Dec 01, 2023  
Loyola Marymount University Bulletin 2023-2024 
Loyola Marymount University Bulletin 2023-2024

Guidance and Counseling, M.A.

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Contact Information

Academic Program Director: Sheri Atwater

Assistant Director: Maryann Francis

Academic Advisor: Michael Cersosimo


The Master of Arts in Guidance and Counseling program is a 41-semester-hour program. It is designed for those who wish to pursue graduate training in higher education counseling and/or academic advising and who want a rigorous graduate Counseling program. Candidates wishing to obtain either the Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC) licensure or  the California Pupil Personnel Services (PPS) credential in School Counseling must apply to those specific programs.  This degree program is ideal for candidates interested in working in higher education settings in positions such as college counselors or advisors or who wish to go on to pursue doctoral-level studies in psychology, counseling, or related fields. 

Program Outcomes

As a result of this training program, students will:

  • Apply effective counseling strategies to meet the diverse academic, social, emotional, and career needs of students in post-secondary institutions
  • Counsel students in post-secondary institutions individually using appropriate theoretical approaches to address students’ academic readiness, language proficiency, cultural background, and individual development
  • Counsel students in post-secondary institutions in group settings using group facilitation skills and appropriate theoretical approaches to address students’ academic readiness, language proficiency, cultural background, and individual development
  • Evaluate post-secondary students using suitable/pertinent assessment measures based on the purpose of the measuring instrument and identified counseling need
  • Implement prevention and intervention strategies for diverse students in post-secondary institutions based on scientific research and program evaluations
  • Consult effectively with students in post-secondary institutions; with peers and colleagues; and with appropriate staff in order to improve student functioning
  • Exemplify the main dimensions of personal growth and dispositions central to successful counseling, including self-awareness, self-care, and self-reflection
  • Apply and implement the ethical codes related to the specific field of counseling within which one works (e.g., ACA Code of Ethics, ASCA ethical standards, LPCC ethical codes)

Program Admissions Requirements

  • Online Graduate Application
  • Bachelor’s Degree from a Regionally Accredited Institution in Psychology or a related field (e.g., Education, Child Development, Human Services, Communication Studies, etc.)
  • Official Transcript from all Colleges/Universities Attended, including all Community/Junior Colleges
    • Applicants who completed an undergraduate/graduate degree outside of the United States of America:
      • Official Transcript Evaluation from an approved evaluation agency that details content of coursework completed, degree equivalency, and cumulative GPA
      • Official Transcript still needs to be submitted with Transcript Evaluation
  • Cumulative Undergraduate GPA of 3.0, or 3.05 in the last 60 Undergraduate Units, a 3.0 in at least 9 Graduate Units, or Completion of a Request for Exception to GPA Requirement
  • Applicants whose citizenship is from a county where English is not the primary language:
    • TOEFL or IELTS or Duolingo English Test Minimum Scores (unless a High School Diploma or a Bachelor’s Degree was obtained in the United States)
  • 2 Letters of Recommendation
  • CTC Certificate of Clearance (COC)
  • Personal Statement of Intent addressing:
    • The characteristics the applicant possesses that he or she thinks will make him or her an effective counselor;
    • In what specific ways does the LMU Counseling Program help the applicant achieve his or her professional goals;
    • The applicant’s commitment towards preparing himself or herself to be an effective counselor, including devoting the required time and financial planning to a culminating internship in the field, a time when it is difficult and ill-advised to work full-time, and becoming active in related professional organizations (e.g., CASC, ASCA);
    • The applicant’s related work or volunteer experiences with individuals from diverse backgrounds (e.g., culture, race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, social class, and/or children/adults with disabilities);
    • The applicant’s perspective on multiculturalism and social justice, as outlined in the School of Education’s REAL conceptual framework;
    • A bulleted list (to be included at the end of Statement of Intent) indicating a) positions held, b) length of time/duration, c) supervisor name/contact information, and d) volunteer or paid positions.

Degree Requirements

Total: 41 semester hours

Additional Requirements

  • Complete 100 pre-counseling hours of skill preparation prior to enrollment in Fieldwork courses within the following:
    • EDSP 6391   Foundations of Counseling (20 hours)
    • EDSP 6362   Counseling Theories & Techniques (10 hours)
    • EDSP 6394   Helping Skills (10 hours)
    • EDSP 6378   Group Counseling (25 hours)
    • EDSP 6386   Culturally Responsive Counseling with Individuals (25 hours)
    • Your Choice Pre-Counseling Hours (10 hours)
  • Candidate Disposition Forms
    • (1) BY END OF FIRST SEMESTER: One Self-Assessment Disposition Form AND One Faculty-Assessment Disposition Form must be completed and turned in to the Counseling Program Advisor and EDSP Associate Director no later than the end of the candidate’s first semester in the Program.
    • (2) BY END OF EDSP 6386 Culturally Responsive Counseling with Individuals One Self-Assessment Disposition Form AND One Faculty-Assessment* Disposition Form must be completed and turned in to the Counseling Program Advisor and EDSP Associate Director upon your completion of EDSP 6386 Culturally Responsive Counseling with Individuals . *This Faculty Assessment MUST be completed by the candidate’s EDSP 6386 Instructor.
  • Completion of a total of 200 fieldwork hours (one semester)
  • Pre-Counseling Documentation Log (“Your choice 10 pre-counseling hours”)
  • Counseling Organization Membership
  • Proof of Liability Insurance with Counseling Organization
  • Approval of Site
  • Completion of all courses prior to enrollment in Comprehensive Exam with the exception of:
  • Application for Degree
  • All coursework must be completed within 5 years.

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