Educational Counseling Doctorate Programs

Educational counseling goes by a variety of names, such as school counseling, and there are a range of doctoral programs that you can apply to across the country.

Educational counseling programs are also found as school counseling, school psychology, and counselor education programs. There are multiple doctoral programs across the country where you can earn a degree in this field, such as those presented here.

Doctorate Programs in Educational Counseling

Most gradaute programs in this area of study, particularly at the doctoral level, are designed for those who have worked in psychology and are looking to specialize or advance their career to leadership positions. These programs might also interest education professionals who want to have a positive impact on a student's mental health so that he or she can succeed in the classroom.

Curricula include courses like academic assessment and intervention methods, child and adolescent psychology, social and emotional evaluation, family and social systems, and the process of learning. However, these programs are often research and experience focused and thus include classes on topics such as biological foundations of behavior, research methods for psychology and education, statistical analysis, and ethics of school psychology. After completing those courses, students spend much of their time dedicated to research, both in the lab and in the field.

Below is a sample of what you can expect to find when undergoing your own doctoral program.

Penn State University: PhD in Counselor Education

The PhD program at Penn State is ranked among the top programs in the country and allows students to participate in professional counseling organizations such as the Association for Counselor Education and Supervision. The program requires that students complete a minimum of 96 graduate-level credits that typically take four years to finish, which also includes master's level courses in preparation for doctoral work. During the 2016-2017 school year, the program had a 100% licensure pass rate and job placement rate.

The University of Oregon: PhD in School Psychology

This doctoral program at the University of Oregon requires students to complete 157 quarter credits that include a pre-doctoral internship and a research dissertation. Students applying to this program should also be prepared to complete a total of 600 school-based internship hours. By completing all of these requirements, the program automatically makes the student eligible to take the Nationally Certified School Psychologist examination and credential.

The University of California - Berkeley: PhD in School Psychology

The UC Berkeley doctoral program in school psychology requires students to complete a school-based internship, an empirical paper and a dissertation. The school-based internship is usually fulfilled during the fourth year of enrollment and teaches students how to navigate between the children, teachers and administrators in a school setting. It is anticipated that you will spend your fifth year entirely devoted to completing your dissertation and internship. This program is one of three in the state of California that is accredited by the American Psychological Association.

The University of Houston: PhD in School Psychology

The University of Houston offers a PhD program in school psychology that can typically be completed within five to six years. Completion of the program prepares students to apply for a variety of credentials that include Licensed Psychologist and National Certified School Psychologist. First year students should expect to complete a practicum that exposes them to various populations and the philosophies that are applied in this field.

The University of Texas at Austin: PhD in School Psychology

The University of Texas at Austin offers students the opportunity to either get a master's or doctorate degree in school psychology. The doctoral program can be completed in six years and includes an internship and dissertation. Halfway through the program you will pick a specialty that guides your choice for an internship and dissertation topic. The final year of the program is dedicated to completing practical experience requirements.

Program Admittance Requirements

Depending on what school you are applying to, the admission requirements will be different. You'll generally need to hold a bachelor's degree in a field such as psychology, sociology, or related field; but some schools do expect a master's degree. Most schools will also need you to submit transcripts, letters of recommendation and/or a resume so the admission staff can assess your potential ability to handle the heavy curriculum. You may need to provide GRE and advanced GPA scores as well.

Each doctoral program in educational counseling is different, but it is common to complete nearly 160 credit hours over the course of six years. In addition to your coursework, you will often be asked to complete a practicum, internship, and/or dissertation.

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