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Liberty University’s 100% online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling is designed to train ministry professionals and church leaders to become Christian counselors in ministry and agency-based, non-licensure settings. Students in the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling will study psychology and the Christian understanding of human nature and God’s creation that informs biblical counseling. The online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling provides a balanced treatment of spiritual and mental health that will equip ministry professionals already in the field or students who want to move into a Christian Counseling role.
The Community Chaplaincy area of study for the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling provides Christian counseling and pastoral care training aligned to public or private chaplaincy roles that may take you out of a Christian environment. Students who pursue the Community Chaplaincy area of study will study the biblical counseling practice and psychology theory needed to become Christian counselors or chaplains in a non-licensure setting.
If you are a ministry professional and find that you lack the training to help people struggling with spiritual and mental health crises, completing an online Christian counseling degree like the Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling will help fill in the gaps and build on your ministry experience to support your Christian counseling and pastoral care. If you want to branch out into a Christian counseling role, the field-specific training and biblical counseling techniques in the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling will provide much-needed support for providing guidance on a variety of issues.
A chaplain is a minister, pastor, or member of the ecclesiastical church body who serves in an official spiritual, mental health, and personal growth advisement role in a company, organization, or branch of government.
Students who complete the area of study in Community Chaplaincy will have specialized training in the elements of psychology and spiritual growth that are needed in an official chaplaincy role. The online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling - Community Chaplaincy degree provides an in-depth study of pastoral care and Christian counseling to allow students to minister directly to the personal and spiritual needs of individuals and families in their ministry in and outside of the church.
*Please note that some chaplaincy roles may require a more specialized and advanced study of a particular field, or through a Master of Divinity (M.Div.) program. Also, the Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling is not designed to fulfill all clinical counseling requirements. You can view all of Liberty University’s chaplaincy programs and licensure-track Professional Counseling degree below for more information about the field and position-specific options.
*Credits taken above 15 credit hours for the Masters of Arts in Pastoral Counseling Online are charged at the part-time rate.
The online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling provides a broad set of foundational Christian counseling skills and knowledge along with field-specialized topic courses and hands-on skill areas. Students who pursue biblical counseling training in the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling will learn how the science of psychology reflects biblical principles of personhood and human nature, and how mental health treatment benefits from spiritual health. Students in the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling will have the opportunity to pursue hands-on training on campus during two optional intensives, and all pastoral counseling students will gain experience in their communities through the pastoral counseling internship.
Students who complete the online Pastoral Counseling - Community Chaplaincy will be trained to apply their pastoral care and Christian ministry skills to an official chaplain role outside of the church. Chaplain roles often have important differences from church leadership and may have restrictions based on state and federal regulations. As such, the Community Chaplaincy area of study for the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling provides an important overview of Chaplaincy Ministry and its particular requirements, as well as important role-specific skills for Professional Development.
Are you a service member, veteran, military spouse, or Department of Defense employee? We are proud to support you in your pursuit of online education by offering the following military-friendly benefits for the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling program:
*Credits taken above 15 credit hours for the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling are charged at the part-time rate.
Students who complete a degree in Christian Counseling like the Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling will be equipped for ministry-based, non-licensure counseling roles in many areas including marriage and family counseling, crisis counseling, and counseling women. Students may be eligible to pursue chaplaincy positions in many settings with the Community Chaplaincy area of study’s specialized content, however many chaplaincy roles may require additional content and specialized chaplaincy training. Students may also be able to pursue additional requirements for state licensure and pursue licensed clinical counseling practice.