Help Parents Raise the Next Generation with the Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling – Parenting and Child/Adolescent Development
Liberty University’s 100% online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling – Parenting and Child/Adolescent Development is designed to train ministry professionals and church leaders to become biblical counselors in Christian ministries 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 which will equip ministry professionals already in the field or students who want to move into a Christian Counseling role.
Liberty University has collaborated with world-renowned psychologist, author, radio show host, and family expert Dr. James C. Dobson to create Liberty University’s James C. Dobson Center for Child Development, Marriage, and Family Studies. Through this partnership, Liberty University offers a parent and child/adolescent program track for the Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling that is designed to give ministry professionals and pastors the tools to help parents and their children to grow together.
Why Choose Liberty’s Online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling – Parenting and Child/Adolescent Development Program?
If you are already 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 online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling will help fill in the gaps. This program is designed to build on your ministry experience to support your Christian counseling and pastoral care, as well as receive important training on counseling through parenting issues. 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 biblical counseling in a variety of settings.
If you are looking for a child counseling degree and want to give families important parenting skills training, the parent and child/adolescent area of study for the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling will help you explore the parent-child relational problems that can create conflict and poor communication, and learn the parent counseling skills that will allow you to correct issues in the home. Liberty’s James C. Dobson Center for Child Development, Marriage, and Family Studies will ensure that your ministry training is recognized and field-tested.
What Are the Benefits of Liberty’s Online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling?
- Unlike many online bible colleges or online seminaries, Liberty University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).
- Study a balanced perspective on the theological principles that underlie psychology and successful family therapy, giving you effective Christian counseling techniques with a firm biblical worldview.
- If you choose to take advantage of the optional on-campus intensives, you will have additional hands-on training and meet directly with your peers and professors.
- Gain marketable real-world experience in Christian counseling and family therapy by helping people in your community through their parenting issues with the pastoral counseling internship.
- The online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling is overseen by the School of Behavioral Sciences but still receives the School of Divinity’s discounted graduate tuition of $395 per credit for part-time, as well as the online seminary’s block rate. Students attending full time or higher (9-15 credit hours) are eligible for a block rate of $2,750 per semester!*
*Credits taken above 15 credit hours for the Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling online are charged at the part-time rate.
What Will You Learn in the Online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling – Parenting and Child/Adolescent Development Program?
The core content of 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.
Liberty University’s James C. Dobson Center for Child Development, Marriage, and Family Studies gives students in the parenting and child/adolescent development area of study advanced, field-tested and evidence-based family counseling and parenting skills training. The parenting and child/adolescent development track features lectures and material from world-renowned psychologist, author, radio host, and family expert Dr. James C. Dobson that will equip men and women with the knowledge to positively impact families and communities. Students in the parenting and child/adolescent development track will study important foundational subjects, including how family issues and environmental factors affect child development and about the development of personhood from childhood to adulthood. Students will also be able to choose individual child counseling issues courses like childhood trauma and healthy sexuality.
- DBPC 600 – Child and Family Development
- DBPC 610 – Human Growth and Lifespan Development
- DBPC 615 – Childhood Issues, Trauma, and Abuse
- DBPC 620 – Healthy Sexuality: Biblical and Developmental
*Please note that while the parenting and child/adolescent development degree may allow you to apply for some Christian counseling certifications, the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling is not designed to fulfill all clinical requirements for state-licensed professional counseling. You can view Liberty University’s licensure-track Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy degree below for more information about counseling licensure.
Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling Program Highlights
- Liberty is ranked in the top 1% of more than 2,100 online colleges and universities for academic quality, affordability, and accessibility by BestColleges.com — and ranked as the #2 online school in America by Niche.com. Earning your online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling degree from a nonprofit university with this kind of recognition will set you apart from others in your field.
- Tuition for all undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs has not increased in 5 years. While many other online colleges have raised tuition, Liberty has been able to keep costs low as a nonprofit university.
- You can complete this online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling – Parenting and Child/Adolescent Development in as little as 1 year.
- Liberty University’s online seminary, the John W. Rawlings School of Divinity, has experienced Christian counselors and ministry professionals who teach practical ministry skills while imparting deep theological teaching.
- Learn from renowned Christian scholars and ministry professionals in the Liberty University School of Divinity, such as Dr. Elmer L. Towns, Dr. Harold Willmington, and Dr. Gary R. Habermas.
- Develop broad experience in Christian counseling and pastoral care to address mental and spiritual health issues in your biblical counseling practice.
M.A. in Pastoral Counseling Program Information
- This program falls under the School of Behavioral Sciences.
- Download and review the Degree Completion Plan for this program.
- View the Graduate Behavioral Sciences Course Guides (login required).
Military Benefits for the Online M.A. 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)
- Discounted divinity block rate: $2,475 per semester – only $165/credit at 15 credit hours*
- 8-week courses, eight different start dates each year, and no set login times
*Credits taken above 15 credit hours for the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling are charged at the part-time rate.
Potential Career Options with a Degree in Pastoral Counseling
Students who complete a degree in Christian counseling like the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling will be equipped for ministry-based, non-licensure counseling roles in many areas including marriage and family counseling, addiction counseling, and counseling women. Graduates of the parenting and child/adolescent development track will be equipped for specialized parent counseling and family therapy ministry.
- Associate pastor
- Child advocate
- Church counselor
- Family therapist
- Outpatient care counselor
Admission Requirements for Our Online M.A. in Pastoral Counseling
A regionally or nationally accredited bachelor’s degree with a 2.0 or above cumulative combined GPA is required for admission in good standing. Please visit our admission requirements page for more detailed admission-related information.
All applicants must submit the following:
- Admission application
- Application fee*
- Official college transcripts
- Unofficial college transcripts may be accepted with a completed official transcript request form**
- Proof of English proficiency
*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.
**An official transcript is needed within 60 days of acceptance or before non-attendance drops for the first set of matriculated classes, whichever comes first.