ministry. The course is designed to lead students from critical reflection to informed practice. The course utilizes a case study approach to develop the role of the minister as grounded in the ministry of Christ. Emphasis is placed on servant-leadership, ministerial ethics, life management, denominational polity, and strategic planning.

RP 442 Public Evangelism & Church Growth

This course is an introduction to public evangelism and church growth with an emphasis on developing skills for practice, students examine the biblical and theological foundations of public evangelism and church growth as demonstrated in the ministry of Christ. Traditional and non-traditional approaches are explored. Special emphasis is given to the role of the laity in successful public evangelism and church growth. Field education is required.

RT 322 World Religions

RT 322 is a survey of the development, beliefs, worldviews, and practices of the religions of the world, including African and Caribbean traditions as well as modern religious movements. Special emphasis is placed on their relationship with Christianity.

RT 421 Christian Theology I

An introductory survey of the development of Christian thought from A.D. 100 to 1300. Treatment is given to the task of theology, theological principles and methods, and biblical critique of theological ideas. Dogmatic categories include theology, Christology, pneumatology, anthropology, soteriology, ecclesiology, and eschatology. Students explore the relevance of theological reflection for modern church and society. Prerequisite: RT 221.

RT 423 Seventh-day Adventist Theology

The course explores the fundamental beliefs of the Seventh-day Adventist church from a biblical and historical perspective. Emphasis is placed on landmark beliefs and apocalyptic heritage.