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Certification Levels

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Dear Potential New AACT Member....

 

The information listed below has more detail about certification and license.  If you have questions please call the AACT office.  

 

Persons who join AACT at the first two levels are NOT certified but are members in training.... We suggest the following: 

 

ASSOCIATE PASTORAL MEMBER

ASSOCIATE CHRISTIAN MEMBER

(Entry level – Where everyone without training begins)

Those in ministry, without previous counseling training, who are not licensed ministers, are required to begin at this level.  The Associate Member level is a non-certified level for those demonstrating interest and desire to grow in their knowledge of Pastoral Care and Counseling.  A person at this level should not attempt any work, but should observe with their mentor in structured settings.  Required coursework topics include Biblical counseling basics, crisis intervention/suicide prevention, active listening skills, and counseling ethics, and must be completed before the Associate Member may advance to the next skill level. This training may be obtained at any educational center recognized by the A.A.C.T., or can be taken through the Institute of Theology & Christian Therapy, the external studies division of the A.A.C.T.  Any other preparation required to pass the Biblical Knowledge and Basic Counseling Skills Test should be undertaken.  This level requires a pastor or spiritual Elder with experience in counseling to act as a mentor for the Associate Member.  This person also must be recommended by his/her pastor, and submit two character references. 

Membership/annual renewal fee - $29 per year

 

 

PASTORAL CARE MEMBER - (Non-certified level)

CHRISTIAN CARE MEMBER - (Non-certified level)

A candidate for the Pastoral Care Member or the Christian Care Member level should be a Licensed Minister with some training and experience in providing pastoral or other ministry care, or an Associate Member who has completed the requirements of the Associate Member level, and met the requirements for Pastoral licensing through the Evangelical Christian Church (ECC http://ecc.dayspringmi.com), or other Christian denomination.  The Pastoral or Christian Care Member may be required to pass the Biblical Knowledge and Basic Counseling Skills Test.  This is a hands-on training level requiring very direct supervision and oversight of a mentor Pastor or spiritual Elder.  The mentor must certify that they will provide a minimum of four hours of supervision per month, or one supervision hour for every four hours of pastoral care provided.  Pastoral recommendation required, and two character references.  Membership/annual renewal fee - $44 Testing fee - $15

 

 

PASTORAL CARE MEMBER, COLLEAGUE

CHRISTIAN CARE MEMBER, COLLEAGUE

Non-certified level

To be considered for the Colleague designation of the Pastoral or Christian Care Member level, an applicant, in addition to the requirements for the C.P.M./C.C.M., must submit an additional two (2 ) references, additional certificates or proof of continuing education beyond the initial required training courses, and a letter of recommendation from his/her denominational/fellowship superior.

Membership/annual renewal fee - $55

 

 

 

 

 

REGISTERED PASTORAL CARE PROVIDER

REGISTERED CHRISTIAN CARE PROVIDER

Non-certified level (Registration number assigned)

The Registered Pastoral or Christian Care Provider should be a Licensed Minister with training and experience in providing pastoral care, with at least 40 units (including some counseling related courses) towards their Associate’s Degree in Theology, Ministry, Christian Counseling or a related discipline. (College unit requirements may be waived for ministers able to document extensive ministry experience, and alternative education, on a case by case basis.)  At this level of registration, ministers are placed in our data base and assigned a registration number.  They must be working under the supervision of a highly experienced mentor Pastor or spiritual Elder, and the Mentor must certify that they will provide a minimum of one hour supervision, for every five hours of Pastoral Care.  The Registered Pastoral or Christian Care Provider may be required to pass the Biblical Knowledge and Basic Counseling Skills Test.  Pastoral recommendation is required, plus two character references. 

Registration/annual renewal fee - $50 Testing Fee - $15

 

REGISTERED PASTORAL CARE PROVIDER – COLLEAGUE

REGISTERED CHRISTIAN CARE PROVIDER – COLLEAGUE

Non–certified level (Registration number assigned)

To be considered for the Colleague designation of the Registered Pastoral or Christian Care Provider level, an applicant, in addition to the requirements of the R.P.C.P. or R.C.C.P. level, must submit an additional two references, a letter of recommendation from his/her denominational/fellowship superior, have completed their Associate degree, or have completed 60 or more units towards their Bachelor degree in Theology, Ministry, Christian Counseling, or a related discipline. (College units may be waived for additional certificates showing extensive alternative, continuing education on a case by case basis.) 

Registration/annual renewal fee $59

 

 

 

A.A.C.T.’s first certification comes at the Bachelor’s degree level or for non degreed persons with special training that is verifiable by or taught by AACT in special classes.  At this level, we begin to more seriously scrutinize the education, counseling experience, and training of the applicant.  This title has been modified to “Care Counselor” to accurately describe the appropriate level of advancement within the counseling field.  With additional time in ministry, one may apply for the colleague designation, as described below.

 

CERTIFIED PASTORAL CARE COUNSELOR

CERTIFIED CHRISTIAN CARE COUNSELOR

(Certification number assigned)

An applicant for the Pastoral or Christian Care Counselor Certification must be a Licensed or Ordained minister, with a Bachelor’s degree in Theology, Ministry, Christian Counseling, or a related discipline, from an approved educational institution.  They must be working under the supervision of a Master’s level (or highly experienced) mentor Pastor or spiritual Elder, and receiving one hour of supervision for every ten hours of Pastoral Care provided.  The Certified Pastoral or Christian Care Counselor may be required to pass the Biblical Knowledge and Counseling Skills Test.  Pastoral recommendation plus two letters of reference required.  Certification/renewal fee- $54 Testing- $15

 

CERTIFIED PASTORAL CARE COUNSELOR - COLLEAGUE 

CERTIFIED CHRISTIAN CARE COUNSELOR – COLLEAGUE

To be considered for the Colleague designation of Certified Pastoral or Christian Care Counselor, the applicant must meet the requirements for C.P.C.C./C.C.C.C., submit two additional letters of reference, provide a letter of recommendation from his/her denominational/fellowship superior, and submit five additional certificates of proof of continuing education beyond the initial required Bachelor’s Degree.

Certification/annual renewal fee $66

 

CERTIFIED BIBLICAL COUNSELOR, Level 1 - $54

CERTIFIED BIBLICAL COUNSELOR, Level 2 - $59

CERTIFIED BIBLICAL COUNSELOR, Level 3 - $64

CERTIFIED BIBLICAL COUNSELOR, Level 4 - $69

An applicant for the Certified Biblical Counselor must be a Licensed or Ordained minister, with special training offered by AACT or another approved educational institution.  They must be working under the supervision of a Master’s level (or highly experienced) mentor Pastor or spiritual Elder, and receiving one hour of supervision for every ten hours of Pastoral Care provided.  The Certified Biblical Counselor may be required to pass the Biblical Knowledge and Counseling Skills Test.  Pastoral recommendation plus two letters of reference required 

 

 

 

 

At the Master’s level we split the certification/licensing process. For “Track A”, we have used the word “counselor” as it accurately describes ministers who utilize primarily a theological lens, or who are highly trained to provide short term counseling intervention and assistance as a part of their general ministerial duties, and who hold degrees in theology, ministry, or religious education.  For “Track B”, we have used the word “therapist” to describe ministers who highly integrate theology and psychology, who provide short and long term  therapeutic intervention, or  who hold degrees in Christian Counseling, Counseling Theology, or Psychology. 

 

 

TRACK A – PASTORAL & CHRISTIAN COUNSELING

 

CERTIFIED SKILLED PASTORAL COUNSELOR

CERTIFIED SKILLED CHRISTIAN COUNSELOR

A candidate for the Skilled Pastoral or Christian Counselor Certification must be an Ordained Minister with a Master’s Degree in Theology, Ministry, Religion, Christian Education)  from an approved academic institution.  They must agree to case consultation with an experienced counselor on a regular basis to insure the integrity of their work.  The C.P.C.P. or C.C.C.C. may be required to pass a Board Exam that focuses on counseling Theology and ethical considerations in the field of Pastoral Counseling.  Pastoral recommendation is required, in addition to three character references. 

Certification fee - $59 Testing - $20

 

CERTIFIED SKILLED PASTORAL COUNSELOR – FELLOW

CERTIFIED SKILLED CHRISTIAN COUNSELOR – FELLOW

To be considered for the Fellow designation of the Certified Skilled Pastoral or Christian Counselor level, the applicant must meet the requirements for the C.S.C.C./C.S.C.C. level, have experienced additional time in ministry, provide two additional letters of reference from ministers with knowledge of his/her work, and submit three continuing education certificates.

Certification Fee - $75

 

 

It is expected that the person granted above the level of C.P.C.C. or C.C.C.C.  be involved in annual continual education , or working in a Doctoral program.  If a person is not engaged in a Doctoral program, he/she may wish to specialize in a specific area of counseling.

 

 

 

 

LICENSED SKILLED PASTORAL COUNSELOR

LICENSED SKILLED CHRISTIAN COUNSELOR

 

A candidate for the Licensed Skilled Pastoral or Skilled Christian Counselor must be an Ordained Minister with a Doctoral Degree in Theology, Ministry, Religion or a related discipline, from an approved academic institution, or a Master’s degree in the same, with extensive post graduate experience and proof of continuing education.  Peer consultation (Doctoral level applicant) or consultation with a mentor (Master’s level applicant) is recommended.   A Board Exam focusing on counseling skills, ethical considerations, and supervisory responsibilities within the field of Pastoral Counseling may be required.  Pastoral recommendation and three character references are required.

Licensing/annual renewal fee - $64 Testing - $20

 

LICENSED SKILLED PASTORAL COUNSELOR – FELLOW (Master’s level applicant)

LICENSED SKILLED CHRISTIAN COUNSELOR – FELLOW (Master’s level applicant)

LICENSED SKILLED PASTORAL COUNSELOR – DIPLOMATE (Doctoral level applicant)

LICENSED SKILLED CHRISTIAN COUNSELOR – DIPLOMATE (Doctoral level applicant)

To be considered for the Fellow or Doctoral designation as a Licensed Skilled Pastoral or Christian Counselor, the applicant must meet the requirements of the L.S.P.C./L.S.C.C. level, submit two additional references, provide five additional certificates of proof of continuing education, and submit a letter of recommendation from his/her denominational/fellowship superior.  Counselors at his level are may provide supervision to other A.A.C.T. counselors.

Licensing/Annual renewal fee - $79 / Fee for Diplomate - $89.00

 

 

The following category is only for the Minister with a Doctoral degree with a counseling minor, extensive experience in counseling, or other continued education.

 

LICENSED PROFESSIONAL PASTORAL COUNSELOR

LICENSED PROFESSIONAL CHRISTIAN COUNSELOR

 

A candidate for the Licensed Professional Pastoral Counselor level must be an ordained minister with a Doctoral degree in Theology, Religion, Ministry or Religious Education, with a minor in Counseling, from a recognized academic institution.  Extensive experience in counseling, additional certificates or other proof of continued education will be considered, on a case by case basis, in lieu of the minor in Counseling.  A Board Exam may be required to demonstrate knowledge of counseling, theology, ethical considerations, and supervisory responsibilities within the field of Pastoral Counseling.  The L.P.P.C./L.P.C.C. may supervise other others, and if able, offer two hours of supervision monthly to other members of A.A.C.T.  Two references from pastors having knowledge of the candidates work, plus one character reference is required.

Licensing/Annual registration fee - $69 Testing - $20

 

LICENSED PROFESSIONAL PASTORAL COUNSELOR – DIPLOMATE

LICENSED PROFESSIONAL CHRISTIAN COUNSELOR – DIPLOMATE

To be considered for the Licensed Professional Pastoral or Christian Counselor – Diplomate designation, in addition to the requirements for L.P.P.C./L.P.C.C., the applicant must submit two additional references, seven additional certificates or proof of continuing education, five years experience as a Licensed Professional Pastoral or Christian Counselor, and a letter of recommendation from his/her denominational/fellowship superior.

Licensing fee -$89

 

 

TRACK B – PASTORAL AND CHRISTIAN THERAPY

 

For “Track B”, we have used the word “therapist” to describe ministers who highly integrate theology and psychology, who provide short and long term  therapeutic intervention, or  who hold degrees in Christian Counseling, Counseling Theology, or Psychology. 

 

 

CERTIFIED SKILLED PASTORAL THERAPIST

CERTIFIED SKILLED CHRISTIAN THERAPIST

(Certification Number provided)

 

A candidate for the Skilled Pastoral Therapist Certification must be a Licensed or Ordained Minister with a Master’s degree in Counseling Theology, Christian Counseling or Therapy, Psychology or related discipline from an approved academic institution.  The candidate may be required to demonstrate knowledge of theology, psychology, counseling skills and ethical considerations through a Board Exam.  The Certified Skilled Pastoral Therapist must agree to case consultation on a regular basis with a qualified supervisor to insure the integrity of their work.  Pastoral and clinical recommendations (one each), and two character references are also required.  Certification fee - $59 Testing - $20

 

CERTIFIED SKILLED PASTORAL THERAPIST – FELLOW

CERTIFIED SKILLED CHRISTIAN THERAPIST – FELLOW

To be considered for the Certified Skilled Pastoral or Christian Therapist – Fellow designation, in addition to meeting the requirements of the C.S.P.T./C.S.C.T. level, the applicant must submit two additional references, provide three additional certificates or proof of continued education, and present a letter of recommendation from his or her denominational/fellowship superior or counseling center director.

Certification/Annual renewal fee - $75

 

 

 

LICENSED CLINICAL PASTORAL THERAPIST

LICENSED CLINICAL CHRISTIAN THERAPIST

A candidate for Licensed Clinical Pastoral or Christian Therapist must be a Licensed or Ordained Minister with a Doctoral Degree in Counseling Theology, Christian Counseling, Psychology or related discipline, from an approved academic institution, or who holds a Master’s degree in the same, with extensive post -graduate experience, and proof of continuing education.  Peer consultation (Doctoral level applicant) or consultation with a clinical supervisor (Master’s level applicant) is recommended.   The candidate may be requested to demonstrate knowledge of Theology, Psychology, counseling, ethical considerations, and supervisory responsibilities in the field of Pastoral Counseling and Therapy through a Board Exam.  Pastoral and clinical recommendations (one each), and two character references are also required.

Licensing/Annual renewal fee - $64 Testing - $20

 

LICENSED CLINICAL PASTORAL THERAPIST – FELLOW (Master’s level applicant)

LICENSED CLINICAL CHRISTIAN THERAPIST – FELLOW (Masters’ level applicant)

LICENSED CLINICAL PASTORAL THERAPIST – DIPLOMATE (Doctoral level applicant)

LICENSED CLINICAL CHRISTIAN THERAPIST – DIPLOMATE (Doctoral level applicant)

To be considered for the appropriate Licensed Professional Pastoral or Christian Therapist advanced designation, (in addition to the requirements for the L.C.P.T./L.C.C.T.) the applicant must have five years post licensure experience, submit two additional references from pastors or therapists having knowledge of his/her work, provide five additional certificates of proof of continuing education, and submit a letter of recommendation from a denominational/fellowship superior or counseling center director.  At this level, the Licensed Professional Pastoral or Christian Therapist – Fellow or Diplomate, may provide supervision to other counselors and therapists within the A.A.C.T.

Licensing/Annual renewal fee - $83 / Fee for Diplomate $89

 

 

LICENSED PROFESSIONAL PASTORAL THERAPIST

LICENSED PROFESSIONAL CHRISTIAN THERAPIST

A candidate for Licensed Professional Pastoral or Christian Therapist must be a Licensed or Ordained Minister with a Doctoral degree in Counseling Theology, Christian Counseling, Psychology, or a related discipline from an approved academic institution.  He/she must have extensive clinical pastoral experience, and experience training and supervising others.   The L.P.P.T./L.P.C.T. is authorized to provide supervision to other Pastoral Therapists and Counselors within the A.A.C.T., and if possible, offer two hours of supervision monthly to other members of the organization.  The candidate may be requested to demonstrate knowledge of Theology, Psychology, counseling, ethical considerations, and supervisory responsibilities in the field of Pastoral Counseling and Therapy through a Board Exam.  Pastoral and clinical recommendations (one each), and two character references are also required.

Licensing/Annual renewal fee - $69 Testing - $20

 

LICENSED PROFESSIONAL PASTORAL THERAPIST – DIPLOMATE

LICENSED PROFESSIONAL CHRISTIAN THERAPIST – DIPLOMATE

To be considered for the advanced designation of Diplomate, the applicant must submit two additional references from pastors or therapists having knowledge of his/her work, have five years experience at the L.P.P.T./L.P.C.T. level, provide five additional certificates of proof of continuing education, and submit a letter of recommendation from a denominational/fellowship superior or counseling center director. 

Licensing/Annual renewal fee - $89