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. Counseling psychology degree programs can be studied at masters and doctoral levels.
This page provides more information about the field, and about the contents of the degrees. It also has information and links to where to study it, an outline of the career prospects, the salaries, and more.
What do you study in these programs?
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 with a counseling psychology degree?
As a graduate of a 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
- Addictions and Community Services Worker
- Addictions and Community Services Worker
The Chicago School is a not-for-profit, regionally accredited institution with more than 4,285 students at campuses across the country and online. TCSPP has been an innovator in the field of psychology and related behavioral science for more than 30 years. TCSPP offers more than 20 degree programs and a wealth of opportunities for international experiences.
- M.A. Counseling Psychology
- M.A. Clinical Mental Health Counseling
- Ph.D. Counselor Education and Supervision
- And more...
- Addictions Recovery Support for Youth and Families
Since 1977, Keiser University has maintained a practical, hands-on approach to career-focused education to help our students achieve their personal and professional goals. Our student-centered approach remains at the foundation of the Keiser University mission and continues to attract students who prefer a more personal learning experience.
- Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
Pacific Oaks College values the experience students bring with them into the classroom. Our faculty will help you fuse your personal and professional experiences with new theories and concepts in a variety of fields.
Pacific Oaks is a nonprofit, accredited higher education institution offering bachelor's-completion, master's, and certificate programs in human development, counseling, education, early childhood education, and teacher credentialing.
- B.A. Community Psychology
The path to a brighter future isn’t always clear. We face roadblocks and detours. Sometimes, we make a wrong turn and get lost. No matter where you are in your journey, Baker College can help you move forward to a rewarding career.
At Baker College, we know the importance of a quality education. We are regionally accredited with award-winning faculty. We will be there every step of the way so you can get where you’re going.