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Thread: Choosing a Major

  1. #1

    Default Choosing a Major

    I'm looking for advice on choosing my major. As many of you know I am studying for ministry and have tentatively chosen a major, though I am not sure I will end up staying with it or choosing a great deal of extra work for a different path.

    I chose Pastoral Care and Counseling

    The Pastoral Care and Counseling concentration offers specialized training for persons who desire to emphasize in their ministry the pastoral role of the minister as counselor and care-giver, whether in a parish setting or in an institutional setting. The program gives attention both to theory and to clinical experience under supervision.
    Concentration Requirements

    http://i826.photobucket.com/albums/zz182/khaymen/Pastoral_CC.jpg


    I'm thinking of pursuing an M.Div./M.A./Educational Specialist in Mental Health Counseling

    The M.Div./M.A./Educational Specialist in Mental Health Counseling program is designed to meet the needs of individuals who seek to integrate theology, faith, and spirituality with counseling theory and clinical experience in the mental health field. The program is designed to meet the educational requirements of licensure as professional counselors in North Carolina and in most other states. This program will prepare students to take the Licensed Professional Counselor exam and complete all educational requirements for North Carolina licensure.

    http://i826.photobucket.com/albums/zz182/khaymen/MentalHealthCounseling.jpg


    The latter would be quite a bit more work and a greater challenge both academic and personal as it would take me longer to get through the degree and graduate. I also have considerations like a son that I want to see and the new wife I desperately want to meet someday.

  2. #2

    Default

    120 hours seems awfully short for a degree. I have well over 1000 hours of playtime in the pokemon series and I do not consider myself a expert at it.

    It's said that people need 10,000 hours of experience before they should be considered a expert in that field/subject and I fully agree with that claim. But even then, everything advances, there's always new stuff to be learned.

    Sorry but I think 120 hours for a degree is rather stupid. Plus look into going to a different school, since this one seems like it's no better then ITT tech or any of the other lame trade schools that offer little to nothing in value for your money and time.

  3. #3

    Default

    Wow, that's a little harsh Fire2box.

    On the other hand: yeh, that does seem very few hours!

    I'm currently studying for a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Divinity (at a very well known Scottish university), and we have 120 teaching hours per semester scheduled, but on top of that we also have guest lecturers which we must attend, and about 3/4 hours work on top of that every day minimum. Then we do that twice a year... for four years.... Goodbye social life. :|

    Next up, we can't help you choose your degree. There is absolutely no point in being in a degree you don't want to be in so only you can decide! Look into all your options, look at other colleges, possible on-the-job training.

    Also, are you bearing in mind that to be a preacher most churches will require you to do some kind of probation period as well after college? E.g. for the Church of Scotland you need to behin the actual ministerial training programme the year before you go to university, and have to do a minimum 15 months probation after that, and probably lots of other stuff as well (depending on what you do during uni!)

  4. #4

    Default

    Khaymen I just want to clear something up about the whole hours thing. Those "hours" represent academic credits right, not actual hours?

  5. #5

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by Fire2box View Post
    120 hours seems awfully short for a degree. I have well over 1000 hours of playtime in the pokemon series and I do not consider myself a expert at it.

    It's said that people need 10,000 hours of experience before they should be considered a expert in that field/subject and I fully agree with that claim. But even then, everything advances, there's always new stuff to be learned.

    Sorry but I think 120 hours for a degree is rather stupid. Plus look into going to a different school, since this one seems like it's no better then ITT tech or any of the other lame trade schools that offer little to nothing in value for your money and time.
    I imagine the hours are credit hours. Big difference.

  6. #6

    Default

    I'm hoping that Fire2box was joking here. A schedule like this is always in credit hours, and 120 hours = 15 credit hours/semester ~5 classes a semester, which is very solid workload.

  7. #7

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by Fire2box View Post
    120 hours seems awfully short for a degree.
    Neither 90, nor 120 hours is short for a graduate degree.

    Plus that 120 hours is classroom hours per week, not total time. The Fall Semester is from January 6th to the Final Exam on December 14th. Take that three hours per week and multiply it by the roughly 18 weeks of class, which deducts the final exam and some holiday observance, and you end up with 54 classroom hours for that three hour class.
    Then you need to account for study and projects which are usually counted as 3 hours per every one classroom hour for a total of 162 hours outside the classroom. So that 3 hour class turns into a 216 hour commitment for the semester.
    Nine hours is full time in my grad school, so count 27 hours outside the classroom for a total commitment of 36 hours a week in class and out of class study.

    1 classroom hour becomes 18hrs in class
    1 classroom hour becomes 54hrs outside the classroom

    120hrs becomes a total commitment of 8,640 hours of commitment.

    Oh and the certification of Licensed Practical Counselor attached to this 120 hour degree also requires 600 clinical hours of working with people in the field while being supervised.

    So that 120 hours ends up being a total commitment of 9,240 hours.




    Quote Originally Posted by talula View Post
    Next up, we can't help you choose your degree. There is absolutely no point in being in a degree you don't want to be in so only you can decide! Look into all your options, look at other colleges, possible on-the-job training.
    I assure you I am looking for opinions here and elsewhere.
    After I've heard those opinions I will decide for myself.
    This is a discussion not a poll to choose my life direction.

  8. #8

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by Fire2box View Post
    120 hours seems awfully short for a degree. I have well over 1000 hours of playtime in the pokemon series and I do not consider myself a expert at it.

    It's said that people need 10,000 hours of experience before they should be considered a expert in that field/subject and I fully agree with that claim. But even then, everything advances, there's always new stuff to be learned.

    Sorry but I think 120 hours for a degree is rather stupid. Plus look into going to a different school, since this one seems like it's no better then ITT tech or any of the other lame trade schools that offer little to nothing in value for your money and time.
    You know not of what you speak.

    Unit-hours are not equivalent to hours spent hunched over homework, thinking things through, and so forth. What is being presented here are unit-hours, which typically represent in-class meetings per week. You can usually double that number at the undergraduate level to figure out how much time is actually being spent on the subject--a 3-unit class, therefore, takes about 9 hours of focus per week by an undergraduate student.

    Let us explore this a bit: 120 credit-hours breaks down into 8 15-unit semesters (4 years of study). This means that, every semester, 45 hours of focus and attention are required for coursework every week. Hence, for a 16-week semester:
    45 hours/week * 16 weeks/semester * 8 semesters = 5760 hours of effort spent at the undergraduate level.

    Is an undergraduate student halfway to expertise? No. But just investing time into something does not expertise make.

    120 units is the de facto standard for undergrad degrees over here, as far as I can tell. The Ph.D. requires 72 units (typically), and this is where the time-scale gets all sorts of odd, as "research units" are taken--usually 6-12 of them--when you are writing your dissertation. The dissertation is itself a career, and gobbles up great swaths of DEDICATED time.

    In short: you ought to apologize, Fire2box. You're in the wrong here. Khaymen, don't go for an M.B.A. You'll not be able to look at yourself in the mirror if you do.

  9. #9

    Default

    Interesting question. I would advise you to do that programme that ends in formal qualification in North Carolina. It offers a qualification that is more widely recognised, and also gives you much more extensive training in mental health counselling. That will make you more effective and helpful in serving God (since it seems that's your ultimate goal). On the other hand, it is a huge amount of work if your ultimate goal is the ministry. How much would that extra learning benefit you as a minister, and your parishioners whom you would advise? I think there's a great deal to be said for education (I will have at least seven years of post-secondary education before I go into full-time work), but studying for the ministry is a significant endeavour in its own right.

  10. #10

    Default

    Seems like I was wrong here.

    When I see hrs. I think Hours. As in 60 mins = one hour. Not one hour now equals 6-18 actually hours.

    Also to note I was not attacking the TC but the school which to me seemed like a bad school if you only needed to devote 120 hours for a degree.


    So I am sorry. It was a misunderstanding.

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