Houston Online Masters in Rehabilitation Counseling Programs

Online Masters in Rehabilitation Counseling programs offer working students the opportunity to earn a graduate degree without having to commute regularly to a university campus. Distance-learning is becoming more popular as education technology and digital tools become more sophisticated. Typically, online study involves logging into a course management system, using web-based libraries, and connecting with professors or classmates via email, web chat, online forums and other methods. If you are an independent learner, need a flexible schedule or just live too far from an accredited college or university, earning your Master’s degree in Rehabilitation Counseling online warrants consideration!

Online Masters in Rehabilitation Counseling Info

Online Masters in Rehabilitation Counseling: Basics

Some Online Masters in Rehabilitation Counseling programs take about 2 years to complete in terms of coursework and another year set aside for internship. Sometimes all the coursework is delivered online, however the practicum work has to be set up through the university. Other programs may be completed in 18 months with an additional number of hours set aside for practicum and internship. Additionally, some online programs involve a few onsite requirements despite being mostly available through distance-learning, so it is a good idea to think about what you can commit to as you initiate your search.

DID YOU KNOW? 49% of Rehabilitation Specialists have a Master’s degree?[i]

Why Consider an Online Rehabilitation Counseling Program?

Broadly, an Online Masters in Rehabilitation program provides students with an opportunity to gain an extensive knowledge of counseling theory, practice and application.

Ultimately, the goal in many of these programs is to help prepare students to be able to:

  • Provide rehabilitation and clinical mental health counseling to people with disabilities or disadvantages
  • Provide educational, vocational, and psychosocial support to people with disabilities or disadvantages and their families
  • Assess the needs of a person with disabilities or disadvantages and create a plan accordingly
  • Provide advocacy to people with disabilities or disadvantages
  • Develop and support community programming for people with disabilities or disadvantages
  • Seek professional licensure which requires a Master’s degree in Rehabilitation Counseling, plus a period of supervised clinical practice or internship[ii]

Which Online Counseling Master’s degree is Right for me?

Online Masters in Rehabilitation Counseling are usually offered as both Master of Arts (M.A.) and Master of Science (M.S.) tracks. Often, a students have undergraduate backgrounds in counseling psychology, psychology, or human services. Students need to consider whether they are looking to pursue a professional degree, (M.S.), or an academic one (M.A.). Professional degrees may help further a current career choice by teaching you the additional skills to address certain populations; students usually go onto to seek state licensure in their field. Academic master’s programs usually involve rigorous research and a written thesis, and may be used as a preliminary degree to a Doctorate.

Finding your Niche in Rehabilitation Counseling

While it may be a common thought to identify ‘rehabilitation’ with substance abuse, rehabilitation counseling is actually different, and there are opportunities to work with specific populations or choose a more general type of program. Rehabilitation Counselors assist individuals or persons coping with personal, social, and vocational difficulties that result from birth defects, illness, disease, accidents, or the stress of daily life to be as independent and employable as possible.  They assess client needs and design and implement rehabilitation programs that may include personal and vocational counseling, training, and job placement. As a rehabilitation Counselor, you might choose to work with a specific type of clientele such as:

  • Veterans who need help to cope with the mental or physical effects of their military service
  • Elderly people who need help to adapt to disabilities developed later in life from illness or injury
  • Students who need to develop strategies to live with their disability and move from school to work
  • Resolve personal, family, social, educational, and employment issues for different groups

Accreditation and Certification Requirements

For Online Masters in Rehabilitation Counseling that may lead to licensure, program accreditation may come from The Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE) and the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP), which is the specialized accrediting body recognized by the Council for Higher Education (CHEA) and the U.S. Department of Education. This is because students who are preparing to work as rehabilitation counselors (clinical rehabilitation counseling) have to learn and “demonstrate the professional knowledge, skills, and practices necessary to address a wide variety of circumstances within the rehabilitation counseling context”[iii]. In terms of national certification, this may or may not be required to practice, however the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification offers the Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC) Certification which may be preferred by current employers. [iv]

Take the Next Step

According to recent Bureau of Labor Statistics data, employment of rehabilitation counselors is expected to grow by 9% from 2014 to 2024.[v] Why not meet this trend with a solid academic foundation! Start reviewing sponsored listings for Online Masters in Rehabilitation Counseling degrees today! Some of the exciting options might include Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and Master of Science in Clinical Mental Health Counseling-General. Remember that each university has uniquely attractive features; reach out to them to request more information.

sources: [i] onetonline.org/link/summary/21-1015.00 |[ii] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/rehabilitation-counselors.htm | onetonline.org/link/summary/21-1015.00 |[iii]core-rehab.org/Files/Doc/PDF/Clinical%20Rehabilitation%20Counseling%20Standards.%20FINAL.pdf[iv] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/rehabilitation-counselors.htm |[v] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/rehabilitation-counselors.htm

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