What is Clinical
Pastoral Education?

Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) offers a distinctive learning experience aimed at personal transformation. We adhere to the Common Qualifications and Competencies, previously known as the common standards of Chaplaincy, established by the Board-Certified Chaplain Institute (BCCI). Our educational approach is grounded in an unapologetically Biblical Christian perspective. We equip our graduates to serve and love all individuals, emphasizing listening to understand rather than prescribing, and advocating for non-judgmental and compassionate living.

CPE is open to spiritual professionals and theological students seeking professional growth in clinical pastoral settings. Through action-reflection methods and supervised practice, students learn to provide pastoral care to individuals in crisis situations.

Practical experience, often termed “Clinical Hours,” can be gained in various settings beyond hospitals. We approve clinical hours in settings such as disaster response, prisons, homeless shelters, workplaces, addiction recovery programs, churches, colleges, and more. Any combination of local ministry can fulfill the practical experience requirement.

CPE consists of four levels, each comprising hands-on learning, clinical supervision, and academic study. It is tailored for chaplain or pastoral care interns, as well as bachelor’s level or higher ministry students seeking to enhance their skills in spiritual care and presence.

Each CPE unit builds upon the previous one, consisting of 100 hours of academic instruction and 300 hours of practical experience. Our campus, approved by the Association of Biblical Higher Education, offers up to 6 hours of master’s level credit per unit. These hours can be earned as an intern, staff member, or lay volunteer. We offer three semesters annually (Winter, Summer, and Fall), each lasting 15 weeks with 12 weeks of classroom instruction.

Our courses also include weekly personalized and gospel-centered life coaching. Through coaching and supervision, we assist students in answering the fundamental question: “What would it look like for me to become the person God created me to be?”

Our student body comprises clergy, such as ordained chaplains and pastors, as well as non-clergy individuals, such as lay volunteers and college or seminary students seeking to serve their congregations and communities.

Completing all four levels of CPE, along with appropriate accredited education and experience, may qualify individuals for Board Certification in Chaplaincy or Pastoral Care.