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Doctor of Theology



Semiotics, Communication, & Spirit Hermeneutics

Online | 42 Credits | Two Years

The Doctor of Theology is an accredited degree of advanced study delivered in an accelerated format.

Students will experience an Oxford-style

faculty mentor relationship with Len Sweet.


Leonard Sweet is a Phi Beta Kappa who earned his Master of Divinity degree from Colgate Rochester/Crozer Divinity School and PhD from the University of Rochester. The author of more than 200 articles, 1300+ published sermons, and more than seventy books, Sweet’s publications include best sellers Soul Tsunami, Aqua Church, and Jesus Manifesto (with Frank Viola), as well as many other volumes like Rings of Fire that are revolutionizing the church’s mission in the 21st century. Sweet has spent his academic life as Provost, Dean, Vice-President of Graduate Studies, President, and Chancellor of seminaries and universities. He now just works with doctoral students in the US and around the world.


One of the most sought-after speakers in North America, Sweet has been voted more than once by his peers as “One of the 50 Most Influential Christians in America” and was once selected by the top non-English Christian website as a “Top 10 Influential Global Christian.” His podcast “Napkin Scribbles” is widely quoted, as is his homiletics resource, For the past three years, he has posted a weekly lectionary-based LenTalk on semiotics and Scripture to his YouTube Channel. 

Doctor of Theology - Semiotics

can be completed in as little as two years



Starting Well 

Foundations of Semiotics

Residency Week @ Kairos University in Sioux Falls, SD

Readings in Semiotics I

Readings in Semiotics II




Contextualization of Semiotics

Residency Week @ Kairos University in Sioux Falls, SD

 Readings in Semiotics III

Comprehensive Exams

Dissertation Writing

Defense Advance @ Orcas Island, WA

Continuing Well
Students in this degree are dually enrolled in Kairos University and receive their degree from Kairos.
NTS.Len.1st Advance.jpg

Defense Advance with Len Sweet on Orcas Island

Publish Your Doctoral Project

​​​During the Project Experience, students will complete a Manuscript as their Doctoral Treatise Paper.

During the Defense Advance, students defend their Manuscript to their fellow students and visiting faculty.

Following a successful Defense, students will have the opportunity to publish their peer-reviewed Manuscripts.

Program Outcomes

With a focus on rich theological reflection on ministry practice, the Doctor of Theology will help you develop and deepen your knowledge of theological content, be more fully formed in Christian character, and generate new understandings of the craft of ministry. Through the program, you will develop and demonstrate proficiency in its eight outcomes: Starting Well, Specialized Inquiry: Literature and History, Specialized Inquiry: Concepts and Models, Specialized Inquiry: Practices and Methods, Integration: Macro Context, Integration: Micro Context, Generative Learning, and Continuing Well.

Residency Experiences

Learning is not done in isolation. That's why, in addition to having a mentor team, you will participate in two week-long group residencies. These residencies will be held in Sioux Falls, SD, and provide valuable opportunities for community building and making connections. You'll be able to draw personal encouragement from others who are asking similar questions and learn from their experiences, perceptions, and wisdom.


As part of the Doctor of Theology program, you will be invited to generate for dissemination high-level scholarly research within a specialized theological field of inquiry toward the improvement of ministry praxis. You will work alongside a mentor team crafted around your specialized field of inquiry, and your entire learning experience may be individualized and contextualized as much as possible toward exploring your degree concentration and research focus. 

Customized Learning Experiences

Learning experiences in Kairos are built around an invitation for students to explore some aspect of their vocation, Christian thought and practice, or the human experience. As a Doctor of Theology student, you will be able to engage in individualized and guided learning experiences that encourage deep theological reflection on ministry practice within your context and tradition.

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