Counseling Master's Degrees

Master's Degrees

Master of Arts in Counseling (Specialization in Marriage and Family)

To serve as a Christian counselor in a church-based ministry, social service agency, community-based ministry, or other Christian Ministries. This degree fulfils the academic requirements in most states for Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) or their equivalents.  Degree Details

Master of Arts in Counseling (Specialization in Clinical Mental Health)

To serve as a Christian counselor in a church-based ministry, social service agency, community-based ministry, or other Christian ministries. This degree fulfills the academic requirements in most states for Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) or its equivalent. Degree Details

Master of Divinity, Specialization in Marriage & Family Counseling

To serve as a professional Christian counselor, pastoral counselor, minister of family life and counseling, other church staff member, social ministry worker, chaplain, or related areas of service which require or benefit from licensure as a professional counselor. This degree provides a total of 60 semester hours in counseling necessary for Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) licensure in most states and a richer study of the biblical and theological foundation for ministry than the Master of Arts in Counseling degree. Degree Details

Master of Divinity, Specialization in Counseling/Non-Licensure Track

To serve as a pastor, associate pastor, pastoral counselor, minister of family life, other church staff member, social ministry worker, chaplain, or related areas of service which require or benefit from training in counseling. This degree does not qualify the graduate to apply for a license in counseling. Degree Details

The Program Objectives of the MA in Counseling (specializations in Clinical Mental Health and Marriage and Family Counseling) and the MDIV specialization in Marriage and Family Counseling programs are:

Program Objective 1. Students will learn to synthesize theoretical and empirical knowledge in the field of counseling

Program Objective 2. Students will develop the necessary academic and clinical skills to obtain professional licensure.

Program Objective 3. Students will develop a deeper understanding of cultural diversity to enhance counseling skills.

Program Objective 4: Students will learn to integrate historical Christian beliefs, faith, and spirituality with the best practices of mental health science, in an ethical manner.


For more information see the NOBTS Master's Counseling Program Handbook and the Master's Practicum and Internship Handbook.

Masters Counseling Handbook CACREP Edition August 2021

Practicum & Internship Manual Revised Aug. 2021

2018-2019 MDIV and MA Counseling Program Annual Report

2018-2019 MA and MDIV Counseling Program Annual Report



Phases of Admission

In addition to the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary admission requirements and acceptance into NOBTS, a student pursuing a degree in counseling (any of the licensure tracks) must complete the following phases of admission:

Entry Phase:
Entry Level for Counseling Licensure Programs

Entry into any Graduate Counseling degree program at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary is based on an evaluation of the applicant’s personal, professional, and academic records by the Counseling Faculty. NOBTS encourages applications from qualified applicants from diverse sociocultural backgrounds who display Christian character, professional promise, intellectual achievement, and educational commitment. This Phase is completed through the typical application process for NOBTS and the Registrar’s Office. At a minimum, applicants are expected to have the following qualifications, and meet the following requirements:

  • The applicant must have a Bachelor of Arts degree or its equivalent from a college or university accredited by an agency related to CHEA, or proof of equivalent training at a foreign university.

  • A minimum of 2.75 GPA on a 4.0 scale, or its equivalent.

  • Beginning candidates must attend the graduate orientation at the beginning of their first semester, complete the NOBTS Entrance Exam, ACE Survey, and Trauma Symptoms Index. These are not barriers to entrance but rather measures to facilitate more effective training opportunities for each student.

  • The student may take a maximum of four of the five core courses (twelve hours) in any of the Counseling degree programs (course work listed as COUN) at NOBTS on a conditional basis. Conditional admission does not guarantee admission into any of the Counseling programs. Students taking less than twelve hours of graduate credit in the counseling program their first semester may complete any of the remaining four core courses the second semester, and take additional hours in the Basic Ministerial Competency Component of the program to fill their semester schedule as needed.

  • Students may take any number of the Basic Ministerial Competency Component courses required in the program prior to seeking admission to one of the Counseling Degree Programs.

  • All students must complete the NOBTS Counseling Education Exam at the beginning of the entry phase.

Phase Two:
Completion of Academic and Clinical Requirements for Full Entrance in Graduate Counseling Programs

(This Phase completed through an application process in the Counseling Department.)

In order to be accepted into a Graduate Counseling Program, candidates must meet the following conditions:

  1. Complete the four prerequisite courses, with no grade lower than a “B.” Candidates cannot take additional COUN courses until they have been accepted into a graduate counseling program.

    COUN6303, Ethical, Legal, and Professional Issues in Counseling (offered every semester)

    COUN6302 Techniques and Skills in Counseling (offered every semester)

    COUN6301 Psychopathology: Diagnosis and Treatment (offered every semester)

    COUN6351 Counseling Theories and Treatment (offered only fall semester)

    OR COUN6350 Clinical Marriage and Family Assessment (offered only spring semester)

  2. Maintain a 3.0 GPA in all COUN classes

  3. Complete application to Phase Two of the Graduate Counseling Program: Students preparing to complete the first four core courses should apply to the program by October 15 or March 15. The application is online, in the Blackboard course COUN6380KS/Program and Practicum Application (on left menu).

  4. Evaluation of Work in Courses: After the candidate has completed and submitted all the above materials, the professors who taught the applicant’s core courses will complete an evaluation of the evidence of academic, emotional and spiritual preparation of the candidate for acceptance into the program and of the candidate’s preparedness to begin the practicum.

    Evaluation Checklist

    When the application is submitted, the professors of the four core courses will fill out an evaluation checklist that will cover the following areas.

    • Academic Communication Skills

    • Professional Orientation

    • Interpersonal Competence

    • Personal Responsibility

    • Personal Integrity

    • Respect others and Diversity

    • Self-Reflection and Self-Care

    • Growth in Core Values of NOBTS

    • Growth in Seven Basic Competencies of NOBTS

    • Regular Involvement in your church and ministry

    • Evidence that the student is dealing with and/or working on any personal issues that could impact his or her work as a counselor.

  5. Interview with Faculty Member: At this point, the candidate will be invited to have an appointment for an oral interview with one of the professors in the Counseling Department. The interview will include all evaluation scores and discussion of any issues of concern.

Candidates will be notified in writing by the Clinical Director of the Department of Counseling regarding the results of their admission status. Those who are accepted will be allowed to register in COUN courses in the next semester.

NOTE: All counseling students are required to achieve a passing score on the CPCE exam before graduating.



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