• Intakes in February and July
  • One Year Full-time Study (Two Semesters)
  • Level 5 (academically equivalent to the first year of a Bachelor degree)
  • 120 Credits
  • $3,725 Full-time NZ Students and $4,838 Full-time International Students

    (For a full list of fees including food and accommodation please see our Fees section)

  • If you are a NZ Student you may qualify for Fees Free (external link)
  • NZQA Accredited – NZ Diploma in Christian Studies (Intercultural Studies) (Level 5)
I will sing praises to You among the nations...

Programme Overview

The Diploma in Intercultural Studies (Level 5) weaves together practical cross-cultural ministry experience with strong theological and biblical foundations in order to equip students to be effective in mission, church, workplace, and ministry environments.

The diploma covers a range of subjects including: Christian Foundations, World Religions & Christian Worldview, Ministry Practicum (Prayer & Care Groups, Spiritual Warfare, and Communicating the Gospel), Intercultural & Spiritual Foundations, Service in Mission (serving in local ministry teams), and Survey of the Old and New Testament.

The diploma is designed to be studied full-time with students living on campus in a real cross-cultural environment (however, part-time study options are also offered). Accommodation options are also available for spouses and families of students.

Applicants should have:

  • A Christian testimony of faith in Jesus Christ
  • A membership of, and at least one year’s involvement in, a local church or assembly
  • The commendation of the local church
  • Evidence that they can undertake a course of intensive study and practical activity, i.e.:
    • The successful completion of a course of secular study or training
    • Satisfactory performance in regular employment
    • Physical fitness
    • Willingness for cross-cultural mission service
  • Be at least 18 years of age in the year of commencement of study

For International Students a minimum English Language IELTS (Academic) 5.5 or equivalent is required. For more information regarding English language requirements please visit our Admissions page.

Course Details

This 15 credit course aims to introduce the learner to core doctrines of Christian theology in the context of cross-cultural Christian ministry and examines the way in which these formulate the basis for a contemporary Christian worldview. The course consists of the following two components

Introduction to Theology – 10 credits

A strictly introductory study of Western Christian Systematic Theology, covering all of its well established categories including: Christian authority (revelation and the Bible); the doctrine of God; the nature of man and sin (Anthropology); the person and work of Christ (Christology); Redemption; the Holy Spirit (Pneumatology); the Church (Ecclesiology) and the last things (Eschatology). The relevance and importance of theology in the proclamation of the Christian gospel in cross-cultural settings will be examined.

The class will also equip the learner with the background needed to commence studies in non-Western Christian Theology later in the college programme.

Biblical Theology of Mission – 5 credits

This component will lead to a greater understanding of the theology behind the mission of God to the world; His concern for mankind as revealed in the Scriptures, His provision for their redemption, and His purposes for those he has redeemed and for His creation.

This course aims to introduce learners to the background, composition and interpretation of Scripture and consists of the following two components:

Old Testament Survey – 15 credits

This component provides an overview of the Old Testament, considering the background, genre and content of indiviual books within the whole. dentify and analyse the overarching biblical narrative and associated themes presented; analyse the origin, context and key events in given passages. The survey will apply key principles of Scripture in contemporary cross-cultural ministry life.

New Testament Survey – 15 credits

This component provides an overview of the New Testament, considering the background, genre and content of each book within the whole. It will begin with a study of the four Gospels, which portray the life and mission of the Lord Jesus Christ within the framework of the Kingdom of God, then move to Acts of the Apostles for an overview of the advance of the missionary project of Jesus’ apostles from the ‘Great Commission’ of Acts 1:8 to the arrival of the Gospel in Rome in Acts 28. The apostolic writings from 1 Corinthians through to Revelation will be examined for their special characteristics, perspectives and contribution to the growth of the Church then and now.

This course aims and explore the Christian worldview as well as the relationships (including cultural perspectives) to introduce students to other Abrahamic and non-Abrahamic world religions. This course is a level 6 course and gives the student a choice of 3 out of 4 possible components listed below.

Islam – 5 credits

This component is an introduction to Islam and its origins. It will evaluate the influence of Islam on traditional Moslem cultures. It will examine the practices and beliefs of Islam. It will evaluate and how Christianity and Islam have interacted historically and today. It will contrast the Islamic and Christian worldviews.

Hinduism & Buddhism – 5 credits

This component is an introduction to Hinduism and Buddhism and their origins. It will evaluate the influence of  Hinduism and Buddhism on their respective cultures. It will examine the practices and beliefs of Hinduism and Buddhism. It will evaluate and how Christianity and Hinduism and Buddhism have interacted historically and today. It will contrast the Hinduism and Buddhism and Christian worldviews.

Primal Religion – 5 credits

This compoenent will introduce the student to traditional religions around the world. It will evaluate the common features of these traditional religious beliefs and contrast them with the Christian worldview.

Secular Humanism – 5 credits

Secular Humanism is dominant cultural influence in the Western world. This component will introduce the student to the assumptions and worldview of Secular Humanism contrasting it with the Christian worldview and evaluate the effects of Secular Humanism on culture.

The aim of this course is to provide learners with the opportunity to develop effective ministry practice for personal and spiritual development. It is comprised of the following two components, covering aspects of practical Christian Ministry:

Communication in Ministry – 10 credits

An introduction to the different facets of communication in ministry ranging from preaching and apologetics through to worship and evangelism. The course also includes an introduction to biblical principles for the communication of the gospel of Jesus Christ and how they apply to the student and the world today. Exposure will be given to a variety of evangelism methods and settings.

Team Ministry – 10 credits

This component consists of 36 weeks of regular supervised weekly cross-cultural ministry in the local community in a variety of settings.

This course aims to equip students for cross-cultural ministry/pastoral care. This includes the study of phonetics and teaching to develop language teaching skills to facilitate cross-cultural communication and pastoral care. This course consists of the following two components:

Foundations in language Learning – 10 credits

This class is an introduction to the nature of languages and to self-directed language and culture acquisition to facilitate cross-cultural communication and pastoral care. The focus will be on how to plan a language learning programme and practice working with a native speaker of another language. The students will also study phonetics in order to recognise and produce the most common speech sounds of the world, along with an introduction to grammatical structures and meaning.

Intercultural Pastoral Care – 10 Credits

This component will explore a broad range of aspects of pastoral care within a cross-cultural context and specifically the care of Christian workers. The content reviews a broad range of topics and provides tools and insights useful in the care of others. There will be a review of the responsibilities of those involved in pastoral care both individually and within organizational structures.

This course aims to introduce learners to cross-cultural Christian service and ministry in agencies, non-government organisations (NGOs) and churches.

  • Integrate learning in the classroom into practical situations.
  • Develop learners’ interpersonal and team building skills in a multi-cultural context.
  • Help identify and develop the learner’s spiritual gifts and understanding as to how they may fit into a ministry role in the future.
  • Train the learner to implement plans and strategies for ministry and be disciplined to see it through.

This course consists of the following four components

Care Groups & Prayer – 5 credits

The aim of this course component is to provide learners with the opportunity to develop effective ministry practice for personal and spiritual development using prayer in various settings. On completion of this component, students be will also be able to evaluate and document a prayer ministry programme based on strategies that integrate both the personal and community faith journeys. This class will develop skills for maintaining spiritual vitality and growth. The emphasis will be on the student’s personal spirituality including devotional, quiet times.

Spiritual Warfare – 5 credits

This is a study of the nature of the encounter between God and satanic powers in human experience, set against the background of biblical revelation about the spirit world. The class studies Satan’s strategy to counter world evangelization and to cause Christians to be ineffective in ministry and teaches effective prayer strategies to bring God’s power into practical situations faced by those involved in Christian ministry. Attention is given to the ways in which the powers of darkness try to alienate humanity from God through deception and, ultimately, to destroy humanity.

Contemporary mission – 5 credits

One week block component giving training on current issues in cross-cultural Christian mission from a visiting lecturer.

Children in Crisis – 5 credits

One week block component giving training on Christian ministry to children in crisis in different contexts.

Interested in studying at Eastwest College?