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The Department of Counselor Education offers a 60 credit hour program (20 courses) leading to the Master of Arts in Counseling: Clinical Mental Health Counseling (CMHC).  This degree fulfills the educational requirements for the two levels of licensure as professional counselors in the State of Illinois: Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC).

The Clinical Mental Health Counseling program is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). The accreditation runs through July, 2016. (Note: The Clinical Mental Health Counseling program is currently accredited under the 2001 standards for Community Counseling programs as a Community Counseling program. The CACREP 2009 standards combine the Community Counseling and Mental Health Counseling standards into standards for Clinical Mental Health Counseling programs. The counseling program intends to seek accreditation for this program as a Clinical Mental Health Counseling program when it comes up for reaccreditation, per CACREP guidelines).  Find out more information on Counselor Education’s accreditation, licensures, and credentialing.

Clinical mental health counselors are employed in settings such as mental health and community counseling agencies, chemical dependency programs, hospitals, counseling clinics, crisis centers, court services, and private business and industry.

Many students in our program have their original degrees and experience in all fields of business, education, medicine, social work, law, religion, the arts, computer technology, engineering, math and science, and other diverse fields. A number of these students have advanced degrees at the master’s and doctoral levels.

Curriculum in Clinical Mental Health Counseling
60 credit hours (20 courses).  All courses are 3 credit hour graduate courses.

  • COUN 401 Professional Orientation and Legal/Ethical Practices (3 cr)
  • COUN 402 Developmental Counseling (3 cr)
  • COUN 403 Theories of Counseling (3 cr)
  • COUN 404 Assessment and Evaluation in Counseling (3 cr)
  • COUN 405 Individual Counseling Skills (3 cr)
  • COUN 406 Group Counseling (3 cr)
  • COUN 407 Mental Health Counseling (3 cr)
  • COUN 408 Research Seminar (3 cr)
  • COUN 409 Career Development (3 cr)
  • COUN 415 Children and Youth in School and Family Systems (3 cr)
  • COUN 420 Introduction to Family Counseling (3 cr)
  • COUN 425 Addictions Counseling (3 cr)
  • COUN 427 Diagnostic Systems for Counseling (3 cr)
  • COUN 429 Psychopharmacology (3 cr)
  • COUN 430 Social and Cultural Diversity in Counseling (3 cr)
  • COUN 438 Crisis and Trauma Counseling (3 cr)
  • COUN 439 Case Conceptualization and Treatment Planning (3 cr)
  • COUN 444 Practicum: Clinical Mental Health Counseling** (3 cr)
  • COUN 464 Internship I: Clinical Mental Health Counseling** (3 cr)
  • COUN 474 Internship II: Clinical Mental Health Counseling** (3 cr)

**Clinical Experience
Practicum and Internship consists of 700 hours of documented field-related experience, of which 280 hours of face-to-face counseling is required. COUN 444 Practicum: Ethical/Legal Issues in Mental Health Counseling is a 100-hour, field-based experience requiring a minimum of 40 hours of direct contact with clients. COUN 464 Internship I: Mental Health Counseling and COUN 474 Internship II: Mental Health Counseling together consist of a 600-hour, field-based experience requiring a minimum of 240 hours of clinical contact with clients. Practicum is taken in the fall semester. Internship I is taken in the spring semester, and Internship II is taken in the summer semester.

Departmental Proficiency Examination
(DPE) All Counselor Education students are required to pass a comprehensive departmental proficiency examination (DPE) prior to graduation. This exam is offered annually in February, June, and October.

Department Website

Apply to the M.A. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program



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