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Master of Arts in Intercultural Studies (ICS)


The M.A. in Intercultural Studies prepares you for life, work, and ministry in an ever-changing, culturally diverse world.


The program provides you with a focused knowledge of the tools and techniques needed to study cultures other than your own. Students will engage in research and analysis that is informed by those disciplines and contributes to the ministry of those engaged in work among ethnic and cultural groups.

The M.A. in Intercultural Studies will equip you to:

  • Demonstrate skill in identifying and analyzing cultural issues.
  • Evaluate current strategies regarding the global mission of God.
  • Demonstrate effectiveness in cross-cultural analysis, research, and writing about the global mission of God.
  • Participate practically in the global mission of God in ministry, mission, and the marketplace.

Potential employment and service opportunities for graduates include:

  • Governmental service: various diplomatic positions in various US embassies overseas.
  • Military service: chaplaincy in the various branches.
  • Church service: mission pastors; ethnic outreach coordinators.
  • Mission service: short-term to long-term missionaries in any cross-cultural service anywhere in the world; mission agency office support person; mission mobilizer.
  • Business service: entry level positions in non-governmental organizations or transnational corporations; tentmakers/business as mission or any other creative access type of platform overseas; marketing specialists to specific groups.
  • Academic Careers: The thesis option track of the MA Intercultural Studies is designed to prepare students for further graduate work, especially a PhD in Intercultural Studies or a related discipline. With a Ph.D., students have the potential to teach at the college, seminary, and university level in North America and abroad. 

Available Formats:

NYC International ProjectNew York City Option: In partnership with the New York City International Project, CIU students can complete much or perhaps all of the MA in Intercultural or Muslim Studies (program 2 only) while serving in an exciting church planting internship among Muslims and internationals in New York City. Students may be enrolled full or part-time through CIU’s Online Studies.
OnlineOffered fully online making it possible for you to complete your program without relocating.


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Course requirements and suggested program of study

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Featured Faculty: 
Mike Barnett
Dean of the College of Intercultural Studies

B.A., University of Houston; M. Div., Ph.D., Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary

David G. Cashin
Professor of Intercultural Studies

B.A., Gordon College; M.A., Dhaka University, Dhaka, Bangladesh; M.A., Ph.D., Stockholm University, Sweden

Trevor Castor Trevor Castor
Assistant Director of the Zwemer Center for Muslim Studies
Chris Little Christopher Little
Professor of Intercultural Studies

B.S., University of Southern California; M.Div., Talbot Theological Seminary; Th.M., Ph.D., Fuller Theological Seminary

Ed Smither
Professor of Intercultural Studies

B.A., North Carolina State University; M.A., M.Div.,Liberty University; Ph.D., University of Wales-Trinity Saint David; Ph.D., University of Pretoria