March 27, 2013 | 8:09 a.m.
By Suzanne McInroy, Director of Communications
Tuition rates for Bethel Seminary have been set for the 2013-14 academic year. Due to adjustments to program lengths and the conversion from quarters to semesters, the overall cost of a Bethel Seminary degree will go down. The cost per semester credit hour will increase about 3% or less, depending on program and location.
Master’s level programs will be $565 per semester credit hour next year for Bethel Seminary St. Paul and San Diego (including InMinistry) and $540 per semester credit hour for Bethel Seminary of the East. “When credit hours are adjusted for the quarter to semester change, this rate keeps costs almost flat for St. Paul and is about a 3% increase for Seminary of the East and 3.2% for San Diego,” says David Clark, vice president and dean of Bethel Seminary.
Doctoral level programs will change as well. The Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.) degree will not be priced by the program, but instead by semester credit hour. D.Min. tuition will be $355 per credit hour for self-directed programs and $550 per credit hour for cohort programs. “Because of the conversion to a semester calendar, D.Min. students will have access to government loans beginning in the summer 2013,” explains D.Min. program director, Justin Irving.
Bethel Seminary is converting to the semester academic calendar rather than the current quarter calendar in September. The semester calendar will be identical to the College of Arts & Sciences schedule, consisting of two semesters, fall and spring, each with approximately 14 weeks of instruction, plus a four-week interim in January and a 13-week summer term.
The conversion to semesters creates opportunities for adjustments to programs and pricing. A typical course in the quarter system was four credits whereas a typical course in a semester will be three credits. Since a semester credit is taught over 14 weeks, and a quarter credit is taught over 10 weeks, one semester credit is equivalent to approximately 1.5 quarter credits.
Adjustments have also been made to degree programs so that students starting a degree in fall 2013 will be required to take fewer credit hours. In addition, several small fees have been eliminated. “These factors will allow Bethel to make seminary more affordable,” explains Clark.
Clark and other administrators see a number of benefits to students because of the quarter to semester calendar change, including the chance to explore a subject more fully during 14-week classes; opportunities for short, off-campus study during interim; and collaborations between faculty at the seminary and Bethel’s other schools. St. Paul students will have easier access to classes offered on the semester system through the Minnesota Consortium of Theological Schools.
The InMinistry tuition rates will be $565 per credit hour for all seminary locations. InMinistry will be offered for the first time in San Diego during fall 2013 and at Seminary of the East in fall 2014.
Tuition rates for the College of Arts & Sciences were announced earlier this month. The Graduate School and the College of Adult & Professional Studies will announce tuition rates in the coming weeks.