Skip to content
Students at commencement

Clinical Pastoral Education

What is CPE?

Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE), spiritual care in clinical and congregational settings, offers students the opportunity to develop and integrate theological knowledge and professional skills in a wide variety of clinical contexts such as:

  • Hospitals
  • Extended care facilities
  • Social service organizations
  • Social justice organizations
  • Congregational settings

The primary focus of learning are the people and relationships affected by the act of giving spiritual care, including both the one who receives and the one who gives that care. Some methods employed to develop this reflective practice include verbatims, journaling, peer group sessions, and one-on-one conversations with a CPE educator.

M.Div. students will take one unit of CPE during their academic program. 
M.A. students (pursuing rostered ministry) may take one unit of CPE as an elective course.

A single CPE unit is a minimum of 400 hours and is offered in a variety of formats: 
-three-month (40 hrs/wk) 
-semester long (25-28 hrs/wk)
-six to nine month long (10-18 hrs/wk)

Each unit of CPE includes 300 hours of ministry in a clinical or congregational context and 100 hours of reflective work, which is divided between peer group reflection, one-on-one meetings with a CPE educator and didactic units focusing on skills and reflective practices for ministry.

CPE Information for Students