703-385-6967 | FAX: 703-352-7725


  1. A1. To Log In, click directly on the words, LOG IN, at the top of the website.

    Scroll to the bottom and you will see the username and password fields.  Your username is usually the email address that we have on file for you. If you have not set up your permanent password, and/or do not know your password, click on the words, Reset Password.  This will generate a temporary password  that will be e-mailed to the address we have on file.  Alternatively you may call (703-385-6967) or email (info@aapc.org) us at the office and we will get back to you.

    Once you receive the new password, enter it in the password field and click Log In. 

    The next screen you see will be one where you can choose to reset your password, pay your dues, or update your contact information.  If any of these are what you want to do, go ahead and click on it.  Otherwise you may wish to check out the member center on the right side of the screen.

    Any time you are having a problem with your login, please feel free to call or email us at info@aapc.org, 703 385-6967.

  2. A2. AAPC certifies the credentials of our members.  Credentialing is a systematic approach to the collection of and verification of an applicant's professional qualifications.  We have different membership categories to reflect the different training and experience of our members.

    The states provide licensure. It is the right and privilege of each state to determine what professions and categories they want to license. Some states license Pastoral Counselors, others require a counseling license of a different title. It is totally under each state's control and each state has different requirements/laws.

    For information on state requirements go to Membership scroll to Licensing.

  3. A3. Membership in AAPC is open to all who support AAPC's mission to bring healing, hope, and wholeness to individuals, families, and communities. The primary benefit of membership is to be a formal participant in the dialogue on the integration of spirituality and one's professional practice.

    Other benefits include: 

          On-line publications

          Continuing education credits

          Discounted liability insurance thru American Professional agency 

          Collegiality and networking opportunities

          Annual association and regional conferences

          Discounted on-line advertising

          Brochures and pamphlets

          Members-only web site

          Referrals (Certified Members only)

          Receive announcements for opportunities to join webinars, attend workshops offering Continuing Education Credits, and available grants

  4. A4. Members need to read it and agree to abide by the code by signing the application and the yearly dues statement.

  5. A5. Applicants for certified categories of membership must have official transcripts sent directly to AAPC from their university.  Students need only send proof they are currently enrolled and no transcripts are needed.

  6. A6. AAPC  does not train or certify chaplains.  It certifies pastoral counselors.  However,

    Chaplains may become members.  Please refer to the membership manual.


  7. A7. Training programs for Pastoral Care Specialist are found under the Education Tab on our website, under Pastoral Care Specialist Training Programs.  We have a limited number of approved programs. 

    For other programs, you may check with The Association of Theological Schools, www.ats.edu  or gradschools.com.  

    There is some online training available under www.oates.org,  www.olcmoodle.oates.org/ or www.chea.org.

  8. A8. AAPC certified pastoral counselors are required to have two hours of supervision monthly, one hour for every 8 to 12 hours of counseling.

    Supervision must be provided by an AAPC Diplomate, AAPC Fellow (under supervision of a Diplomate) and /or an approved member of another mental health discipline with equivalent credentials, training, and supervisory status.


    Any AAPC fellow who supervises the clinical work of another member is required to have ongoing supervision of that supervision, provided by an AAPC Diplomate and/or a member of another mental health discipline with equivalent credentials, training, and supervisory status.


    Non AAPC Supervisors may be approved by the Regional Certification Chair through the Request for Approval of Non-AAPC Supervisor form in Appendix D of the membership manual. 

    Supervision of two individuals who are in shared supervision is considered the same as individual supervision.

    Three or more persons who are in shared supervision constitute group supervision.


  9. A9. The rules are set up so that you have a range of experience with three supervisors.  The requirement that one third of that supervision be under an AAPC Diplomate or Fellow under supervision of a Diplomate is rarely if ever waived.  We value the supervisory process as a way for us to get to know each other and create collegiality, and bring the applicant into the culture of AAPC.  In addition, AAPC fellow requirements have been approved by several states, to allow persons with the fellow credential to sit for state licensing exams.  If we waive requirements, we would potentially compromise our state relationships and the value of the credential. AAPC Supervisors have been through the process and can guide applicants.    If you elect to embark on certification you will need to contract with an AAPC supervisor for 42 hours of supervision in order to become better acquainted with the AAPC culture and expectations.   

  10. A10. Pastoral Care Specialist category requires only a letter from the applicant's local congregation stating they are an "active participant."

    Certified members need to meet the requirements of their denomination.  There is a religious endorsement form which should be completed.  Those denominations without endorsers are required to follow the protocol which pertains to their own group in obtaining ecclesiastical endorsement in support of their aapc membership or application

    The members and student members category does not require a letter or an endorsement.

  11. A11. The Body of Knowledge required for AAPC certified membership includes clinical theory and theological education. 

    The Clinical Theory Body of Knowledge is satisfied by a state license or certification in an approved mental health discipline, or a graduate degree program from an institution accredited by AAPC, APA, AAMFT, ACSW, ANCC or CACREP.


    The theological education requirement may be satisfied by completing a theological or other graduate degree, which includes courses in core clinical theory, and specialized technical studies as outlined in the membership manual.


  12. A12. There are 5 specific related cognate groups, Association for Clinical Pastoral Education, Association of Professional Chaplains, Canadian Association of Spiritual Care, national Association of Catholic Chaplains, and National Association of Jewish Chaplains.


  13. A13. All Certified members are required to participate in responsible programs of professional education and development.   We require 8 hours of CEU's for our certified members to keep current.  This may consist of classes, retreats, and/or workshops.  There is no requirement for specific approved courses - just what benefits each member in his/her ministry/practice.  The requirement is listed on page 2 of the dues statement that members receive and are required to sign.  By signing, they attest that they are in compliance with AAPC guidelines.

    Student members are required to be enrolled in an AAPC approved training program, a seminary or an academic program - undergraduate or graduate.

  14. A14. AAPC Centers and Regions may request NBCC credits.  They must fill out the request form, including the vita of the presenter and the content of the workshop, which they will need to send to the association office.  Once approved, they receive further instructions regarding the evaluation sheet and the attendance sheet, which they will need to foward to the association office.  The association office will mail the certificates to the attendees. The cost is $25 per person receiving the credits.

    For the annual conference, each attendee who wants NBCC credit pays $25 at registration.  The fee covers our costs associated with offering the credits. A certificate will be mailed to them after the conference.

  15. A15. Retirement and inactive status is different from resigning.

    Retired status: Members need to meet 1 of 3 criteria.

    Be over age 65.

    Be over age 55 and a member for 10 years.

    Be retired based on medical issues.

    Retired members can do an average of 10 paid hours of counseling or teaching a week and they retain voting and office-holding rights.  Dues are $100 a year.  They need to complete the Request Form in order to have this approved.  Retirees can return to active status by completing the same form.

    Inactive status:  Members must meet the criteria and complete a request form.  Dues are $100 a year.  Inactive members do not practice, teach, or supervise and they do not retain voting or office-holding rights..  After 3 years, request for inactive status needs to be renewed.

  16. A16. You do not have to be a member to attend the conferences.

  17. A17. The Accreditation process for institutional members that are Service Centers assesses the quality of an institution's programs in certain fields to determine if standards are met. If standards are met accredited status is granted.  The institutional members that are Training Centers go through an Approval process that is similar to the Accreditation process for Service Centers.

  18. A18. There are three certified membership and three non-certified membership categories.  For detailed information on each membership category, please refer to the membership manual and the applications that are on our website.


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