NCCA Counseling Curriculum Information
The CTS and NCCA Association
Colorado Theological Seminary (CTS) is proud to be affiliated with the National Christian Counselor’s Association (NCCA). CTS is a Certified Academic Institution (CAI) for the National Christian Counselor’s Association. This Association is an educational and training organization for Christian counselors and includes ministers, professional Christian counselors, church leadership, testing specialists, medical doctors, attorneys and educators. The staff of CTS and the NCCA have committed themselves to Jesus Christ and believe that counseling is in vain, unless it is founded upon, and directed by, the Word of God.Our main purpose is to provide quality training for pastors and mature Christians who feel God’s call to counsel and make available credentials that the community (Christian and non-Christian) will recognize. (Please be advised that CTS does NOT do any credentialing, but we can put you in contact with churches and organizations that can.) As with our Biblical Studies and Ministry programs, costs and requirements are identified upfront, and you pay for your courses and fees as you go through the program.Upon completion of degree requirements, you will receive your Degree in Clinical Pastoral Counseling from CTS and you can be licensed by the NCCA, the world’s largest Christian licensing association.
Who Can Benefit from CTS and NCCA Training?
The training adjusts to meet the needs of Christians with different goals, including:
Christians who want to be better equipped to minister to those who need counsel
Pastors who want to learn how to counsel members of their community who are experiencing problems
Christians who want to be credentialed and enter the field of counseling as a part-time or full-time ministry.
Professional counselors who want to become APS (Arno Profile System) certified and learn a Biblically-based counseling model with proven success.
Advantages of the Arno Profile System
As a candidate, you will learn the Arno Profile System (APS) for counseling. The APS is an easy-to-learn counseling technique used by thousands of lay counselors, professional counselors and pastors throughout the United States and in nine foreign countries.The Christian counselor administers a questionnaire, which takes fewer than ten minutes for the counselee to complete. The questionnaire measures the counselee’s needs, natural traits, strengths, and weaknesses according to temperament. These are identified in the computerized Arno Profile System report, providing the counselor with in-depth information and the best way to counsel the individual. The system enables a qualified counselor to identify the counselee’s temperament problem faster and more accurately.
NCCA Credentials Help You Professionally and Personally
Potential counselors often ask about the benefits of the training and obtaining certification or licensure. Of course, the main benefit is knowledge. The training you receive provides a deep spiritual insight into understanding human behavior and relating to others. This knowledge is valuable in every area of life, including your ability to help those who are hurting.In addition, the certification or license can open many doors. For example, once you successfully complete the program, you may elect to apply for ministerial credentials qualify to open your counseling ministry in your community under the authority of this national church organization.
Having credentials ensures that you are recognized within your community as a qualified Christian/Pastoral counselor. The community can be assured that your credentials are authentic and current because you will be under the discipline of professional review boards that are organized on the national and state levels by the NCCA.
Other benefits available to NCCA members include qualifying for professional liability insurance, networking with other counselors and the opportunity to earn continuing education credits at seminars and conferences.
Christian Certification / Licensing
Each individual must decide if he or she wants to be an agent of the state or a servant of the Church (Body of Christ). If you have a Divine call on your life to counsel and minister to the hurting, then a state license may inhibit such ministry.The NCCA Licensing Program is not a state license and is, in fact, distinctly different. Most states have regulatory laws governing the practice of psychology. Many of them also legislate the practice of general counseling. The laws vary form state to state. For example, some states have a counselor category called “Licensed Professional Counselor.” Therefore, the NCCA requires its counselors to clearly identify their license, e.g., “NCCA Licensed Pastor Counselor” or “NCCA Licensed Clinical Christian Counselor.” This ensures that the NCCA counselor is operating within legal and ethical standards, and maintaining the public’s trust and confidence.State regulatory laws help to protect the public, and ensure professionalism within the counseling profession. The NCCA strives to attain a similar goal within the Christian community and, at the same time, operate so as to avoid infringing upon state regulations.The state and federal governments also have jurisdictional boundaries. They cannot pass laws that prevent the Church from fulfilling its purpose and ministering to humanity’s needs. The state recognizes that counseling is one of the responsibilities of the Church and its clergy. For this reason, the state does not and must not interfere with the Ministry of Counseling.
The major difference between state-licensed professional counselors and Pastoral or Christian counselors, who are licensed by the NCCA and under the authority of the Church (Body of Christ), is clear and well-defined. Counselors who have been licensed by the state and are held to strict ethical standards which mandate an individual’s right to be free from religious influence. The state licensed professional counselor is forbidden to pray, read or refer to the Holy Scriptures, counsel against things such as homosexuality, abortion, etc. Initiating such counsel would be considered unethical by the state. The only time a state licensed counselor can involve religious (Christian) principles, morals, activities, instruction, etc., is if the counselee initiates or requests counsel in this area. The state-licensed counselor may not have the education, experience and knowledge of Scripture that the NCCA provides.
Opposite from that, Pastoral counselors are required to pray, share their faith, read the Holy Scriptures, etc. The fact that Pastoral and Christian counselors do these things creates a clear distinction. We are two distinct professions and govern ourselves accordingly.
As you can readily see, the state governs secular counselors and the Church is responsible to set standards and govern ministers who have devoted their lives to the ministry and to Pastoral counseling.
None of this is to say that the Christian counselor, minister or priest is not permitted to request fees and receive remuneration for the services they render, as long as they remain adherent to the state laws governing such procedures.
The NCCA requires all who are certified or licensed by its Licensing Board of Examiners to:
Be credentialed ministers (ordained, licensed or commissioned) whose goal is to evangelize and ease the emotional pain and suffering of humanity.
Provide their service under the authority of a legally organized local church, a national church organization or a 501(c) (3) not-for-profit ministry.
Complete specialized training provided by CTS and NCCA.
Complete the minimum requirements for continuing education and license renewal.
Uphold NCCA’s Code of Ethical Standards.
NCCA’s published “Code of Ethical Standards” outlines all of the procedures involved in dismissal, revocation, probation and reinstatement of in individual’s membership, certification and/or license.
Explanation of Ministerial Credentials and Clergy
Many individuals who inquire about NCCA’s licensing program are ordained ministers. These individuals can complete the requirements and be licensed as a Licensed Pastoral Counselor or as a Licensed Clinical Christian Counselor. They can counsel anywhere in America and accept remuneration for this service (in accordance with state and local guidelines) without being affiliated with any state agency, i.e., without being state licensed. This is because the laws governing counseling in all states exempt “Clergy” from submitting to its (the state’s) authority. The First Amendment of our Constitution requires such exemption: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof:…”What about the others – those individuals who are not ordained ministers or pastors? The call to counsel is just as real for them. They do not want to be state licensed and most certainly do no want to relinquish their right to represent Jesus Christ in their counseling ministry. They just want to answer and fulfill God’s call on their lives.
Indeed, some are called to the high office of the pastorate. These persons should be ordained (set aside) by a church or a denomination and approved to perform all the duties of the pastorate, including the dispensation of the sacraments (giving Holy Communion and Baptizing); however, there are many other types of Ministers or Clergy. For example, Ministers of Music, Chaplains, Ministers of Administration, Missionaries, Youth Ministers, etc. All of these offices are understood by the state and federal government to be “Clergy.”
The Ministry of Counseling is a valid ministry, which is instituted by God. The call into this ministry is an awesome call, which cannot be easily ignored.
Perhaps you are not called to pastor a church or to give Holy Communion or Baptize. However, if you are called by God into the Ministry of Counseling, we can help you. You do not have to be Ordained; you can qualify to be commissioned as a Commissioned Minister of Counseling. This will meet state requirements so you can legally counsel and accept remuneration because you will be recognized by your state as Clergy. And, it will open the doors for you to accept God’s call on your life.
Your local church/pastor can commission you as a Commissioned Minister of Counseling or you can complete the appropriate courses and be commissioned by the National Conservative Christian Church, the church arm of the NCCA.
Please do not reject God’s call and His anointing on your life because you are fearful of the words “Clergy,” or “Ordained,’ or “Commissioned” or “Minister.” These precious words mean “set aside” for the specific ministry for which God has called you.Our call is to help you fulfill your call.
Additional Counseling Program that does not lead to a Degree.
Procedures and Requirements
CC 501 / CC 601 Basic Christian Counseling
CC 502 / CC 602 Temperament Theory
CC 503 / CC 603 Testing/Measurements
CC 504 / CC 604 Temperament Therapy
CC 505 / CC 605 Christian Psychology and Counseling
Each candidate must:
Complete a practicum. This consists of administering the APS to 10 individuals under the direction of an assigned and approved clinical supervisor.
Upon completion of the required courses, submit the following:
Written responses to 50 ethical questions posed by NCCA’s National Licensing Board of Examiners.
$50 for the first year’s annual dues.
A signed Application for Certification/Membership for and a signed copy of NCCA’s Code of Ethics Standards.
After completing all of the requirements for Phase 1, the candidate will (assuming everything is in order) receive:
Certified Temperament Counselor
Clinical Member (non-clergy) or Professional Clinical Member (clergy)
CC 506 / CC 606 Mastering Pastoral Counseling
CC 507 / CC 607 Temperament Case Studies
CC 508 / CC 608 Counseling the Codependent
Secure ministerial credentials (if necessary) (CTS can help)
Each candidate must:
Complete a practicum. This consists of administering the APS to 15 additional individuals under the supervision of an assigned and approved clinical supervisor.
Upon completion of the required courses, submit the following:
A signed Application for License form. This Application for License form also authorizes the NCCA to secure a national background check to verify each candidate’s history.
A licensing fee of $100.
After successfully completing all of the requirements for Phase 2, the candidate will (assuming everything is in order) receive:
Certified Pastoral Counselor (non-degreed)
Licensed Pastoral Counselor (holds a Bachelors)
Licensed Clinical Pastoral Counselor (holds a Masters)
Licensed Clinical Pastoral Counselor-Advanced Certified (holds a Doctorate)
Annual membership and license renewal is required. Membership is $50 per year and license renewal is $20 per year (total $70). A signed affidavit verifying continuing education must be submitted annually.
Guidelines for Thesis or Dissertation
It is recommended that the Thesis or Dissertation be submitted in a Word or PDF file document to the instructor and to Colorado Theological Seminary’s Administrative Office.
Your thesis or dissertation must include a cover page that includes your name, the degree program for which it is being submitted.
Your thesis MUST include the following:
The individual’s APS report scores, e.g., M/P/GcM
Description (physical) of the individual and the reason he or she came to you for counseling.
Information regarding referrals. Did you refer them, for example, to a physician for a physical examination? To a psychiatrist for prescribed medication? To a minister of a local church so they could receive a visitation and be encouraged to attend?
The number of sessions you had with this individual, what you discussed during these sessions and what you accomplished, if anything.
The counselee’s history outlining major events which may have impacted the individual being counseled/helped.
A well developed outline of your work with each individual. This outline should include an honest self-evaluation. For example, where do you feel you were deficient and where did you succeed? Your thesis should be comprehensive and honest. The purpose for the thesis is to help you identify your strengths and weaknesses and to assist in the development of your counseling skills. Please be advised that your thesis will be reviewed with enthusiasm and that it weighs heavily on the approval of the degree you are seeking. The overall appearance should be professional and impressive. Spend some time on your thesis; it is a representation of you and your work performance. It should represent you with integrity. If your thesis is being submitted as a part of your requirements for a Masters degree, then a written report (as described above) is required on a minimum of 25 individuals. A Doctoral thesis is commonly referred to as a dissertation, and it is normally larger than the Masters degree thesis. Therefore, a minimum of 35 reports must be submitted for the Doctoral degree. The Doctor of Theology Degree in Christian Counseling requires 15 reports.