Our program is pleased to offer two certificates, either of which may be applied toward our MA or PhD.

Certificate in East–West Spiritual Counseling

This two-semester program that provides licensed mental health professionals and pastoral counselors with the foundational background and skills for working in an increasingly diverse world. The course of study enables therapists to broaden the scope of their practice to include the central role of spiritual and religious experiences and beliefs, and teaches meditative techniques and perspectives from world spiritual traditions that have been traditionally used to bring about a deep sense of well-being.

After completing this program, participants will have:

  • An understanding of the relationship between one's spiritual container and psychological health.
  • A realization of the importance of bringing to consciousness the underlying spiritual assumptions that hold us.
  • Specific tools for facilitating the examination of spiritual assumptions.
  • A working knowledge of the world's spiritual teachings that can be transformative to people seeking spiritual counseling, regardless of spiritual orientation.
  • Development of the fundamental basis of their spiritual counseling practice.

Curriculum Overview

Students are required to complete 18 units, consisting of 3 units of core courses and 15 units of directed electives.

Students will all take this required course:

  • Spiritual Counseling Skills

Students will choose among these directed electives:

  • Non-dual Perspectives in Spiritual Counseling
  • The Psychology of Death and Dying: An East–West Exploration
  • Jungian Psychology and East–West Spirituality
  • Non-duality and the Self

Students who are enrolled in our MA and PhD programs may take these courses over four semesters instead of two semesters. For MA and PhD students who complete the certificate, East–West spiritual counseling becomes their area of specialization.


Licensure as a mental health professional, or training and experience in pastoral counseling, is a prerequisite for admission. Admission to the certificate program begins in the fall semester only, and is for currently enrolled students.

Certificate in Eco-Resilience Leadership

This certificate offers MA and PhD students the knowledge and mentoring to address global ecological crises like climate change psychologically. Students learn practices and models for helping people move from passivity, trauma, and other counter-productive states into responses that blend deep reflection with thoughtful action on behalf of earth-honoring forms of eco-resilient community. Ways of relating to self, community, nature, and place depend ultimately on recovering a deep sense of re-enchantment, and of inhabiting an animate, wondrous world.

After completing the certificate, students will be able to:

  • Facilitate discussion circles for people concerned about climate change.
  • Offer tools for educating others about the psychodynamics of global ecological change.
  • Mentor others in their quest to feel more deeply at home in their lives and work.
  • Gather and utilize knowledge geared toward fusing deep reflection with effective action.

Curriculum Overview

Students are required to complete 12 units, consisting of 6 units of core courses and 6 units of directed electives. Students can spread the coursework over four or more semesters as they weave the certificate requirements in with those of the MA or PhD degrees. When students enroll in the certificate program, Eco-Resilience Leadership becomes their area of specialization.

Students will all take these required courses:

  • Ecotherapy
  • Leadership, Evolution, and Transformative Change

Students will choose among these directed electives:

  • Planetary Psychology
  • Ecospirituality and Creative Expression
  • Science and Living Systems
  • Ecopsychology and Expressive Arts


This certificate is available only for matriculated East–West Psychology students and to other CIIS students whose degree programs allow for at least 12 units of electives in another program.

Questions about admissions or our program?

Admissions Counselor:
Richard Wormstall
(415) 575-6156| rwormstall@ciis.edu

Program Manager:
Stephen Julich, PhD
(415) 575-6189| ewp@ciis.edu

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