Counseling Career Path – Counseling is a job where trained counselors talk and help families, individuals, or groups overcome personal or work problems. They also help people with their education, wellbeing, mental health, and career goals.
Counseling is a very broad area of study in the United States. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) organizes counselors into different groups.
- Behavioral disorder, substance abuse, and mental health counselors
- Career and school counselors
- Family and marriage therapists
- Counselors, etc
These fields are divided into various kinds of counselors. In order to become a counselor, you need to complete a training program.
There are different types of counseling degrees that you can get at colleges and universities, either by attending classes on campus or taking online courses.
The level of education required depends on what kind of counselor the person wants to be. For example, someone who helps people with substance abuse may need a four-year college degree.
On the other hand, someone who helps people with mental health issues may need a more advanced degree. When picking a program, it’s crucial to find a school or program that has been recognized and approved.
Bachelor Degree in Counseling
The bachelor’s degree is a popular choice among students who want to study counseling. This program lasts four years and helps students get ready to work in counseling.
They can work in areas like helping people with substance abuse problems, mental health issues, behavior disorders, or family counseling. Many counseling programs offer bachelor’s degrees that can be taken online.
Online Bachelor’s Degree in Counseling
Southern New Hampshire has a program where you can study psychology online and specialize in mental health. It’s popular among students who want to become mental health counselors.
This program is cheap and convenient because you can access it online anytime. Students study topics like abnormal psychology, the different stages of human development, and methods used in counseling. This college provides various services for students who study online.
Liberty University offers an online program where students can earn a bachelor’s degree in psychology with a focus on Christian counseling. This program helps students learn how to use religious knowledge in their studies.
It also helps teachers provide students with the knowledge on how to live happy lives. This program requires earning 120 credits and can be finished in three and a half years.
Capella University has a fully online program where you can earn a bachelor’s degree in psychology with a focus on pre-counseling. Students do not need to take a GRE or a GMAT to be accepted into the program.
The course covers topics like mental disorders, introductory counseling and therapy, and advocating for different groups of people. This program helps students get ready for a job in counseling.
Associate Degree in Counseling
Out of all the degrees, the associate’s degree is the fastest to finish. It only takes two years to complete. The curriculum includes two types of classes.
The first type is about general topics like reading, writing, and math. The second type is about counseling, which is when someone helps others with their personal problems.
The counseling associate degree helps students start their careers in counseling and can be a first step towards earning a bachelor’s degree. You can get a counseling associate degree either online or by going to a school in person.
Online Associate Degree in Counseling
Brigham Young University has a program online that helps students become marriage and family therapists. The classes begin by teaching students the basic concepts of marriage and family therapy.
As students progress, they take more advanced courses that are necessary to become a marriage and family counselor. Some parts may have to be finished at the school campus.
Hood Community College offers a program in Mental Health, Social Services, and Addiction Counseling that you can complete online. It takes two years to finish. Classes in theories of counseling, math, sociology, and psychology.
This program helps students learn basic information about counseling in different areas. Students need to finish 100 units of a specific course or subject.
Maricopa College offers a program called Associate in Arts with a focus on Counseling and Applied Psychological Science. This program takes two years to complete. This program is made up of 60-64 credits.
You will learn about ethics and research methods, career and lifespan development, and counseling skills. You can also use credits to switch to a bachelor’s degree program.
Master Degree in Counseling
The counseling master’s degree is a program lasting four years. It is for people who want to work in specialized areas of counseling. For many counseling jobs that require a higher degree, students may also need to get certified and licensed.
Some certifications you can get as a counselor are Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), Certified Rehabilitation Counselor, and National Certified Counselor (NCC). You can choose to study Marriage and Family Therapy and become a MFT.
Online Master Degree in Counseling
Marquette University has a program where you can get a master’s degree in clinical mental health counseling through the internet.
The program takes three years to finish and allows students to take their time and choose when they want to complete their classes.
After finishing this program, the students will be ready to take the official exam to get their license in their state.
The University of Wisconsin Superior has an online program for a master’s degree in counseling that can be finished in just two years. You don’t need to take the GREs to get into this program.
This program for graduates has three options to choose from: Helping individuals and families with their problems, assisting people with mental health issues, or supporting students as a counselor in schools. This program helps students get ready to take the exams they need in order to get a license to work in the state they want.
Walden University has an online program where you can get a master’s degree in counseling. They have options to specialize in clinical mental health counseling or school counseling.
They also offer psychology programs that aspiring counselors can take. They also have a fast program for college students who want to get a master’s degree.
Advanced Counseling Degree
Advanced counseling degrees are higher level education programs that consist of doctoral degrees and post-graduate certificate programs.
The post-graduate programs are for people who already have a degree after completing their undergraduate studies but wish to specialize further in a specific field of counseling.
Many people who already work as counselors with a master’s degree choose to pursue a doctoral degree program.
The programs on the internet let students get a degree while also working. Doctorate degrees usually need a long research paper, project, or a final course to complete.
People who want to become counselors and are interested in doing research or teaching often choose these programs.
Online Advanced Degree in Counseling
This program is not for getting a license or becoming a professor, but it is good for people who want to work in higher positions in counseling.
Regent University has a Ph.D program that can be completed entirely online. Counseling and Psychological Studies programs don’t need GRE. The subjects we will cover in this course are statistics, psychometrics, and research.
The coursework is available for 16 weeks at a time. Candidates need to have completed a master’s degree in a mental health program from an accredited school. Students have the option to select particular classes that are related to the subjects they are interested in.
The University of the Cumberlands offers an online doctorate program in Counseling Education and Supervision. This program is perfect for counselors who want to teach college students and can be completed entirely online.
The program is designed in a way that lets students work on their coursework and dissertation at the same time while still being able to work. You can complete the degree in three years.
Counseling Career Path
Psychiatric Assistant – This person helps psychiatrists with small jobs instead of directly taking care of patients and clients. You can get this job with a degree in counseling that takes two years to complete.
Family Mediator – Family mediators are people who help families resolve conflicts. Sometimes they work with counselors who have a license, while other times they work on their own. It depends on what the state says they have to do.
Mental Health Counselor – Mental health counselors help people with mental health problems. The experts need to have a higher-level degree and official proof of being qualified.
Substance Abuse Counselor –These experts help people who have problems with drugs or alcohol. Substance abuse counselors need to have a bachelor’s degree and may need a license, depending on the rules of the state. In certain states, someone who has completed an associate’s degree can pursue this occupation.
Mental Health Supervisor – Mental health supervisors are in charge of the whole mental health facility and the counselors who work there. This job usually requires you to have a master’s degree or a doctorate degree.
Ph.D Counselor Professor – This person is able to teach counseling and psychology at colleges and universities. Counselor professors need to have a Ph.D in counseling or psychology.