Clinical Pastoral Education

Baptist Health Louisville's Pastoral Care team offers practical, hands-on experience to interested students. The hospital is accredited by The Association for Clinical Pastoral Education, Inc. (ACPE), as a Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) Center.

This type of spiritual care training is important for clergy in all settings, lay people who minister in their faith community and for those sensing a call to chaplaincy/pastoral ministry in a specialized setting.

Students chosen for the program can expect a focus on providing practical theological education in a clinical setting. An inductive learning process is the foundation of this method of pastoral formation and skill development education.

The Baptist Health Louisville CPE Program is accredited by ACPE to offer Level I, Level II, and Supervisory Education. All Baptist Health Louisville CPE programs meet ACPE standards.

To learn about the application process, visit Becoming a Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) Student.

Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) Programs offered:

Level I CPE a-b

This level is for all people who are taking their first and second units of CPE. It is an opportunity to learn about CPE, make important self discoveries, and take some risks in initiating relationships, giving critique, and identifying personal strengths and growing edges in ministry.

Level II CPE a-b

Level II CPE a-b includes developing pastoral reflection, pastoral formation, pastoral competence, and -- for some people -- pastoral specialization. The outcomes of Level I CPE a-b are necessary to complete before beginning Level II CPE a-b.

Supervisory CPE

This level is for those students who desire certification by ACPE, Inc. to become a CPE supervisor. Supervisory CPE is typically a multi-year commitment to professional training and certification. While applications are received at any time, consideration is given only when a position becomes open.

Prerequisites for Supervisory CPE include:

  • Ordination (when appropriate)
  • Satisfactory completion of at least four units of CPE
  • Master of divinity degree completed
  • Endorsement by one's denomination
  • Demonstration of professional pastoral care functioning
  • Personal and professional readiness for training

Program Dates

The year-long CPE Program:

Level I CPE is offered in the fall, spring, and summer each year.

  • Spring: Jan-May (25 hours per week for 16 weeks)
  • Summer: June-Aug (40 hours per week for 10 weeks)
  • Fall: Aug-Dec (25 hours per week for 16 weeks)

Tuition is $850 for each CPE unit. The year-long CPE programs typically begin in August and conclude one year later.

Other types of CPE units offered are:

  • Part-time (Spring and Fall) unit:
    The Part-time CPE unit is a four month program offered in the Spring and Fall. It is designed for those in an initial unit of CPE or not able to participate in a full-time program. Participants are often seminary students, parish ministers, local chaplains and lay ministers. The time commitment normally includes the equivalent of one full day of structured education and seventeen hours a week in clinical curriculum, which includes overnight and weekend on-call assignments. (Total of 25 hours per week for 16 weeks) (Currently accepting applications.) 
  • Summer intensive unit:
    Baptist Health Louisville offers an intensive unit of CPE, normally from the beginning of June through the middle of August. Participants may be seminary students or others able to commit to a full-time program for a 10-week period. (40 hours per week). This program is designed to integrate personal, interpersonal and professional learning in ministry formation. The clinical curriculum component includes professional and personal practice learning. Open to clergy, laity, religious workers and students for ministry. (Currently accepting applications.)
  • CPE residency:
    The full-time residency program is offered for one year, normally beginning in August and concluding the following August. Three consecutive, intensive units of CPE are offered during the year. A residency year is taken by ministers who: desire to become certified as institutional chaplains, strengthen their pastoral care ministry for a variety of ministry contexts, or by those who desire a sabbatical to discern their vocation. Theological education and a minimum of one unit of ACPE, Inc. CPE are prerequisites for application. The current stipend for CPE residents is over $31,000.00 Residents have employee benefits including health insurance and paid days off. (Currently accepting applications.)

The cost of tuition for one unit of CPE is $850.00. The tuition for Residents is waived.


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