Doctoral Program (PhD)

An accessible and affordable program designed to serve both the academy and the church.

Vision and Mission

Foundational for the doctoral program at PRTS is the emphasis on both the academic and spiritual formation of the student. There is a growing demand for a comprehensive doctoral program that captures academic rigor and combines this with biblical piety (de pietate cum scientia conjungenda). It is furthermore necessary that a doctoral program serve the ministry of both the academy and church (teaching and preaching). Secondly, aspiring doctoral students from around the world are looking for a PhD program that is affordable and accessible, one that accommodates learning from a distance.

PRTS seeks to adhere to the Reformed and Puritan tradition of blending learning and piety as exemplified by John Calvin (1509-1564), William Perkins (1558-1602), William Ames (1576-1633), Gisbertus Voetius (1589-1676), Archibald Alexander (1772-1851), and many others. We aim to do so by offering a PhD program that is distinctive in its academics and biblical piety; this is evident in the admission requirements, the program’s academic rigor, and the spiritual formation components of the program.

Academics

The PhD program is academically rigorous as we offer a comprehensive doctoral program with high, measurable, and internationally peer-reviewed academic standards. The academics of the program is further enhanced by a dedicated faculty for the doctoral program combined with qualified, PRTS-approved scholars serving as adjunct faculty and co-advisors for the doctoral student. The program is also further enhanced by external courses to be taken by the PhD student outside PRTS, and the goal of publishing the doctoral dissertation with an academic and internationally-recognized publishing house.

Read the full Doctoral Handbook

Research

The PhD program at PRTS is supported by a vast number of primary and secondary sources, and other research resources as found in the Puritan Research Center (PRC). The PRC is the culmination of a dream that is decades old and offers exciting possibilities for promoting the appreciation of Reformed and Puritan literature around the world. The PRC’s aim is to assemble the largest possible collection of resources on the Puritans, including antiquarian books (mostly from the seventeenth century) and modern reprints of Puritan writings, as well as secondary source materials on the Puritans such as books, dissertations, and articles.

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A Worldwide Reach

The PhD program at Puritan provides the best of hybrid learning through technology and traditional teaching.
This provides an advanced and affordable education that does not compromise academic standards and spiritual focus.

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A Robust Program that is Affordable and Able to be Completed from a Distance

The spiritual formation components of the PhD program may consist of assigned readings, experiential preaching (theory and practice), and practical teaching ministry. Resonating with the Reformed and Puritan tradition of international learning, PRTS’s  doctoral program is one with a strong international dimension that articulates biblical, reformed doctrine, and biblical experiential preaching and teaching.

The rationale of our doctoral program focuses on both scientia (academics) and pietas (biblical piety), and is supported by two considerations: technology and expense. The immense changes in the field of education through the deployment of technology is compelling many graduate programs to re-think their approach to research, education, and publication. PRTS has implemented a doctoral program with a well-built technology component offering digitalized primary and secondary sources for research and education (to this end, PRTS has smart-room(s) designed for distance education and the deployment of digital writing tools for publication). Indeed, technology is integral to the PhD program, taking the classroom to non-residential students with the hopes of a more effective knowledge transfer; the desire is for a hybrid or blended-learning environment that includes in-class contact sessions (on campus or online) and online only sessions.

Secondly, the cost of PhD programs are often so high that it is not feasible for students to attain such a doctorate; furthermore, to laden students with debt at the very point of them entering the ministry of teaching and preaching is questionable practice. Thus, PRTS seeks to address these challenges in a sustainable way; we aim to lower the cost of a PhD by:

  1. delivering educational content through technology;
  2. reducing the time required to be on-campus;
  3. providing as much scholarship assistance as possible.

PRTS aims to do this without compromising its academic standards and spiritual focus.

In sum, PRTS prepares students to serve Christ and His church through biblical, experiential, and practical ministry through a PhD program with concentration in Historical Theology (Reformation & Post-reformation studies, 2016), Biblical Studies (2017), and Homiletics (2020).

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