Career After Completing School Counselor Degree Online

Online School Counseling Degree

Working as a school counselor may be something you are interested in doing. However, before you may be able to jump in and help students with their educational and other needs, you may need to complete core education. Many times, this means completing a master’s degree program. You may take several educational paths to reach this career path and numerous things you need to know before you get started.

How Do You Become a School Counselor?

Each state sets specific requirements for those who wish to work as a licensed school counselor. In many situations, you may have to complete a master’s degree in education or another field that is close to it. Some may also be able to complete their master’s degree in a field such as social work, school leadership, or psychology. Once you complete the necessary and required education based on state laws, then you may need to complete a licensing test if you do not already have one.

Many students may complete a bachelor’s degree in psychology or education. They then could complete their graduate degree in counseling. However, there are various paths that may help to meet your goals.

 

What Is a School Counselor Career?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) provides some insight into what a school counselor career is and what to expect from it. These counselors may help students in a variety of areas, including academic and social skill development. Also, they may provide career counseling and support depending on the path the student takes with their education. They may work in public and private schools, typically. They may work at all levels of education as well.

How much does a school counselor make?

According to the BLS, those working as a school counselor or advisor earned a median pay of $60,510 per year in 2021. To begin their degree, those working in this field obtained a master’s degree. It’s also important to know that this field is growing. The BLS states that from 2020 to 2030, the job outlook for a school counselor may grow by 11 percent or a need for 37,000 more qualified individuals. That is a faster rate than is considered average across all jobs.

Top States for Employment for Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists
StateEmploymentAnnual Mean Wage
California18,250$94,670
New York11,380$86,410
Texas6,250$64,990
Pennsylvania4,800$73,430
Illinois3,990$69,980

Bureau of Labor Statistics

What does a school counselor do?

School counselors may work with students of all ages and grade levels. This may include helping elementary students with problems, whether social or academic. In high school, they may work to help students with college preparation, including helping them to prepare for standardized testing, college applications, and scholarship searches. In some situations, they may also provide mental health support for students in either of these areas. School counselors may also be present on many college campuses, though they may be called advisors based on the type of work they do.

The role of a school counselor may differ from one school to another because of the job requirements. However, for those that enjoy working with and supporting people, especially those in elementary and high school, this type of work may be very rewarding.

Many times, the success a student has is dependent on their access to support services as well as guidance. The job of a school counselor, then, is to help support those students’ needs in any way that is possible. The role of a school counselor may be in providing support for a person’s emotional and social needs as well as academic needs. They may also help students explore interests and work on career options, so they may be able to take courses that prepare them for their field.

  • Some of the nation’s most affordable tuition rates, from a private, nonprofit, NEASC accredited university
  • Qualified students with 2.5 GPA and up may receive up to $20K in grants & scholarships
  • Multiple term start dates throughout the year. 24/7 online classroom access

What Are the Duties of a School Counselor?

The duties a school counselor engages in depend on many factors but are typically related to supporting the social, emotional, and academic needs of a student. They may work one-on-one with students while also working with parents and teachers to help improve communication and support the specific needs of each person.

Some of the duties that a school counselor may have on a routine basis include:

  • Identifying issues that may be impacting the student’s school performance, such as missing too many classes
  • Helping students to develop skills that are key to their academic success, such as studying habits or better communication skills
  • Addressing any type of behavioral or social problems that arise and are related to the school environment or a student’s ability to learn
  • Assessing a student’s abilities and interests, sometimes to help them to choose courses or prepare for long-term career or college goals
  • Providing individual counseling to support the specific needs of the student, sometimes in smaller groups
  • Helping students to achieve their academic goals for the year by determining what tools they need to do so

How Do You Work as a School Counselor?

To work as a school counselor, many states may require individuals to have a master’s degree. That degree may include specific education and skill support for working with children to provide counseling services. Often, individuals have to first obtain a bachelor’s degree in a field related to psychology. They then may be able to enroll in a master’s degree. This type of education typically falls in the area of educational studies, though some may pursue this career path through psychology as well.

Many of these programs could take about two years to complete for full time students. This is typically a path that students may be able to complete while already working in the field, such as through part time online education. That may extend the length of time it takes to complete this program by a few years.

Be sure to check state licensing requirements. Many who enroll in this type of degree program already have a license as a teacher, but others may need to obtain it before they may provide counseling services in that state.

Once you complete this education, you may be able to find work in schools, private practices, business and industry, hospitals, and within community agencies to help support the needs of children and young adults as they travel through their own educational path.

School Counselors Degree