Doctor Theology in Pastoral Counseling

Overview of the Program

The sophisticate of theology in pastorale guidance ( ThD ) prepares persons for the ministry of pastoral rede at the doctoral floor by combining rigorous academic and theological work with oversee clinical commit. The degree is an equivalent of the PhD and is designed for those whose interest in pastoral guidance is primarily master .
Emory University besides offers a ph plan through its Graduate Division of Religion in the Person, Community, and religious Life program. Through the PhD, students may pursue advance studies in pastorale theology as formulation for a chiefly academic career of research and teaching. The ThD, by contrast, offers doctoral-level preparation for the full-time professional practice of pastoral guidance .
The ThD helps students gain advanced sympathy of allow theological and theoretical concepts. Students besides learn, under restricted supervision, the application of these concepts in pastorale rede and how to promote professional integration of hypothesis and skills in both bucolic care and guidance. In addition, each student designs and executes a research project appropriate to the student ’ s master practice and gives evidence of creative ability to contribute to the aspect of pastoral rede that is the focus of the research project .


The doctoral platform is under the immediate direction of the ThD committee of the Atlanta Theological Association. This musical arrangement enables students to enroll through Candler for courses at Columbia Theological Seminary and the Interdenominational Theological Center. The Curriculum and Policy Committee of Candler School of Theology oversees Candler ’ sulfur engagement in the broadcast.

Degree Requirements

The platform requires 50 semester hours of academic and clinical practicum courses ( 21 core hours, 17 practicum hours, and 12 elective courses ). Students must be endlessly enrolled. failure to maintain continuous registration will result in automatic rifle termination from the ThD program. Students must complete the program within nine years. Extensions may be granted by the ThD committee only under strange circumstances. The program comprises the surveil :
The core seminars batch with personality theory and theological anthropology, historical and social dimensions of pastoral rede, pastoral theology, theories and practices of psychotherapy and pastoral rede, ethics, and the development of professional and multicultural competence .
Elective courses ( 12 semester hours ), selected in reference with a faculty adviser, are required during the first six semesters of study .
Pastoral counseling practicum ( 17 semester hours ) is required over the first four semesters of discipline. The clinical typeset for the practicum normally is the bucolic guidance serve of the Care and Counseling Center of Georgia, located at 1814 Clairmont Road in Decatur, Georgia .
Examinations are contract following completion of all academic and practicum courses totaling 50 credits, and having earned a least a bel average. The student will take a clinical performance examination ( normally in May of the second class ), showing competence in counseling. Following the performance examination, students will prepare for five qualifying exams, covering remedy kinship and personality theory, marriage and family theory, pastoral theology, sociocultural dimensions of pastoral guidance, and ecclesiological and ethical dimensions of pastoral guidance. The five written exams are followed by a comprehensive oral interrogation. Students must enroll in ATA 497 : ThD Exams Process each semester until successful completion of qualifying exams .
The research project and dissertation are undertaken at the end of the program of report. The student executes an approve research visualize that demonstrates ability to utilize theological and theoretical cognition in sexual intercourse to some problem of professional arcadian care and guidance. The project should contribute utilitarian findings and insights in the scholar ’ s area of theological investigation. The student then writes a dissertation, reporting on, analyzing, evaluating, and interpreting the project. Following the successful completion of qualifying examinations, students must enroll in ATA499 : ThD Dissertation Research until successful completion of the dissertation .

Application for the Degree

early in the calibrate semester, the campaigner must submit a dinner dress lotion for the ThD degree before the deadline stated in the academic calendar. The lotion for Degree is available in OPUS during a window of time set by the university registrar each semester. A separate application is required for each degree received. Students are required to be enrolled during the semester of gradation .


doctor of theology students initially are assigned a irregular course adviser. late, the scholar works with a dissertation adviser, who chairs an advisory committee selected by the scholar and approved by the dissertation adviser. The committee consists of at least three persons, normally two Candler faculty members and a member of another ATA school faculty. The committee is responsible for preparing examinations for the student and functions in an advisory capacity throughout the write of the doctoral dissertation .

Grading System

Grading of scholar make is based on the follow scale : A=4.0, B=3.0, C=2.0, and F=0. Students must maintain a rate average of 3.0 or better to remain in doctoral programs. A rate of B– or lower in a congress of racial equality course or practicum is induce for follow-up of the student ’ second progress. A class grade of F normally results in ending of the scholar ’ second platform.

work extending over two or more semesters, such as practicums or project/ dissertation supervision, receives an IP ( in build up ) at the end of each semester until the work is completed. All Candler students, including doctor of theology students, are subject to Candler ’ south policy on incomplete coursework, which can be found in the Procedures and Regulations section .

Transfer of Credits

In planning the student ’ s platform with her/ his adviser or ThD program film director, a student may request credit for oeuvre done prior to entry under the watch guidelines :

  • credit for prior academician and/or clinical train must be approved by the ThD Committee, in conversation office of academic affairs at Columbia. All transfer credit rating must have been done at a PhD or ThD level and a grade of B or better must have been given for the anterior coursework. The student must be able to show that the employment is relevant to the ThD program. The coursework normally can be no older than five years old. no more than 12 credit hours may be transferred from either an gain degree or from other coursework. All classroom study transferred in will be counted as elective citation. In the case of clinical practicum exercise, a student may receive advanced standing with credit for practicum work that was done in junction with licensure, clinical work for another degree, or prior registration at the Care and Counseling Center of Georgia ’ randomness practicum broadcast. No more than 8 credit hours will be awarded for this work and will be credited toward the basic practicum requirement. The student would be enrolled for the remaining 9 hours of practicum work at the advanced residency degree .
  • credit for sour done after entry into the program at schools and agencies not related to the ATA may be transferred to fulfill requirements for the ThD degree under the follow guidelines :

    • Prior to registration for a course for which credit is to be transferred, the student must have written permission of his/her adviser or the ThD program director and the office of academic affairs at the student’s school of enrollment.
    • The student pays his/her own fees to the school where such work is done at institutions not related to the ATA. The number of credits to be allowed within this limitation is, in each instance, subject to the approval of the respective ATA school.
  • A specify of 12 semester hours is placed upon any work done at institutions not related to the ATA whether earned anterior to enrollment or during registration in the program. All work transferred in will be credited as elective courses .

Directed Study

doctor of theology students may register for conduct studies with members of the ATA faculty for a maximum of 9 hours. Prior to registering for directed study work, students must complete a Request for Directed Study form ( available from the Candler Registrar web site ) and obtain the teacher ’ sulfur signature .

Withdrawal/Leave of Absence

A ThD student who chooses to withdraw or to take a leave of absence must notify in writing the director of the ATA ThD course of study and the Candler registrar. In order to be acted upon by the ThD committee, requests for a farewell of absence or withdrawal for an approaching semester must be received by both directors by April 1 for the fall semester or November 1 for the give semester. In addition, the scholar must complete an passing interview with the Candler registrar. If the scholar seclude during the semester and does not complete an passing interview, an F will be recorded for all courses, and the student will be responsible for any charges incurred .


readmission may be granted by the ThD committee upon written request of the scholar, the recommendation of the basal adviser, and the approval of the director of advanced studies. The request must be received by the director of advance studies by April 1 for the hang semester or November 1 for the spring semester. Written presentment of a readmission decision will be sent to the student by the conductor of advance studies. Students with unpaid balances or incomplete coursework will not be considered for readmission.

Procedures and Regulations

Candler procedures and regulations are listed on pages 89–117. For a more thorough description of ThD program procedures, consult the Doctor of Theology in Pastoral Counseling Student Handbook, available from the registrar .

Professional Certification

The supervision in pastoral guidance, an integral share of the ThD degree course of study, is provided according to the standards of the American Association of Pastoral Counselors and the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists. The supervision may be used, consequently, to meet the requirements for counseling supervision of both the AAPC and the AAMFT .


note : The ThD program is no longer accepting new applications .

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