Course of Studycos_gradclass_2014 (Small) is a program of the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry, administered by the seminary, for the purpose of educating licensed local pastors in the United Methodist Church.

The Saint Paul Course of Study School offers a variety of formats.

Summer Session-4 Weeks in July/August – each course is 1 week long (Mon – Fri)

Winter Session-2 Weeks in January – each course is 1 week long (Mon – Fri)

Fall and SpringWeekend Sessions

Foundational and functional classes are taught, exposing students to both theory and application.

Course of Study School is designed to be a year-round learning experience. Registered students receive advance assignments and book lists from which to prepare. Students who do not complete and submit the assignments by the published deadlines will receive grade deductions. Students also receive further assignments during class sessions.


  • In order to avoid the Easter holiday as much as possible, date changes have been made to the 2018 Course Schedule previously posted.  The updated 2018 dates have been posted.  In addition, in 2018 in response to student request, we will be changing the Summer term format from 4 weeks to 2 weeks where 2 classes per day will be offered.
  • During the 2017 Course of Study Summer term this July, we’ll be offering 3 complimentary Practical Learning Seminars:
    • Wed, July 12 from 1 – 3pm: Dr. Hal Knight’s “Distinctives of the Wesleyan Movement”
    • Wed, July 26 from 1 – 3pm: Rev Jeremy Basset’s “The Bible through a Missional Lens”
    • Wed, Aug 2 from 1 – 3pm: Dr. Mike Graves’ “Improving Our Preaching”
  • For classes beginning after September 1, 2017, the required texts and advance assignments will change.  Updated book lists and advance assignments for Fall 2017 courses will be available online after the New Year.   Exception: COS 324 Preaching Required texts and advance assignment changes will be effective for Summer 2017. 
  • If a Local Pastor wishes to take more than four courses in one year, you must obtain written approval from: The DS, LPR, the Director of the Regional School and from the Assistant General Secretary at GBHEM.   All written approvals should be submitted along with your course registration form.  Effective January 1, 2017, if a student enrolls in more than four (4) courses per calendar year without receiving ALL approvals listed above, any courses taken over four (4) will not be recognized on your transcript and will not be counted towards completion of the Basic Course of Study. Please complete this form to start the approval process.

COS Graduation

Course of Study Graduation will be held this year on Thursday, August 3, 2017  at United Methodist Church of the Resurrection.  The ceremony will take place from 3:00 – 4:30 pm with a reception to follow.  This year’s featured speaker will be Thomas Kemper, General Secretary and CEO of the General Board of Global Ministries of the United Methodist Church.

If you are scheduled to complete basic Course of Study this year, please complete the Graduation Form to let me know so I can audit your transcript to make sure you are not missing any courses and include you on information regarding the graduation ceremony this summer.  Friends and family are welcome to attend!

Housing & Meals

Summer & Winter Hotel Information

Click HERE for seminary commuter housing options.

Kansas City Spring & Fall Hotel Information

UPDATE: Chase Suite Hotel Kansas City near Platte Woods UMC has closed.  Drury Inn & Suites KCI near Platte Woods is not offering Saint Paul students a discount this year.

Fairfield Inn & Suites Kansas City Airport
11820 NW Plaza Circle
Kansas City, MO 64153

For reservations, call 816-464-2424 and ask for the Saint Paul School of Theology group rate or go to – select your arrival and departure dates;  check the box “special rates”  and in the “group code” box type in group code: SPSSPSA

Reservation Deadline: 3 weeks prior to arrival date

March 9 – 11, 2017: $89 per night plus tax
April 6 – 8, 2017: $89 per night plus tax
October 5 – 7, 2017: $84 per night plus tax
November 2 – 4, 2017: $82 per night plus tax

La Quinta Inn & Suites Kansas City Airport
6901 North West 83rd St
Kansas City, MO 64152

For reservations, call 816-587-6262 and ask for the Saint Paul School of Theology group rate.

Reservation Deadline: 2 weeks prior to arrival date

March 9 – 11, 2017: $85 per night plus tax
April 6 – 8, 2017: $85 per night plus tax

Other hotels nearby but we don’t have discounted rates with include:

Extended Stay America Kansas City Airport – Tiffany Springs: 816.891.8500
Sleep Inn Kansas City International Airport: 816.891.0111
Drury Inn & Suites Kansas City Airport: 816.880.9700
Embassy Suites Kansas City International Airport: 816.891.7788

Meal Information: Spring & Fall Kansas City

$50 per course.
Cash or check made payable to Saint Paul School of Theology.

Friday: lunch & dinner
Saturday: “to go” lunch
Snacks and beverages
If you do not wish to partake in the meals made available by Saint Paul, please email to notify that you are making separate dining arrangements.  Should you choose to leave property during lunch and dinner breaks; it is your responsibility to return to class on time.

Local Pastor Guidelines

The United Methodist Book of Discipline provides guidelines for local pastors. Some basics include:

  • Make initial contact with an elder / deacon in your local parish.
  • Read The Christian as Minister (available from Cokesbury).
  • Visit with your district superintendent.
  • Make contact with your district committee on ordained ministry for help with the inquiry and discernment process. A mentor will be assigned to you for guidance and supervision.
  • If your ministry decision is affirmed and a setting is available, you may be appointed to a part-time or full-time ministry setting. Full-time local pastors are required by the Discipline to complete four Course of Study classes per calendar year. Part-time local pastors are required to complete two classes per calendar year.
  • Attend licensing school facilitated by your annual conference’s board of ordained ministry.
  • Register to attend Course of Study School

Course of Study Revised Curriculum

The Course of Study Basic Five-Year Curriculum has been revised by the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry (GBHEM). The new curriculum took effect January 2015. You will note that the Course Schedule reflects the new course numbers and names.

New Course Goals

The New Course Goals was prepared by the GBHEM. It defines the goals of each class in the basic Course of Study program.

New Curriculum Exchange Credits

The New Curriculum Exchange Credits document shows you how the courses you have already completed compare with the new curriculum.  This will assist you in planning which courses you need to complete the program.


Students (or anyone making a payment on the student’s behalf) can make a payment as follows:

  • Click the button below to get to the payment page.

  • Enter personal information (please include email address for payment confirmation)
  • Select “Additional Fees” and then “Course of Study”
  • Enter amount
  • Select payment method and start date
  • Note start date cannot be current date
  • Select “Next”
  • Enter payment information and confirm payment


Students may request a copy of their COS transcript by emailing  Please include your full name and Annual Conference in the email.


  • For information about the GBHEM online COS offerings, visit You will need Form 110 (Basic) or Form 111 (UM Studies/ACOS).


Most Annual Conferences offer some form of financial assistance in the form of scholarship or reimbursement. For specifics to your Conference, please contact your DS or Annual Conference Registrar.



tiana gatewood2

Tiana Gatewood
Course of Study Coordinator
Saint Paul School of Theology

Israel Kamudzandu

Dr. Israel Kamudzandu
Course of Study Director
Saint Paul School of Theology

2017 Course Schedule

2017 Course Dates

2018 Course Schedule

2018 Course Dates

Book Lists & Advanced Assignments

Book Lists & Advanced Assignments

GBHEM Policy Handbook

COS Policy Handbook 2017

Course of Study Handbook

2016 COS Handbook

Attendance Policy

Course of Study Curriculum Checklist

COS Curriculum Checklist

Course of Study Directory

COS Directory Release Form

COS Faculty and Staff Directory 2016-2017

Writing Tips

Writing Lab

Bibliography Examples