Dec 01, 2023  
2016-2017 Academic Catalog 
2016-2017 Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Positive Psychology, M.S. (Secular Ethics & Contemplative Science Track)

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Certification as a Meditation Instructor

Students in this specialty track, by engaging in the requirements for the track, will automatically complete two of the main requirements for certification as a meditation instructor in the Cognitively-Based Compassion Training (CBCT) protocol (the first being a course in CBCT, and the second being a residential retreat in CBCT). They will also be eligible to pursue certification in other contemplative studies protocols and programs, the requirements of which will depend on the protocol in question. Certification is not guaranteed, as students will have to complete other requirements and receive approval before they can teach CBCT or any other protocol as a certified instructor. Students in this track will, however, graduate with significant qualifications that will make them well suited for instruction and research in contemplative practices.


Students will earn a Master of Science in Positive Psychology (MSPP) degree. Life University’s Master’s in Positive Psychology/Secular Ethics and Contemplative Science is a 6-quarter program. For students in this area of specialization, training in contemplative science, contemplative studies, and contemplative psychology will involve first-person engagement with contemplative and meditative practices, including popular interventions such as mindfulness meditation and Cognitively-Based Compassion Training (CBCT), in courses that involve a “meditation lab” component.

Students will develop familiarity with the emerging research on contemplative practices and their effects, particularly in the fields of psychology, neuroscience, and the health sciences. Student will learn how to develop secular interventions based on contemplative practices and traditions, and how to design research studies that evaluate such interventions in diverse settings, including educational and clinical settings.

Prerequisite Courses (Undergraduate)

  • General Psychology (recommended)
  • Research methods (recommended)
  • Statistics

Admission Requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution
  • Cumulative Grade Point Average/GPA (recommended 3.00 or higher)
  • Cover Letter of Intent
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • GRE 280 cum, 3.5 writing;
  • TOEFL 500-paper, 61-ibt, 173-comp

Course Schedule: Year 1

(Courses marked with an asterisk are taken in online/hybrid format. All others are live, on-campus.)

Summer Residential Retreat

Students in this specialty track participate in an annual residential week-long retreat, which should be completed during the summer at the end of their first year in the program, but which may in certain circumstances take place at the end of the second year. This retreat will be a teaching retreat with significant time for group and individual contemplative practice. Typically, the retreat will involve training and practice in the Cognitively-Based Compassion Training (CBCT) meditation protocol.

Course Schedule: Year 2

(Courses marked with an asterisk are taken in online/hybrid format. All others are live, on-campus.)

Total: 70-73 Quarter Credit Hours

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