Foundations of Correctional Chaplaincy


Number of Lessons: 24Course Duration: 56 DaysCredits: 3Price: $40


This course provides an overview of correctional chaplaincy as it functions in correctional facilities. Topics will include the history of correctional chaplaincy, the special skills and abilities the professional chaplain must possess, the critical dimensions of the multiple roles a chaplain assumes, and the constitutional mandates that govern the delivery of religious services in an institutional setting. Special focus will be placed on the “ministry of presence,” effective volunteer management, the development of individualized ministry plans, and on chaplains as “agents of change.”


ProfessorKaren Swanson
  • Northern Illinois University, EdD
  • Western Michigan University, MA
  • Calvin College, BS
  • Cornerstone University, BA


  • Comprehend the rich tradition of correctional chaplaincy in America.
  • Identify three critical dimensions of institutional chaplaincy.
  • Explain the religious rights of the incarcerated and how to determine accommodations.
  • Identify the multiple ways that effective chaplaincy positively impacts inmates, correctional staff, and the institutional environment.
  • Compare the strengths and skill-sets of effective chaplains and compare those with your own personal giftings.
  • Demonstrate the ability to build a ministry plan that corresponds to specific institutional settings and its inmate demographic.
  • Develop strategies for creating meaningful ministry partnerships with local church leaders and laypersons.
  • Develop a chaplaincy manual specific to your institution.