Christian Counseling Degrees
Christian counselors provide counseling services and rehabilitation support. These professionals help people children, adolescents and adults with addictions, health issues or disabilities. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics does not provide the employment growth statistics for Christian counselors but has information about mental health counselors and marriage and family therapists. Employment of mental health counselors is expected to grow by 37% while jobs for marriage and family therapists are expected to grow by 41% during 2010 to 2020.
Indiana Wesleyan University
Christian Counseling Degrees
Students interested in becoming Christian counselors can pursue a variety of degree programs. They can work towards the bachelor's or a master's degree and find out how the teachings of the Bible can help get over depression, familial issues ad addiction. These degrees combine psychology and counseling theories with Christian morals. In most counseling programs students involve in case studies that help them get to know the counseling techniques and conflict management. PhD programs are also available in this area of study. Students in the master and doctoral programs include a clinical practicum and the chance to get hands-on experience in the field.
The Christian counseling programs may cover courses such as child psychology, the Old and New Testaments, marriage and family counseling and addiction counseling. Students can also take courses in Biblical crisis counseling, Christian counseling and cultural diversity and counseling with biblical principles for grief, loss and trauma. Students also learn how to devise counseling strategies and blend biblical teachings with psychological theories.
Those aspiring to become licensed professional counselors or marriage and family therapists should pursue the Master's degrees in Christian counseling. The curriculum may include topics such as Biblical processes in marital therapy, forces in biblical change, pastoral counseling and techniques of selected counseling theories.
Christian counselors also require a certification or license to get into the field. Though licensing requirements vary by state but in most cases, aspiring counselors need to at least have a master's degree and related experience.
A high school diploma or GED is required to enroll in a counseling degree. Candidates may also be required to submit have ACT or SAT scores. Other requirements may vary by school.
Christian counselors may work in a church, private or group practice. They may conduct one-on-one sessions with individuals seeking assistance on various issues such as depression, anxiety, job stress or domestic violence. Some counselors offer online counseling or telephone counseling as well, while others become authors or motivational speakers. Some may work in colleges or Christian schools.
The BLS does not have information about the income of Christian counselors but it does have salary information of metal health counselors that can give a fair idea of how much one can potentially make in the field of counseling. The median annual wage of mental health counselors was $38,150 in May 2010.
Skills for Christian Counselors
Christian counselors should have excellent listening and speaking skills. Absolutely essential to this line of work are problem-solving skills as these professionals often have to think out of the box to help people.