The Department of Pastoral and Theological Studies offers a Certificate in Spiritual Formation and Direction, a Certificate of Advanced Study in Spiritual Formation and Direction Supervision, an M.S. and graduate certificates in Pastoral Clinical Mental Health Counseling and a Ph.D. in Pastoral Counseling. All of the department’s graduate programs actively integrate psychology and spirituality in an ecumenical learning community that is both spiritually nurturing and intellectually challenging. The Neumann approach stresses a developmental understanding of individuals and groups, preparing students to meet the unique mental and spiritual demands of a culturally diverse world, while responding in a spirit of contemplative love. People of all faiths and spiritual practices are welcome. Spiritual Formation and Direction certificate programs provide training in spiritual formation and direction, spiritual direction supervision, and additional courses in spirituality.
Applicants with a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited, degree-granting institution who have successfully completed all prerequisite courses are eligible for entrance to the Master of Science in Pastoral Clinical Mental Health Counseling or the Spiritual Formation and Direction Program, subject to the approval of the program coordinator.
- A completed Graduate Student Application available online through www.neumann.edu.
- Official transcripts from each regionally accredited institution attended.
- Letter of Intent or essay not to exceed three pages describing your interest in the program and your goals upon completion. The Spiritual Formation and Direction Program requires an explanation of the individual’s spiritual journey.
- Three official letters of recommendation from persons with whom you are familiar and who can speak to your academic suitability for graduate studies, your personal maturity, and your potential for graduate work. The Spiritual Formation and Direction Program requires that one of them be from the individual’s spiritual director.
Once all admission materials have been received and processed through the Office of Admissions, the graduate program director will arrange for an interview, if appropriate, following a review of all candidate credentials.
Limitation on Transfer Credit
Because of the ever-evolving and pre-paradigmatic nature of the foundation on which Pastoral Clinical Mental Health Counseling and Spiritual Formation and Direction rests, the program has set a limit of seven years for the acceptance of transfer credit for which a minimum grade of “B” has been earned from any regionally accredited, degree-granting institution to Neumann University. This time limitation applies to all required courses. Exceptions to this policy can only be made with the written approval of both the Dean of the Division of Education and Human Services and the Coordinator of Pastoral and Theological Studies.
A maximum of nine credits earned over no more than three semesters may be taken as a non-matriculated student. To transfer non-matriculated credits to a degree or certificate program, a student must receive permission from the coordinator of the program.
Pastoral Clinical Mental Health Counseling and Spiritual Formation and Direction courses meet on weekdays in the late afternoon and into the evening, with some elective courses being offered on weekends.
Progression/Retention/Certificate Completion Requirements
For the Certificate in Spiritual Formation and Direction, continued progress requires that the student maintain both a “B” average as outlined in the student handbook and a satisfactory rating in all characteristics judged necessary for the ministry of spiritual formation and direction. Students in the Spiritual Formation and Direction practicum courses must demonstrate competence in the learning objectives of the program. All requirements for the program must be completed in no less than two years and not more than five years. Students who wish an exemption to this time frame must submit a written request to the coordinator of the program. Completion of the Certificate in Spiritual Formation and Direction is contingent upon: (1) submitting a signed Application for Certificate form to the program coordinator, (2) completion of the twenty-four credit program with at least a cumulative 3.00 GPA, with no more than two grades of “C,” and (3) successful completion of a final seminar paper in which the student integrates the practice of spiritual formation and direction, using both theological and psychological resources.
Professional Membership and Liability Insurance
Students in Pastoral Clinical Mental Health Counseling or Spiritual Formation and Direction programs are required to carry student liability insurance throughout their clinical sequence (i.e., the Spiritual Formation and Direction practicum). Proof of insurance is kept on file in the department office. Information on purchasing insurance may be obtained from the clinical coordinator or program secretary.