1. General

1.1. Academic Regulations is a basic document regulating studies and all issues concerning educational activities in the Baltic Methodist Theological Seminary (henceforth the Seminary).

1.2. Following the Academic Regulations is mandatory for all seminary faculty, staff, and students.

1.3. The Academic Regulations, including changes and additions, are confirmed by the Academic Council.

1.4. Rector’s Council has the right to establish additional regulations for the academic work of the Seminary.

 

  1.5. Explanation of terms used in the Academic Regulations:

European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System's credit point (ECTS) – a study load unit that corresponds to 26 hours of study (including contact hours, independent work, and assessment)
Academic dismissal - exclusion from the list of students.

Matriculation – admission to the list of students.

Re-matriculation – readmission to the list of students.

Nominal study period – time required for fulfilling the whole curriculum

Study year – from August 1 to July 31.

Course – a defined amount of systematised knowledge about a certain discipline or part of it, taught by using different teaching methods, and the acquired knowledge is assessed by examinations and credit tests.

Curriculum – the basic document that defines the objectives, nominal study period, list and study load of courses and the requirements for graduation.

Academic Council – the highest collegial body of the faculty including the Rector, Academic Dean, full-time teachers, the Academic Secretary, representatives of translators and students.

Auditor – a person who has enrolled in a certain course, is taking part in lectures and class discussions but does not take credit tests or sit examinations.

Elective – a course offered by the Seminary for the completion of the curriculum in addition to the mandatory courses.

Free elective – a course transferred from another school, from another curriculum, or on the basis of APEL.

Foreign student – a citizen of a foreign country, enrolled as a student at the Seminary, not permanently living in Estonia.

2. ADMISSIONS

2.1.  Persons eligible to apply for admission to the Seminary must have secondary education and be Estonian or European Union Citizens or have permanent residence or temporary residential permit in Estonia.

2.2.  Admission is decided by the Admissions Board (the Superintendent of the Estonian UMC, the Rector, and the Dean) on the basis of the student’s written application, recommendation by the local church minister, and oral interview.

2.3. Students are matriculated upon the decision of the Admissions Board by Rector’s Directive. The student who, without a compelling reason, has not attended the first two study sessions, will be dismissed from the Seminary.

2.4. During the study year, the student can by way of exception be matriculated considering his/her previous academic records.

2.5.   The student will be re-matriculated by the Rector’s directive upon the student’s written application and the pastor’s recommendation.

3. CURRICULUM

3.1. The Seminary offers studies at the level of professional higher education, with the nominal study period of three years.

3.2. The studies are guided by the curriculum. The study load of the Theology and Mission curriculum is 180 ECTS. The study load for one nominal study year is 60 ECTS.

3.3. Every course has a syllabus that defines the course title and code, learning goals and learning outcomes, a short description of the content according to the topics, name of the lecturer, study load, prerequisite courses, reading list, forms of assessment and assessment criteria.

3.4. The Academic Council decides upon the opening of a new curriculum and its alterations, and the termination of the curriculum.

4. STUDY FORMS

4.1. The Seminary offers full-time studies divided between study sessions (cyclical studies).

4.2. The Seminary offers:

4.2.1.  Full-time studies – the student has to accumulate at least 75% of the required amount of ECTS credit points according to the curriculum by the end of each study year (i.e. a minimum of 45 ECTS per study year).

4.2.2.  Part-time studies – the student has to accumulate at least 50–74% of the required amount of ECTS credit points according to the curriculum by the end of each study year (i.e. 30-44 ECTS).

4.2.3.  External studies are for anyone who wants to obtain theological education but is not able to undertake full-time or part-time studies.

External learners are admitted on the same basis as students. External learners are not students, but they have the opportunity to complete the curriculum at their own pace, sit exams, and defend the Diploma Paper. External learners attend the studies together with students and complete courses on the same basis as students. At the completion of the whole curriculum, the external learner will receive the diploma and the diploma supplement.

External learner’s tuition contract is made separately for each semester. The contract defines the study load and the study fee according to the number of credit points earned during that semester.  

External learners have access to the BMTS study system, including an e-mail address, username, and password.

4.2.4. An auditor is a person who as registered on a course, attends lectures, participates in the class discussions, but does not complete assignments and exams. Auditors pay the study fees on the basis of the number of credit points.

4.3. The study consists of contact hours, independent study, practical work, or online study. The proportions of study forms are assigned in the syllabus.

4.4. Contact hours are lectures, seminars, or other forms of study assigned in the syllabus.

4.5. Practical work is a study form that is designed for achieving the learning objectives through practicums or other forms assigned in the syllabus. Practicum is supervised practical work in the working environment for acquiring work experience.

4.6. Independent work involves the student’s independent acquisition of knowledge and dealing with the raised questions under the guidance of the lecturer. This can also take place in an interactive web environment.

4.7. Courses are divided into mandatory courses and electives.

4.7. The student registers for the mandatory courses and electives in the Study Information System (SIS) at the beginning of each semester by a given date. Additional enrolments can be made immediately before the courses start by completing the declaration on SIS. It is not possible to drop a course or change from credit to audit when more than half of the course has passed.

4.8. The times of contact hours are assigned in the timetable.

4.9. The student is required to attend 75% of the contact hours of the respective course.

5.  REGULATIONS FOR EXAMINATIONS, CREDIT TESTS, AND DIPLOMA PAPER DEFENCE

5.1. Learning outcomes are assessed by examinations, credit tests, and defending the diploma paper, marks are registered in the assessment record. Students’ learning can also be assessed during
the courses by tests, papers, essays, etc., the marks of which are not shown in the assessment record but can contribute to the examination or credit test result. The forms of assessment for each course are assigned in the respective syllabus.

5.2. The forms of assessment are differentiated assessment (graded), and non-differentiated assessment (pass/fail). Successful passing of a non-differentiated assessment is marked with P and failure with F.

Differentiated assessment uses the grading scale A, B, C, D, E, F according to the assessment criteria given in the course syllabus.

F indicates failure, unsatisfactory learning whereby the student has not reached the minimum level of learning outcomes.

Weighted Average Mark (WAM) is used to measure the student’s academic performance throughout the studies. For calculating the WAM, the numerical value of the mark (A = 5, B = 4, C = 3, D = 2, E = 1, F and IC = 0) of each course is multiplied with the credit points of the course, the products for all courses are added up and the sum is divided by the total number of credit points received during the whole study period. For receiving the diploma, the WAM has to be at least 2,0.

5.3. Redoing an exam or assignment that has already been given a pass mark is possible only in agreement with the lecturer and the awarded mark cannot be higher than B.

5.4. At the beginning of the course, the lecturer will inform the students about the format and prerequisites of exams or assignments that have to be met before being allowed to complete the course.

5.5. When the course ends with an examination, two dates must be offered. The second date is set in agreement with the lecturer.  A student resitting an exam for the third time must pay a resit fee determined by the Rector’s Council. When an online exam is opened for more than two days, then a resit fee is applied for the second date.

5.6. Failing a course does not generally prevent the student from completing other courses in the scheduled time (unless the faculty examination plan states otherwise.)

5.7. A student who fails to appear for an examination will be recorded as “not present” (‘NP’; in Estonian: MI). In the case of an unfinished course, “NP” will appear at as the final course grade two weeks after the end of the semester unless the student has made an arrangement with the teacher. If a student uses unauthorised aids during the examination, it will result in a failing mark in the examination record.

5.8. After three times failing the same course examination or credit test, the student will be dismissed from the Seminary. In the case of re-matriculation, the student has a right for one attempt to resit the examination for the failed course.

5.9. The examinee has a right:

5.9.1. to appeal in writing to the Academic Council during two workdays after the examination or credit test results have been revealed if he/she is not satisfied with the results. The Academic Council will solve the question within one week after receiving the appeal.

5.9.2. to read his/her written paper during two working days after the presentation of the examination results.

The examiner has the right

5.9.3. to assign the form and procedure of the examination (oral, written or in the web environment).

5.9.4. to remove a student from the examination or credit test for using unauthorised materials or aid from other students.

5.10. If the student’s work contains plagiarism, the teacher may require the student to rewrite the assignment. The teacher may require the student to retake the subject if plagiarism is detected to a larger extent. The student has the right to dispute the teacher’s decision by appealing to the Rector's Council.

5.11. Assignment deadlines and examination dates are appointed by the lecturers. In case of late assignments, the lecturer has the right to deduct the mark by one point, unless the student has applied for an extension before the deadline and received permission.

5.12. The last assignment submission date for the spring semester is August 31, and for the autumn semester January 31, if the teacher has not set a different deadline. After these dates, it is not possible to submit assignments and the student has to retake the course next time it is offered and pay a resit fee.

5.13. The precondition for sitting the final examination or defending the diploma paper is the completion of all courses in the curriculum and the ministry practicums. The requirements of the final exam and diploma paper and the composition of the final examination/diploma paper committee are confirmed by the Rector.  

6. ACCREDITATION OF PRIOR AND EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING (APEL)

6.1. Student or external learner can apply for the accreditation of prior and experiential learning completed during the past seven years according to the conditions and procedures laid down in the APEL regulations

7. INTERRUPTION OF STUDIES

7.1. Academic leave:

7.1.1.  Academic leave is a permission to be absent from studies upon student’s request once during the studies for no more than one year, for medical reasons, for two years. When academic leave is sought for medical reasons the student must submit a doctor’s statement, and for resuming the studies, the student needs doctor’s permission.

7.1.2.    The student who is called upon to perform compulsory military service in the Estonian Defence Forces can request additional leave for one year (on the basis of the notice from the Defence Resources Board).

7.1.3.    To request academic leave, the student must apply to the Dean. Academic leave is granted by the Dean’s Directive.

7.1.4.    Students on academic leave belong to the student body of the BMTS.

7.1.5.    During the first semester of studies, academic leave is granted only on medical grounds.

7.1.6.    In full-time studies, it is not allowed to apply for an academic leave less than two months before the end of the semester, except for medical reasons.

7.1.7.    The student can take maternity/parental leave according to the legislation of the Republic of Estonia.

7.1.8.  During academic leave, the student has no right to fulfil the curriculum (register for courses, or sit exams), except when the student 1) has a severe or profound disability; 2) is a parent caring for an under 3-year-old child, or a disabled child; 3) is on an academic leave due to the compulsory military service or alternative civilian service.

7.2. Academic dismissal and completion of studies.

7.2.1. A student will be deleted from the matriculation register

a) at the request of the student.

b) at the initiative of the Baltic Methodist Theological Seminary.

c) when transferring to another higher education institution.

d) upon completion of studies.

7.2.2. A student wishing to terminate their studies must submit an application to the Rector. Reasons do not have to be stated.

7.2.3. The student will be dismissed at the initiative of the Seminary for the following reasons:

a) failure to fulfil the curriculum (lack of progress): when the student has more than two uncleared failures;

b) after failing the second resit of the same exam or credit test;

c) inappropriate behaviour of the student, preceded first by an oral reprimand and written disciplinary warning;

d) not registering for courses within the first two study sessions of the academic year;

e) failure to pay the tuition fees on time:

f) the student’s divestment of active legal capacity.

If the dismissal is the initiative of the Seminary, the reason must be stated in the Rector’s Directive.  

7.2.4. After the completion of the whole curriculum, the student will be excluded from the enrolment list.

7.2.5. The Diploma will be awarded by the Rector’s Directive upon completion of the curriculum.

7.2.6. The statute and issuing procedures of Diplomas and Diploma Supplements are established by a directive of the Republic of Estonia.

7.2.7. Issuing Duplicate Diplomas and Diploma Supplements is established by the directive of the Minister of Education and Research. 

8. COMPLETION OF STUDIES

8.1. After the completion of the whole curriculum, the student will be excluded from the enrolment list.

8.2. The student who has completed the professional higher education curriculum to the full extent will be awarded a Diploma, Diploma Supplement, and a Diploma Supplement in English, according to the procedure established by the directive of the Estonian Government.

8.3. A diploma cum laude will be awarded to a student who has passed all examinations with marks A, B, and C and received A for the Diploma Paper, and whose weighted average mark has been 4,60 or higher.

8.4. The student who has completed the one-year Foundation Course in Practical Theology may receive a Certificate from the Seminary, and the transcript.

 

Confirmed by the Academic Council on November 6, 1998

Changes confirmed by the Academic Council on August 31, 2002
Changes confirmed by the Academic Council on January 29, 2009
Changes confirmed by the Academic Council on March 3, 2011
Changes confirmed by the Academic Council on January 28, 2014
Changes confirmed by the Academic Council on June 10, 2016
Changes confirmed by the Academic Council on October 12, 2017
Changes confirmed by the Academic Council on February 11, 2020