Certificate in Buddhist Chaplaincy

This program is available as a stand-alone certificate supplementing significant previous academic and/or clinical studies. This certificate is appropriate for students wishing to pursue a chaplaincy career in hospice or health care, prison outreach, or the armed services. The certificate indicates that the student has completed a course of study focusing on the application of Buddhist thought and practice in pastoral care and chaplaincy.

Please contact Admission Director Gesshin Greenwood for information on the Certificate in Buddhist Chaplaincy (gesshin@shin-ibs.edu).

Start your application today!

Program Requirements

Students must complete a total of eight, 3-unit courses within three years to complete the certificate.

Required courses include:
  1. HR1515 Buddhist Traditions of South Asia
  2. HR1518 Buddhist Traditions of East Asia
  3. PSHR3076 Buddhist Pastoral Care I
  4. Any Pastoral Care course from another GTU school
  5. Four elective courses selected in consultation with the program advisor to meet individual students’ specific needs

In addition to these courses, chaplaincy students have the opportunity to partake in a variety of experiences designed to aid in their development as professional helpers, such as monthly, supportive “formation meetings” and lectures by visiting scholars. IBS students are also active in their various educational, religious and spiritual communities.

Watch to our alumni in the “Buddhist Spiritual Care for Our Times” panel speak about their formation as spiritual leaders in the chaplaincy training program.


Here is current chaplaincy student Amy Shoemaker participating in a talk at GTU on Art and Creativity in Spiritual Care.

Below is a presentation on “Movement Chaplaincy” given by members of the Faith Matters Network to chaplaincy students at the Institute of Buddhist Studies in April of 2021.

Daring Compassion & Movement Chaplaincy from Institute of Buddhist Studies on Vimeo.