Graduate Diploma of Leadership

CRICOS 107377M

About this course

The Graduate Diploma of Leadership (GradDipLead) is an AQF Level 8 award. The course is designed for those possessing a three-year undergraduate degree in the field of philosophy and religious studies who wish to pursue a further qualification an area of leadership focus as part of their continuing education for ministry.

The Graduate Diploma of Leadership focuses on building leadership capacity for people involved in a wide scope of religious, non-profit, community-focused enterprises. Students may be working for denominationally based organisations in education, welfare, aged care, local church, or other ministries requiring specific leadership training for ministry or mission.

Australia Student Visa holders are required to study full-time (at least two-thirds face-to-face).

Course Details

Admission to the Graduate Diploma of Leadership requires:

  • Satisfactory completion of a three-year AQF 7 award in the field of philosophy and religious studies (Australian Standard Classification of Education field 0917 – Philosophy and Religious Studies).


English Proficiency

Applicants whose entry qualifications were obtained in an institution where English is not the language of instruction normally require a minimum IELTS (or equivalent) overall score of at least 7.0 with no subtest below 6.5.

The Graduate Diploma of Leadership requires the completion of 8 units (72 credit points) which includes:

  • two *compulsory units (18 credit points)
  • two core units (18 credit points) taken from the list of approved **Master of Leadership core units
  • four elective units (36 credit points) from the 8100 and 9200 series in the SCD Schedule of Units


*Compulsory Units

If either of the two compulsory units have been completed in the award used for admission into the Graduate Diploma of Leadership, they are to be replaced with one or two elective units respectively.

  • P8107 Non-Profit Governance for Ministry
  • P8155 Foundations of Christian Leadership


**Master of Leadership Core Units
  • P8162 Administrative Leadership and Management for Ministry
  • P8163 Spiritual Leadership
  • P8106 Administrative Gifts for Ministry
  • P8158 Working in a Ministry Team Setting
  • P8108 Financial Management for Ministry
  • P9221 Managing Conflict in Ministry
  • P9222 Change Management for Ministry
  • P9258 Strategic Thinking and Decision Making
  • P9259 Leading the Larger Church
  • P9261 Transformational Leadership in Ministry
  • P9260 Personal Growth for Leadership
  • C8103 Psychology and Leadership
  • S8101 Formation in Christian Leadership
  • S8103 Personal Transformation
  • E9271 Business and Professional Ethics
  • M9227 Intercultural Communication

Graduates will have:

  • an advanced level of theoretical and technical knowledge related to the practice of leadership particular to the management and governance of a complex religious, non-profit, ministry enterprise;
  • an advanced understanding of the principles of inquiry and methods applicable to leadership theory and their application to real-world ministry practice.



Graduates will demonstrate advanced, specialised cognitive and technical skills in leadership within a ministry-related body of knowledge, so that they are able independently to:

  • analyse critically, evaluate, and adapt information to complete a range of activities associated with leadership in a ministry related context;
  • analyse, generate and provide solutions to complex problems to guide the effective governance, management and operations of a religious, non-profit, community organisation;
  • transmit knowledge, skills and ideas through coherent and sustained leadership to specialist and non-specialist audiences.


 Applications of Knowledge and Skills

Graduates will have the ability to:

  • apply knowledge and skills in a way that demonstrates autonomy, well-developed judgment, adaptability, and responsibility as leaders in religious, non-profit, community-focused enterprises;
  • plan and execute an advanced research or field-based project in an area of work-based leadership.

A candidate may seek credit up to a maximum of 18 credit points in the Graduate Diploma of Leadership.


Credit can only be granted for units that are from an equivalent award or institution and have outcomes, content, demand hours, and assessment equivalent to that of units in the SCD award.


Articulation to other awards

Students are eligible to articulate to the Master of Leadership on completion of which students are required to surrender their Graduate Diploma.

The Graduate Diploma of Leadership is offered through the individual colleges and an application for enrolment must be made to the Registrar of the teaching institution. The registrar will be able to help you with any information regarding your study, including fees, units, mode of delivery and timetable.


In 2024 Nazarene Theological College is not currently accepting students into this award at the Queensland campus located at 40 Woodlands Dr, Thornlands QLD, 4164.  Please contact the SCD Academic Registrar for other location options ([email protected]).


In 2024 PlanetShakers College is not currently accepting students into this award at the Melbourne campus located at 129 Whiteman St, Southbank VIC, 3006.  Please contact the SCD Academic Registrar for other location options ([email protected]).


A student is designated as full-time if enrolled in three units (27 credit points) or more in a semester or the equivalent in a trimester. Sydney College of Divinity offers a wide range of units and students have the option to study one or more units across the colleges delivering Sydney College of Divinity awards, whilst enrolled with one college.


For any questions contact us at [email protected]