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Unit Weighting                       

9 cps

Type of Unit                




Academic Staff            

Rev. Alan Galt OAM (2006), BA (Sydney 1964) MA (Macquarie 1980), Acting Level 3 Supervisor of CPE (2003), Senior Lecturer

Curriculum Objectives

This graduate course introduces students to various models of pastoral counselling that are integral to the process of ministry and encourages critical reflection upon this. Emphasis will be both on learning the function of basic counselling skills within the pastoral context and on theological reflection upon this form of pastoral activity.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this unit students will be able to:

  1.     Appraise, and critically reflect upon, the role of pastoral counselling skills in ministry
  2.     Distinguish between, and appraise, various pastoral counselling models.
  3.     Interpret how various components of the pastoral counselling relationship apply to ministry.
  4.     Exhibit basic listening and reflective skills.
  5.     Apply an understanding of the ethics of the practice of pastoral counselling in ministry.


  1.     Introduction. What is pastoral counselling?
  2.     The skills of listening and emotional involvement.
  3.     Empathy and empathic containment
  4.     The components of the pastoral counselling relationship
  5.     Critical evaluation of counselling models.
  6.     Pastoral counselling and spiritual direction: similarities and differences.
  7.     Theological perspectives on pastoral counselling
  8.     Ethics in counselling practice in the pastoral context

Assessment Profile

  1.    3 reflections on pastoral interactions (1,250 words each). Value: 60% 
  2.    Pastoral theology paper (2,250 words). Value: 40%  


3hr lecture per week on campus, or via distance education