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Clinical pastoral education

From theological reflection on specific human experiences, participants gain new understanding of the human situation.

What is clinical pastoral education?

Clinical pastoral education (CPE) is an action-reflection process of education.

It provides opportunities for supervised pastoral encounters with people in a variety of circumstances. Through intense involvement with people and the feedback from peers, mentors, supervisors and the people to whom pastoral practice is offered, CPE participants develop new awareness of their own humanity and the needs of those to whom they offer pastoral care. From theological reflection on specific human experiences, they gain new understanding of the human situation.

Participants within the health care setting have the opportunity to work alongside members of the interdisciplinary health team. Within this team pastoral care has its own unique contribution.

Through experiential learning focussed on the study of specific human experiences, CPE assists participants to acquire pastoral skills and develop their own pastoral identity through integration of their theology, practice and personality.

CPE seeks to:

  • Attend to the human condition, particularly life's spiritual dimensions.
  • Engages a reflection component which entails the exploration of the pastoral practice experience, the dynamics present, and the theological and spiritual dimensions. This action reflection process is integral to the participants understanding and the formation of their personal, professional and pastoral identity and competence.

CPE is accredited through ASACPEV Inc. according to the ASACPEV Standards.

Education dates


Program dates

Applications close

Summer (full time)
14 November 2022 to 27 January 2023

9 September 2022

Semester 1 (part time)
7 February 2023 to 15 June 2023

4 November 2022
Semester 2 (part time)
4 July 2023 to 9 November 2023
5 May 2023
Summer (full time)
13 November 2023 to 26 January 2024
8 September 2023

Contact us

Clinical Pastoral Education


Sue Westhorp

Phone: 03 9496 2908

Email: sue.westhorp@austin.org.au