The Master of Buddhist Counselling programme offers quality training on Buddhist
teaching-based counselling knowledge and skills by means of
interdisciplinary learning and contemplative practice. Buddhist
counselling students are held to high standards of knowledge of
Buddhist teachings, counselling skills, ethics, self-introspection, and
awareness. In particular, a significant portion of courses will focus
on guiding students to apply Buddhist teachings in counselling. Using
this training model, students will participate in group discussions,
conduct role playing of counselling sessions, develop mindfulness
practices, apply Buddhist counselling techniques in daily lives, and
become involved in other experiential activities.
Feature of MBC - A Unique Programme Motivated by Compassion
A Programme Motivated by Compassion
The MBC programme is not a conventional psychology programme providing training in Buddhist-derived psychological interventions. Instead, it is a Buddhist Counselling programme based on core Buddhist teachings and practices as explicated in classical Buddhist scriptures. Students will receive training in delivering traditional Buddhist counselling as a holistic, structural, and transformative process of helping. Motivated by compassion, the MBC is a distinctive training opportunity for students to gain insights into deeper issues of human suffering and develop skillful means to alleviate suffering in self and others.
First of Its Kind
In a dearth of Buddhist counselling services and the demand for ethical and professional services for individuals affiliated with Buddhism, the Buddhist Counselling programme is designed to train ethical and competent Buddhist counselling practitioners to provide compassionate services for individuals and communities in Hong Kong. In comparison to the Master of Buddhist Studies programme, MBC programme aims to put forth the theoretical studies of Buddhist teachings into practice by equipping students with pragmatic Buddhist teaching-based counselling skills and fostering spiritual formation.
Reflective and Contemplative Learning
Spiritual reflection and formation is a strong emphasis of the programme because these endeavours can foster awareness, compassion and wisdom to face challenges of life, dissolve barriers that perpetuate one¡¦s suffering, and enhance ones¡¦ ability to connect with others. Due to these reasons, students are highly encouraged to find and develop their spiritual direction, apply their learnings in real life situations, and cultivate compassion for self and others.
The programme is intended for individuals with basic knowledge in
Buddhist Studies who would like to study how Buddhist counselling adds
a new dimension to their daily work. The curriculum is designed to
support a wide range of career paths, including healthcare
professionals, helping professionals, educational professionals,
officers from disciplinary forces, and any other persons who are
interested in the study of Buddhist counselling for personal
The basic qualification necessary for admission to the programme includes:
(a) Holding a Bachelor¡¦s degree with honours from this University or an
equivalent qualification from comparable institutions.
(b) Satisfactorily completed BSTC6079 Early Buddhism: a doctrinal
exposition and BSTC6002 Mahayana Buddhism in the HKU Master of Buddhist
Studies programme, or courses of Buddhist studies offered by another
comparable institution accepted for this purpose.
Applicants who do not fulfil (a) and/or (b) above may be invited to
attend the ¡§Buddhist Studies Foundation Course (BSFC)*¡¨ or take a
qualifying examination. They will be considered for admission if they
have satisfactory performance in the BSFC/qualifying examination.
*The BSFC is designed for selected MBC applicants who have not
fulfilled the prerequisites in Buddhist Studies. The course aims to
equip students with fundamental Buddhist knowledge to prepare them for
the study of Buddhist counselling. Course details will be provided to
selected applicants after initial short-listing.
Applicants who wish to be admitted to the programme on the basis of a
qualification from a university or a comparable institution outside
Hong Kong where the language of teaching and/or examination is NOT
English are required to obtain:
1. A score of 550 or above (paper-based test) or 80 or above
(internet-based test) in the Test of English as a Foreign Language
(TOEFL). Applicants who take the TOEFL should request the Educational
Testing Service (ETS) to send an official score report to the
University (Institution code: 9671) directly. Original/certified copy
of the Examinee¡¦s score record will not be accepted; OR
2. A minimum overall band of 6 with no subtest lower than 5.5 in the
International English Language Testing System (IELTS)
Note: The TOEFL or IELTS result should be obtained within the two years
before the date of application.
Full-time (1 year)
Part-time (2 years)
Classes are mainly conducted on weekday evenings and weekends.
Students are required to take eight courses to complete the whole
programme. Therefore, full-time students normally need to take four
courses, and part-time students two courses, each semester.
Each core/elective course usually consists of three consecutive
teaching hours per week. The number of teaching weeks in each semester
varies, but normally there should be around 10-13 teaching weeks per
Candidates will complete eight courses including three core courses,
four elective courses, and one course for capstone experience.
1. Core Courses
Theories and practice in Buddhist counselling I
Theories and practice in Buddhist counselling II
Spiritual formation through contemplative practices
2. Elective courses
Awareness training program
Being with the elderly, sick, and dying
Buddhist homiletics: the art of presenting Buddhist teachings
Buddhist liturgy and rituals
Special topics in Buddhist counselling (1)
Special topics in Buddhist counselling (2)
3. Course for Capstone Experience
The capstone experience project is compulsory and can be conducted in the following forms:
(a) Contemplative learning in Buddhism;
(b) Autobiography paper guided by Buddhist teachings;
(c) Buddhist homiletics; or
(d) Buddhist counselling case study
Students from the MBC programme will be provided with options to select
elective courses from the Master of Social Sciences (Counselling)
programme. Teachers from the Master of Social Sciences (Counselling)
programme may also serve as the co-supervisor in the Capstone
Experience if the area of study is relevant. The selection of
cross-listed courses and co-supervision of Capstone Experience should
be subject to the approval of the Programme Director/Chairman of the
two respective programmes.
(The course list above is subject to change.)
The MBC course outline,
time-table and other course details for 2019-20 will be available in
The course information for the current academic year is available below
for your reference. You may also click HERE to access more course details this year.
Full-time (1 year): HK$100,000
Part-time (2 years): HK$50,000 per annum
¡§MaMa Charitable Foundation Postgraduate Scholarship in Buddhist
Counselling¡¨ is available for application. More information will be
in January 2019.
(The course fee and scholarship above
is subject to the University¡¦s approval)