Mission Studies Certificate (MSC)

The MSC is offered at all GGBTS campuses as well as 100% online. All courses are fully accredited and applicable for other degree programs.


The Missions Studies Certificates are designed to fulfill the minimum theological course work required for appointment by the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. These courses can be taken in three stages if desired: 1) the Basic Mission Studies Certificate is comprised of 12 hours of Biblical/Theological foundations required for appointment as an apprentice missionary, 2) an additional 8 hours of mission studies completes the Advanced Mission Studies Certificate and meets the requirement for 20 hours of study before appointment as a career missionary, and 3) an additional 10 hours of study for those who will serve as field leaders is available as the Leadership Mission Studies Certificate. IMB guidelines are specific regarding the Biblical/Theological foundation coursework, while the remaining courses have been carefully selected by our faculty to provide the student with a firm foundation in the faith as well as vocational preparation for international missions deployment. Although the MSC addresses educational requirements of the IMB, it is not limited to those preparing to serve in that organization. All courses taken for masters credit can be applied to Golden Gate Masters degree programs.

Entrance Requirements

Students must complete Seminary entry requirements as a Regular or Special student. This certificate may be earned in addition to other degree plans or as a skill set without degree. 

Course Requirements

  Course Title Course # Hours
Basic Mission Studies Certificate:                                                                                                                              
  Old Testament Introduction I or II S1112/3 3
  New Testament Introduction I or II S1312/3 3
  Christian Theology I or II L1211/12 3
  Biblical Hermeneutics S2521 2
  Intercultural Hermeneutics (independent study)   1
  BMSC Total Hours   12
Advanced Mission Studies Certificate:  
BMSC Requirements Plus:  
  Introduction to Missions/Global Worldviews I1211 or I1121 3
  Basic Evangelism I1311 2
  Intercultural Communication I1113 3
   AMSC Total Hours   20  
Leadership Mission Studies Certificate  
AMSC Requirements Plus:  
  Any Electives   10
   LMSC Total Hours   30

Completion Requirements

The Basic Missions Studies Certificate is awarded upon successful completion of the foundational 12 credit hours.  The Advanced Mission Studies Certificate is awarded upon completion of the additional 8 credit hours.  An additional 10 hours credit is required for the Leadership Mission Studies Certificate.  The transfer of coursework into the MSC is governed by the GGBTS transfer policy.  Please see the section on Transfer Credit for details.