MA Pastoral Counseling Theology Online Degree Program
Credit Hours
Years (Avg.)
Class Type
100% online*, 8-week courses
Transfer Credits
Transfer in up to 50% of the degree total
Next Start Date
Jan 15, 2024
Liberty University is accredited by SACSCOC

Provide Theological Counseling with an MA in Pastoral Counseling – Theology Degree

Liberty University’s 100% online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling – Theology is designed to train ministry professionals and church leaders to become pastoral counselors in Christian ministries and agency-based, non-licensure settings. In the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling, you will study psychology and the Christian understanding of human nature that informs biblical counseling. You will also be provided with balanced training in spiritual and mental health issues, which can help equip you for success in your current ministry or in a future Christian counseling role.

If you want to enhance your ministry and personal growth through advanced studies in the Christian faith, the theology area of study in our pastoral studies counseling degree allows you to pair in-depth, Christ-centered theology courses with your counseling training. The profound biblical truths taught in our theology courses can help prepare students like you to provide pastoral care in non-licensure human services settings, local churches, or counseling centers that do not require you to hold a professional counseling license.

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

Why Choose Liberty’s Online MA in Pastoral Counseling – Theology?

If you are currently a ministry professional and find that you lack the training to help people struggling with spiritual and mental health crises, completing an online master’s in biblical counseling can help bolster your ability to offer Christian counseling and pastoral care to people experiencing distress. If you want to branch out into a Christian counseling role, the field-specific training and counseling techniques taught in this faith-based counseling degree can provide an educational foundation for biblical counseling in a variety of settings.

In addition to pastoral counseling, this degree program offers an in-depth study of theological principles. The theology specialization, which places an emphasis on systematic theology, is an excellent complement to our master’s in pastoral counseling program.

What Are the Benefits of Liberty’s Online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling?

  • Unlike many Bible colleges or seminaries, Liberty University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

  • Study the theological principles that underlie psychology and learn effective Christian counseling techniques with a firm biblical worldview.
  • If you choose to take advantage of the optional on-campus intensives, you will receive additional, hands-on training and meet directly with your peers and professors.

Master Of Arts In Pastoral Counseling – Theology

  • Gain marketable real-world experience in counseling and therapy by helping people in your community through the pastoral counseling internship.
  • The online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling falls within the School of Behavioral Sciences but receives

    the graduate tuition rate of just $395 per credit hour for part-time students, as well as the online seminary’s block rate. Students attending full time (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.

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What Will You Learn in the Online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling – Theology?

The online master’s in theology and counseling degree program can equip you with a broad set of foundational Christian counseling skills through field-specialized courses. Students who pursue a biblical counseling degree can learn how the science of psychology reflects biblical principles of human nature and how mental health goes hand-in-hand with spiritual health. 

Additionally, the online master’s in Christian counseling program will give you the opportunity to pursue in-person training on campus during 2 optional intensives. You will also gain experience in your community through the pastoral counseling internship.

The theology area of study for the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling offers additional, advanced exploration of several important topics in theology studies. You will receive a guided, 2-course overview of systematic theology. In these courses, you will be asked to demonstrate the formalized method of investigating theological concepts in the Bible. 

Students in the theology area of study will also explore the doctrine of God and public theology through courses that examine the existence, nature, and attributes of God. Our theology specialization exists to ensure that the ministry efforts of Christian counselors are rooted in biblically sound theology.

*Please note that the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling is not designed to fulfill clinical counseling requirements. You can view Liberty University’s licensure-track Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree for more information about counseling licensure.

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Degree Information
Military Benefits
Admission Requirements

MA in Pastoral Counseling – Theology 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 degree from a nonprofit university with this kind of recognition can help set you apart from others in your field.

  • Tuition for all undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs has not increased in 9 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 – Theology in just 1.5 years.
  • Liberty University’s online seminary, the John W. Rawlings School of Divinity, is led by experienced Christian counselors and ministry professionals who teach practical ministry skills while imparting deep theological teaching.
  • Learn from lessons and materials developed by renowned Christian theologians such as Dr. Elmer L. Towns, Dr. Harold Willmington, and Dr. Gary R. Habermas in Liberty University’s John W. Rawlings School of Divinity.
  • Develop broad expertise in Christian counseling and pastoral care to address mental and spiritual health issues in your ministry.

    MA in Pastoral Counseling – Theology Degree Information

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    Military Benefits

    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 part-time 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, 8 different start dates each year, and no set login times (may exclude certain courses such as practicums, internships, or field experiences)

    *Credits taken below 9 and above 15 credit hours for the online Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling are charged at the part-time rate.

    Career Options with a Master’s in Pastoral Counseling – Theology

    • Associate pastor
    • Church counselor
    • Lay ministry leader
    • Outpatient care counselor
    • Teaching pastor

    A degree in Christian counseling can help equip you for ministry-based, non-licensure counseling roles in many areas — including marriage and family counseling, addiction counseling, and counseling women. Graduates of the theology area of study will receive enhanced, graduate-level theology training that may open up ministry and academic teaching opportunities.

    Admission Requirements for Our Online MA in Pastoral Counseling 

    A regionally or nationally accredited bachelor’s degree with a 2.0 or above cumulative 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
    • Unofficial college transcripts may be accepted with a completed official transcript request form**
    • Proof of English proficiency (for applicants whose native language is other than English)

    *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.