Clinical Pastoral Education/Training (CPE/T) seeks to integrate sound Psychological and Counseling principles with Theological insight and tools. As such, it is well suited to be part of the curriculum of theological schools. In fact, many religious denominations and schools require CPE/T as part of their ordination or graduation process. What are some of the options?
1. Full Unit CPE/T Intensive. This is 400 hours over 8-12 weeks. This is full-time obviously, and can be done during summer break in most schools.
2. Half Unit CPE/T. This is approximately 200-240 hours over 4-8 weeks normally. This is on the edge between part-time and full time. Generally, however, it will dominate the schedule of the trainee and so should be done with no other classes or requirements. Half-unit is suitable for schools that have a CPE requirement, but do not require the Full Intensive. CPE/T. This is commonly done during summer break, but can also be done other times of the year as well.
3. Full Unit CPE/T Extended. This program is 400 hours over 16-26 weeks (depending on the agreement between trainees and supervisor). This program is primarily designed for professionals, allowing them to maintain their work/ministry while doing CPE/T. However, if extended over 26 weeks, the hours required per week end up under 20. Therefore, it can be an option for some theological students to do CPE/T while being an active student with other classes. If this is being done, it is beneficial that the CPE program and the theological school are in communication to ensure that there are no conflicts.
4. Clinical Pastoral Orientation (CPO). This program is approximately 60 hours and designed to fit into a slot as a regular class at a theological school. In some ways, it is similar to a regular class in Pastoral Care and Counseling. The differences are the addition of Group process, Individual supervision, and practical chaplain work in hospital or other ministry point. The goal is to follow the learning objectives and methodology of CPE/T. To do so provides the self-growth found in regular CPE/T. It also allows a student to get a taste of CPE/T to determine if it might be of value to him or her.
NOTE: The first three programs are certified by CPSP (www.pastoralreport.com). The last one (CPO) is not certified by CPSP, however, it is being standardized by CPSP-PI, to ensure standards are being maintained at different school settings.