2021-2022 Catalog 
    Jul 25, 2024  
2021-2022 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

School of Graduate and Continuing Studies

Jeremy Van Kley, M.Div., Dean

Living, learning, and faith. Here, they are united, indivisible, one. Faith is at the heart of Olivet Nazarene University.

At Olivet, the priorities go beyond providing the finest programs. The true aim of the University is to train women and men for lives of service to God and humanity. The School of Graduate and Continuing Studies meets the challenge of providing quality, innovative educational programs to fulfill the lifelong learning needs of adults, giving them the expertise they need to impact their world.

Formed in 1986 in response to a growing demand for adult education, the School of Graduate and Continuing Studies desires to accommodate the special requirements of adults who are interested in receiving a bachelor’s, master’s or doctorate degree, but who must also continue to meet their personal and professional commitments.

Recognizing that learning continues throughout life, Olivet Nazarene University serves adults interested in pursuing graduate and undergraduate professional studies. The School of Graduate and Continuing Studies attempts to fulfill the following general objectives:

  • To provide for intellectual, spiritual, and personal growth through quality degree programs that integrate education, values, and faith.
  • To offer educational degree programs to adult students who appreciate the religious and ethical teachings of the University and whose occupations, family responsibilities, personal preferences, and/or geographical location do not permit them to live in residence on the campus.
  • To provide an atmosphere that will stimulate intellectual curiosity and constructive critical thinking through the exploration of the ideas inherent in the liberal arts, professional traditions, and the Christian faith.
  • To develop an appreciation of current research, the value of research, and an acquaintance with basic research methodology.
  • To strengthen the professional competencies of students in their areas of specialization.
  • To develop an increased understanding of human nature and Christian values, with an emphasis on the individual’s ethical and moral responsibilities.

Most of the programs are offered in special packages in which the degree may be earned in about two years by enrolling in classes which meet online. Our programs combine theory with practical experience to give working adults the skills needed to advance in today’s rapidly changing economy.

In addition to programs meeting online, Olivet has authorization to offer the following degree programs throughout the greater Chicago area: Master of Business Administration, Master of Arts in Education, and the undergraduate degree-completion programs in Business and Nursing.

Olivet’s School of Graduate and Continuing Studies maintains offices in Bourbonnais and Oak Brook. The toll free number is 877.4.OLIVET (877.465.4838).

The material contained in this section is for information only and does not constitute a contract between the student and the University. At the time of printing, the information is complete and accurate to the best of our knowledge. However, the School of Graduate and Continuing Studies reserves the right to revise information, requirements, or policies; amend rules; alter regulations; and change financial charges at any time in accordance with the best interests of the institution.

The School of Graduate and Continuing Studies also reserves the right to determine the number of students in each course. If an insufficient number of students enroll for a course, the School of Graduate and Continuing Studies reserves the right to cancel the course, change the time or delivery mode, or provide a different professor for any course.


Olivet Nazarene University is committed to academic excellence. The University is accredited to offer baccalaureate, master’s, and doctorate degrees by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association, 230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500, Chicago, IL 60604-1413, telephone (800) 621-7440 or (312) 263-0456, FAX (312) 263-7462 or http://www.ncahlc.org/.  The baccalaureate degree, master’s degree, and post-graduate APRN certificate programs at Olivet Nazarene University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, http://www.cneaccreditation.org/.

As part of the School of Education unit, courses within the graduate education programs have been specifically aligned with national content-specific standards and/or Illinois State Content Area Standards. Note: Since Olivet is accountable for aligning program/course content to state and national standards, transfer credit is not accepted for many of the advanced programs. In addition, the Illinois Department of Education has approved Olivet as a degree granting institution in teacher preparation and advanced master’s degrees. The Illinois State Board of Education also has granted entitlement rights for licensure and endorsements. These programs are approved by specialty organizations and/or the State of Illinois:

Bilingual Endorsement
Curriculum and Instruction
Driver Education Endorsement
English as a Second Language
Reading Specialist
Special Education (LBSI)
Teacher Leadership
Educational Leadership

Finally, the Indiana Department of Education has approved Olivet as a degree granting institution in teacher preparation and advanced master’s degrees. The Indiana State Board of Education also has granted entitlement rights for licensure and endorsements. These programs are approved by specialty organizations and/or the State of Indiana:

Ethical Building Leadership
English Language Learner Endorsement

Undergraduate licensure information can be found in the School of Education  section of the Catalog.

Graduate Programs

In addition to offering the Doctor of Education degree in Ethical Leadership, the School of Graduate and Continuing Studies currently offers courses leading to the following master’s degrees: Master of Arts in Education in Curriculum and Instruction, Educational Leadership, and Reading Specialist; Ethical Building Leadership, Master of Business Administration; Master of Organizational Leadership; Master of Science in Nursing with tracks in Education, Family Nurse Practitioner and Transformational Leadership.

Post-Master’s Certification Programs

For students who have earned a Master of Science in Nursing degree, Olivet offers post-master’s certification programs for Education,  Family Nurse Practitioner, and Transformational Leadership.

Endorsement Programs

Programs leading to teaching endorsements: English as a Second Language (ESL), English Language Learner (ELL) for Indiana, Bilingual Education, Safety/Driver’s Education, Reading Teacher, Learning Behavior Specialist (LBS1), Teacher Leader.

The following programs are offered by the School of Theology and Christian Ministry: Master of Arts with majors in Religion, Biblical Studies, Christian Ministry, Family Ministry, Pastoral Ministry, Pastoral Leadership, and Urban Ministry; Master of Ministry; Master of Ministry (Spanish); Master of Divinity.

Undergraduate Programs

In order to meet the needs of working adults, Olivet Nazarene University offers a number of degree completion program offerings as alternatives to the usual residential degree program. The offerings include the Bachelor of Applied Science, Bachelor of Science in Business, Bachelor of Science in Leadership, Bachelor of Science in Multidisciplinary Studies, and Bachelor of Science in Nursing. The Bachelor of Applied Science in Practical Ministries and the Bachelor of Science in Human Service Leadership is offered to Salvation Army Officers only. Additionally, starting in 2016, the SGCS began offering an accelerated RN-MSN program, allowing candidates to complete both the Bachelor of Science in Nursing and the Master of Science in Nursing degrees.  The degree completion options have several features that are designed to make them ideal programs for adults with other responsibilities.

  • Classes meet online.
  • Course content is geared toward practical application in the everyday life and occupation of a student.
  • Because Olivet recognizes that adult students bring a wide variety of experiences and skills with them, college credit is awarded, under specified circumstances, for some of these appropriate experiences.
  • Students participate in and contribute to every class session using a variety of methods meaningful and appropriate to the adult learner.
  • Student/faculty class contact hours vary based on the objectives and intended outcomes of each course.
  • Adult cooperative learning strategies are utilized.

Accelerated Bachelor’s/Master’s Degree Programs

The Accelerated Bachelor’s/Master’s Degree Programs  allow a student enrolled at Olivet Nazarene University (ONU) an opportunity to complete the requirements for both the bachelor’s and master’s degrees at an accelerated pace.

Program Formats - SGCS

Online Format - Online programs in the School of Graduate and Continuing Studies are accelerated and are offered in a flexible enrollment model. Online programs do not require on-campus study and are delivered through a Learning Management System (LMS). Emphasis is placed on faculty-student and student-student engagement in online courses throughout all SGCS online programs.

Hybrid Format - Hybrid programs in the SGCS are accelerated and require a combination of online and on-ground coursework.  Online coursework is delivered through the LMS, while on-ground coursework is delivered at various locations.  Hybrid programs are most common in nursing programs, where lab and practical/clinical work occurs at approved sites.   

School of Theology and Christian Ministry Formats

Modular Format - Modular courses meet for one concentrated week of study on Olivet’s campus. Modular courses require appropriate off-campus study before that week and additional off-campus study after that week through the LMS. Assigned work following the class session must be completed and submitted to the instructor for grading no later than 30 days following the end of the session. Students with extenuating circumstances may request an extension, not to exceed four weeks, from the instructor.

Traditional Format - In the most traditional format, a course meets on campus two or three times a week for a full semester. Variations can include half semesters or blocks, meeting once a week or once every other week, depending on the class and program.

Online Format - Online courses do not require any on-campus study. Most online courses are part of a specific program sequence, however students can utilize online courses across programs with approval and when appropriate.

Blended Format - Some programs allow for students to use a blend of module, traditional, and online courses. With the assistance of an advisor, these courses may be selected as necessary.

Ralph E. Perry Student Award of Excellence

At each Commencement, one student is selected to receive the Ralph E. Perry Student Award of Excellence. The criteria for selection include outstanding scholarship and excellent leadership. The selection is made by the School of Graduate and Continuing Studies administrative team based on recommendations presented by program directors, faculty, and classmates.

Graduate Programs - SGCS