Master of Education programs in Educational Counseling prepare aspiring counselors to work in diverse K-12 educational environments. Students in these programs receive classroom instruction in counseling theories and practices, as well as real-world experience shadowing a professional school counselor. Specialization options include school and community counseling. These programs usually take about two years to complete.
In order to apply, students must hold a bachelor's degree. They may be required to submit GRE scores, letters of recommendation, and personal essays.
Masters in Educational Counseling
Master's degree programs in educational counseling are designed to prepare students for licensure so that they can practice as elementary or secondary school counselors. In most programs, students must complete 48 hours of coursework prior to graduation. Possible course titles include:
- Professional ethics in counseling
- Principles and procedures for individual appraisals
- Counseling theories and methods
- Crisis intervention methods
- Counseling in a multicultural environment
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, educational, guidance, school and vocational counselors earned a mean annual wage of $56,490 as of May 2015. Those counseling in a college or university setting earned a mean annual salary of $49,770, while those in elementary and secondary schools earned a mean annual salary of $63,760 (www.bls.gov).
Master's degree programs in educational counseling prepare graduates for licensure as school counselors. A master's degree in counseling is required for licensure to work as a school counselor in all states, and a few states also require that counselors hold a teaching license, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). In addition to these educational prerequisites, aspiring school counselors must also pass an exam in order to get a license.
After successful completion of a master's degree program in educational counseling, many students choose to continue their education by pursuing a Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) or a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Education. Others choose to continue their education through continuing education opportunities. For instance, the American Counseling Association and the American School Counseling Association are among the organizations providing professional development classes, conventions, seminars and workshops for educational counselors.
If you want to become a counselor in an elementary, secondary, or postsecondary school, you need to get a master's degree in order to earn a license and start practicing. Master's degree programs in educational counseling provide relevant training in the field.