Clinical Mental Health Counseling, M.S.

The master of science degree (60 credit hours) in mental health counseling is designed for persons seeking employment in an agency counseling setting. The program qualifies students to be eligible for state licensure as a licensed mental health counselor (LMHC) and certification as a professional counselor (NCC) and clinical mental health counselor (CCMHC). (Additional years of experience are required for licensure.) The mental health program is accredited by and aligned with the standards of the Council for the Accreditation for Counseling and Related Educational Programs.

Application Procedures

The admission requirements are similar to those in graduate education. All students attend an interview.

During the application process, the applicant has a nonmatriculated status and may register for three graduate courses in the mental health program. Courses taken during the nonmatriculated status do not guarantee acceptance into the program.

Curriculum

EDU 595Introduction to Educational Research3
EDU 651Introduction to Counseling3
EDU 652Multicultural Counseling3
EDU 654Counseling Theory and Practice3
EDU 655Lifespan Development and Behavior3
EDU 657Assessment in Counseling3
EDU 658Adv. Counseling Techniques3
EDU 659Mental Health and Wellness3
EDU 664Career Counseling and Planning3
EDU 666Psychopathology & DSM Diag.3
EDU 668Couples & Family Counseling3
EDU 669Group Counseling3
EDU 670Differential Diagnosis and Treatment3
EDU 671Psychopharmacology3
EDU 672Substance Abuse & Addictions Counseling3
EDU 673Found/Ethic Mental Health Coun3
EDU 679Mental Health Practicum3
EDU 685Mental Health Internship I3
EDU 686Mental Health Internship II3
EDU 687Mental Health Internship III3
Total Credits60

Note: A comprehensive portfolio is required.

Required Cycle of Required Courses for Full-Time Students

Plan of Study Grid
First Year
First SemesterCredits
EDU 651 Introduction to Counseling 3
EDU 654 Counseling Theory and Practice 3
EDU 655 Lifespan Development and Behavior 3
 Credits9
Second Semester
EDU 673 Found/Ethic Mental Health Coun 3
EDU 664 Career Counseling and Planning 3
EDU 658 Adv. Counseling Techniques 3
 Credits9
Third Semester
EDU 672 Substance Abuse & Addictions Counseling 3
 Credits3
Second Year
First Semester
EDU 666 Psychopathology & DSM Diag. 3
EDU 595 Introduction to Educational Research 3
EDU 679 Mental Health Practicum 3
 Credits9
Second Semester
EDU 657 Assessment in Counseling 3
EDU 652 Multicultural Counseling 3
EDU 685 Mental Health Internship I 3
 Credits9
Third Semester
EDU 671 Psychopharmacology 3
 Credits3
Third Year
First Semester
EDU 686 Mental Health Internship II 3
EDU 669 Group Counseling 3
EDU 670 Differential Diagnosis and Treatment 3
 Credits9
Second Semester
EDU 687 Mental Health Internship III 3
EDU 668 Couples & Family Counseling 3
EDU 659 Mental Health and Wellness 3
Additional Requirement  
Portfolio  
 Credits9
 Total Credits60

The Comprehensive Evaluation in the Mental Health Counseling Area of Studies (Portfolio)

The comprehensive evaluation is designed to assess the student’s ability to integrate theoretical knowledge into an effective counseling style. The program is based upon an eclectic counseling perspective which encourages students to learn various techniques from different theoretical counseling models.

Candidates complete a comprehensive portfolio demonstrating their knowledge, skills and dispositions in each of the Council for the Accreditation for Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) core areas:

  1. Professional identity
  2. Social and cultural diversity
  3. Human growth and development
  4. Career development
  5. Helping relationships
  6. Group work
  7. Assessment
  8. Research and program evaluation

Note: The faculty is responsible for recommending to the dean any student whose level of academic performance and/or personal characteristics require remediation or possible termination from the program. This may occur at any time during the student’s program of study.

Internships

The program includes a three credit-hour counseling practicum and a nine credit-hour internship for a total of 1,000 clock hours of supervised experience.

Registration

The master of science (M.S.) degree and the certificate of advanced studies programs in mental health counseling have been approved and registered by the New York State Education Department. The New York State Education Department licenses mental health counselors. The Niagara University mental health counseling program meets NYS Education Department requirements for licensure.