ICPCC Post Conference Evaluation

12th International Council on Pastoral Care and Counseling (ICPCC) Congress on July 3-6, 2023, In Potchefstroom, South Africa


A post-conference evaluation survey was designed to gather feedback from participants of the 12th International Council on Pastoral Care and Counseling (ICPCC) Congress held from July 3-6, 2023, in Potchefstroom, South Africa. The survey was administered using Google Forms, a widely recognized and user-friendly online survey tool.

Survey Structure:

The survey consisted of 10 questions, designed to capture both quantitative and qualitative feedback from the participants. The questions were structured around the following themes:

  1. Value of the Conference: Assessing the impact of the conference in enhancing participants’ knowledge and understanding of pastoral care and global issues related to pastoral care and counselling.
  2. Personal Growth: Understanding how participants’ presentations or participation contributed to their personal and professional growth in the field of pastoral care and counselling.
  3. Conference Experience: Gathering insights on how the conference presentations influenced attendees’ perspectives and understanding.
  4. Future Recommendations: Collecting suggestions and advice for enhancing the productivity and effectiveness of future ICPCC conferences.
  5. Quality Assessment: Evaluating the quality of speakers and presenters, the venue, and the overall organisation and management of the conference.
  6. Interaction and Discussion: Assessing the adequacy of time allocated for discussions and interactions during the conference.
  7. Areas of Improvement: Identifying key areas that need attention and improvement for subsequent conferences.
  8. Overall Rating: Capturing an overall impression and rating of the conference from the participants.


The survey consisted of 10 questions, which covered the following themes:

  1. How valuable was the conference in advancing your knowledge of pastoral care and understanding issues related to pastoral care and counselling around the world?
  2. To what extent has your presentation/participation at this conference increased your knowledge in your area of pastoral care and counselling?
  3. Describe how attending the conference presentation changed you.
  4. What advice do you have for future ICPCC conferences to make it more productive?
  5. Give you impressions on the quality of speakers/presenters.
  6. Give your impressions on the avenue.
  7. Give your impressions on conference organisation, coordination, and management.
  8. Give your impressions on allocated discussion & interaction time.
  9. Reflect on the conference and list two areas that need to be improved in the next conference.
  10. Give an overall rating of the conference.


The survey was distributed to all attendees of the ICPCC Congress, ensuring a comprehensive collection of feedback from a diverse group of participants, including speakers, presenters, and attendees.

Data Analysis:

Once the survey was closed, responses were exported from Google Forms and analysed to identify patterns, trends, and areas of improvement. Both quantitative data (e.g., ratings) and qualitative data (e.g. open-ended responses) were analysed. Quantitative data was analysed using descriptive statistics, while qualitative data was reviewed to identify common themes and sentiments.


Question 1    Global understanding and knowledge of pastoral care?

                                         Rating of: 5 (highest rating): 13 / 62%; 4 (next highest): 7/33%; 3 (neutral) 1/4.8%


Question 2: Extent conference increased your knowledge?

Rating of: 5 (highest rating): 5/ 23%; 4 (next highest): 14/66.7%%; 3 (neutral)  2/9.6%

Question 3:  How has conference attendance changed you?

Rating of: 5 (highest rating): 7 / 33%;  4 (next highest): 11/52%;  3 (neutral) 3/14%



Question 4:  Advice for us to make future conferences more productive?

To allow enough time for reflection groups and lectures in the mornings and at enough time for break during lunch time
More time for interaction and discussion
No advice as I found the conference to be productive as it was.
The only thing I can mention is the structure of the council meeting. The meeting seemed a bit unstructured and unplanned.
I had subscribed to attend online. I would like to receive the documents of the Conference if possible. Thank you
The structure and programme of ICPCC Conference 2023 worked well so repeating this at the next conference will be great.
The focus on social change and justice was significant. Not sure how it could have been more productive. Impact was significant.
Regional reports on the same theme that are publicized in advance by the planning committee.
Meeting should be done yearly
South Africa done well. Like in Malacca give more attention to the Keynote address and a response from the scholar in the field. I responded to the Keynote address by Vhumani in Malacca.
This was a winning recipe
See below
It was very good.
More time for reflection on presentations
It would be nice if members could bring the next generation.
More time in small groups, which should not be much bigger than 5 persons.
I thought it was a wonderful conference.
It was very meaningful to host the conference in South Africa to think of intersection between pastoral care counseling and social disparity/injustice. Thank you very much for your hard work to welcome us in South Africa. Next time, it would be more grateful to invite multi-faith chaplains (like Muslim chaplains, Buddhist Chaplains etc) if it is allowed.
A little more space in the schedule for free time would be most welcomed to give our brains and body a rest in between such stimulating meetings and also would allow for time to meet up with others beyond meal times.
One day longer? More structured time in the evenings, after the evening meal, for group discussions, exchange of pastoral clinical experiences, insights etc. Many participants had an enormous amount of experience and reflections, but were too modest to talk much about it and anyhow, time was short. A real election process, where all are involved, have a preknowldge of the candidates etc etc. Each conference day has 24 hours and we can sleep when we get home.

Question 5: Quality of Speakers?

Rating of: 5 (highest rating): 13 / 62%; 4 (next highest): 6/28%; 3 (neutral) 2/9.6%

Question 6:  Quality of Venue?

Rating of: 5 (highest rating): 18 / 85.7%; 4 (next highest): 2 / 9.6%; 3 (neutral) 1 / 4.8%

Question 7: Conference organization, coordination & management?

Rating of: 5 (highest rating): 17 / 81%; 4 (next highest): 3 / 14%; 3 (neutral) 1/4.8%



Question 8:   Time Allocated for Discussion & Interaction?

Rating of: 5 (highest rating): 8 / 38%; 4 (next highest): 6 / %;28.6 3 (neutral) 1/4.8%

Question 9:

Have time in the afternoon and enough time for reflections
After the end of the conference, a whole day can be left open for those who will want to reflect and relax from the back to back nature of the conference. This should be an option.
Whilst grateful for the generous portions of food served, there was a lot of it.
More academic presentations; More time for Q and A. .
I had subscribed to attend online. I would like to receive the documents of the Conference if possible. Thank you
All areas worked well. Congratulations and thank you so much!
To be such a loosely organized association if that is what we are I think the quality was excellent all the way round. I like the presentations, discussion and small group time. Not sure I would change what has worked for so many of the past conferences.
1. To enhance regional communication in between conferences, esp. in Asia-Pacific 2. To encourage greater participation from the younger generation primarily online
More time for discussion and group activities
Give enough time and complete full days/ We tried to short cut some programmes during the last two days. I had prepared a meditation on the suffering people in Manipur in India… did not get a chance to do what I planned for a number of days. You can check my emails
1. Greater participation from other denominations, and countries. 2. Some kind of planned divine service and / or church visits would have been nice as a complement. 3. A visit to a hospital or another institution, experiencing some practical pastoral work etc. would also have been interesting.
There was great hospitality! Sometimes we need more time to be also with oneself to process; I liked the spontanious worship service, that helped to “come down” into the presence of God and feel the oecumenical community and Spirit. We may not loose this. .
No good idea, as situations differ a lot
1. It would be good to have non-Christian chaplains. 2. Introduction of each country would be nice.
I was very satiesfied and do not see the need for improvement. Thank you so much for your good work!
Maybe a little more interaction time
It was the first time to participate the conference for me and the conference was very inspiring. I would like to invite my friends of chaplains (mainly Buddhist or Shintoist) to the next conference if it is permitted, because it is very important to interact chaplains from different cultural/religious background to cultivate our knowledge and skills. I respect ICPCC history and culture truly, and I wish I could invite chaplains from different religious background.
The online presentation from Prof. Thesnaar was a little difficult to understand and it was very packed full so I wanted to be able to understand what he was saying better. I know it isn’t always possible for speakers to be in person but that would be ideal. I appreciated the time of breaking into the small groups for response after the speakers and then coming back to the large group to report. Perhaps mix up the groups each time to give us more opportunity to hear from different people.
Group time. Election process. I should have wanted to give an overall rating of 10, didn’t because of the above comments, but I still am extremely thankfull for having been allowed to participate and for the religious, pastoral clinical and purely human input.

Question 10:   Overall Rating?

Rating of: 10. (highest rating): 8. / 38%; 9. (next highest);  8.  4 / 19%;  7.  2 / 9.6%;  5. 1 / 4.8%