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How to Become a Counselor

Most careers in professional counseling require a minimum of a four- year college degree in social work, psychology, or a similar field. Courses are available at community colleges, four year colleges and universities, and through online degree programs, which are convenient if you need a flexible schedule. It's important to verify that your study program is offered by an accredited institution.

Counseling professions are regulated on a state-by-state basis. You will need to know the licensing requirements are for the state where you wish to work. Your educational program must meet the requirements for licensing in your state. If you need help in determining this, check with an academic advisor o admissions counselor at the college or university where you want to study. Academic advisors will also help you plan a course of study. .

 

Managing the Cost of College

College can be expensive, but there are many financial aid programs available. These include federal and private student loans, scholarships and grants. If you're employed, your employer may offer tuition assistance or other educational support. It's a good idea to consult the financial aid department at your college to find out all available options. If you're seeking a graduate degree, fellowships and research grants may also be available.

 

Don’t' Forget About Professional Licensing Requirements

Contact your state government to learn about licensing requirements. It's important to know these requirements as you plan your course of study, and to keep up with changes in the requirements as you prepare to apply for a professional license.

 

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

 

Related Career Resources

Counseling Colleges and Schools

Counseling Career Information

Counseling Career Outlook and Salary Information

Counselor Career Traits

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