Since the beginning of Biblical Counseling Center in 1989, we have intentionally focused on training, not just counseling. Our goals are both to counsel effectively and to equip others consistent with the Word so that our training impacts the health of churches around us and around the world. As a training center, we have experienced a fruitful partnership with ACBC, a certifying organization committed to helping churches grow in quality biblical counseling.
ACBC Certification gives our students an opportunity to join a community of passionate and quality biblical counselors. ACBC Certification starts with training through a certified center (Phase 1), moves to observations and an extensive written exam of 48 essays questions (Phase 2) and concludes with a mentored supervision of actual counseling by you at your church or approved ministry setting (Phase 3). It takes most individuals 1-2 years to complete the various requirements, and it matures students to a higher level of understanding and effectiveness.
Here are the three main reasons why we encourage students to pursue ACBC certification:
Because you want to join a life-long learning community – Even when you complete the initial certification process through ACBC, you will still have much to learn about counseling. ACBC offers resources, conferences, podcast and continuing education specialties so that you can continue to grow. No other certification organization comes close to offering the kinds of resources ACBC can offer you. With more than 60 ACBC training centers around the country, ACBC provides opportunities for you unlike any other group of biblical counselors.
Because strong convictions matter – ACBC is a community of biblical counselors firmly committed to the understanding that God’s Word is the most reliable guide for all the problems of life and that no struggle can be accurately counseled without first understanding what God has to say about that particular struggle. ACBC is firmly convinced that the gospel ought to be the central concern in counseling and the church should be firmly committed to counseling as discipleship. ACBC has a strong code of conduct and a standard of ethics that safeguard the biblical counseling ministries led by its members.
Because you desire to grow as a counselor –How would it help you as a counselor if you could walk alongside an experienced counselor with decades of understanding about complex struggles and who has reliably shared wisdom with those caught in sin and those experiencing suffering? This benefit is the point of ACBC supervision and why our students benefit so much from the supervision process ACBC requires. ACBC Certification challenges our students to improve as a biblical counselor.
An Opportunity Beginning this September
While you can start the ACBC Prep Course at any time of year, we are starting a new cohort of students in September. Dr. Ron and Sherry Allchin will be overseeing the cohort and will walk with you through the ACBC Process. You will begin with the Basic Training (Foundations), then watch 10 sessions of counseling filmed in our counseling offices (Portraits Observations), and finish with your ACBC exam guide (Essentials).
We plan to help students complete the course in about 1 year. If you have wanted to complete the ACBC certification, but you think you need help to do it, this training may be right for you. You will need to set aside at least 2-3 hours a week to keep up with the work. We regularly answer questions and encourage students to keep moving toward your goal. Our goal is to have more ACBC students than ever in training this year.
FAQ’s about our ACBC Training Process
1. How is your training different from other ACBC training centers or the ACBC weekend trainings?
All training centers must include specified topics in their basic training courses so there are many similarities. What makes BCC different from other programs?
- Support to you from start to finish of ACBC certification
- Online, self-paced, engaging video instruction
- Experienced men and women who instruct you
- Dedicated staff to help support you in the online schoolwork
- Multiple levels of training and a robust Resource Center
- Far more affordable than most live options
- Small Group Resources for Group Training Process available
2. How is the ACBC supervision accomplished if I don’t live close to a BCC mentor?
Staff from BCC oversee students via Skype to complete the 50-hour ACBC supervision requirement. You will submit a written case report for each session to your supervisor who will review and critique it with you. For 5 sessions, you will need to get permission from your counselee to video or audio record a session and submit it to your supervisor. This process helps you to grow as a counselor. The supervision process requires a separate fee to cover the many hours of personalized instruction you will receive.
3. Is there any face-to-face time with BCC instructors?
Each class has an experienced BCC instructor who oversees the class. You can ask questions and request resources. Additionally this fall, we are beginning to host a Q & A for our ACBC Prep and Lay Counseling Certificate students one night a month. Look for the Fall Q&A schedule soon.
4. How much does it cost?
Our ACBC Exam Prep Course is only $375 or $37.50 a month for 12 months, and you have one year to complete the path. If you are not done after 1 year, you may request a free two-month extension. After the two-month grace period, you pay $37.50 a month until you have completed your studies. After you complete the course and exam, the ACBC application fee is $100 paid to ACBC and supervision is $675 paid to your supervisor directly. ACBC also has annual dues for membership.
5. Is ACBC for everyone? No. However, ACBC Certification is an intentional process to grow you as a biblical counselor, but not everyone will desire or enjoy it. Also, you need to make sure you can affirm the doctrinal positions of ACBC if you are going to put in all the work and funds that the ACBC certification will take. Additionally, you need to have a ministry setting with a supply of hurting people that you can help so you can accomplish your mentored supervision. Most accomplish this in their local church or a local para-church ministry.