Spiritual and Professional Development of the Chaplain – CHPL 598

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 07/28/2020

Course Description

This course addresses the professional and spiritual formation of chaplains. Students will observe and evaluate, first-hand, various chaplain ministries. Attention is given to the biblical nature of chaplain ministry and its practical application within the secular and pluralistic contexts of the military, healthcare, and community chaplain settings. Special emphasis is given to formation of godly character necessary for successful chaplain ministry.


CHPL 500


The chaplain needs to understand the biblical nature of chaplain ministry and its application within secular and pluralistic contexts. The student needs to observe and evaluate various chaplain ministries first-hand in order to best understand how to provide soul-care, as well as lead spiritually within the framework of secular, pluralistic environments. Additionally, a chaplain must be spiritually grounded and growing in the Lord in order to minister within military, healthcare, and community chaplain settings.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Appraise the biblical nature and work of chaplaincy within military, healthcare, and community settings.
  2. Assess the value of chaplain ministry as observed firsthand in pluralistic chaplaincy contexts.
  3. Summarize the biblical basis for spiritual disciplines and daily living.
  4. Analyze the disciplines essential for a strong spiritual formation.
  5. Critique the evidence of spiritual disciplines in his/her life.
  6. Create a spiritual growth plan pertinent to a specified type of chaplaincy ministry.
  7. Demonstrate knowledge of spiritual formation as revealed in the spiritual disciplines and pastoral leadership.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and lecture presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Discussion Board Forums (2)

Discussion boards are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student is required to create a thread in response to the provided prompt for each forum. Each thread must be at least 400 words. In addition to the thread, the student will reply to at least 4 classmates’ threads. Each reply must be at least 100 words.

Journals (7)

The student will write Journals recounting his/her ministry observations and spiritual reflections. Prompts for each journal will be provided. The student must incorporate at least 1 biblical integration and write a minimum of 300 words for each Journal. (MLO: A, C, D)

Spiritual Assessment

The student will complete a personal Spiritual Assessment as the basis for a Spiritual Development Plan. The student will reflect intently on his/her daily relationship with the Lord in 6 parts and complete a personal SWOT analysis as the seventh part. The Spiritual Assessment paper must be at least 900 words. (MLO: C, E)

Shadow Evaluations (4)

The student will complete a 3-hour interview/shadow with 4 chaplains (for a total of 12 hours and 4 evaluations). The student will evaluate his/her shadowing experience. Each of the 4 evaluations must be at least 1,300 words and incorporate at least 2 course textbook citations. (MLO: A, B, C, D)

Shadow Evaluation Paper

The student will compare and contrast his/her 4 Shadow Evaluations and write a paper based on lessons learned. The Shadow Evaluation Paper must be at least 1,600 words, follow current Turabian format, and incorporate at least 3 course textbook citations and 3 biblical integrations. (MLO: B, E, G)

Spiritual Development Plan

The student will create a Spiritual Development Plan. The Spiritual Development Plan will focus on specific and measurable steps the student will take over the coming module/weeks to implement/practice chosen spiritual disciplines. The purpose in creating a Spiritual Development Plan is to intentionally map the student’s part of the spiritual formation process. The Spiritual Development Plan must be at least 2,500 words, follow in current Turabian format, and must incorporate at least 5 scholarly citations and 3 biblical integrations. (MLO: E, F)

Quizzes (3)

Each quiz will cover the material found within the course textbooks and presentations for the modules/weeks in which they are assigned. Each quiz will be open-book/open-notes, contain 20 multiple-choice questions, and have a 30-minute time limit. The student will be permitted 2 attempts per quiz in an effort to achieve his/her best score. (MLO: D, G)