Master of Science in Counseling: Clinical Mental Health Specialization

Thank you for your interest in our Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program.

We are pleased to accept your application for this specialty area of counseling!

The application portal will be available starting late October 2022 and can be found at this link:  https://www.ewu.edu/apply/graduate/  The completed application and supporting documents are due by January 15, 2023.

The program will be offered using a combination of in-person and online (synchronous and asynchronous) modalities. Students will be expected to be present for courses on the Cheney campus on Mondays, with hybrid delivery of material occurring during the rest of the week.  In addition, it is redesigned a two-year program, with summer after the first academic year required and summer the second year optional depending on credit completion during the academic year.

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Curriculum & Requirements

Counseling, Clinical Mental Health Counseling, Master of Science (MS)

Clinical Mental Health Counseling is designed for students wishing preparation as counselors or therapists in settings such as: mental health centers, hospitals, residential treatment centers, employment services and vocational rehabilitation services. Clinical mental health counselors are also frequently found in the juvenile correction facilities, community colleges, pastoral services and business and industry.

Classes and experiences are organized around four objectives:

  1. a thorough preparation in foundation skills and principles;
  2. a functional mastery of techniques in various therapy modes; e.g., cognitive, affective, behavioral;
  3. coverage of principles, issues and trends in the psychology of counseling; and
  4. self awareness as it relates to the counseling process.

Practical application is stressed. Students are provided early and continuous skill practice with personalized feedback and coaching. Continuous opportunities for expanding awareness of the self of the counselor will be provided.

The program is both extensive and comprehensive. It is nationally accredited by CACREP and fulfills education requirements for licensure for mental health counselors. Graduates can complete the NBCC exam for National Counselor Certification.

Note: successful completion of comprehensive examination of conceptual attainments is required.

Required Courses
PSYC 506COUNSELING DEVELOPMENT AND TRANSITION ACROSS THE LIFESPAN4
PSYC 520TACTICS PSYCHOLOGICAL RESEARCH4
PSYC 535INTRODUCTION TO CLINICAL MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELING4
PSYC 542CAREER COUNSELING4
PSYC 544COUNSELING THEORY AND TECHNIQUES4
PSYC 545APPRAISAL IN MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELING4
PSYC 546TRAUMA INFORMED COUNSELING4
PSYC 548COUNSELING CHILDREN AND ADOLESCENTS4
PSYC 569FAMILY SYSTEMS4
PSYC 571COUNSELING SKILLS4
PSYC 572ADVANCED COUNSELING SKILLS4
PSYC 575DSM TREATMENT ISSUES FOR COUNSELORS4
PSYC 576PROFESSIONAL ISSUES IN MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELING3
PSYC 583GROUP EXPERIENCE1
PSYC 584GROUP THEORY AND PROCESS4
PSYC 587ADDICTIVE BEHAVIOR COUNSELING4
PSYC 588CRISIS INTERVENTION AND TRAUMA COUNSELING4
PSYC 590DIVERSITY COUNSELING4
PSYC 592SUICIDE ASSESSMENT AND TREATMENT1
PSYC 694PRACTICUM4
PSYC 697INTERNSHIP IN PSYCHOLOGY (over four quarters)16
Electives approved by advisor4
Total Credits93

Catalog Listing

Program Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully earn an MS in Clinical Mental Health Counseling should be able to do the following:

  • assess community needs, design, implement and evaluate mental health programs and systems–Mental Health Counseling Emphasis;
  • describe the ethical and legal considerations that govern the practice of mental health counseling–Mental Health Counseling Emphasis;
  • provide accurate assessment, diagnosis (where appropriate) and treatment planning for a diverse client population–Mental Health Counseling Emphasis.

Additional Information

The Counseling Program at Eastern Washington University is committed to the selection, training, supervision, and professional success of counseling students, in keeping with the high standards established by the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). As a regional teaching university, EWU has a proud history of providing education to a high percentage of first-generation college students, often from under-represented and lower socioeconomic communities, a tradition which the Counseling program maintains. Thus, counselor training occurs in a learning community that is intentionally focused on both skills development and personal growth of the counselor-in-training. In this way, Counseling fulfills its purpose of preparing competent and caring professional counselors to meet the needs of diverse urban and rural communities.

The program is both extensive and comprehensive. It is nationally accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs and fulfills Washington State academic requirements for licensure as a Mental Health Counselor (LMHC). In addition, graduates can complete the National Board of Certified Counselor Exam and are eligible for National Counselor Certification.

YearNumber of GraduatesCompletion Rate*NCE Pass Rate **Placement Rate ***
20215100%100%100%
20207100%100%100%
20197100%100%85%
2018888%100%88%
20171181%100%81%
20161091%100%80%
20157100%100%100%

*Percent of students who graduated within the expected time frame
**for students seeking job placement
***National Counselor Exam or the WA state licensure exam

Each of our students gets hands-on experience during the program. Many students serve in local/area agencies. For information about field experience and internships, visit our Field Experience page.

Download Student Handbook

Frequently Asked Questions

We now use a third party system to assist in graduate applications called GradCAS.  The entire application packet is available to you online. All required material is completed and submitted via the application portal.

 

Contact Keely Hope at khope@ewu.edu or 509.359.2439 for questions regarding the counseling program.

The application deadline date is January 15.

The application requirements include official undergraduate transcripts (and graduate transcripts, if applicable), three references, cover letter and resumé,  and a personal statement.

Applicants must demonstrate successful completion of an undergraduate statistics course.

In your personal statement, please address the following in a one-page, single-spaced document:

  • Significant life event or experience that contributed to your desire to be a counselor.
  • What do you view as the single most important quality in a counselor, and what will you need to do to work on this quality?
  • Evidence demonstrating your commitment to working with diverse communities

We recommend you write your answers to above questions prior to completing the online application.

Take your time and create a well thought out answer to these questions.

 

In your personal statement, please address the following in a one-page, single-spaced document:

  • Significant life event or experience that contributed to your desire to be a counselor.
  • What do you view as the single most important quality in a counselor, and what will you need to do to work on this quality?
  • Evidence demonstrating your commitment to working with diverse communities.

We recommend you write your answers to the personal statement and the above questions prior to completing the online application. Your personal statement should be one page, single spaced, long.

Take your time and create a well thought out answer to these questions.

You will submit the name and email of the person who is providing you a recommendation in the application portal. The person will receive an email from the university/program and will do the recommendation electronically.

All you need is the person’s name, title, and email address.

Make sure to alert your reference to the change and that they will receive an email from us with the opportunity to upload the traditional letter of recommendation and fill out our form electronically.

Good question. Below you will find our application data.

YearTotal Number of ApplicationsNumber of Applications AcceptedPercentage of Applications Accepted
2015572035%
2016842125%
2017701927%
2018811822%

No. It is no longer true.

All classes will be held on the main campus in Cheney. This includes internship classes and any seminar classes. Practicum and Internship sites could be in Spokane depending on where the student completes the clinical experience.

As with all things, though, there may be changes to this plan, but that will be on a case by case basis and typically due to a scheduling conflict of the instructor.

The program is designed as a full-time program.

The Counseling core faculty are Keely Hope and Camille Frank.

Core faculty members are defined by CACREP as someone who has earned a PhD in Counselor Education and identifies professionally as a counselor as evidenced by membership in professional organizations and holds either a current license or certification in their specialty area.

The program is designed as a two-year program, with summer after the first academic year required and summer the second year optional depending on credit completion during the academic year.

This includes the 600-hour internship requirement over the course of one academic year.

 

 

The program will offer courses in a hybrid format beginning in fall 2022.  This means some of your required content toward the credit hours in class will be delivered online, asynchronously, via Canvas.

The MS Counseling: Clinical Mental Health Counseling program will be offered using a combination of in-person and online (synchronous and asynchronous) modalities. Students will be expected to be present for courses on the Cheney campus on Mondays, with hybrid delivery of material occurring during the rest of the week.

The program is a two-year program, with summer after the first academic year required and summer the second year optional depending on credit completion during the academic year.

 

It is possible to work a part-time position during the course of the program with good time management skills.

Please note that while your commitment to campus is on Mondays, you are responsible for the asynchronous components on your own time.

In addition, your practicum will begin in Spring of your first year and require a commitment of 10 to 15 hours per week on site. Your internship will require 20 to 25 hours of time on site per week.

 

In total, the counseling program admits between 24 and 30 per year. Because our programs are nationally certified by CACREP, we maintain a 12:1 student-to-faculty ratio. We routinely have more academically qualified applicants than we can admit.

94 quarter credits. This is the equivalent of 62 semester credits.

Strong consideration is given to demonstrated academic excellence. We want students who will be competent in a graduate level course of study.  In addition, the faculty focuses on the applicant’s maturity, interpersonal skills, and prior experience in a helping role with others. Each applicant’s file is reviewed by each member of the Counseling faculty using a weighted scoring sheet that considers GPA, the strength of letters of recommendation, prior work experience, and professionalism of the applicant’s written personal statement.

Grammar, style, and content are evaluated as part of the personal statement. Faculty members then decide collectively on which students will be further considered for admission. Each applicant still in consideration is interviewed by the faculty. A final decision on members of the cohort is reached by mid to late February if possible.

The faculty are dedicated to trying to make decisions on admission as quickly as possible.

The application deadline is January 15.

Faculty then review completed applications within two weeks and make decisions on interviews.

Interview offers are made within 2-3 weeks of the application deadline.

Initial offers of admission are made within one week following the interviews.

It can take up to one month after interviews for all cohort spots to fill.

EWU does not adhere to the April 15th Resolution.

As such, we will ask for an admissions decision prior to that date.

If you ask for a delay in making your decision, your request will be discussed by the committee.

In cases of offers made, this means someone else did not receive an offer. We do ask that you decide as expeditiously as possible and if the answer is yes, to confirm your admission with Graduate Studies.

We do know that circumstances change, but we do ask that if a students accepts admission they plan to attend in fall.

 

No. While many of our students have a degree in psychology or a closely related field, each year, students are admitted with undergraduate degrees in such disciplines as communication, education, business, nursing, or social work. However, most of those would benefit from taking some psychology courses that prepare them for graduate work in the counseling field. If you have any questions about whether or not you need to take a course before admission, please contact Keely Hope at khope@ewu.edu, Program Director of Counseling.

Yes. Successful completion of a course in Statistics.

The course should cover through ANOVAs.

It is your responsibility to provide proof of successful completion of a statistics course before final admission is granted/start of the first term. Successful completion would be considered a passing grade.

If  your degree did not include this course, you will need to take one prior to your first quarter of graduate school.

We do not require a degree in psychology or any specific degree.

If you have questions regarding this, please contact Keely Hope at khope@ewu.edu, Program Director of Counseling.

Courses can be transferred from other CACREP programs only. The maximum number of credits that can be transferred into our program is 12 quarter credits or 9-semester credits, and this requires the approval of the faculty.

The courses that are transferred to EWU are based on the discretion of the faculty members.  Students are consulted in this process, but the final recommendation is based on faculty recommendation. Students will need to submit the syllabi of the courses they would like the faculty to consider. Transcripts are not enough. Review of syllabi is done after a student has been offered a position in the program, not prior.

Transferring credits may lessen the credit load for students per quarter but will not allow them to graduate faster as there is a 4 quarter internship requirement that spans the second year.

Very high, even in economically difficult times. Because of the strengths and reputation of the program, graduates routinely find full-time positions in their field within a few months of completing the program.

Students will graduate with a Master’s of Science in Counseling, with a Clinical Mental Health Specialization.

Graduates will have completed all education requirements to apply for the associate license in Washington.

As associate license, or LMHCA, is the first step of licensure in Washington. Having it denotes a person has completed all coursework and a university supervised internship. This person then must complete 3000 supervised hours while working toward a full license, or LMHC.

The process for applying for licensure in Washington is discussed during this program and students will receive guidance on how to do this when they graduate.

Of course.

One of the first assignments in this program is to investigate other state’s licensure requirements!
If you know where you want to live, this will begin the conversation of differences in licensure laws and education requirements in other states.

Most states do not have large differences in education, but some do require classes that are not standard to our program.  If this is the case, you may work with your advisor to locate a class that could cover the missing education requirements. Each student has elective credit to take so identifying a needed class would be a good use of those credits.

Some states also require longer internship requirements. This is information that we strive to address early on so that the student can negotiate that extra time at a site with internship site supervisors.

A degree with a specialization in clinical mental health counseling will not train you to be a school counselor.

Some schools employ licensed mental health counselors.

Some agencies or practices have clinicians that provide services in schools.

YCourse # FallCourse #WinterCourse #SpringCourse #Summer
1PSYC 571Counseling SkillsPSYC 572Advanced Counseling SkillsPSYC 588 Crisis InterventionPSYC 697Internship
4 creditsM 8- 11 am 4 creditsM 8 – 11 am4 creditsM 8 – 10 am4 creditsM 2- 4 pm
PSYC 535Introduction to Clinical Mental Health Counseling PSYC 575DSM and Treatment IssuesPSYC 694 PracticumPSYC 546Trauma Counseling
4 credits M 12 – 2 pm4 credits M 12 - 2 pm4 credits M 10:30 am to 1230 pm4 creditsM time TBD
*Elective
Students choice
PSYC 544Counseling Theories PSYC 590Diversity CounselingPSYC 584Group Counseling
4 credits M 3 – 5 pm 4 creditsM 3- 5 pm4 credits 130 pm – 330 pm
PSYC 583Group Experience PSYC 506 Development Across the Lifespan PSYC 592Suicide Assessment
1 creditM 2 groups, 5 or 6 pm 4 credits *Asynchronous1 credit*Asynchronous
PSYC 520Research Methods
4 credits*Asynchronous
2 PSYC 569 Family SystemsPSYC 587Addictive Behavior CounselingPSYC 576 Professional Issues in Clinical Mental Health Counseling
4 creditsM 8 – 11 am4 creditsM 10 am to 12 pm3 creditsM 10 am to 12 pm
PSYC 548Counseling Children and AdolescentsPSYC 545AppraisalPSYC 697 Internship
4 creditsM 12- 3 pm4 credits4 credits M 3 pm to 5 pm
PSYC 697Internship PSYC 697Internship *Elective
4 credits M 330 - 530 pm4 credits M 3 – 5 pm
PSYC 542Career Counseling*Elective
4 credits *Asynchronous
*Elective