PhD in Christian Leadership – Spiritual Formation Empower Spiritual Growth


Credit Hours

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100% online, 8-week courses

Transfer in up to 50% of the degree total

In today’s hyper-individualistic culture, we need to bring people into the Christian community and help facilitate their spiritual growth and formation. Liberty University’s 100% online Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Christian Leadership – Spiritual Formation is a research degree designed for leaders in all aspects of Christian churches, organizations, and schools. Through empirical research, you can learn how to address various educational and ministerial challenges. You’ll also explore how biblical principles relate to education and leadership philosophy, theory, and practice.

The spiritual formation specialization can help you pursue the goals you have for your church or organization. By completing your Christian spiritual formation degree at Liberty, you can develop a historical perspective of spiritual formation and learn new ways to foster spiritual growth in your church and community. In addition, you can learn how to use Christian social networks to reach non-Christians.

Our courses can help you prepare to make a difference in the world, and your dissertation will help you refine your problem-solving skills as you conduct scholarly research to contribute to the current knowledge base.

*The PhD in Applied Apologetics, PhD in Bible Exposition, PhD in Christian Leadership, and PhD in Practical Theology are not approved by the Commission on Accrediting of The Association of Theological Schools but are approved by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

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What Sets Us Apart?

  • Private Nonprofit University
  • 600+ Online Degrees
  • No Standardized Testing for Admission
  • Transfer in up to 75% of an Undergrad Degree
  • Transfer in up to 50% of a Grad/Doctoral Degree

Liberty’s mission of Training Champions for Christ is exemplified in this degree. This PhD is considered an empirical research doctorate. You will have the opportunity to find solutions to educational and ministerial research problems as you complete your dissertation.

With our online PhD in Christian Leadership program, you can further your education from the comfort of your own home or office. Our 100% online format allows you to study when and where it is convenient for you. This allows you to pursue your educational goals as you stay active in your family, job, and community.

Liberty University’s John W. Rawlings School of Divinity is uniquely equipped to provide the training you need to explore new career opportunities. And, unlike many online Bible colleges and seminaries, Liberty is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). Our programs have met rigorous academic standards and accreditation requirements — so you can pursue your degree with confidence.

This degree is broken down into 3 main parts: core Christian leadership courses, research courses, and the spiritual formation specialization. By synthesizing this knowledge into a dissertation focused on the application of these 3 parts, you can help produce solutions to educational and ministerial research problems.

Our core Christian leadership courses will first focus on the biblical foundations of leadership and education. You can also gain skills in organizational theory and development as well as current and past theories of management and leadership. As the leader of a ministerial or educational organization, you can benefit from learning about group and team dynamics as well as academic leadership.

Through the spiritual formation specialization, you can gain a broader perspective as you examine the historical and biblical roots of spiritual formation. You will examine how to foster spiritual growth and strengthen Christian communities, especially in challenging academic and ministerial settings. Additionally, you can learn how to use Christian social networks to evangelize to non-Christians and improve the spiritual strength of the church.

Your Christian leadership courses will culminate in doctoral-level research for practical application in diverse educational, organizational, and ministry contexts. Your PhD dissertation gives you the opportunity to synthesize the knowledge gained throughout the program. You can apply advanced research methods learned in the Doctor of Philosophy in Christian Leadership program to help contribute to the general body of knowledge in spiritual formation.

Degree Completion Plan (PDF)

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Speak to one of our admissions specialists to help you choose the program that best fits your needs.

Your success is our success, which is why we are committed to providing quality academics at an affordable tuition rate. While other colleges are increasing their tuition, we have frozen tuition rates for the majority of our undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs for the past 9 years – and counting.

To continue our mission of providing affordable education, electronic textbooks are provided for many divinity courses* all for one convenient fee.

*Electronic textbooks are not provided for courses that fall under departments outside the School of Divinity.

Doctoral Divinity Block Rate (7-15 credit hours) $2,750
Doctoral Divinity Part Time (0-6.99 or over 15 credit hours) $395/Credit
Military Doctoral Divinity Block Rate (7-15 credit hours) $2,700
Military Doctoral Divinity Part Time (0-6.99 or over 15 credit hours)* $395/Credit

*Eligible current and former military service members and their spouses may qualify for a special rate of $300/credit hour (learn more).

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Liberty University is dedicated to providing world-class educational experiences to military students across the globe.

Who May Qualify?

  • Active Duty
  • Reserve/National Guard
  • Veterans/Retirees
  • Spouses of Service Members and Veterans/Retirees
  • Current Department of Defense Employees

Available Benefits:

  • Discounted divinity block rate – $2,700 per semester*
  • Additional discount for veterans who service in a civilian capacity as a First Responder
  • 8-week courses, 8 different start dates each year, and no set login times (may exclude certain courses such as practicums, internships, or field experiences)

*Credits taken below 7 and above 15 credit hours per semester are charged at the part-time rate of $395/credit hour.

Eligible current and former service members and their spouses may qualify for a special rate of $300/credit hour (learn more), but the $300/credit hour doctoral military rate cannot be combined with the First Responder Discount.