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Siang-Yang Tan

Senior Professor of Psychology, Clinical Psychology Department

As senior faculty at Fuller, this professor primarily mentors students and only occasionally, if ever, teaches courses.

BA, McGill University
PhD, McGill University

Courses Taught

PC819: Clinical Interventions: Cognitive and Behavioral Therapy
PC832: Behavioral Medicine and Clinical Health Psychology
PG860/560: Training Lay Counselors in the Church
PI800/500: Introduction to Integration
PI806: Advanced Integration
PI817: Foundations of Christian Therapy

Areas of Expertise

Cognitive-behavioral therapy of anxiety, anger, and depression; behavioral medicine/health psychology; paraprofessional/lay counseling; cross-cultural psychology and counseling; integration of psychology and the Christian faith; spiritual disciplines and

“When the Spirit is involved in Christian counseling, we can expect that the therapist will evidence the fruit of the Spirit toward his or her clients and that the outcome of the therapy will be a person who is more and more exhibiting Christlike fruit.”


Dr. Siang-Yang Tan, in an interview on the role of the Holy Spirit in therapy.


Siang-Yang Tan currently serves as senior professor of psychology at Fuller’s School of Psychology & Marriage and Family Therapy, and previously was director of the PsyD (Doctor of Psychology) in Clinical Psychology program (from 1989 to 1997). He is a licensed psychologist with a PhD in Clinical Psychology from McGill University and is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association (APA). 

Dr. Tan has published articles on lay counseling and lay counselor training, intrapersonal integration and spirituality, religious psychotherapy, cognitive behavior therapy, epilepsy, pain, and cross-cultural counseling with Asians and Hispanics. His 17 books include Lay Counseling: Equipping Christians for a Helping Ministry (1991), Managing Chronic Pain (1996), Disciplines of the Holy Spirit (with Doug Gregg,1997), Exercises for Effective Counseling and Psychotherapy (with Les Parrott, 1997), Rest: Experiencing God’s Peace in a Restless World (2003), Exercises for Effective Counseling and Psychotherapy (2nd ed., with Les Parrott, 2003), Coping With Depression (revised and expanded ed., with John Ortberg, Baker, 2004), Full Service: Moving from Self-Serve Christianity to Total Servanthood (Baker, 2006), and three major textbooks, Counseling and Psychotherapy: A Christian Perspective (2nd ed.,2022), Lay Counseling (2nd ed., with Eric Scalise,2016), and Shepherding God’s People: A Guide to Faithful and Fruitful Pastoral Ministry (2019). His latest book is A Christian Approach to Counseling and Psychotherapy (2022).

He was the 1993 recipient of the Award for Contributions to Racial and Ethnic Diversity from the National Council of Schools and Programs of Professional Psychology (NCSPP), the 1999 recipient of the Distinguished Member Award from the Christian Association for Psychological Studies (CAPS) International, the 2001 recipient of the Gary R. Collins Award for Excellence in Christian Counseling from the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC), the 2002 recipient of the William Bier Award for Outstanding and Sustained Contributions from Division 36 (Psychology of Religion) of APA, and the 2011 recipient of the Distinguished Silver Award for Outstanding Influence and Leadership in the Development and Advancement of Christian Counseling Around the World, and the James E. Clinton Award for Excellence in Pastoral Care and Ministry from AACC. He also received the C. Davis Weyerhaeuser Award for faculty excellence from Fuller Theological Seminary in 2020.

He is associate editor of the Journal of Psychology and Christianity and serves or has served on the editorial boards of the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, Journal of Psychology and Theology, Christian Psychology: A Transdisciplinary Journal, and Journal of Spiritual Formation and Soul Care. He was president of Division 36 (Psychology of Religion) of the American Psychological Association from 1998 to 1999. Tan served as senior pastor of First Evangelical Church Glendale in California for more than 25 years and transitioned to the role of senior pastor emeritus in 2021. He lives in Pasadena with his wife, Angela, and they have two grown children, Carolyn and Andrew, and a granddaughter, Brooklyn. He is originally from Singapore.

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