Dr. Mitchell Linneman, MA, DCC, BCCC on 2/13/24 gave:
In December 2023, I completed the Doctor of Christian Counseling (DCC) Program with Colorado Theological Seminary (CTS) in Longmont, CO. My frame of reference entering the program was having previously completed a master’s degree in Professional Counseling with Webster University in St Louis; then having been licensed and working part time in Illinois for seven years as an LPC. I also completed courses and certifications with the American Association of Christian Counselors, and worked pro bono for churches in the St Louis area.
My DCC program with CTS included ten classes that were supported by Christian theology and classes that explained temperament theory. These classes took me about two years to complete. Then my dissertation focused on the use of temperament theory with clients in actual counseling practice. For the dissertation, I completed from three to seven sessions with 25 clients for a total of well over 100 hours of client sessions. The number of sessions was determined by client presenting issues and needs. Then the session notes formed the basis of the written dissertation. The prospective student considering a DCC needs to understand these things. For me compiling and writing the session notes was the most difficult part of the program; the prep work and notes took me as long as the client sessions did.
The dissertation work took me about a year and three months, doing the work at a reasonable pace. A person could finish the program faster, but I did not rush the experience because I wanted to get the most I could out of it. The value of temperament theory is in understanding who God made us to be, and in defining the needs of a given temperament (which is often not understood by clients). The theory underscores the strengths and weaknesses of a person’s unique temperament. It does this in the three areas of the mind, will, and emotions. The program is dedicated to Christian thought, with curriculum designed for the adult distance learner, providing an on-line learning structure, where students can work at their own pace (within a reasonable timeframe). The CTS DCC fits into the integrationist model (see Timothy Keller, Four Models of Counseling in Pastoral Ministry).
The seminary assigns an instructor/mentor to guide and help students, and to grade the term papers and other aspects. It is important to understand that the program is mostly self-study. Students must be self-motivated. I found that what you get out of it is what you have put into it. My mentor was excellent and caring, always encouraging and explaining the path forward. I now have a lifetime connection with her as a reference to help me with any difficult counseling issues I might face. I also consider the staff members at CTS to be very helpful in completing the studies. In completing the degree, learned a lot I hadn’t known previously about human nature and counseling. The program was rewarding for me personally and enhanced my skill-set and therapy tools as a Christian counselor. I am very thankful to the Lord that this program exists.