Overview

A master’s in Christian counseling is a highly specialized field that incorporates Christian beliefs, biblical doctrine, and faith-based values with traditional counseling methods. Christian counselors, not only give counseling to those of the same beliefs, they also believe in helping those outside their beliefs with common issues that include personal matters, careers, faith, and mental health issues. These counselors can offer variety of theory settings such as individual or group settings.

Students can expect their coursework to fall under two foundational areas: counseling theories and methodology, and strategies for serving clients in a faith-based therapy setting. Most programs will require their students to have internships and/or clinical residencies. This will allows students to build the experience they need to become successful counselors. If a student wants to go into the private sector, they will be required to be fully licensed in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

Degree holders can work as mental health counselors, marriage/family therapists, and substance abuse counselors to name a few.

Yes. Many online programs exist, and it is essential to find an accredited program that suits your specific scheduling needs.

Most online degrees are accepted by employers and universities. Many highly respected programs now offer online degrees.

Most students will graduate with their master’s in Christian counseling within 2 years. However, programs are structured differently at different schools, so it may take more or less time to complete the degree.

Competition is stiff among those who pursue a master’s in Christian counseling, but for those who want to help others out through their beliefs, this is the career to go after.

Careers in Christian counseling tends to fall into two categories: private and public sectors. Working in the public sector will require licensure like the private sector, but does not have to be in all states. For certain types of counselors, such as mental health counselors, marriage/family therapists, and substance abuse counselors are required to log between 2,000 to 4,000 postgraduate training hours to be licensed.

Best Online Masters in Christian Counseling Programs

We took a deep-dive and analyzed every online Masters in Christian Counseling program in the nation. Below are the results of our analysis and list of the 23 best online Christian Counseling programs.

Read about our methodology here.
School Type
Private
Tuition
Full-time: $2,750 block rate; Part-time: $395 per credit
Most Flexible

Liberty University students who want to earn their Master of Divinity in Pastoral Counseling degree can complete the entire program 100 percent online. This program is ideal for part-time students who have career and family obligations and can't commit to a full-time schedule on campus.


Program OverviewDepartment Name: Rawlings School of Divinity
Program Name: Master of Divinity in Pastoral Counseling
Accrediting Body: SACSCOC

DeliveryFormat: Online

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Bachelor's degree
Credit Requirements: 75 credits

Program LengthProgram Length: 3 years
Program start dates: February 11, 2019

Admission RequirementsGPA: 2.0

Address:

1971 University Blvd

Lynchburg, VA 24515

800-424-9596

School Type
Private
Tuition
$596 per credit
Best in Collaborative Studies

Concordia University Wisconsin encourages student collaboration and offers small class sizes in its master's in counseling program. Smaller class sizes mean more personalized instruction from faculty members and greater collaboration between peers as they work on group projects and build strong networks that will benefit them after college.


Program OverviewDepartment Name: School of Education
Program Name: Master of Science in Education
Available Concentrations: Professional Counseling, School Counseling
Accrediting Body: Higher Learning Commission

DeliveryFormat: Online, Face-to-face

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Undergraduate degree
Credit Requirements: 45-60 credits
Field Education Requirements: 700 hours in practicum

Program LengthProgram Length: less than 2 years

Admission RequirementsGPA: 3.0

Address:

12800 N Lake Shore Dr

Mequon, WI 53097

262-243-4300

School Type
Private
Tuition
$660 per credit
Best in Academic Excellence

Messiah College is a leader in academics and provides exceptional master's degree programs for students who long for career advancement. Students who want to learn from a leading-edge curriculum and industry professionals should consider Messiah College for its master's degree program in Christian counseling.


Program OverviewProgram Name: Master of Arts in Counseling
Available Concentrations: Clinical Mental Health Counseling, Marriage, Couple and Family Counseling, School Counseling
Accrediting Body: CACREP

DeliveryFormat: Online

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Undergraduate degree
Credit Requirements: 30 credits

Program LengthProgram Length: 2-6 years

Admission RequirementsApplication deadline: Rolling
GPA: 3.0

Address:

One College Ave

Mechanicsburg , PA 17055

717-796-5061

School Type
Private
Tuition
$902 per credit
Best Clinical Internship

Students who want to gain the skills to succeed as counselors, pastoral minsters or chaplains should consider Fordham University. The Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling and Spiritual Care program includes supervised clinical internships to prepare students for counseling work with individuals and groups in the church and public settings.


Program OverviewDepartment Name: Graduate School of Religion and Religious Education
Program Name: MA in Pastoral Counseling and Spiritual Care
Accrediting Body: MPCAC

DeliveryFormat: Online

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Undergraduate degree
Credit Requirements: 60 credits

Program LengthProgram start dates: Fall, Summer, Spring

Admission RequirementsApplication deadline: Fall/Summer: March 15, April 15, July 15; Spring: September 15, December 15
GPA: 3.0

Address:

441 E Fordham Rd, Keating Hall 303

Bronx, NY 10458

718-817-4800

School Type
Private
Tuition
$959 per credit
Best Course Convenience

Dallas Baptist University's Master of Arts in Christian Counseling program is designed to meet the individual needs of every student. Students can choose from online, evening and hybrid courses, providing them with the flexibility to earn their degree based on their schedules.


Program OverviewDepartment Name: Graduate School of Ministry
Program Name: Master of Arts in Christian Counseling
Accrediting Body: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

DeliveryFormat: Online, Hybrid

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution
Credit Requirements: 36 credits

Program LengthProgram Options: Part-time
Program start dates: Fall, Spring, Summer

Admission RequirementsGPA: 3.0

Contact:

Dr. Dana Wicker

Admissions Contact

Address:

3000 Mountain Creek Parkway

Dallas, TX 75211

214-333-5883

School Type
Private
Tuition
$701 per credit
Best Course Delivery

California Baptist University delivers its master's in counseling psychology program in two formats to meet the students' needs: virtual hybrid and asynchronous. Both formats are delivered online


Program OverviewProgram Name: Master of Science in Counseling Psychology
Accrediting Body: WASC

DeliveryFormat: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous, Asynchronous

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Bachelor's degree
Credit Requirements: 62 units

Program LengthProgram Length: 24 months
Program start dates: Summer 2019: May 6, July 1; Fall 2019: September 3, October 28

Admission RequirementsGPA: 3.0

Address:

10370 Hemet St, Suite 200

Riverside, CA 92503

951-343-3900

School Type
Private
Tuition
$788 per credit
Most Customized

Loyola University offers a truly customizable Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling program for distance learners. Students can adhere to the three-year design or work with an adviser to determine the curriculum, taking as many as five years to earn their degree.


Program OverviewDepartment Name: Institute of Pastoral Studies
Program Name: MA in Pastoral Counseling
Accrediting Body: Higher Learning Commission

DeliveryFormat: Online

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Bachelor's degree
Credit Requirements: 60 credits

Program LengthProgram Length: 3 years
Program start dates: Fall, Spring, Summer

Admission RequirementsApplication deadline: Rolling
GPA: 2.5

Address:

820 N Michigan Ave

Chicago, IL 60611

312-915-8950

School Type
Independent
Tuition
$550 per credit
Best in Career Development

Cornerstone University is the ideal choice for students who want to develop the necessary skills and knowledge for career advancement in the field of counseling. Through Cornerstone's advanced curriculum, graduates emerge with the credentials to assume leadership positions in group counseling, student development, pastoral care, church-based counseling ministry and more.


Program OverviewProgram Name: Master of Arts in Counseling
Accrediting Body: Higher Learning Commission

DeliveryFormat: Online

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Bachelors degree at an accredited institution
Credit Requirements: 69 credits
Field Education Requirements: 100 hour Practicum, 600 hour Internship experience

Program LengthProgram Options: Full-time, part-time
Program Length: 3-4 years

Admission RequirementsGPA: 2.5

Address:

1001 E Beltline Ave NE

Grand Rapids, MI 49525

616-949-5300

School Type
Private
Tuition
Full-time: $480 per credit; Part-time: $535 per credit
Best Spiritual Leadership Development

Amridge University offers a Master of Divinity in Professional Counseling program with an emphasis on leadership in ministry. With an in-depth curriculum featuring courses in spiritual leadership, graduates develop the knowledge and the skills to succeed in their professional counseling careers.


Program OverviewDepartment Name: School of Education and Human Services
Program Name: Master of Divinity in Professional Counseling
Accrediting Body: SACSCOC

DeliveryFormat: Online, On-campus
Instruction Style: Asynchronous

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree from a regionally or selected nationally accredited institution
Credit Requirements: 96 credits
Field Education Requirements: 100 hours practicum, 600 hours internship

Program LengthProgram Options: Full-time, part-time
Program Length: 3 years

Admission Requirements

Address:

1200 Taylor Road

Montgomery, AL 36117

888-790-8080

School Type
Private
Tuition
$274 per credit
Best Value

Students who want an affordable counseling program with all the credentials should consider Luther Rice College & Seminary. The Master of Arts in Biblical Counseling program is a great value in terms of affordable tuition rates, hands-on training, accelerated format options and transfer credit acceptance.


Program OverviewProgram Name: Master of Arts in Biblical Counseling
Accrediting Body: Commission on Accreditation of the Association for Biblical Higher Education (ABHE)

DeliveryFormat: Online, On-campus

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Bachelor's degree
Credit Requirements: 36 credits

Program LengthProgram Length: 18-24 months
Program start dates: March 5, 2018

Admission RequirementsGPA: 2.0

Address:

3038 Evans Mill Rd

Lithonia, GA 30038

770-484-1204

School Type
Private
Tuition
$494 per credit
Best in Personal Development

Huntington University focuses on both the students' professional and personal development in the Master of Arts in Counseling program. Students learn to engage in their own healing and spiritual growth, helping them to become more effective leaders and to make more positive impacts on people.


Program OverviewProgram Name: Master of Arts in Counseling
Accrediting Body: Higher Learning Commission

DeliveryFormat: Online, On-campus

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Bachelor's degree
Credit Requirements: 48-60 credits

Program LengthProgram Options: Part-time
Program Length: 2 years

Admission RequirementsGPA: 3.0

Address:

2303 College Ave

Huntington, IN 46750

800-600-4888

School Type
Private
Tuition
$350 per credit
Best in Core Pastoral Counseling Education

Students who want to receive a solid foundation in Christian counseling should consider Trevecca Nazarene University's Master of Arts in Religion program. This program has a concentration in pastoral counseling and equips church leaders with strong knowledge and key skills to address issues related to families, relationships and crises.


Program OverviewProgram Name: Master of Arts in Religion
Available Concentrations: Pastoral Counseling
Accrediting Body: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

DeliveryFormat: Online
Instruction Style: Asynchronous

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Bachelor's degree from an accredited institution
Credit Requirements: 33 credits

Program LengthProgram Length: 18 months
Program start dates: February 26, 2019

Admission RequirementsGPA: 2.75

Address:

333 Murfreesboro Rd

Nashville, TN 37210

615-248-1320

School Type
Private
Tuition
$595 per credit
Best Virtual Campus

Regent University gives online students a campuslike experience in the Master of Arts in Human Services - Christian Counseling program. Students engage in real-time interaction with professors, collaborate on small group projects and take part in chat room discussions, giving distance learners a feeling of togetherness as they work toward their degree.


Program OverviewDepartment Name: School of Psychology & Counseling
Program Name: M.A. in Human Services - Christian Counseling
Accrediting Body: SACSCOC

DeliveryFormat: Online

Program requirementsPrerequisites: B.A. or B.S. from a regionally accredited college or university
Credit Requirements: 30 credits

Program LengthProgram Options: Full-time, part-time
Program Length: 1-2 years
Program start dates: February 11, 2019; March 18, 2019; May 13, 2019; June 24

Admission RequirementsApplication deadline: January 30, 2019; March 6, 2019; May 1, 2019; June 12, 2019
GPA: 3.0

Address:

1000 Regent University Dr

Virginia Beach, VA 23464

757-352-4498

School Type
Private
Tuition
$585 per credit
Best in Clinical Mental Health Counseling

Southwestern Assemblies of God University offers a master's degree program in clinical mental health counseling, preparing students to address issues regarding substance-use disorders in families and marriages. Through intensive coursework and training, students learn to approach these issues from a Christian point of view and to provide effective counseling for those who need it.


Program OverviewDepartment Name: Thomas F. Harrison Graduate School
Program Name: Master of Divinity
Available Concentrations: Counseling
Accrediting Body: SACSCOC

DeliveryFormat: Online

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Undergraduate degree
Credit Requirements: 72 hours
Field Education Requirements: 3 hours practicum

Program LengthProgram Length: 6 years

Admission RequirementsGPA: 2.5

Address:

1200 Sycamore St

Waxahachie, TX 75165

888-937-7248

School Type
Private
Tuition
$1,278 per course
Best in Distance Education

CCCTS excels in distance education and provides one of the best online Master of Divinity in Pastoral Counseling programs in the country. Students in this program receive a quality education from a distance and develop the skills to advance their careers in pastoral counseling, pastoral care and more.


Program OverviewProgram Name: Master of Divinity
Available Concentrations: Pastoral Counseling
Accrediting Body: Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools

DeliveryFormat: Online

Program requirementsCredit Requirements: 96 credits

Program LengthProgram start dates: Spring, Summer, Fall

Admission RequirementsApplication deadline: Spring 2019: February 1; Summer 2019: April 5, June 7; Fall 2019: July 12

Address:

3117 Whiting Ave

Charlotte, NC 28205

704-334-6882

School Type
Private
Tuition
$579 per credit
Best Financial Support

More than 90 percent of Dallas Theological Seminary's students graduate without bearing the burden of additional debt. Donors offer more than 4 million dollars in scholarship funds each year, helping biblical counseling students earn their master's degree without breaking the bank.


Program OverviewProgram Name: Master of Arts in Biblical Counseling (MABC)
Accrediting Body: SACSCOC

DeliveryFormat: Online, On-campus

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Baccalaureate degree
Credit Requirements: 90 credits

Program LengthProgram Length: 2-years
Program start dates: Fall, Spring, Summer

Admission RequirementsApplication deadline: Fall: July 1; Spring: November 1;Summer: April 1

Address:

3909 Swiss Ave

Dallas, TX 75204

214-887-5000

School Type
Private
Tuition
$681 per credit
Best Placement Rate

Colorado Christian University boasts one of the highest job placement rates among Christian schools in the country. With a 96 percent placement rate, students in the Master of Arts in Counseling program are all but assured a successful career upon earning their degree.


Program OverviewDepartment Name: College of Adult and Graduate Studies
Program Name: Master of Arts in Counseling
Accrediting Body: CACREP

DeliveryFormat: Online, In-seat

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college or university
Credit Requirements: 60 credits

Program LengthProgram Length: 2 1/2 years
Program start dates: Spring 2019: January 7

Admission RequirementsGPA: 3.0

Address:

8787 W Alameda Ave

Lakewood, CO 80226

303-963-3311

Graduation Rate
93.2%
School Type
Private
Tuition
$233 per credit
Most Comprehensive

Apex School of Theology offers a comprehensive, 69-credit-hour Master of Arts in Christian Counseling program. Students delve into a vast curriculum that covers everything from Old and New Testament studies to cross-cultural counseling, preparing graduates to counsel people in and outside of the church.


Program OverviewDepartment Name: School of Theology
Program Name: Master of Arts in Christian Counseling
Available Concentrations: Professional Counselor, Marriage and Family Therapy

DeliveryFormat: Online

Program requirementsCredit Requirements: 69 credits

Program LengthProgram Length: 1 year
Program start dates: Fall, Spring, Summer

Admission Requirements

Contact:

Dr. Tonya Armstrong

Admissions Contact

Address:

1701 T.W. Alexander Dr

Durham, CA 27703

919-572-1625

School Type
Private
Tuition
$420 per credit
Best Curriculum

Maranatha Baptist University's master's in biblical counseling program is ideal for full-time ministers or others who want to become more effective at crisis counseling. With courses in theological systems, methods of biblical change and family counseling, students learn from a vast curriculum that covers every aspect of counseling from a theological point of view.


Program OverviewProgram Name: Master in Biblical Counseling
Accrediting Body: Higher Learning Commission

DeliveryFormat: Online, On-campus

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree from an approved institution
Credit Requirements: 33 credits

Program LengthProgram Length: 2.5 years
Program start dates: Spring: January 14, 2019

Admission RequirementsGPA: 3.0

Address:

745 W Main St

Watertown, WI 53094

920-206-2324

School Type
Private
Tuition
Full-time: $3,875 per semester; Part-time: $430 per credit
Best Learning Experience

Bob Jones University's Master of Arts in Biblical Counseling program provides one of the best learning experiences for graduate students. Whether it's ample resources from Mack Library, project-based LOGOS Bible software or exceptional career services, students have everything needed to succeed not only in the classroom but also in their future careers.


Program OverviewProgram Name: Master of Arts Biblical Counseling
Accrediting Body: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

DeliveryFormat: Online

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Bachelor's degree from an approved college or university
Credit Requirements: 33-41 credits

Program LengthProgram Options: Full-time, part-time
Program start dates: Fall, Spring

Admission RequirementsApplication deadline: Fall: April 1; Spring: October 15
GPA: 3.0

Contact:

Andrew Redding

Admissions Contact

Address:

1700 Wade Hampton Blvd

Greenville, SC 29614

800-252-6363

School Type
Proprietary
Tuition
$515 per credit
Best Transfer Program

Grand Canyon University makes it easy for transfer students to enroll in the Master of Science in Christian Counseling program and to use their previous credits to reduce the overall course load. Students can transfer up to 12 credits into this program and earn their degree more quickly.


Program OverviewDepartment Name: College of Humanities and Social Sciences
Program Name: Master of Science in Christian Counseling of Substance Use and Addictive Disorders
Accrediting Body: Higher Learning Commission

DeliveryFormat: Online

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Undergraduate degree
Credit Requirements: 48 credits

Program LengthProgram Length: 40 months

Admission RequirementsGPA: 2.8

Contact:

Christel Mosby

Admissions Contact

Address:

3300 West Camelback Road

Phoenix, AZ 85017

855-428-5673

School Type
Private
Tuition
$639 per credit
Most Accelerated

Mid-America Christian University offers an accelerated path to a Master of Science in Pastoral Counseling degree for distance learners. Students can complete the entire program and earn their degree in just 2.5 years.


Program OverviewProgram Name: Master of Science in Counseling, Pastoral Counseling and Spiritual Direction
Accrediting Body: HLC

DeliveryFormat: Online

Program requirementsCredit Requirements: 36 credits

Program LengthProgram Length: 2.5 years
Program start dates: January, February and March

Admission Requirements

Address:

3500 SW 119th St

Oklahoma City, OK 73170

888-888-2341

School Type
Private
Tuition
$320 per credit
Best in Pastoral Studies

Holy Apostles delivers an outstanding master's in pastoral studies program with a concentration in pastoral counseling, featuring in-depth courses to prepare graduates for family and individual Christian counseling. Through rigorous coursework, graduates emerge with the skills to pursue Christian counseling careers in ministries and other faith-based settings.


Program OverviewProgram Name: Master of Arts in Pastoral Studies
Available Concentrations: Pastoral Counseling
Accrediting Body: New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE)

DeliveryFormat: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous

Program requirementsPrerequisites: Bachelor's degree
Credit Requirements: 36 credits

Program LengthProgram Length: 6 years
Program start dates: Fall, Spring, and Summer

Admission RequirementsGPA: 3.0

Contact:

Dr. Elizabeth Rex

Admissions Contact

Address:

33 Prospect Hill Rd

Cromwell, CT 6416

860-632-3066