Getting the Education: Know Where to Look
The National University System -- Focus on Bereavement
Spiritual counseling is generally equated with helping the recently bereaved to cope with the loss of a family member or close friend. This Certificate of Bereavement requires you to take eight graduate courses that total 36 credits. You come to understand age related bereavement issues and also cultural differences. In addition to learning how to help survivors, you will receive training in how to prepare a dying person for what is ahead. National University is accredited by the Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. As of 2011, the cost of tuition starts at $1,521 per course.
Seton Hall University – Focus on Spiritual Literature
Seton Hall focuses on spiritual literature and a deeper understanding of the Christian faith as being the springboard from which to heighten a candidate’s ability to counsel. Real life examples serve to underscore the applicability of scripture and ancillary religious writings. This in turn enables the spiritual counselor to assist others in building and preserving one-another relationships, deepening their personal walks with God, and also overcoming relationship problems. The program consists of seven courses totaling 21 credits at $875 per credit. Clergy receives a 50% discount. While the course is online, students must attend one orientation weekend in New Jersey.
Fordham University – Focus on Health Care Ethics
The graduate certificate that spiritual counseling candidates with an M.A. or A.P.D. are sure to appreciate -- in health care ethics -- offers transferable credits. The coursework consists of four courses and targets members of the clergy as well as volunteers desirous of learning the intricacies of the ethics surrounding end-of-life decisions, health care and social backdrops. The goal is to guide others through the maze of bioethical decision-making. Coursework includes classes from the schools of theology, law and psychology. 2011 tuition costs start at $693 per credit.