Counseling psychology is essentially the application of psychology to the solving of the problems of everyday stresses, e.g, career planning, marriage guidance and family difficulties. It can be studied at masters and doctoral levels.
This page provides more information about the field, and about the contents of the degree. It also has information and links to where to study it, an outline of the career prospects, the salaries, and more. Although the information about the field is relevant to all students, this page mainly provides links to schools for students who wish to study counseling psychology online. If you wish to explore the on campus psychology programs available, go to the campus universities page.
What do you study in a counseling psychology degree online?
Counseling psychologists help people to solve interpersonal problems. To do this they use many techniques, including one-on-one interviews, group sessions and hypnosis. These are all skills that need to be learned. A good rapport between the counselor and the patient is essential for counseling sessions to be successful, so good interpersonal and communication skills are very important.
A typical counseling psychology degree would include:
- Career development
- Human growth and development
- Interpersonal communications and relationships
- Group work
- Social and cultural diversity
- Research and program evaluation
- Professional identity
Counseling psychology career requirements
For most counseling careers you need to have a relevant first degree (e.g., psychology, sociology, or education), and have successfully completed graduate level courses or a graduate degree in counseling psychology. You also need a minimum of 600 hours of supervised clinical counseling experience. This will allow you to work as a Careers Counselor, Executive Coach, Family and Marriage Counselor, or similar.
But to be licensed to practice as a counselor in the US you also need to have a master’s degree (or PhD) in counseling and up to 2,000 hours of supervised clinical internship, in addition to taking a state-administered exam.
The American Psychological Association (APA) accredits doctoral training programs in counseling, as well as institutions that provide internships for doctoral students in counseling psychology.
What are the career prospects?
As a graduate of an online counseling psychology program you would advise people on how to deal with problems of everyday living, including career or work problems and problems faced in different stages of life. You might be helping people overcome addictions and substance abuse, marriage and domestic issues. As a graduate of a counseling psychology degree you might work in K-12 education settings, hospitals, and non-profit organizations. Make sure the program you take is accredited by an accrediting body appropriate for the profession you wish to enter, such as the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP), the American Psychological Association (APA), the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT), or the Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE).
The demand for psychology counselors seems to be increasing. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data, employment of counseling professionals should grow rapidly until at least 2018. Employment for behavioral disorder counseling should increase dramatically. The greater enrollment in schools will lead to a rapid growth in numbers of school counselors.
List of schools and programs
- Bachelor of Science in Psychology program helps students prepare for careers in counseling, marketing/sales, human services, ministry, and more.
- The School of Psychology & Counseling received a 95% match rate for 4th year Psy.D. student internships in 2015.
- Programmatic accreditation for psychology programs is provided by the American Psychological Association (APA).
- Regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).
- Master of Arts in Human Services Counseling
- Doctor of Ministry in Clinical Pastoral Education
- Bachelor of Science in Psychology
- And more...
- Programs include Bachelor of Science in Human Services, Bachelor of Science in Psychology in Addiction, and more.
- Approved as an education provider by the National Association for Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors (NAADAC).
- Courses cover topics such as addiction science, assessment, prevention, and treatment.
- Students learn how to identify, plan, and use resources to help improve client situations.
- MS in Psychology - Addictions
- MS in Psychology - General Psychology
- MS in Psychology
- And more...
- Designated as a 2015 Military Friendly® School by Victory Media, publishers of G.I. Jobs®.
- Each program is designed to instill the knowledge, ethical values, and interpersonal skills of professional practice and to foster values of social responsibility.
- Offers several flexible learning options, including a blended format that combines campus and online learning.
- Several scholarship opportunities are available for students who qualify.
- Psychology (BA) (Online)
- Drug & Alcohol Treatment Specialist
As a student at South University, you will have the opportunity to learn from accomplished faculty members who have real-world experience in the subjects that they teach. Our small class sizes allow you to receive personalized attention from instructors, and the encouragement to recognize your goals for the future and the means to achieve them.
- Clinical Mental Health Counseling (MA)
- Psychology (BA)
Liberty University provides a world-class education with a solid Christian foundation, equipping men and women with the values, knowledge, and skills essential for success in every aspect of life.
A liberal arts institution with 16 colleges and schools, Liberty offers programs in fields such as medicine, religion, law, aviation, cinematic arts, psychology, business, and more. Part of the Big South Conference, Liberty fields 20 NCAA Division I athletic teams and 32 Club Sports teams, offering fans an unparalleled college sports experience.
- MA in Professional Counseling - 60 Hour
- MA in Marriage and Family Therapy
- M.Div: Pastoral Counseling
- And more...
Pursue an advanced degree in Psychology or Counseling at Divine Mercy University. Study for an M.S. online, or start your Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology on campus. Learn more now
- Online M.S. Counseling
Earn your graduate degree online with Northcentral University. We offer online programs focused on doctoral and master’s degrees in the schools of business and technology management, education, psychology and marriage and family sciences.
- MAMFT - Military Family Therapy
- Child & Adolescent Therapy - PhD In Marriage/Family Therapy
- Medical Family Therapy - PhD In Marriage/Family Therapy
- And more...
One of the world's leading private research institutions, the University of Southern California (USC) was founded in 1880. What began as an academic institution of just 53 students has now grown to more than 38,000. Today USC continues to uphold its tradition of integrating liberal and professional education, fostering a vibrant culture of public service and encouraging students to cross academic as well as geographic boundaries in their pursuit of knowledge.
- Online Master of Science in Applied Psychology