2019-20 Catalogs

Accelerated Graduate Pathway to Counseling

Accelerated Graduate Pathway to MS in Counseling


For highly motivated undergraduate students who are already looking ahead to graduate school, USM offers an Accelerated Graduate Pathway from our Social and Behavioral Sciences program to the MS in Counseling program that allows you to begin graduate study while completing your bachelor's degree, saving you time and money -- which means you'll be ready for a career that much sooner, with your bachelor's and master’s degrees in hand.

Program Requirements

In order to gain full admission to the Master of Science in Counseling program a student must do all of the following:

  • Declare the Social and Behavioral Sciences major.
  • Maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 in all course work and in the major; earn at least a B- in any 500-level graduate courses taken while an undergraduate.
  • Complete HCE 500 Orientation to the Counseling Profession during the fourth year of undergraduate study if intent is to complete the Mental Health or School concentrations in the graduate program; complete HCE 510 Introduction to Rehabilitation Counseling and Services if intent is to complete the Rehabilitation concentration in the graduate program.
  • Take the GRE with a combined verbal and quantitative score of 286 or better, or the MAT (Miller Analogies Test) with a score of 398 or above. Test must be taken within five years of application.
  • Follow the additional guidelines for MS in Counseling applicants as outlined on the Graduate Admissions website.

Recommended Course Sequence

In addition to HCE 500, students may substitute up to five of the following undergraduate SBS courses with the specified graduate course (totaling up to 18 credits of the graduate program):

HRD/SBS 200 Multicultural Human Growth and Development can be replaced by HCE 668 Human Development (required course in graduate program)

SBS 343 Substance Abuse can be replaced by HCE 642 Perspectives in Chemical Dependency for the Clinical Mental Health and School concentrations of the graduate program (required), and by HCE 643 Psychopharmacology, Substance-Related Disorders, and Integrated Co-Occuring Treatment for the Rehabilitation concentration of the graduate program (required)

SBS 303 Abnormal Psychology can be replaced by HCE 645 Diagnosis and Treatment Planning (required course in graduate program)

SBS 329 Research Methods can be replaced by EDU 600 Research Methods (required course in graduate program)

SBS 348 Responding to Mental Health Crisis in the Community can be replaced by HCE 644 Crisis Intervention (required course in graduate program)

SBS 364 Introduction to Expressive Therapies can be replaced by HCE 520 Expressive Arts in Counseling (graduate program elective)

Diversity category course in the SBS Counseling Concentration can be replaced by HCE 612 Multicultural Counseling (required course in graduate program)


How to Apply or participate in the Counseling Pathway:

  • On the Common App, select the Social and Behavioral Sciences major.  You will then see the following option: “Please indicate your interest in one of the following accelerated pathway options at the University of Southern Maine” from which you can select a Pathway.
  • In the University of Maine System application, select your First Choice Major and then you will see the following drop-down menu: Accelerated Graduate Degree Pathway (First Choice Major), from which you can select a Pathway.
  • If you are a Transfer or Continuing Student, please contact the University of Southern Maine Advising Office to meet with an academic advisor who can review your previous coursework and determine your eligibility for entering an Accelerated Graduate Pathway. Please call (207) 780-4040 or email: usm.advising@maine.edu.