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Future LPC: For Student in Arizona High School or Arizona High School GraduateYour First Step: Choose the degree emphasis of counseling that that makes the most sense for you and earn the highest grades possible. Many graduate schools will require a minimum GPA. Do the best you can as an undergraduate, as the counseling field is extremely competitive. Choosing a psychology or social work, or something similar, as an undergraduate, is a logical path for students focused on pursuing a counseling graduate degree. If your interest is in the realm of counseling for substance abuse, you could pursue a behavioral science oriented program as an undergraduate. Arizona will provide licenses to Associates and Bachelor’s degree workers to work in the capacity of associate counselor or substance abuse technician. Your Second Step: Gaining admission to a graduate program will be easier with related professional experiences in your background. Dive into viable volunteer opportunities or paid work projects that are in the field of counseling or something closely related.
Bachelor’s Degree College Graduates(CACREP– The Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Educational Programs). Rehabilitation counseling programs are usually accredited by CORE (The Council on Rehabilitation Education). First:
- Start your research on graduate programs in line with your interests. Varying counseling specialties have diverging requirements, and some students may choose to accomplish dual licensing. Look into your options and decide what is best for you.
- Becoming licensed as an Independent Substance Abuse Counselor will require that you pursue a graduate program that encompasses at least 24 semester hours of counseling. (Up to three of the semester hours of the requirement can be aside from the formal Master’s program.)
- To work the role of school guidance counselor (Pre-K – 12), a student should properly pursue education through a counseling graduate program. Usually the program will involve a practicum.
- Becoming a Licensed Professional Counselor requires a school program that encompasses a minimum of sixty coursework hours (total). Degree programs that have accreditation through CORE, or CACREP, will be considered formally approved.
- Those with a focus on working as an independent substance abuse counselor (at an independent level) must work while being supervised for a minimum of 24 months while accruing a minimum of 3,200 experience hours.