Admission to the New Certification Process

Process Overview

The ACPE Certification Process has two parts to the admission process:

Part One: Application and acceptance to a local ACPE Accredited Center
Part Two: Application and acceptance to become a Certified Educator Candidate with ACPE

Applicants begin the process by downloading and completing the Application for Certified Educator Programs from the ACPE website. The first page of the form should be completed and emailed to the local center and to the national office. Upon receipt, the national office will send the applicant information about setting up the portfolio to upload their responses to the questions on page two of the application.

Part One: The Local ACPE Accredited Center

Admission to the local ACPE Accredited Center includes the following criteria:
  • A completed Application for Certified Educator Programs
  • College graduation
  • Graduate theological degree or its equivalent
  • Ordination or commissioning to function as a spiritual care provider by an appropriate religious/spiritual authority as determined by ACPE. Individuals whose spiritual or religious community do not have ordination should email for more information.
  • Endorsement/statement of accountability from an appropriate religious/spiritual authority as determined by ACPE
  • Successful completion of a minimum of four units of Level I/Level II CPE
  • Demonstration of spiritual care and conceptual competence as evidenced by the attainment/completion of Level I/Level II Outcomes
  • Evaluation of the competencies for admission to a Certified Educator Program
Using the application materials that applicants have uploaded to their portfolio, the ACPE Certified Educator will conduct an initial assessment of each applicant’s suitability for admission and potential for becoming an educator. Acceptance into the local program is distinct from acceptance to the ACPE Certification Process.

When a center has a single candidate and the ACPE Certified Educator has determined that the applicant meets the competencies for admission to the ACPE Certification Process, they will arrange for Part Two of the process to take place.

Part Two: The ACPE Certification Process

Once chosen by the local center, and prior to the ACPE interview, the applicant must view the following videos located on the New Certification Process webpage:
The applicant will write a brief reflection on each of the videos, demonstrating their understanding of the major ideas of each and include these reflections in their portfolio.

The training ACPE Certified Educator will arrange for the applicant’s interview. The interview committee will be comprised of three persons. The interview can be arranged in person or via video conference and will include the following persons:
  • The training ACPE Certified Educator from the local center
  • A representative of the Certification Commission who will be assigned by the Chair of the Commission or Certification Coordinator in the national office
  • Another ACPE Certified Educator who is part of the National Faculty, selected by the training ACPE Certified Educator
The Certification Commission representative and the local ACPE Certified Educator shall be given access to the applicant’s portfolio no less than 30 days prior to the interview. Each will review the materials and evaluate the applicant in accordance with the competencies for admission.

If either the Commission Representative or the local ACPE Certified Educator determines that an applicant has not met the required competencies, they shall request a conference call with the ACPE Certified Educator from the local center to discuss their concerns. The group must reach a consensus as to how to proceed with the process, seeking consultation from the Chair of the Commission as needed.

Upon completion of the assessment of the applicant’s materials and the interview process, the committee shall determine the applicant’s level of competence and suitability for the certification process. The decision shall require a minimum of two votes for acceptance. Following the committee’s deliberation, feedback will be provided to the applicant.
  • Applicants who are accepted into the process will then enroll in their first unit of Certified Educator CPE through the ACPE website and are granted the title Certified Educator Candidate.
  • If an applicant is not accepted, it is possible for the local center to continue to work with the student on the areas outlined by the committee, and then arrange for another interview at a later date. Aspirants who choose this path will enroll in Level I/Level II CPE during this time period.
If an applicant has been accepted into the ACPE Certification Process but decides to apply to a different center, they only need to complete that center’s interview process. They do not need to complete the ACPE interview process again.