What Is A Major Applied Research Project?

Posted on January 10, 2012 at 9:45 AM

As evident in the above statement, a key element of the D.Min. program is the Major Applied Project (MAP). The ATS explicitly states with respect to the MAP:

The program shall include the design and completion of a written doctoral-level project that addresses both the nature and the practice of ministry. The project should be of sufficient quality that it contributes to the practice of ministry as judged by professional standards and has the potential for application in other contexts of ministry.

The ministry project should demonstrate the candidate’s ability to identify a specific theological topic in ministry, organize an effective research model, use appropriate resources, and evaluate the results, and should reflect the candidate’s depth of theological insight in relation to ministry.

Upon completion of the doctoral project, there shall be an oral presentation and evaluation. The completed written project, with any supplemental material, should be accessioned in the institution’s library.

It is helpful to think of the MAP as an experiment in ministry. It is carried out in an individual's context of ministry and the final documents and oral examination describe what is done and what the results were so that others might learn from the experiment. Thus, the MAP is a key measure and significant demonstration of the learner's competence as practiced in his context of ministry. The completion of the MAP signifies that the learner is sensitive both to the theory and practice of ministry. A written document and an oral presentation constitute the basis for evaluating the achievement of this key measure.

In summary, the D.Min. student ordinarily completes his formal course of study in the program with the MAP. It is anticipated that the goals the learner will achieve through his project are to:


1. demonstrate a higher level of understanding of ministry and its context;

2. develop a higher level of theological competence in ministry;


1. appreciate the theological context in which ministry is practiced;

2. increase feeling for the impact of learning on ministry with the parish;

3. deepen awareness of the need for personal and pastoral formation;


1. implement a theology for ministry into the practice of ministry; and

2. study individually a specific topic of interest under the guidance of an advisor.

The previous material was taken from the MAJOR APPLIED PROJECT MANUAL AND PROCESS GUIDE from Concordia Seminary St. Louis.

Categories: General Information

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