Guidance counselors in New Hampshire require master's level education before becoming eligible for certification. Master's degree programs in counselor education are available at four of the 43 different institutions of higher learning in the state. In some cases, students will need a previous degree or prerequisite courses to gain admittance to a program. Students also are expected to complete internships or comprehensive exams. Below are short overviews of all four schools in New Hampshire offering guidance counseling programs, as well as a school comparison table listing specific degrees and tuition information.
Keene State College
With 5,200 students attending its Keene campus, Keene State College offers two courses of study, a master's and post-master's program in education with guidance counselor certification. The 48-credit master's program can be completed on nights and weekends over two or three years, depending on the student's desired pace of study. Courses include methods and skills of counseling, school counselor assessment and evaluation and group counseling in schools. Degree candidates must complete 12 hours of internships in elementary and secondary schools as well as a capstone project. The 30-credit certificate program, on the other hand, is designed for students who already hold master's degrees but are interested in becoming certified as NH guidance counselors. Like the master's degree program, students complete the coursework over two or three years. Whether classes are taken on a full- or part-time basis, required coursework is similar to the full master's degree curriculum, but students are required only to complete two internships at the elementary and secondary education levels for the certificate.
Plymouth State University
Enrolling approximately 5,700 students each year at its Plymouth campus, Plymouth State University is the largest public university offering training programs leading to a NH guidance counselor certification. The Parenting Involvement and Education Certificate is a 15-credit program is designed for counselors, teachers and other human relations workers who want to enhance parent interaction skills. The school also offers a master's program in school counseling with concentrations in counselor education and school psychology. The counselor education program consists of 48-credit hours and prepares students for work as guidance counselors for all school levels, kindergarten through 12th grade. Students take courses including advanced human development, counseling theories and social behavior. Unlike the guidance counselor concentration, the school psychology concentration requires students to already hold a master's degree. Coursework consists of 69 credit hours including classes in counseling youth and critical issues in schools
A 4-year, Catholic institution, Rivier University moved to its present campus in Nashua in 1941 and currently has 2,200 enrolled students. The university offers a master's and post-master's program in counseling certification. The master's program consists of 55 credit hours, with coursework coming in basic human interaction, adolescent development and identity and advanced psychology of human development. Students are also required to complete two six credit hour internships over the course of their education. The Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program is designed specifically for students who already have gained their master's degree and are looking to further their education or gain certification. The program is 37 credit hours long; in addition, students must have already completed a group of five prerequisite courses in fundamentals of research, basic human interaction, counseling theory, techniques of counseling and group counseling before being admitted into the program.
University of New Hampshire
Having been founded in 1866, the University of New Hampshire is the oldest public university in the state and offers a master's program in counseling at its Durham campus. Including two different internships, the program requires students to complete 48 credit hours, with coursework including psychological disorders, assessment in counseling and teaching exceptional learners. Individuals must complete a comprehensive exam before earning the degree and meeting state certification requirements.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type & Setting||Guidance Counseling Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition Fees (2015-16)|
|Keene State College||4-year, public; distant town|| Master of Education,
| $13,228 (in-state)*,
|Plymouth State University||4-year, public; remote town|| Parent Involvement and Education Certificate,
Master of Education in School Counseling
| $13,128 (in-state)*,
|Rivier University||4-year, private not-for-profit; small city|| Master of Education in School Counseling,
Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study in Clinical Mental Health Counseling
|$29,700 (all students)*|
|University of New Hampshire||4-year, public; small suburb||Master of Education in Counseling|| $16,986 (in-state)*,
Source: *NCES College Navigator