The Certificate in Theology, Medicine, and Culture (TMC) combines scholarship and coursework with practical experience and community engagement. It prepares Duke Divinity students for robust theological and practical engagement with contemporary practices of medicine, community, and public health.
The certificate will be of special interest to students who plan to work in parish-based settings and who wish to develop further competence and confidence engaging questions of suffering, illness, and the role of medicine; those who are interested in serving as chaplains in a health care setting; those who are trained or are pursuing training in the clinical disciplines (e.g., medicine, psychology, nursing, and social work); and those who intend further study in bioethics or in pastoral theology.
Students in the TMC certificate program complete three courses that explore the intersections of theology, medicine, and culture and complete a research paper or project that addresses these issues. In addition, students gain practical experience engaging matters of health and illness and participate in regular TMC seminars and other colloquia.
The certificate can be earned within the M.Div. (hybrid and residential), M.T.S., Th.M., and M.A. degree programs.
Theology, Medicine, and Culture Fellowship
The Theology, Medicine, and Culture Fellowship at Duke Divinity School encourages theological formation among those with vocations to healthcare and provides significant tuition grants. The fellowship is open to students and practitioners in any of the health professions, as well as to others whose vocations and aspirations involve full-time work in health-related contexts (e.g. hospital administrators, chaplains, and public health workers).
M.Div Students (Residential and Hybrid), M.T.S., Th.M.
- Completion of three courses exploring the intersections of theology, medicine, and culture from approved list. If approved by the program director, directed study courses may count toward this requirement.
- Participation in a program, elective, or professional service providing practical ministry-related experience engaging matters of health and illness. A unit of Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) or a relevant field education placement will satisfy this requirement. Students may substitute alternative practical experiences with the approval of the program director. Students who have served in an ordained capacity in healthcare settings or who have completed CPE or a healthcare-related field placement in their prior study at an accredited theological school may petition for a waiver of this requirement.
- Completion of a research paper that directly engages the intersection of theology, medicine, and culture. This paper may be done as part of a class and will ordinarily be presented publicly near the conclusion of the student’s degree program.
- Regular participation in the semi-monthly TMC seminar. The schedule of these informal seminars and discussion is available from the TMC website and on the school’s calendar of events. Candidates for the certificate are expected to attend as many of these events as possible.
M.A. in Christian Practice (all M.A. certificates are subject to course availability)
- Completion of two courses exploring the intersections of theology, medicine, and culture from approved list. If approved by the program director, directed study courses may count toward this requirement.
- Completion of a research paper that directly engages the intersection of theology, medicine, and culture. This paper may be done as part of a class and, if feasible, may be presented publicly at a TMC seminar or year-end symposium
- If feasible, regular participation in the semi-monthly TMC seminar. The schedule of these informal seminars is available from the TMC website and on the school’s calendar of events.
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