Diploma in Chaplaincy & Spiritual Care Research Literacy


Clinical Pastoral Educators, Board Certified Chaplains, and Spiritual Care Providers often work in research-based care environments where they are increasingly asked to provide research-based practices that contribute to performance improvement in delivery of care.

The Diploma in Chaplaincy & Spiritual Care Research Literacy is designed to equip chaplains, spiritual care providers and pastoral care educators who work in research-driven environments with the tools they need to:

  • Work alongside interdisciplinary colleagues to develop practices informed by scientific inquiry, and
  • Design and implement their own evidence-based research.

Diploma students will study alongside colleagues in the Doctor of Ministry program in the Chaplaincy/Spiritual care concentration in a professional learning community that is multi-faith, culturally competent, spiritually grounded, and pedagogically innovative.

Learning Objectives            
The curriculum is designed to foster interest and curiosity in professional chaplains about their own and others’ provision of spiritual and religious care that give rise to research inquiry and critical thinking.  Students will develop and master rigorous data collection methodologies appropriate for their ministry setting. Specific learning objectives include:

  • Identify methodological issues and terminology in spiritual care services evidenced-based research
  • Identify library and internet information sources
  • Review chaplaincy-related research that contributes to a research-informed approach to spiritual and religious care
  • Interpret existing research designs and evaluate their quality
  • Reflect theologically and critique the history of research
  • Utilize data employed by health care administrators in operational and strategic decisions
  • Apply performance improvement processes relating to clinical chaplaincy
  • Interpret data that contributes to addressing a specific research question or issue
  • Identify sources of data and data collection techniques
  • Understand and apply characteristics of measurement/data quality
  • Understand and apply IRB and HIPAA requirements for data collection

San Francisco Theological Seminary has designed this program so that it may be considered by participants for use as continuing education to enhance the professional knowledge and pastoral competency of chaplains certified through the Board of Chaplaincy Certification Inc.® an affiliate of the Association of Professional Chaplains®.

Diploma in Chaplaincy & Spiritual Care Research Literacy

Apply Today!

For more information, please contact:

Rev. Ruth T. West, Program Manager, Advanced Pastoral Studies
rwest@sfts.edu | 415.451.2838