The Master of Arts in Education (M.A.Ed.) in Professional School Counseling (PSC) is a 60-credit hour, graduate degree program housed in the Department of Counseling located in the College of Health Sciences. The PSC program is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Education Programs (CACREP) and the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). Our program is designed to prepare and mentor graduate students to become committed, collaborative, and competent professional school counselors. Through a variety of teaching formats (i.e., online, hybrid, face-to-face), graduate students develop core competencies necessary to serve ALL students (k-12) in elementary, middle, and secondary schools. Our students acquire knowledge, attitudes, and skills required to promote social/emotional, academic, and career development through intentional methods such as advocacy, use of evidence-based practices, and data collection. Through experiential activities, students learn how to develop and deliver comprehensive school counseling programs including direct (i.e., individual and small group counseling) and indirect (i.e., consultation) services aimed at promoting student success and life-long learning. The American School Counseling Association (ASCA) Ethical Standards and American Counseling Association (ACA) Code of Ethics are used as guides in developing and delivering the program’s curriculum. For more information, please visit the UNCP 2019-2020 Catalog - PSC Program Information
Our program is approved by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI) and meets NC Professional School Counseling Standards. Graduates are licensed by NCDPI as advanced graduate (specialist) in K-12 school counseling which can result in additional pay beyond the master's level (dependent upon current NC legislation/State Board policy). Our graduates also seek certifications through the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC). While our program prepares students for professional school counseling, plans of study also meet current requirements for licensure by the NC Board of Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselors. Graduates go on to pursue careers in a variety of professional counseling settings.
What do Professional School Counselors do?
Professional School Counselors develop comprehensive counseling programs designed to serve the unique needs of students, families of students, teachers, and administrators at the school level. They provide consultation to school staff and parents, make appropriate community-based referrals, and conduct individual and small group counseling sessions as well as classroom guidance. Using needs assessments, data collection, program evaluation, advisory boards, and collaboration with all stakeholders, school counselors develop and implement curriculum geared to promote academic, social/emotional, and career development for ALL students. School counselors are systemic change agents and advocate for students, policy change, and their role in schools. Professional School Counselors work in elementary, middle, and high schools preparing students for life-long learning and success through career and college access.
Program-Specific Admission Requirements
In addition to The Graduate School and Research admissions requirements: 1. Submit an essay detailing: a) relevant experiences and career goals and b) qualities and skills possessed that will lead to becoming an effective professional school counselor; 2. Submit three letters of recommendation from individuals with whom the applicant has professional affiliation, such as former faculty members or current supervisors; 3. Complete a brief electronic supplemental skills survey; and 4. Participate in an interview with program faculty.
Requirements for M.A.Ed. in Professional School Counseling
Sem. Hrs Core Counseling Courses 27
CNS 5000 Professional & Ethical Issues
CNS 5050 Counseling Skills & Techniques
CNS 5500 Research and Program Evaluation
CNS 5400 Theories of Counseling
CNS 5700 Career Counseling & Development
CNS 5025 Lifespan Development
CNS 5100 Groups in Counseling
CNS 5600 Assessment Practices in Counseling
CNS 5800 Multicultural & Social Justice Counseling
Specialty Area and Elective Courses 24
CNS 5350 The Professional School Counselor
CNS 5550 Seminar in School Counseling
CNS 5750 College & Career Readiness
CNS 5250 Counseling Children & Adolescents
CNS 5310 Mental Health Issues in Childhood & Adol.
CNS 5060 Crisis Intervention
Select two elective courses from:
*CNS 5650 School Counselor as Leader, Adv., & Consult.
*CNS 5760 Legal Aspects of Educational Leadership
*CNS 5770 Evidence-Based School Counseling
*CNS 5780 The Achievement Gap & Social Justice
CNS 5360 Diagnosis and Treatment Planning,
CNS 5080 Gender and Sexuality Issues in Counseling,
CNS 5850 Theory and Process of Family Counseling,
CNS 5070 College Counseling and Student Affairs,
CNS 5870 The Family and Addiction,
CNS 5900 Addictions Counseling,
CNS 5810 Introduction to Play Therapy,
CNS 5820 Play Therapy Theories and Techniques,
CNS 5830 Play Therapy for Specific Challenges,
CNS 5840 Filial and Family Play Therapy, or
CNSS 5xxx Special Topics in Counseling
(* HIGHLY RECOMMENDED)
Clinical Field Placement Courses 9
CNS 6100 School Counseling Practicum
CNS 6130 School Counseling Internship I
CNS 6130 School Counseling Internship II
Total Program Hours