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.

Requirements

M.Div Students (Residential and Hybrid), M.T.S., Th.M.

  • Completion of three courses exploring the intersections of theology, medicine, and culture. One of these courses must be one semester of the two-course sequence XTIANETH 761 and 763: Health Care in Theological Context. The other two courses must be listed by the registrar as fulfilling the Certificate in Theology, Medicine, and Culture. 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. One of these courses must be one semester of the two-course sequence XTIANETH 761 and 763: Health Care in Theological Context. The other two courses must be listed by the registrar as fulfilling the Certificate in Theology, Medicine, and Culture. 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.

Approved Electives:

  • CHURHST 790 (History of Medicine/Christianity)
  • CHURHST 810 (Death, Grief & Consolation)
  • CHURHST 819 (The Body in Early Christian Thought and Practice)
  • CHURHST 954 (Death and Dying in Antiquity)
  • CPE 500 (Parish-Based CPE – Duke Hospital)
  • CPE 510O (Level One CPE)
  • CPE 550 (Level One Clinical Pastoral Education, Transferred)
  • CPE 575 (Level Two Clinical Pastoral Education in Pastoral Care and Counseling)
  • CPE 580 (Level Two Clinical Pastoral Education, Transferred)
  • NEWTEST 771 (New Testament Bodies)
  • NEWTEST 813 (Paul and the Person)
  • OLDTEST 769 (Prophecy in the Body)
  • OLDTEST 770Z / 870Z (Ezekiel: Trauma, Exile, and Vision)
  • OLDTEST 806 (Biblical Bodies)
  • PARISH 760 (Food, Eating, Life of Faith)
  • PARISH 786 (Organized Compassion: History and Ethics of Humanitarianism)
  • PARISH 806 (Caring for Creation)
  • PARISH 817 (Theology and Social Science)
  • PARISH 821 (Global Food Policy)
  • PARISH 822 (Charitable Foods)
  • PASTCARE 760 (Introduction to Pastoral Theology and Care)
  • PASTCARE 761 (Introduction to the Ministry of Social Work)
  • PASTCARE 762 (Issues in Cross Cultural Pastoral Care and Counseling)
  • PASTCARE 765 (Pastoral Care for Depression/Anxiety)
  • PASTCARE 766 (Responding to Loss and Displacement in Pastoral Ministry)
  • PASTCARE 790 (Death, Dying, Bereavement)
  • PASTCARE 804 (Theology and Trauma)
  • PASTCARE 806 (Naming the Powers: Pastoral Care and the Spirit World)
  • PASTCARE 810 (Theology, Mental Health, and Human Flourishing Warren Kinghorn
  • PASTCARE 812/XTIANTHE 812 (Discipleship and Disability) 
  • PASTCARE 890 (Church’s Care of the Bereaved)
  • PREACHNG 807 (Balm in Gilead)
  • XTIANETH 763 (Introduction to Medical, Ethics, and Theology)
  • XTIANETH 764 (Health and Holiness)
  • XTIANETH 765 (Attending to Persons in Pain)
  • XTIANETH 807 (Advanced Theological Bioethics)
  • XTIANETH 811 (Happiness, the Life of Virtue and Friendship)
  • XTIANETH 813 (Listen, Organize, Act)
  • XTIANETH 815   (End of Life Care and Theological Ethics)
  • XTIANETH 816   (Health Care, Inequities, and Theological Ethics)
  • XTIANSTU 705 (Cultivating Christian Imagination)
  • XTIANSTU 707 (Spiritual Formation and Community Engagement For Theology, Medicine and Culture)
  • XTIANSTU 708 (Spiritual Formation and Vocation in Healthcare)
  • XTIANTHE 809 (Theology of Death and Martyrdom)
  • XTIANTHE 812 (The Christian Doctrine of Creation and Theological Anthropology)
  • XTIANTHE 842 (Womanist Theological Ethics)
  • XTIANTHE 845 (Beauty, Suffering and the Cross)
  • XTIANTHE 851 (Transhumanism, Theology and Embodiment)

Forms and information for current students »

For more information, contact duketmc@div.duke.edu