What Can I Do with a Clinical Counseling Degree?

Graduates who have earned degrees in clinical counseling are prepared to assist individuals who are dealing with mental and emotional problems. They may work in private practices, hospitals or clinics. Read on to discover career options for those who hold clinical counseling degrees. Schools offering Mental Health Counseling degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Overview of Clinical Counseling

Clinical counseling professionals may work in any of several areas, including the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of mental illness. Counselors are trained to provide therapy after determining the cause of the problem, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, www.bls.gov). Professionals help individuals adjust to life by focusing on the client, according to the Education Resources Information Center (ERIC, www.eric.ed.gov).

According to the BLS, they can work in counseling centers, hospitals, or clinics, as well as in residential treatment centers, healthcare facilities, or private practices. Rosalind Franklin University adds that these medical specialists take scientifically developed counseling methods and apply them professionally. Clinical counselors can become involved in research experiences or undergo additional training if they desire to conduct their own research. All treatment methods used by clinical counseling professionals are supported by research conducted by others in the field.

Important Facts About This Occupation

Required Education Bachelor's degree and above
Key Skills Crisis management, medical knowledge, good listener
Similar Occupations Psychologist, psychiatrist, school counselor
On-the-Job Training Internships, clinical work

Issues Addressed

The Chicago School of Professional Psychology states that industry professionals work with patients who have emotional issues that prevent them from living life as fully as they might otherwise be able to. They are qualified to treat chronic or severe mental illness or to treat patients who are dealing with common concerns. For example, they may assist with the following issues:

  • Depression
  • Divorce and other relationship issues
  • Grief and anxiety
  • Personal crises
  • Schizophrenia
  • Physical rehabilitation

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

According to the BLS, clinical mental health counselors are projected to see a 29% increase in employment, which is much faster than average, from 2012-2022. The mean annual wage for mental health counselors was $43,990 in May 2014. Additionally, the BLS noted that outpatient care centers and individual family services employed the most mental health counselors.

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