Skip to Navigation

Webmail Login

    Neumann University
   
 
  Nov 21, 2017
 
 
    
2016-2017 Graduate Catalog Archived Catalog

Certificate in Spiritual Formation and Direction


Return to Pastoral Clinical Mental Health Counseling Return to: Pastoral Clinical Mental Health Counseling

Overview

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.

Admission Requirements

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.

Non-Matriculated Students

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.

Course Schedule

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.

Spiritual Formation and Direction Skills


Graduate Certificate in Spiritual Formation and Direction (24 credits); Certificate of Advanced Study in Spiritual Direction Supervision (15 credits)

Spiritual Formation and Direction: The Neumann Approach

The required courses for Neumann University’s Spiritual Formation and Direction certificate programs have been designed to support the program’s focus of attending to manifestations of contemplative love through spiritual formation and direction in one-to-one and peer group experiences. While utilizing psychological insights about human development, spiritual formation and direction focuses on a person’s spiritual growth. The curricula of these certificate programs, therefore, reflect the theological and practical courses which are necessary for the ministry of spiritual formation and direction. Classes and practical experiences integrate spirituality, developmental psychology, case studies, and the actual experience of spiritual direction, while balancing theory and practice with an emphasis on articulating one’s theology of spiritual growth and psychology of human development in the director and the directee. Focusing on Franciscan, Ignatian, Carmelite, and Salesian traditions, students are invited to describe and demonstrate how one particular spiritual tradition - for example, Catholic, Anglican, or Reform Protestant - shapes or challenges their experience in the ministry of spiritual formation and direction. Courses support and challenge students to describe, interpret, and evaluate their experiences in light of ecumenical and culturally diverse perspectives.

The certificate programs that are described below train and supervise persons called to a ministry of Spiritual Formation and Direction in which one person helps another/others  to recognize and integrate God’s presence and direction in every aspect of life. All course work and experience focus on the integration of spiritual and psychological growth, with specific attention to faith development. The curriculum is coordinated to attend to the manifestations of contemplative love in spiritual formation, direction and supervision relationships. Graduate studies in Spiritual Formation and Direction may be pursued in one of two ways:

  • Successfully complete a 24-credit Graduate Certificate in Spiritual Formation and Direction.
  • Successfully complete a 15-credit Certificate of Advanced Study in Spiritual Formation and Direction Supervision.

SPIRITUAL FORMATION AND DIRECTION LEARNING OUTCOMES

At the completion of the Program in Spiritual Formation and Direction, students will have accomplished the following Learning Outcomes under each of the following categories of proficiency:

Professional Identity and Growth

  • Evidence a professional competency in recognizing and evaluating assumptions about theological/spiritual and developmental issues;
  • Demonstrate a comprehensive overview of the evolution, structure and expansion of the field of ecumenical spiritual formation and direction.
  • Be able to apply a contemplative process of theological reflection for interpreting spiritual growth, discernment and decision making in themselves and in their directees or mentees.

Theoretical and Skill Areas

  • Recognize and employ skills for discernment and decision making in a variety of spiritual and ecumenical/inter-religious contexts and ministries;
  • Apply and demonstrate a competency for interpreting ethical issues governing the covenant/contract between spiritual director/mentor and directee/mentee;
  • Develop an openness to feedback in the course of learning and practice that allows for critical integration of theological/spiritual and developmental themes in written reports and reflections;
  • Extend skills for critical reflection on and analysis of their practice through one-to-one and peer group consultation and supervision.

Spiritual Formation and Direction Certificate Requirements

  • Provide evidence of recent theology. Additional theology may be required before beginning the Practicum. (The admissions process and later consultation with faculty discern student needs.)
  • Receive consistent, ongoing spiritual direction before and throughout the program.

Certificate in Spiritual Formation and Direction Outcomes

At the completion of the Spiritual Formation and Direction certificate programs, the student will be able to:

  • Express and evaluate one’s theological assumptions about issues central to spiritual formation and direction, psychological development, and maturity.
  • Describe the relationship between spiritual and psychological development and maturity.
  • Distinguish spiritual formation and direction from pastoral counseling and spiritual/pastoral care.
  • Use theology as a diagnostic tool in spiritual formation and direction.
  • Apply skills of discernment and decision-making in a variety of spiritual and religious paths.
  • Develop and evaluate criteria according to which one could use past tradition to support contemporary Christian growth.
  • Integrate contemporary theory with the practice of sustained ministry of spiritual formation and direction.
  • Describe the relationship between one’s own spiritual/psychological integration at the beginning and end of the certificate process.

 

Return to Pastoral Clinical Mental Health Counseling Return to: Pastoral Clinical Mental Health Counseling