Post-Master’s Certificate in Pastoral Studies

The Post-Master’s Certificate in Pastoral Studies program is a 30-credit hour course of study designed to give students, who already hold a Master’s degree in Pastoral Studies, an opportunity to advance their academic standing and concentrate on an area of Pastoral Studies. This certificate program may be completed 100% online. There is a six-year time limit from entry into the program for completion of the requirements. This is a flexible program, designed to prepare students for subsequent licentiate or doctoral work, or for integrating a pastoral component into their lives and professions.


The candidate for the Post Master’s Certificate in Pastoral Studies may compose his or her program from any graduate level courses he or she wishes, as long as four core courses are included (See Academic Guidelines). In the case of a student who intends to pursue licentiate or doctoral work, careful attention must be paid to compose his or her program from coursework which will fulfill admissions requirements for the intended future college or university program. In some cases, it may be advisable for a student to approve each semester’s course selection(s) with the future institution of study, to ensure a smooth transition from Holy Apostles Post Master’s Certificate in Pastoral Studies program into a licentiate or doctoral program

Degree Requirements

  • The Post Master’s Certificate Program in Pastoral Studies requirements must be completed with a G.P.A. of 3.0 or better. For purposes of retaining a consistency and integrity in its Post Master’s Certificate in Pastoral Studies program, Holy Apostles requires that a twelve-credit core curriculum be completed within the program by each candidate.
  • All Post Master’s Certificate candidates must integrate the following core courses into their program:
    • PAS 683 – Pastoral Counseling I: Spiritual Helping and Accompaniment
    • PAS 511 – Mission and Evangelization
    • MTH 841 – Catholic Social Teachings
    • PAS 720 – Nurturing the Domestic Church: Fostering Authentic Marriage and Family Life and Spirituality.

Course requirements for areas of concentration are identical to those of the online M.A. in Pastoral Studies program. In cases where a student has already taken any of these core courses, or comparable courses on the graduate level, the requirement may be waived by the Academic Dean.

A maximum of six graduate credits toward the Post Master’s Certificate in Pastoral Studies will be accepted by Holy Apostles for transfer. These credits must be from accredited colleges, must not have been applied to a degree, and must be applicable to the Post Master’s Certificate Program in Pastoral Studies. Acceptance of transfer credits is at the discretion of the Academic Dean.

The student must write a culminating paper of 30 pages under the guidance of an academic advisor.

Areas of Study

Post-Masters Certificates in Pastoral Studies are available in the following concentrations: Marriage and Family Studies, Pastoral Counseling, Spiritual Direction, Youth and Young Adult Ministry, Catechetical Ministry,

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