• Student playing an acoustic guitar
  • Three Seminary students taking notes during a lecture.

The Presbyterian Certificate provides the skills and courses essential to meet Presbyterian Church USA (PCUSA) and other reformed tradition’s ordination requirements. This Certificate is designed to be embedded in an MDiv for those planning to pursue ordination in a reformed denomination. This program was developed in collaboration with local leaders from the San Joaquin presbytery of the PCUSA denomination. Students will gain a better understanding of reformed history, reformed church polity and biblical exegesis. The certificate is also offered for those who already hold an MDiv.


  • Graduates will meet ordination prerequisites set by Presbyterian Church USA (PCUSA)
  • Program developed with local Presbyterian leaders
  • Opportunities to learn from local partnering pastors, including PCUSA Senior Pastor, Rev. Renn Serna
  • Online courses available
  • Fully accredited by the Association of Theological Schools (ATS) and the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)
  • Ability to earn Presbyterian Certificate simultaneously with Master of Divinity for an additional three units

Program director

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Brian Ross, D.Min.

Associate Professor, Program Director, Christian Ministry, Master of Divinity & Ministry Leadership and Culture


Photo of Lynn Jost, Ph.D.

Lynn Jost, Ph.D.

Professor, Program Director, Old Testament, Director of the Center for Anabaptist Studies

Photo of Tim Geddert, Ph.D.

Tim Geddert, Ph.D.

Professor, Program Director, New Testament

Photo of Mark Baker

Mark Baker, Ph.D.

Professor of Mission and Theology

Photo of Valerie Rempel, Ph.D.

Valerie Rempel, Ph.D.

Vice President, Dean of the Seminary, Associate Professor, J.B. Toews Chair of History and Theology

Photo of Stephen Varvis, Ph.D.

Steve Varvis, Ph. D.

Professor of History

Admission requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited university
  • Minimum GPA of 2.5
  • Admission form and fee: fpu.edu/applygrad
  • Personal profile statement
  • Three letters of references
  • Writing sample

Course listing

Required Courses (22 Units)

CodeRequired CoursesUnits
BIB XXXOld Testament Theology and Exegesis*3
BIB XXXNew Testament Theology and Exegesis*3
THEO 757Reformed and Presbyterian History and Confessions3
BLIT XXXAny Bible Elective3
THEO 754Engaging the Tradition – Reformed Theology I3
THEO 755Engaging the Tradition – Reformed Theology II2
MIN 747Reformed Worship3
THEO 752Presbyterian Polity2

*These are cross-listed with BIB 750 Old Testament Theology and BIB 752 New Testament Theology.