PhD in Counseling Psychology Online
Online Counseling Psychology PhD Programs offer graduate students a convenient option for earning an advanced degree. If you are working or cannot relocate, finding an APA-accredited online PhD program may make sense. Distance-learning usually means that your courses are available on a web platform, and you use digital research and library tools so you can study remotely, or from wherever you have Internet. Meetings with faculty can also be done via web-based technology, and internships or externships may be coordinated through your graduate school at settings near your home. If you need the flexibility, are autonomous and eager to practice as a licensed psychologist[i], finding a PhD or PsyD program online may be advantageous.
Online Counseling Psychology PhD Programs : Basics
Depending on your personal requirements, there are accredited Online Counseling Psychology PhD and PsyD programs that either except students with a Bachelor’s Degree, a Master’s Degree or both. There may be variance in the application process for doctoral candidates between schools, but here are some things you may be asked to provide:
- Official school transcripts and prerequisite courses
- GRE standardized test results
- Current resume with contributions or work experience
- Letters of recommendation
- Personal statement
- Interview process
What Do Online Psychology Doctorate Degrees Require?
Online Counseling Psychology PhD programs typically involve a combination or coursework, research and internships. Some programs may also entail a graduate teaching experience.[ii] The average length of a doctoral program can be about 5 years of full-time study. Some programs such as the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) are geared to those interested in research, teaching or a combination of both, which is why to obtain this degree, students must research, write and
present a dissertation based on original findings. Other programs such as the Doctor of Psychology (PsyD) are oriented to students who prefer clinical practice and working with individuals, couples or groups. This type of program usually entails examinations and practicum as opposed to a dissertation.
DID YOU KNOW? Psychologists hold a doctoral degree such as a PhD or PsyD. They study both normal and abnormal functioning and treat patients with mental and emotional problems. They also study and encourage behaviors that build wellness and emotional resilience.[iii]
Potential Coursework and Degree Requirements of a PhD Counseling Psychology Online
Each Online Counseling Psychology PhD program is going to have unique features, and coursework, although there may be similarities in terms of program structure from required coursework to practicum, internship, research, then dissertation.
Potential PhD courses might include topics such as:
- Experimental procedures
- Research methodology
- Interpersonal psychology
- Ethics, laws governing counseling psychologists
- Counseling skills
- Developmental and child psychology
Finding the ‘Right’ Online Doctoral Degree in Counseling Psychology
Counseling Psychology is both a specific type of Psychology Degree as well as an umbrella for other types of Counseling doctoral degrees that may have their own licensing boards. It is important at this stage to fine tune your area of interest both in terms of potential career and because a doctoral degree involves a lot of dedicated work. Online Counseling Psychology PhD programs are available in specialized areas such as:
- Online PhD in Art Therapy
- Online PhD in Counseling and Therapy
- Online Doctor of Marriage and Family Counseling
- Online PhD in Rehabilitation Counseling
- Online PhD in Substance Abuse Counseling
Furthermore, while the PhD and PsyD are the terminal Counseling Psychology Degree options, there are a few other doctorate degrees to consider outside of psychology that might be available in these other counseling related specializations:
Doctor of Education in Counseling Psychology (EdD) An EdD in Counseling Psychology may be considered a professional teaching degree as programs focus more on applying knowledge than progressing it, and its focus on education and training make it a popular choice for those looking to teach or work in educational administration or for those who aspire to be a leader in administration in one particular area of specialization, such as the director of a chemical dependency counseling center.
Doctor of Marriage and Family Therapy (DMFT) For the graduate student who is keenly interested in working with couples or with families, either in private practice or as part of an agency, pursuing an online Doctor of Marriage and Family Therapy (DMFT) degree may be the best option for you, as it will provide you with the tools to counsel these different groups; a DMFT takes the lens of viewing patients as individuals and as part of a group that can be analyzed scientifically to arrive at scientifically valid treatment methods.
The PhD in Counselor Education/Supervision This type of doctorate degree is based upon the premise that the best counseling organizations are built with a solid infrastructure and support systems. As the holder of a PhD in Counselor Education/Supervision, you will be taught to create those systems to potentially take on a leadership and supervisory role.
Accreditation : Accredited Counseling Psychology PhD Programs Online
Students interested in Online PsyD or PhD programs should take note that while the American Psychological Association does not accredit Bachelor’s or Master’s programs or schools, they are the national accrediting authority for professional education and training in psychology. The scope of their accreditation is for doctoral graduate programs in clinical, counseling and school psychology, internship programs in professional psychology that are part of doctoral training, and postdoctoral residency programs that provide education and training in preparation for professional practice[iv].
List of Online Counseling Psychology Program Types
|Program Specialization||Common Focuses||Degree Earned|
Online PhD in Art Therapy
Psychotherapy and usage of art as a medium of holistic healing
Online PhD in Counseling and Therapy
Research methodology and academic skills or clinical pratice preparation
Online PhD in Rehabilitation Counseling
Counseling people with disabilities, mental health or addiction issues
Online PhD in Substance Abuse Counseling
Counseling victimes of abuse and addiction
Doctor of Education in Counseling Psychology Online
Teaching counseling psychology, administration of programs
Doctor of Marriage and Family Therapy
Counseling families and couples
The PhD in Counselor Education & Supervision
Administration and leadership of counseling organizations
Take the Next Step to an Online Counseling PhD
Earning an Online Counseling Psychology PhD may be an important step in the direction of your career; once licensed or certified, graduates may end up as Applied Behavior Science Specialists (ABSS), Chemical Dependency Therapists, Counseling Services Directors of Licensed Professional Counselors (LPC)[v]. If you are someone who wants to earn a doctorate degree but cannot make the commitment to a campus program, start reviewing sponsored program listings such as Online Doctor of Philosophy in Marriage and Family Therapy- Child and Adolescent Therapy, Online Doctor of Psychology – Mental Health Administration or PhD in Psychology online. Make sure to request information from the prospective universities as they all have unique features and formats.
Childhood and the teenage years are often fraught with drama and, for many, heartache. The Child and Adolescent Therapy DMFT specialization is designed to prepare you to work in therapy settings with children and adolescents, and view those interacti...
Grand Canyon University
Grand Canyon University’s Bridge to Doctor of Philosophy in Counselor Education and Supervision program is for independently licensed or associate-level licensed mental health professionals who want to teach counseling students, supervise clini...
Walden University’s Ph.D. in Psychology program combines rigorous academics and original research so that you can build the skills and knowledge required to meet the changing needs of a diverse world. This program follows a scholar-practitioner...
- Kirkland, WAKirkland, WA
Saybrook’s online hybrid clinical psychology programs are specifically focused on the knowledge, experience, and practical skills you will need to directly enter professional practice.
Liberty University Online
Liberty University’s Doctor of Philosophy in Counseling (Ph.D.) — Counselor Education and Supervision online program instructs students in advanced teaching and counseling skills. This program is ideal for those interested in progra...
Utah State University
USU has a strong history of delivering an Internet-based rehabilitation program. It is recognized as one of the leading rehabilitation counseling programs in the U.S. The program is ranked #9 by U.S. News & World Report. Take advantage of a CORE accred...
Nova Southeastern University
The primary emphasis of the D.M.F.T. degree program is different from the Ph.D. program in that it seeks specifically to produce professionals whose chief contributions will be in the clinical rather than academic sphere...
- Cambridge, MACambridge, MA
Transform individuals & communities through creativity, innovative research, and collaboration; low-residency cohort model...
In the Counseling and Social Change concentration you will prepare for your role as an advocate and change agent for the...
San Diego University For Integrative Studies
Recognizing the need to provide the best educational experience in conjunction with thelatest technology, SDUIS is among the first universities in the country to offer degrees andcertificate programs via the Internet.Course work over the Internet all...
International University of Professional Studies
Our Expressive Arts Therapy program involves the systematic use of the expressive arts (art, dance, music, poetry, movement, ritual, storytelling, drama). Historically, the expressive arts have been part of ancient healing practices and a bridge between...
Amridge University (formerly Southern Christian University)
The Ph.D. in Family Therapy degree, which has two concentrations, requires a minimum of 60 semester hours, is a rigorous research oriented degree prog...
Providing on-campus and distance education Master's Degrees in Rehabilitation Counseling.
University of West Georgia
The mission of the Professional Counseling and Supervision Program is to prepare School and Community Counselors to be proficient in professional coun...