Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling Mentor Future Generations


Degree Options

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100% online,* 8-week courses

Transfer in up to 50% of the degree total

A Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling is a degree that can travel far in an imperfect world. If you want to help people work through life’s challenges, Liberty University’s non-licensure pastoral counseling degree is a great option. Our program can provide you with the counseling skills and biblical knowledge needed to help people in all walks of life – from spouses and families to service members and new believers.

Pastoral counselors combine theology with psychotherapy to address relational, emotional, and spiritual needs. By integrating modern psychology with ministry training, they can help people overcome many challenges, including addiction, marital issues, family conflict, and trauma. As leaders in ministry and mental health, they provide valuable guidance and comfort to people of all ages and stages.

Partner with us and learn how to provide quality care to those in your community.

*Some exclusions apply. Please refer to our exclusions page for more information.

What is pastoral counseling?

Our MA in pastoral counseling is a graduate-level program designed to blend the principles of mental health counseling with spiritual guidance, allowing you to support individuals not just psychologically, but spiritually as well. As a student in this program, you can dive deep into understanding human behavior, emotional distress, and the methods of therapeutic intervention.

However, what sets pastoral counseling apart is its integration of religious, spiritual, and theological insights into the counseling process. This means you’ll also study religious texts, spiritual formation, and the ethical considerations unique to spiritual counseling.

What sets pastoral counselors apart from regular counselors? The ability to offer counseling from a biblical perspective. 

In this program, you’ll learn how to address emotional, relational, and psychological needs within a spiritual context. Our courses can help enrich your understanding of what the Bible says about suffering and human nature, giving you the tools needed to employ scientifically and biblically sound counseling methods.

This pastoral counseling program integrates foundational courses with various specializations, allowing you to earn a degree that aligns with your interests and career goals. No matter which specialization you choose, this degree can help you become more biblically responsible, relationally wise, and ministry-ready.

The core pastoral counseling courses will address a variety of topics, including crisis intervention, marriage and family counseling, counseling theory, theological doctrine, and multicultural issues. You’ll also gain real-world experience by completing a supervised internship, which includes 225 hours – a minimum of 50 which are required to be face-to-face counseling experience. With a master’s in pastoral counseling, you can be better prepared to pursue work in a variety of settings like churches, hospitals, correctional facilities, military bases, and counseling centers.

Niche Best Colleges

Ranked in the Top 10% of’s Best Online Schools in America

What Sets Us Apart?

  • Private Nonprofit University
  • 600+ Online Degrees
  • No Standardized Testing for Admission
  • Transfer in up to 75% of an Undergrad Degree
  • Transfer in up to 50% of a Grad/Doctoral Degree

  • Associate pastor
  • Church counselor
  • Hospital counselor
  • Non-licensed counselor
  • Prison chaplain
  • Rehabilitation specialist
  • Substance abuse counselor
  • Trauma counselor

Within our pastoral counseling degree online, you’ll get to choose a specialization that provides specialized training and knowledge. These cognates will allow you to personalize your degree to meet your unique goals.

Top 1% For Online Programs

Not sure what to choose?

Speak to one of our admissions specialists to help you choose the program that best fits your needs.

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.

Grad & Postgrad Divinity Block Rate (9-15 credit hours) $2,750
Grad & Postgrad Divinity Part Time (0-8.99 or over 15 credit hours) $395/Credit
Military Grad & Postgrad Divinity Block Rate (9-15 credit hours) $2,475
Military Grad & Postgrad Divinity Part Time (0-8.99 or over 15 credit hours) $275/Credit

These rates also apply to the MA in Pastoral Counseling, which falls under the School of Behavioral Sciences.

All Tuition & Fees


Liberty University is dedicated to providing world-class educational experiences to military students across the globe.

Who May Qualify?

  • Active Duty
  • Reserve/National Guard
  • Veterans/Retirees
  • Spouses of Service Members and Veterans/Retirees
  • Current Department of Defense Employees

Available Benefits:

  • Tuition discounts – $275 per credit hour for part-time graduate and postgraduate divinity courses
  • Discounted divinity block rate – $2,475 per semester*
  • Additional discount for veterans who service 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)

These benefits also apply to the MA in Pastoral Counseling, which falls under the School of Behavioral Sciences.

*Credits taken below 9 and above 15 credit hours per semester are charged at the part-time rate.

**Not applicable to certificates.