College Life

Learn more about our course schedule, structure, and grading criteria

Studying at Hillsong College USA

When will my classes and church involvement be?

Hillsong College is committed to the local church and our school calendar reflects such. The church calendar does shift from season to season so this may look different at depending on the year.

If you are an incoming first year student, your school day will run Monday through Thursday from about 8:30am until 5:00pm. These are times are estimated and do not reflect the actual intervals you’ll be sitting in class. You’ll have time throughout your days for lunch, catching up with students and trainers, and to enjoy the surrounding areas.

Will I be able to work while studying?

It is common for students to work while they are enrolled into their studies. Prioritizing class time, church involvement, and assessments will be critical to create a healthy school and work balance. There are many working options within Mesa and in the greater Phoenix area.

Lectures, Tutorials, & Workshops


Lectures, like most universities, are our largest learning environment.


Pastoral Leadership and Worship Music students will have both separate and shared lectures. You’ll want to bring a notebook or a laptop to these classes; referencing your notes will be useful for discussion in tutorials, working on your assessment, or even in team huddles in your teams across church.



With every lecture comes a tutorial, which are small group learning and discussion groups. Tutorials are specifically designed for students who are focusing on the same area of study and are of similar ages. You’ll be free to ask questions, discuss different opinions, dive deeper into Lecture content, and even get a jump start on your upcoming assessments. Your trainers and your fellow students can be the best resource for getting the most out of your course material and your time at College.



Workshops are for our Worship Music students. These hands-on learning environments will allow you to practice the very things you’ve been learning in discussing in lectures and tutorials. Receiving feedback and tracking your progress in this setting will prepare you for that next creative item, worship set, real life ministry scenario, or assessment.


Practicum & Grading System



As a student, you’ll be assessed in an area of church involvement which we call ‘practicum’. You’ll have the chance to put your course learning to practical use while being a critical member of a team within Hillsong Church.

Outside of your practicum, you will have the chance to explore and help out with many areas of church life. Hillsong College doesn’t exist outside of Hillsong Church but is at the very center of everything we do as a global family. So, whether you enroll in Worship Music or Pastoral Leadership, you’ll find many spaces and teams to get acquainted with.

If you are a part of another local church in the Phoenix area, you may be able to complete your practicum and church involvement there. We’d recommend talking with our training staff for situations like these.

Grading System


Hillsong College uses a grading system more suitable for a vocational learning environment which is not GPA-based but rather competency-based. Upon assessment of a specific assignment or involvement, students will receive either a ‘Not Yet Competent’ or a ‘Competent’ mark. A Not Yet Competent assessment doesn’t mean anyone has failed; it helps us understand where the students still needs to grow in order to be Competent in that specific area. Our training staff are committed to the student’s growth and all assessments will have the opportunity to be revised and resubmitted until the student has reached competency.