Fuller Logo

Fall 2011-Summer 2012
Pasadena and Regional Campuses


DESCRIPTION: This course (pass/fail for 2 units) is designed to provide an experience of pastoral care in the hospice setting, under the direct supervision of an experienced hospice spiritual care provider. Students will (1) explore attitudes about disease, pain, suffering, spirituality, and religion at the end of life, and death and dying; (2) learn the hospice philosophy of palliative care; (3) develop skills in visitation and spiritual assessment within home and health care facility contexts; (4) sharpen abilities to reflect theologically in connection with patient care needs and concerns; (5) participate in grief support settings, memorial services, and other rituals as available.

SIGNIFICANCE FOR LIFE AND MINISTRY: This course provides an introduction to the world of hospice ministry--its tasks, skills, challenges, and opportunities.

LEARNING OUTCOMES: Students will (1) grow in their ability to engage in theological reflection by having regular opportunities to think critically about ministry in light of the Christian tradition; (2) deepen their understanding of the cultural context of ministry by immersing themselves in a specific context and regularly reflecting with their supervisor on the connection between context and ministry; (3) develop toward becoming spiritually mature and accountable practitioners by reflecting with their peers in a theological reflection group or in their faith community, and with their supervisor in their internship on the connection between their faith and their ministry; (4) become better Christian leaders by having many opportunities to practice the responsibilities of ministry throughout their internship.

COURSE FORMAT: The student will spend a minimum of 100 hours in hospice-related settings (homes, skilled nursing settings, office) in one 10-week period. During this time, the student will be given patient visitation assignments, meet regularly with the supervising chaplain, attend integrative and didactic sessions, and participate in memorial services or support group settings as assigned. The chaplain will provide training and lead discussions on topics relevant to hospice ministry. Students are required to attend all sessions.

ASSIGNMENTS AND ASSESSMENT: Regular and punctual attendance; completion of all visitation assignments; attendance at agreed upon meetings, inservices, and support groups; completion of at least four written (typed) verbatims, one book review, and one personal evaluation report to be uploaded on Moodle by the tenth week of the quarter by the student along with the supervising chaplain's evaluation. Meeting with Field Education Advisor during Week Five for a progress report on the internship.

PREREGISTRATION REQUIREMENTS: Before the student may register for this course, several steps must be completed, a process that may take up to a two months, since the student is responsible to make arrangements for an internship site. The first step in the process is to read the preregistration materials available at http://www.fuller.edu/current-students/resources/field-ed/field-ed.aspx. Apply to a recognized hospice site. A list of recognized sites is available at http://www.fuller.edu/current-students/resources/field-ed/chaplaincies.aspx. After acceptance, submit an internship application by email and schedule an enrollment interview with the Field Education and Ministry Formation Office. If the internship is approved, the student and his/her Academic Advisor will receive a Course Approval Notification. The student must then contact the Advising Office to receive a Course Reference Number (CRN) in order to register for FE548 online. The student must also complete an orientation with the assigned chaplain at the beginning of the internship. The student may also need to complete other preliminary requirements as well, such as a drug screen or background check. These preliminary requirements may take a month to complete, and must be completed before the student can begin the internship. Some or all of these costs may be passed along to the student from the hospice organization.

PREREQUISITES: Completion of 24 units before registering for this course.

RELATIONSHIP TO CURRICULUM: Meets FE2 Field Education MDiv requirement (MIN 7). It is an elective for the Masters in Theology (MAT). This internship is offered pass/fail for two units.

This ECD is a reliable guide to the course design but is subject to modification. (August 2011)