If you're interested in working in the counseling field, you'll want to study psychology as an undergrad and counseling in your graduate studies. The following Christian counseling colleges offer faith and community outreach opportunities to help you combine your beliefs and with your counseling skills.
Many different denominations are represented in the colleges offering counseling programs. Across the nation, you can find several well-known college programs for under $37,000 a year.
|School Name||Institution Type||Denomination||Location||Tuition (2017-2018)*|
|Indiana Wesleyan University||4-year, private not-for-profit||Wesleyan||Marion, IN||$25,980 (undergraduate); $10,764 (graduate)|
|Alaska Pacific University||4-year, private not-for-profit||United Methodist||Anchorage, AK||$20,760 (undergraduate); $12,110 (graduate)|
|Bethel University||4-year, private not-for-profit||Baptist||Saint Paul, MN||$9,630 (graduate)|
|Canisius College||4-year, private not-for-profit||Roman Catholic||Buffalo, NY||$36,454 (undergraduate); $15,466 (graduate)|
|Whitworth University||4-year, private not-for-profit||Presbyterian||Spokane, WA||$12,132 (graduate)|
Source: *National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)
Overview of Counseling Programs at Christian Colleges
If you're interested in learning about the human condition, you'll find counseling and psychology programs at the following Christian colleges. These colleges combine faith and psychology for students, so that they can understand how a counseling program might be used to better their communities.
Indiana Wesleyan University
Chapel is held Monday, Wednesday, and Friday on the Indiana Wesleyan University campus, helping to guide you through your studies. There are also opportunities to participate in or lead Bible studies and prayer initiatives. As a counseling student, you can pursue a master's degree in one of several areas, such as marriage and family counseling, clinical addictions counseling, community counseling, school counseling, and clinical mental health counseling. There is even a bachelor's degree in addictions counseling offered online; coursework can be completed in about 22 months.
Alaska Pacific University
If you choose Alaska Pacific University's counseling psychology bachelor's degree program, you'll study mindfulness, positive psychology, and community psychology. You'll also take field trips and complete internships with mental health facilities. After you have completed this program, you should be prepared to continue your education in the school's counseling master's degree program or land a job in the fields of addictions counseling and behavioral health. You can also pursue certification in chemical dependency and behavioral health. With so much beauty around campus, it is likely not surprising that there are several outdoor activities to participate in, such as backpacking and sea kayaking. You can also spend time in the chapel during Thursday services.
At Bethel University, you can study clinical mental health counseling at the graduate level. Some of the courses you'll find in the Master of Arts counseling degree program include family systems, addictions counseling, lifespan development, trauma and counseling, neuroscience, and child counseling. There is also a psychology undergraduate program to get you started. Campus ministry at this Baptist college consist of chapel services held every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday; Vespers are held every Sunday night. The campus also meets regularly for prayer, community outreach, and spiritual growth. During spring breaks, students can take trips throughout the world to help underprivileged communities.
Buffalo, New York's Canisius College had an 83% retention rate for first-year undergraduate students in 2016, according to the NCES. At Canisius, you can major in psychology and pursue a minor in clinical/counseling psychology for either adult or child populations. For graduate students, the college offers a certificate in advanced clinical mental health counseling as well as Master of Science programs in school counseling and clinical mental health counseling. Some of the courses you'll find in the latter program are:
- Counseling theories
- Group counseling
- Counseling & ethics
- Child, family, & community counseling
- Research techniques
- Lifespan development
As a Catholic college, there are opportunities to become Catholic and learn the Catechesis. Along with a week-long campus ministry immersion experience, there are youth ministry programs, alumni programs, retreats, benefits, and service immersion trips for students of all faiths.
With an 85% retention rate for first-time undergraduates in 2016, per the NCES, Whitworth University offers over 80 majors. One of these programs is the psychology program, and you can continue your education with the master's degree programs in counseling and therapy. There are four areas that your counseling master's degree can be focused in. These concentrations are:
- Applied behavior analysis
- School counseling
- Marriage & family therapy
- Social & behavioral health
Pastoral counseling and spiritual care services can be found at the university chapel. Students can also find ministry taking place in the residence halls and chapel services during the week. Additional opportunities to participate in campus spiritual life include Hosanna and AWAKE, student-led ministries that help get students involved with each other and the community.