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All About a Bachelors Degree in Christian Studies Online

Getting involved with a church can be as simple as attending prayer or doing volunteer work. However, for people who want to dedicate their professional lives to the church

as well, it may be a prudent decision to earn a bachelor's degree in Christian studies. With a degree in this field, graduates may find themselves better qualified to pursue positions within the church or better participate in their local Christian communities. The study itself can be refreshingly broad, encompassing not only history and theology but also key aspects that come with counseling and ministering within the church.

Coursework involved
While many universities offer classes that delve into theologies, Christian studies as it pertains to working within that faith will generally focus on Christian teachings. Typically, biblical studies serve as the basis for this degree, with students learning how to read, interpret and contextualize the Bible in everyday life. Many programs may delve into the complexities and nuances of these teachings through studies of theology, philosophy and history, both in a general context and how it pertains to the Christian faith specifically, the end result being a greater understanding of the text and Christian beliefs overall.

Those biblical studies are often the framework for a program's larger objective - to train students to be able to communicate and exhibit those teachings to others, namely through community leadership. The coursework lays down a foundation for further graduate studies that may be required to become a member of the clergy. It also may help students become better prepared to take on social and community service work as well as counseling positions in the future. That means that students may learn the organizational, public speaking and management skills needed in order to lead a group or community.

Job Opportunities
Earning a bachelors degree in Christian studies online may serve as the beginning step in the pursuit of a career in ministry, though more coursework at the graduate level may be required to be considered for a ministry position. However, it may be no less essential, as it covers many of the skills and some of the basic knowledge needed for that field.

People who wish to pursue such a position may study ministry in general or focus on youth ministry. Students may also take Christian Studies in order to help prepare themselves for positions related to Christian counseling. Yet, it's also possible for graduates to pursue work in other fields. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, social workers generally need a bachelor's degree in social work,[i]  though some employers will consider graduates with degrees in related fields, including sociology and psychology. Christian studies programs may offer the necessary background to attain work in this field, though qualifications depend entirely on the employer in question.

People who hold a degree in Christian studies may instead choose to pursue work not directly related to the church, but which is nonetheless geared toward improving the community. Human service assistants and community health workers are involved in social work that Christian studies graduates may find appealing.

Potential salaries
Wages in related fields may be difficult to pin down, as this degree generally serves as a stepping stone for further studies in the ministry. However, the BLS provides insight into the median annual wages of some of the above-mentioned careers.

  • Clergy: $44,060[ii] (expected job growth not provided)
  • Social and humans service assistants: $28,850[iii] (22 percent job growth expected through 2022)[iv]
  • Community health workers: $41,830[v] (21 percent expected job growth expected through 2022)[vi]

Skills required
A commitment to Christian values and teachings form the groundwork for this degree. To put it to use in a ministry or social work setting, compassion, empathy and an ability communicate and lead effectively may also be necessary. As such, people who wish to earn a bachelors degree in Christian studies online should think of it as much as a study in leadership, and not just theology.


[i] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/social-workers.htm#tab-4 [ii] bls.gov/oes/current/oes212011.htm [iii] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/social-and-human-service-assistants.htm [iv] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/social-and-human-service-assistants.htm [v] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/health-educators.htm [vi]bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/health-educators.htm