NZ Diploma in Christian Studies

LEVEL 5   |   120 CREDITS   |   1 YEAR FULL-TIME (part-time available)

STUDY OPTIONS: On-site & Distance


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Programme Outline

Transform your church or ministry leadership by starting your theological study journey with the New Zealand Diploma in Christian Studies.  It is the perfect starting point for Christian leaders to be equipped to reflect on theological and biblical principles relevant to their specific context.  You can gateway to further study in the Bachelor’s degree.  Learn, grow, be transformed.

Students who study the New Zealand Diploma in Christian Studies (NZQA accredited) will gain a broad understanding of the principles of theology, biblical foundations, evaluative thinking, and applied leadership skills in ministry and mission.  The programme allows learners to study alongside ongoing ministry practice and engage in reflective practice as part of their studies.

“If you are interested in digging deeper into God’s mission of love, justice, mercy and holiness in the world, then I invite you to explore how we encounter this God, this mission and this kingdom in the Old Testament.”

Dr Michael Rhodes, Lecturer — Old Testament

Programme Structure

This programme is equivalent to one year full-time study, 120 credits, comprising:

All of the following:

Code Course Name Credits
MB521 Thinking Theologically 15
MM581 Mission of God 15
MS510 Te Ao Māori 15

and one or both of :

MB531 Introduction to the Old Testament 15
MB532 Introduction to the New Testament 15

and one of either:

MF501 Reflective Field Education 15


MF505 Contextual Theological Praxis 30

And up to three of the following (depending on other courses chosen):

MB526 Insights into Church History 15
MM561 Introduction to Pastoral Care 15
MM564 Worship Then and Now 15
MM572 Foundations of Youth Ministry 15

Graduate Outcomes

The New Zeland Diploma in Christian Studies will equip you to:

  • Have a sound introductory understanding of the Bible and key theological concepts

  • Apply introductory Biblical knowledge and understanding in specific contexts 

  • Understand and meet the specific needs of different individuals and/or groups (eg different ages, ethnicities, gender) 

  • Reflect on ministry/community contexts and identify opportunities for individual (or group) spiritual growth

  • Demonstrate ethical considerations within ministry/community contexts and programmes

  • Contribute to and lead (formally or informally) individuals (or groups) in ways that are culturally appropriate 

  • Align your knowledge of Biblical principles with practice in a range of life contexts

  • Communicate effectively across cultural boundaries 

Entry Requirements

Admission to the New Zealand Diploma in Christian Studies is open to full-time and part-time New Zealand students and full-time International students.

General Admission
In order to gain admission all applicants must have achieved one of the following:

  • National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA), with a minimum of 42 credits at Level 3 or higher on the National Qualifications Framework, and
  • a minimum of 8 credits in English at Level 2 or higher, 4 credits of which must be in reading and with the remaining 4 in writing.
  • A grade of C or higher in each of the three subjects in New Zealand University Entrance or Bursaries and Scholarships (NZUEBS) examinations.

For special admission and International student admission requirements (including English language) view the Academic Regulations and Calendar.

Transfer from other Programmes

Students who have completed courses at other institutions may be eligible for cross-credits or recognition of current competency.

Graduates of the New Zealand Certificate of Christian Studies may transfer all credits towards the New Zealand Diploma in Christian Studies programme.


Fees are inclusive of 15% GST, but do not include the Student Services Fee, course books, travel and health insurance, or living costs.  In addition to the tuition fees, there is a Student Services Fee of $50 per 15 credit course. Students enrolling in MS510 Te Ao Māori and/or MB630 Understanding Culture are required to also pay $64 + koha for a compulsory noho marae.

Domestic Student $787.00 per 15 credit course
International Student $2,617.00 per 15 credit course
Audit (interest only, not for credit) $320.00 per 15 credit course
Undergraduate Prospectus Cover_2023

Key Information for Students

Compare qualifications and academic information across different New Zealand institutions.

Photo of Caleb Brown for quote

“I took one year out of my working life to complete the New Zealand Diploma in Christian Studies at Carey and it was absolutely amazing. The staff, the community and the students were welcoming, clever, and down to earth. I  think every Christian should complete this study. It was challenging, interesting and helped me grow in my faith in God. It is a year I will never forget.”

– Caleb Brown, Graduate, New Zealand Diploma in Christian Studies

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