Masters in Counseling and Therapy programs offers students the opportunity to learn counseling modalities cultivate expertise in working with different populations, and understand techniques for helping people cope with issues. This can mean giving career advice, guiding someone who is dealing with tragedy, addiction, abuse, mental illness, or physical disability. In order to become a licensed professional counselor (LPC) or licensed marriage and family therapist (LMFT) in the United States, earning a Master’s degree in counseling is part of the process[i]. With the different paths to choose in the field of Counseling and Therapy, it is important to evaluate each graduate program against your interests and ambitions.
Masters in Counseling Program Basics
Masters in Counseling and Therapy degrees prepare aspiring licensed professional counselors with knowledge base and methodology to help people experiencing emotional or behavioral problems or suffering from mental health disorders. Prospective applicants to a Counseling Master’s Program typically include a Bachelor’s degree in a related field, GPA scores set by the university, personal essay, reference letters, MAT or GRE scores, and possibly, liability insurance. That being said, some colleges offer a dual degree program where students can earn a Bachelor’s and a Master’s in 5 years[ii]. Earning a Master’s degree in counseling is part of a longer process towards state licensure. Most Counseling Masters Programs take about 2 years of full-time study to complete.