Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling – Theology Bridging Faith and Counseling


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100% online,* 8-week courses

Transfer in up to 50% of the degree total

Liberty University’s 100% online Master of Arts (MA) 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.

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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

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.

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.

Degree Completion Plan (PDF)

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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.

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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.