Online Masters In School Counseling Programs and Degrees General Info
If you have a keen interest in a specialized counseling niche that combines education, psychology and guiding different ages of children and adolescents, an online masters in school counseling program may prepare you for a bright future. According to the BLS, growing student enrollments in elementary, middle, and high schools, as well as in colleges and universities, are expected to raise demand for school counselors. As these enrollments rise, schools will require more counselors to respond to the developmental and academic needs of their student populations. Colleges will also need to hire additional counselors to meet the demand for career counseling services from their students.[i]
Online Masters in School Counseling programs teach students about nurturing academic development; managing group and individual counseling; and collaborating with parents, teachers, and other school staff. Some programs also prepare learners to become student services administrators. These programs often require students to gain experience through an internship or practicum.[ii]
School counselors help students of different ages develop the social skills to succeed in school, and typically, must be credentialed, which most often requires a Master’s degree[iii]. GradSchools.com has helpful search tools to assist you in finding the Masters in School Counseling program that matches your educational and vocational goals. Some of the listings might include Online Post Masters Endorsement: Director of School Counseling Services, Online Master of Arts in College Counseling, Online M.A. in School Counseling with a K-12 School Emphasis, Online Master of Education in School Counseling, Online Master of Science in School Counseling or Online Mental Health Practices in Schools-Master’s and Educational Specialist.
For the currently employed professional or busy adult, a Web-based learning format might be the most convenient way to advance one’s education.
Typically, students log into a course management system at their convenience, and progress through a sequence of courses according to their own schedule. Digital tools keep students connected to classmates and faculty, so you are not completely alone or without support, you just move more at your own pace. Successful completion of the School Counseling masters Program usually means eligibility to apply for certification as a School Counselor. Licensure or certification typically requires a master’s degree in school counseling and an internship or practicum completed under the supervision of a licensed professional school counselor.[iv]
Depending on the degree earned, level of education and other factors, some of the potential career paths for graduates might include:
School Psychologists: Typically need an advanced degree and certification or licensure to work. The advanced degree is most often the specialist degree, a Doctoral Degree in school psychology, or in some cases, a Master’s Degree. School psychologists are trained in education and psychology in order to address the education and mental health components of student development.[v]
Educational, Guidance, School and Vocational Counselors counsel individuals to help them understand and overcome personal, social, or behavioral problems affecting their educational or vocational situations. This may include crisis intervention, conferring with parents, maintaining accurate records, and preparing students for later education.[vi]
Elementary School Counselors focus on helping students develop skills, such as decision-making and study skills so they can be successful in their social and academic lives. They meet with parents or guardians to discuss their child’s strengths, weaknesses, and any possible special needs and behavioral issues. School counselors also work with teachers and administrators to ensure the curriculum addresses both the developmental and academic needs of students.[vii]
Middle School Counselors assist students and parents in order to help students develop and achieve career and academic goals. They help students develop the skills and strategies necessary to succeed academically and socially[viii].
High School Counselors advise students in making academic and career plans, and may help students with personal problems that interfere with their education. They assist students choose classes and plan for their lives after graduation. High School Counselors provide information about choosing and applying for colleges, training programs, financial aid, and apprenticeships. They also may present career workshops to help students search and apply for jobs, write résumés, and improve interviewing skills.[ix]
Perhaps you have benefitted from the guidance of a school counselor over the course of your education and you have seen the benefits of their assistance. Maybe you enjoy learning counseling theories and are hoping to specialize your education to then potentially become a School Counselor. With employment in this area on the rise at a rate of 12% over the next decade[x] why not use the search tools on GradSchools.com to find the online school counseling masters program that might help you achieve your goals!
Sources: [i] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/school-and-career-counselors.htm#tab-6 | [ii] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/school-and-career-counselors.htm#tab-4 | [iii] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/school-and-career-counselors.htm#tab-4 | [iv] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/school-and-career-counselors.htm#tab-4 | [v] bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/psychologists.htm#tab-4 | [vi] onetonline.org/link/summary/21-1012.00 | [vii] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/school-and-career-counselors.htm#tab-2 | [viii] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/school-and-career-counselors.htm#tab-2 | [ix] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/school-and-career-counselors.htm#tab-2 | [x] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/school-and-career-counselors.htm#tab-1
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