A school counselor is a person who provides guidance expertise and services at the elementary, secondary and post-secondary level. In the United States licensure requirements as regards school counselors vary. Most states require that one has a school counseling masters in order to be a recognized school counselor for that state.
A masters in this field can enable you to enter an interesting and rewarding profession. Many people prefer to take their program online because of the convenience, e.g., you don’t have to leave work, you can study in the comfort of your own home, you don’t have to travel. This page provides more details of both online and on campus programs, lists suitable schools for these programs, and outlines the career prospects after graduation.
What do you study?
In general the program will provide you with the educational background and the necessary professional preparation in being able to provide counsel services to children and adolescents in the educational and social spheres. By taking these courses, one will also be exposed to classes and training on the psychological development of children, how to counsel multicultural adolescents and children as well as theories and applications. Hands on experiences are provided through the attendance of seminars and supervised experience at participating local schools.
Should you be interested in taking up a school counseling masters degree, there are necessary prerequisites. All graduate schools do require you to have finished an undergraduate degree. Some graduate schools are more specific, requiring an undergraduate degree in education, counseling or child psychology. Depending on experience and exposure, most if not all require candidates to complete a GRE examination and submit their respective transcripts.
Once you are admitted, coursework focuses on the both theoretical and practical aspects of counseling provision. Counseling courses and subjects provided provided cover techniques, theories, how to counsel groups, developmental psychology, basics for both individuals and schools, curriculum organization and how to administer counseling programs.
Gaining and earning the final masters degree in this field may sometimes require a final thesis, project or long paper. Depending on the university one is enrolled with, some students gain their degrees by only submitting a portfolio prior to their graduation. Thus requirements may differ across schools and campuses.
What are the career prospects with a school counseling masters?
Once you have completed your graduate requirements and finally hold that graduate degree in your hand, what can you expect in terms of school counseling jobs and salary? According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics data of 2008, counselors held about 665,500 positions, with an expected job growth for this field of14% before 2018. This is basically a faster demand than most jobs currently offered. Median annual incomes are not bad either, with the median annual salary for a school counselor in 2008 ranging around USD 57,800 or roughly USD 4,816 a month.
Thus with the expected double digit demand for counselor related jobs, and the apparently attractive salary structure, it is quite practical and recommended to get more training in this field as regards a masters degree. One must remember however that state regulations for licensure, acceptance and placements differ so you needs to do a bit of research and forecasting on where you wants to be once you finish the degree. All in all, a career in school counseling is well worth it.
List of schools and programs
Pioneering distance education since 1985, Liberty University is now the nation’s seventh largest university. With more than 300 online and residential areas of study, Liberty offers programs from the certificate to doctoral level.
- M.Ed. - School Counseling
- MA in Professional Counseling - 60 Hour
- MA in Marriage and Family Therapy
Capella combines outstanding academics with a supportive faculty and staff in a program designed for working adults.
An education that blends theory and practice to fuel your career
- MS - School Counseling (CACREP-accredited)
- MS - Educational Psychology
- MS - Clinical Counseling
- And more...
As a community of initiative, University of the Southwest challenges graduates to become enterprising members of our society contributing to the common good by advocating and participating in the productive commerce of free enterprise, the constitutional privilege of self-government, and the practical contributions of community service.
- MSEd: School Counseling
- Which career path will you take – Business, Nursing, Education, Psychology? Something else? GCU offers more than 100 majors to get you started!
- Colangelo College of Business: Features more than 25 programs from the bachelor through the master's level, including several high-demand MBA programs and an accelerated accounting degree.
- College of Nursing and Health Care Professions: Rich 25-year history providing outstanding health care and nursing degree programs, including an RN to BSN program & master's in nursing degrees.
- College of Education: Whether you are looking to start or advance your career as a teacher or administrator, GCU offers bachelor’s and master’s in education degrees in key areas.
- College of Humanities and Social Sciences: Provides a job focused education and features a variety of programs from counseling and psychology to justice studies, history and English literature.
- Does something else interest you? GCU also offers programs in Doctoral Studies; Theology; Science, Engineering & Technology; and Fine Arts & Production. Speak with an enrollment counselor today!
- M.S. in Professional Counseling with an Emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy
- M.S. in Christian Counseling
- M.S. in Professional Counseling with an Emphasis in Childhood and Adolescence Disorders
- And more...
At Kaplan University, we offer over 180 degree and certificate programs. With three different ways to learn, you can choose the format that works best for you:
- Study wherever you have an Internet connection, because almost all of our courses are 100% online, or
- Take campus-based classes(with day and evening options available), or
- Combine campus learning with online classes (blended).
- Master of Science in Psychology : Applied Behavior Analysis
- Master of Science: Psychology
- Master of Science in Psychology : General Psychology
Regent University prepares students with the knowledge to excel and the faith to live with purpose. Our 20,000 alumni, from more than 110 countries, are changing the world as accomplished professionals. Named a top-15 school nationally for online bachelor's programs (U.S. News & World Report, 2015), Regent is among the most affordable undergraduate Christian colleges (CCCU 2015). Fully accredited, challenging programs are available online and on campus. New classes begin every eight weeks.
- Master of Science in General Psychology
- Master of Arts in Marriage, Couple & Family Counseling
The Chicago School is a not-for-profit, accredited institution with more than 4,285 students at campuses across the country (Chicago, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C.) and online. TCSPP has been an innovator in the field of psychology and related behavioral science for more than 30 years. TCSPP offers more than 20 degree programs and a wealth of opportunities for international experiences.
- MA Behavioral Economics
- M.A. Psychology
- M.A. International Psychology
- And more...
Earn your graduate degree online with Northcentral University. We offer online programs focused on doctoral and master’s degrees in the schools of business and technology management, education, psychology and marriage and family sciences.
- MAMFT - LGBTQ Couple and Family Therapy
- MAMFT - Military Family Therapy
- MAMFT - Child and Adolescent Family Therapy
- And more...
Established in 1897, Bradley University is a private, independent institution of higher learning in Peoria, Illinois. Inspired by our founder, notable philanthropist Lydia Moss Bradley, we pursue excellence in teaching, research, scholarship and service; and we celebrate leadership, integrity, diversity and collaborative learning. Today, we offer an impressive array of more than 130 undergraduate, graduate and continuing education programs across five colleges and the Graduate School.
- Online Master of Arts in Counseling - Professional School Counseling (PSC)
Founded in 1959, California Lutheran University's dedicated, accomplished faculty works with small classes of students who are open-minded—and are seeking to grow as individuals. Everyone at Cal Lutheran is committed to helping each student pursue their passions to discover their purpose, and follow that purpose to transform their community—and the world.
- M.S. in Counseling Psychology
- M.S. in Clinical Psychology