Return to: 4120 Department of Counseling and Psychological Services
The M.S. major in Clinical Mental Health Counseling is a non-certification program that prepares persons to function as counselors in mental health centers, governmental agencies, labor departments, employee assistance programs, community agencies, religious settings, and correctional agencies.
The counselor employs skills, principles, and techniques to assist people to identify and resolve personal, social, career, intrapersonal, and interpersonal concerns.
The counselor is prepared to:
- work individually and with groups of clients on educational, vocational, social, emotional, or personal problems.
- counsel and consult with diverse populations
- consult with other professionals and administrators concerning the client’s development needs.
- participate in educational, social, and career assessment programs, including the interpretation of test results.
- provide information and understanding to clients in the areas of educational, social, and career planning.
- conduct and facilitate program evaluation and research efforts.
- practice according to the ethical codes of the American Counseling Association.
- use appropriate technology to assist clients with educational, social, and career planning.
- further their identity as a professional counselor through advocacy for the profession.
Program Academic Regulations
A minimum of 60 semester hours of graduate coursework must be completed with a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.00. Degree objectives may require more than the minimum number of hours to meet certain professional standards. The M.S. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program is not designed for part-time students. Students will distribute their required semester hours over a six or seven semester period. It is not feasible for students to work full time while adhering to this model program. Students who are working full or part time must plan to extend their programs over a period of time of more than eight semesters.
Usually, 12 credit hours of the students’ program consist of laboratory experiences. The remainder of the courses occurs in classroom settings. Delivery systems used for instruction include lecture, group work, required readings, presentations using advanced technology, simulated activities, and applied practice followed by individual and group supervision in some courses.
The program culminates in an extensive supervised practicum and internship, consisting of three semesters of work in an agency setting for a minimum of 700 hours over the three semesters. It is not recommended that students attempt to work full time or take more than nine (9) credit hours in either of the semester of practicum or internship.
All clinical mental health counseling students must complete CPS 6010 with a grade of “B” or higher. A grade lower than “B” requires repetition of the course. CPS 6010 is a prerequisite for most CPS courses. During the academic term in which CPS 6010 is first taken, other courses may be taken concurrently. However, when repetition of CPS 6010 is necessary, no other CPS coursework may be taken concurrently or prior to successful completion of CPS 6010.
Students must successfully complete the following courses to take the comprehensive exam: CPS 6010, CPS 6410, CPS 6450, CPS 7260, CPS 7300, CPS 7340, CPS 7450, CPS 7500, CPS 8100, CPS 8380, CPS 8460, CPS 8470, and EPRS 7900. Contact the Department of Counseling and Psychological Services (404/413-8010) for information on the comprehensive examination schedule.
For clinical mental health counseling students to be eligible to begin the applied practice (CPS 7660), the students must successfully complete the following courses: CPS 6010, CPS 6410, CPS 6450, CPS 7260, CPS 7300, CPS 7340, CPS 7450, CPS 7500, CPS 8100, CPS 8380, and CPS 8460. Students may be required to take an approved advanced counseling skills course prior to or concurrently with their practicum (CPS 7660) and internship (CPS 7680), depending on the course offering. Students are approved to begin applied practice based on the number of hours they have completed in their programs and based on space available in applied practice sections. The department may delay students’ beginning their applied practice for one or more academic terms.
Evaluation of a student’s performance is continuous and involves consideration of the student’s academic performance as well as the student’s performance in laboratory, applied practice, and internship classes. A student may be dropped from a course and/or the program if the welfare of the student’s clientele or prospective clientele or the functioning of a school or agency is, in the judgment of the CPS faculty, in jeopardy as a result of the student’s behavior. Students in this program are expected to follow the latest version of the American Counseling Association (ACA) Code of Ethics.
Departmental Endorsement Policy
The Department of Counseling and Psychological Services requires that program faculty endorsement be given only for the program for which the graduate students have been prepared.