Master of Arts in Counseling
The Master of Arts in Counseling program prepares you to succeed as a counselor in diverse educational, community, private, and non-profit settings. This is a 60-semester-hour program designed for those who intend to pursue Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC) certification. Graduates of the MA in Counseling Program are eligible to apply to the Board of Behavioral Sciences (BBS) for Professional Clinical Counselor Intern (PCCI) status. As a PCCI, you would then complete 3,000 hours of work and pass 2 national exams to receive LPCC status. There are 4 specialization options for LPCC eligibility:
School Counseling: For candidates who desire to work in a K-12 school setting. You will gain experiences that include individual counseling, group and educational counseling, career and college counseling, teacher consultation, and prevention programming. The completion of this specialization will also result in eligibility to receive a Pupil Personnel Services Credential for the State of California. This program is approved by the State of California Commission on Teacher Credentialing and the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education.
Community Mental Health Counseling: For candidates who desire to work in a community mental health settings or outpatient hospital settings. You will gain experiences offering mental health counseling to clients from a variety of age groups and presenting with a variety of clinical issues. Additional experiences may include group counseling, assessment, and family counseling.
Multicultural and Social Justice Counseling: For candidates who are interested in gaining experiences in counseling settings that offer traditional (e.g., individual mental health counseling) and nontraditional counseling services (e.g., homeless shelter, domestic violence shelter, group home). In addition, students in this specialization track are more likely to aspire to work for a nonprofit agency.
Doctoral Preparatory: For candidates who are interested in obtaining a Master's degree that will prepare them for a doctoral program. Students will gain experiences (e.g., doctoral application strategies, applied counseling and psychotherapy research, etc.) aimed to facilitate their acceptance to a doctoral program in professional psychology.
1. Completion of the Graduate Division application form, submitted directly to the Graduate Admissions Office.
2. Two official copies of transcripts from all colleges/universities attended, sent directly to the Graduate Admissions Office.
3. Cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0; or a 3.05 GPA in the last 60 semester hours of undergraduate course work taken or a 3.0 GPA in at least 9 semester hours of graduate level coursework is required. An appeal may be made to the Exceptions Committee.
4. A letter of application (intent) to the Academic Program Director in which the following issues are addressed:
a. Why the applicant wants to be a counselor;
b. characteristics the applicant possesses that he or she thinks will make him/her an effective counselor;
c. the applicant's commitment towards preparing himself/herself to be an effective counselor (e.g., devote the required time to an internship; become active in related professional organizations); and
d. a summary of experience with culturally diverse individuals.
5. Two letters of recommendation. Forms may be accessed in the online application.
6. Certificate of Clearance (COC): Completion of fingerprint clearance (Livescan) process through the Department of Justice (DOJ) and FBI must occur prior to enrollment in first semester classes. Fingerprint applications are available on the School of Education website.
7. Interview and approval by Academic Program Director or Assistant Director.
8. After steps 1-7 above have been completed, the candidate's file will be reviewed for provisional or controlled admission. Under these designations, candidates are able to enroll in their first semester of coursework.
9. Completion of the CBEST no later than the end of the first semester of enrollment and before fieldwork assignment. The CBEST is not required for those students pursuing the Master degree without the PPS credential. Intern candidates must pass CBEST prior to beginning the internship program.
10. Signed Candidate Disposition Forms from two full-time faculty members in the School of Education with whom the candidate has had courses are required before a candidate is granted Formal Admission.
11. All entering candidates should first enroll in
. Candidates will be reviewed for formal acceptance upon completion of this course and steps 1-10 above.
12. Basic Computer Skills: All applicants must verify that they have basic computer skills that are necessary for success in the School of Education. Applicants may either verify their skills by signing a self-verification form provided by the School of Education or take EDUX 846, Basic Computer Skills of Educators, during their first year.
13. Prior to beginning fieldwork, candidates must verify 100 clock hours in a "practica" experience (e.g., shadowing a counselor, observing classroom instruction, attending school-based meetings, peer counseling, personal or group counseling experiences). Eighty of these hours are accumulated in the required course work.