Can You Get a Counseling Degree Online?

Counseling DegreeMany universities now allow students to get a counseling degree online with little or no campus visits for the ultimate flexibility. Master’s in Counseling is the┬ásecond most popular online degree in America. Online students pursuing a counseling degree will receive the preparation to help individuals, families, or groups develop solutions for coping with problems. Becoming a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) requires earning at least a master’s degree in most states. Accredited online counseling degrees can fulfill this requirement by teaching you the necessary mental health principles for practice. If you’re a good listener with great observation, critical thinking, and problem solving skills, this could be a perfect, in-demand human services career. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that the overall employment of counselors will grow rapidly by 20 percent through 2024.

Typical Online Counseling Curriculum

Online counseling degrees are offered at the bachelor’s, master’s, or PhD level. Bachelor in counseling programs provide four years of general education and introduce the fundamentals required for mental health services. Online master’s programs in counseling are more numerous to develop the advanced clinical knowledge and skills for licensing. Doctorate degrees in counseling are usually reserved for counselors wishing to supervise others or teach. Counseling degrees help online students explore topics like therapeutic intervention, human development, psychopathology, group therapy, family dynamics, and cross-cultural counseling. Online master’s programs typically allow for specialization in areas like clinical mental health counseling, school counseling, addictions counseling, or marriage and family therapy.

Benefits of an Online Counseling Degree

Studying counseling online will give you the opportunity to complete advanced training without sacrificing your full-time career. Most online counseling programs are asynchronous, which means students can log in anytime 24/7 to finish assignments before deadlines. Online degrees fit any schedule because students can stop and restart any lecture. Advancing web technology makes online classroom discussions engaging and interactive. Counseling students will virtually network with peers from across the country. Online learners can usually finish their degree’s practicum requirements in their hometown for less commuting. Counseling degrees online can also be more affordable since you’ll save on room and board, transportation, childcare, and even textbooks.

Choosing the Right Online Counseling Program

Not all online counseling degrees are created equal though. Prospective online counseling majors need to remain leery of diploma mills. Make certain that online colleges are regionally accredited by an agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Check for professionally accredited online options by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). Rankings published by the U.S. News and World Report will point you to the best of the best online universities. Guarantee that the online program satisfies qualifications for the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC). Other factors to consider include student-faculty ratio, financial aid, internship opportunities, specialty areas, technology support, and job placement rates.

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When there’s no time in your routine to sit in a traditional college classroom, studying online can be the ideal solution. More and more online counseling degrees are being offered to make mental health training easily accessible. Counseling programs delivered online will still equip you with the techniques necessary for improving clients’ lives. The average yearly salary for counselors in the United States is $43,990, or $21.15 per hour. If you get a counseling degree online, you’ll begin building a rewarding career promoting optimal mental and emotional well-being in diverse populations.