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Graduate Diploma in Rehabilitation Counseling

A graduate certificate in rehabilitation counseling is perfect for anyone who wants to help individuals with disabilities reintegrate back into society. Read on to find out what's required for this certificate and what general coursework to expect.

General Info for a Graduate Certificate in Rehabilitation Counseling

Graduate certificates are an excellent addition for anyone continuing their education in addition to a master's degree in the selected field of study (i.e. general counseling). Unlike a master's, a graduate certificate in rehabilitation counseling typically takes much less time to complete, with requirements ranging between 15-30 credits in a completion time of only a few semesters. Below is a comprehensive list of courses to expect when taking a program in rehabilitation counseling.

Aspects of Living with Disability

When working with the disabled population, it helps to know what it's like living on a daily basis with a disability for the individual client, so as to adapt to their unique individual needs. Courses like this focus on the emotional, physical, medical, and psychological effects on an individual living with a disability, as well as the social impact on the individual with regards to connections within community. Understanding the factors that are involved in living with a disability helps future counselors to provide more effective services to clients in this category.

Job Placement Techniques

There are many techniques that counselors can use to assist clients when preparing to return to the workforce. Understanding the legal and personal rights of clients provides security for individual needs in the work environment with regards to worker and employer relationships. Students learn how to assess a client's ability to work as a successfully functioning member of society.

Psychological Theory in Counseling Individuals with Disabilities

Just like anyone in counseling, individuals with disabilities have their own personality, perspectives, and backgrounds. Students will study a variety of psychological theories to gain a greater scope of how to understand clients' individual needs. These courses also teach students various essential diagnostic strategies such as assessment and evaluation tools.

Foundations of Rehabilitation Counseling

Students taking these courses will be introduced to the history and philosophies of the field, as well as the ethical and legal perspectives involved within it. Students learn the basic tools and strategies used in rehabilitation counseling and explore the populations intended to be worked with. Students may be expected to take a field trip to a rehabilitation center so as to experience the professional setting of their future career.

Perspectives on Social & Cultural Diversity in Counseling

Students taking this course prepare for working with a diverse population and expand their understanding of diverse cultural and social perspectives. Sensitive topics such as gender and sexual orientations are explored with regards to counseling populations, as well as exploring the impact of people of different ethnicity while living with disabilities within various social communities. Students examine different multicultural concerns of clients in order to provide fair and ethical treatment of individuals.

Psychology of Disability and Trauma

Students working with disabled clients need to be prepared to deal with not only physical disabilities but psychological ones as well. Clients living with disability and trauma might include those with a head injury or with PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), such as veterans or clients recovering from past or current experiences of abuse. Different populations of clients experience different psychological disorders, depending on their disability. Students taking courses on the psychological aspects of disability and trauma learn specific diagnostic assessment and treatment tools when working with this unique population.

Typical Admissions Requirements

Before applying, you will want to explore admissions information required by any specific school to which you are applying. As with most degree programs, each school has general requirements for the admissions process. You will want to have all of your official school transcripts ready from both undergraduate and graduate. Make sure you have your resume, as well as a personal statement detailing your passions, experience, and reason for applying. Some schools will also require letters of recommendation. International students may expect to find additional requirements such as proof of English comprehension.

Whether you are an experienced professional who is already working in the counseling field, or have recently graduated and discovered you have a strong desire to work in the rehabilitation field, a graduate certificate may be just the right course of action for you. Courses relating to the theory of rehabilitation counseling, job placement techniques, and aspects of living with a disability can help students prepare for their careers.