College Counseling Degree Programs

As a college counselor, you'll provide guidance to college students with academic and career questions. Read on to learn more about the different programs that are available, common course topics and the licensure process. Schools offering School Counseling degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What College Counseling Programs Are There?

Whether you've just earned your bachelor's degree, have a job in an academic setting or would like to change careers, there's a college counseling degree program that will fit your needs. If you're a high school teacher or guidance counselor, graduate certificate programs in college counseling and admissions counseling can help you understand the college admissions process and learn to effectively advise college applicants. These can also prepare you for entry-level work in a college counseling center.

Master's degree programs prepare you for work in college counseling, college admissions and student affairs. Often, you'll find college counseling as a specialty within a master's degree program in counseling. If you'd like to conduct research and take on leadership roles at college counseling centers, you can earn a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology. You might be able to earn college counseling graduate certificates online, but master's and Ph.D. programs typically require in-person work and research.

Available Programs Graduate certificate, master's degree, doctoral degree
Online Options Online graduate degrees in the field aren't typical, but online graduate certificates are available
Common Courses Student development, student needs, group counseling, career counseling
License Requirements Varies from state to state; often requires completion of post-baccalaureate education

What Will I Learn?

In a college counseling degree program, you'll learn about student development through their college years. You'll also learn about unique populations in the college community, such as returning, minority and disabled students. Some of the courses you'll take will discuss student needs, campus communities and student services. You'll also learn about group counseling and career counseling. Other courses might include family services, personality theories and behavior adjustment principles.

College counseling master's degree programs typically require you to complete a thesis and participate in observational experiences, laboratory work and independent research projects. If you're pursuing a Ph.D., you'll have to complete and defend a dissertation highlighting unique and independent research. In both programs, you'll take courses that help you design experiments and conduct research.

Do I Need a License?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), state college counselor licensing requirements vary from state to state, but you'll probably need at least some post-baccalaureate education ( Some states require that you obtain a license, which means you need to complete periodic continuing education programs.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

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