An LUO Counseling Promo Is Done On Thursday June 3, 2021. (Photo By KJ Jugar)
Credit Hours
Class Type
100% online, 8-week courses
Transfer Credits
Transfer in up to 50% of the degree total
Next Start Date
May 13, 2024
Liberty University is accredited by SACSCOC

Enhance Your Counseling Ministry with Our EdD in Community Care and Counseling – Pastoral Care and Counseling Degree

Pastoral counselors play a vital role in fostering mental and emotional health. They combine biblical principles with effective counseling techniques to help people work through some of life’s greatest challenges. As trained experts in biblical guidance and counseling, they provide a valuable service to those in their congregations and communities.

Liberty’s 100% online Doctor of Education (EdD) in Community Care and Counseling – Pastoral Care and Counseling degree can help equip you with the tools and knowledge you need to provide professional counseling services in a ministry setting. Our pastoral care and counseling doctoral degree provides you with practical training that can help you counsel diverse individuals, groups, and family populations. You have a passion for reaching hurting individuals with the wisdom and love of Christ, and our EdD in pastoral counseling can provide you with the education you need to make your counseling ministry more effective.

This online EdD in counseling degree is ideal for pastors, licensed professional counselors, marriage and family therapists, and clinical social workers who want to further their education and enhance their careers. This doctorate of pastoral counseling degree provides advanced biblical counseling skills that can help prepare you for counseling ministry, allow you to expand your human services experience, and help you to effectively address current issues and crises facing your community.

Please note: This EdD degree is not designed to meet state counseling licensure requirements. If you are interested in a state counseling license, please see our Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health CounselingMaster of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy, or Master of Education in School Counseling.

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Why Choose Liberty’s EdD in Pastoral Care and Counseling for Your Doctorate?

At Liberty University, we’re dedicated to providing an online pastoral care and counseling doctorate degree program that supports your success with the ethical, evidence-based, and biblically grounded skills you need to minister in today’s increasingly complex and diverse society. Delivered through our online learning environment, this online doctoral counseling program provides a quality education taught by professors who are content experts with real-world experience in the field.

If you want to pursue a ministry-focused online doctoral degree in counseling from one of the largest Christian universities in the country, our online EdD in Community Care and Counseling program offers a path to completing a doctoral degree with practical, real-world applications.

Liberty University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). Our programs have met rigorous academic standards and accreditation requirements, so you can pursue your degree with confidence. Additionally, our courses are designed to integrate ethical principles with industry knowledge — so you can become equipped to lead with integrity in your field.

What Are the Benefits of Our Online EdD in Community Care and Counseling Degree?

  • Completing our online Doctor of Education (EdD) in pastoral care and counseling program can give you a practice-focused degree that focuses on solving real-world problems with advanced research in contrast to most Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Counseling programs, which emphasize more theoretical research.
  • Our EdD in Community Care and Counseling online degree program does not require you to have current state licensure for clinical counseling. However, if you are a licensed counselor or social worker, our doctorate in pastoral care and counseling can help advance your skills and knowledge so you can bolster your effectiveness.
  • Our online EdD in Community Care and Counseling degree’s integrated dissertation allows you to work toward significant parts of your dissertation research while you complete your online course content, giving you a clear, step-by-step path to finishing your doctoral studies in as little as 2.5 years.
  • Completing our EdD in Community Care and Counseling online degree’s integrated dissertation allows you to focus your research on a real-world human services issue, giving you the opportunity to put your academic work into motion to help real communities.
  • Our pastoral care studies degree is offered 100% online, so you won’t have to relocate or take time off from work to attend on-campus classes. We’re committed to offering high-quality programs that let you continue your education without giving up your other priorities.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is pastoral care and counseling? What is the difference between pastoral counseling vs. clinical counseling?
Is the EdD in pastoral counseling the same as an online PhD program in pastoral counseling?
What can I do with a pastoral counseling degree?
How long does it take to earn a doctorate in pastoral care and counseling?
Which doctorate in pastoral counseling is right for me?
Do I need a counseling license to pursue the doctorate in pastoral counseling at Liberty University?

What Will You Learn in Our Online EdD in Pastoral Care and Counseling Degree Program?

The core of our online EdD in Community Care and Counseling degree provides a robust research foundation as well as careful preparation for the integrated dissertation project. Within the program, you will study applied counseling theories as well as teaching and learning techniques. This diverse set of skills can help you apply advanced counseling theories and techniques to real-world human services problems in your community and beyond.

Throughout our pastoral care and counseling EdD degree, you will study advanced biblical counseling approaches to individual, family, premarital, and marital issues as well as crisis response. Your online counseling doctoral courses will teach you a diverse set of practical skills that you can apply to your counseling ministry, allowing you to address many different modern-day problems.

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Degree Information
Military Benefits
Admission Requirements

EdD in Community Care and Counseling Degree Information

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Military Benefits for Our Online Doctorate in Pastoral Counseling

Liberty University is dedicated to providing world-class educational experiences to military students across the globe. Whether you are a current service member, discharged or retired from service, or the spouse of a service member or veteran, we are here to support you every step of the journey.

As a thank-you for your dedication and service to our country, Liberty is honored to serve and support you in your pursuit of online education by offering the following benefits:

  • Tuition discounts – $275 per credit hour for graduate courses
  • Additional discount for veterans who serve in a civilian capacity as a First Responder (less than $625 per course)
  • 8-week courses, 8 different start dates each year, and no set login times (may exclude certain courses such as practicums, internships, or field experiences)

Potential Careers with an EdD Degree in Pastoral Counseling 

Graduates of our online EdD in Community Care and Counseling degree program will have a terminal doctoral credential that may provide opportunities for publishing academic research, teaching at the college level, and pursuing advanced counselor roles. The practical skills and knowledge taught in our online pastoral care and counseling doctorate can help equip students for many roles in counseling and human services, such as Christian counseling, nonprofit counseling, or other ministry-focused counseling.

Some of the roles that may benefit from this doctoral degree include:

  • Church counselor
  • Marriage and family counselor
  • Outpatient care therapist
  • Social worker
  • University professor

Please note: Many clinical counseling roles will require individual state licensure, which this degree does not provide.

Admission Requirements for Our Online EdD in Community Care and Counseling Degree Program

A regionally or nationally accredited master’s degree with a 3.0 or above GPA is required for admission in good standing. Please visit our admission requirements page for more detailed admissions-related information.

All applicants must submit the following:

  • Admission application
  • Application fee*
  • Official college transcripts
  • Proof of English proficiency (for applicants whose native language is other than English)

Applicants lacking a graduate-level statistics course will be required to complete CEFS 515 Research and Program Evaluation (3 c.h.), or EDUC 518 Educational Research and Assessment (3 c.h.), or its equivalent prior to EDCO 735 in the Ed.D.

*There is no upfront application fee; however, a deferred $50 application fee will be assessed during Financial Check-In. This fee is waived for qualifying service members, veterans, and military spouses — documentation verifying military status is required.

Our Online EdD in Pastoral Counseling Program Highlights

  • We are recognized by multiple institutions for our academic quality, affordability, and accessibility. Our commitment to excellence also helped us rank in the top 10% of’s best online schools in America. Earning your online EdD in Community Care and Counseling degree from a nonprofit university with this kind of recognition can help set you apart from others in your field.
  • Your success is our success, which is why we are committed to providing quality academics at an affordable tuition rate. While other colleges are increasing their tuition, we have frozen tuition rates for the majority of our undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs for the past 9 years and counting.
  • You can gain a diverse set of practical counseling skills in our online pastoral care and counseling doctorate degree program that can help equip you for marriage and family therapy, marital and premarital counseling, and current social issues that affect communities and churches in your area.
  • By completing the EdD in pastoral counseling degree’s integrated dissertation project, you can demonstrate your expertise and ability to apply advanced counseling theories to practical problems.
  • Earn a degree that fits your schedule. Liberty University’s counseling online courses allow you to pursue your degree from the comfort of home.