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Biblical Counseling Degrees: Home Study and Online Programs

Biblical counseling education combines the study of religious texts with psychology theories and methods. Learn about schools, online degree programs, course topics and post-graduation employment options.

What Types of Biblical Counseling Degrees Can I Earn Online or Through Home Study?

There are several online biblical counseling degree programs, including a Bachelor of Arts, Master of Arts, Master of Divinity, Doctor of Ministry and Doctor of Education. You can even earn a graduate certificate in biblical counseling online. Because schools that carry biblical counseling programs are private, you should be careful when choosing a program by making sure that your school is accredited. However, not all biblical counseling positions will require a degree from an accredited institution, but it's still important to research your options.

Degree LevelsBachelor's degree, master's degree, doctoral degree, graduate certificate
Common Courses Old Testament history, New Testament survey, Introductory theology, personality theory, group counseling
State Licensure Required for some positions
Online Learning Programs utilize live chats, video lectures, online discussions, e-mail and textbooks
Potential Careers Pastor, chaplain, ministry director, counselor, school administrator
Median Salary (2018) $48,990 (for all clergy)*
Job Outlook (2016-2026) 8% growth (for all clergy)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

How Does an Online or Home Study Program Work?

Most online and home study programs are completed at home using the Internet, videos and textbooks. Many programs use individual course websites where you can meet with your instructors and colleagues for live chats, lectures and discussions. Coursework is usually submitted via e-mail or uploaded onto the course website. Some home study programs send you learning materials through the mail.

What Courses Will I Take?

In any online biblical counseling degree curriculum, you will find a large selection of Bible and theology courses. You will also find psychology and counseling courses to prepare you to counsel others using biblical ideas and methods. Some courses you might take include:

  • Old Testament history
  • New Testament survey
  • Introductory theology
  • Personality theory
  • Abnormal psychology and behavior
  • Group counseling
  • Spiritual practices
  • Lifestyle development

Will an Online Program Meet Requirements for State Licensure?

Not all online, home study or on-campus programs meet requirements for state licensure or certification in counseling. It is very important that you research licensure requirements for the state you plan on working in, as well as the requirements for the career you are interested in pursuing after graduation. You may find that some biblical counseling positions don't even require licensure.

What Can I Do with a Degree in Biblical Counseling?

With a degree in biblical counseling, you can become a pastor, chaplain or ministry director. You can work as a family, marriage or individual counselor through a private organization or a church. You may also be able to find a position at a private school as a guidance counselor, teacher or administrator. There are any number of positions you may be eligible for at various churches with this degree. However, your eligibility for some positions may be dependent upon your experience, level of education or licensure.