MS in Counseling with a Concentration in Clinical Mental Health
The Master of Science in Counseling (MSC) degree provides graduates with the counseling knowledge and skills used in school, clinical mental health, and rehabilitation settings. Students study human development and behavior, individual counseling theory, group theory and dynamics, research methodology, and psychological measurement and evaluation, in addition to courses in individual concentrations—school counseling, clinical mental health counseling, and rehabilitation counseling. The Mental Health Rehabilitation Technician/Community (MHRT/C) post-bachelor's certificate program may be taken independently of the master’s degree (applications through Rehabilitation Counseling). The certificate of advanced study in counseling is a post-master’s program for current counselors who are interested in pursuing advanced coursework.
Depending on the MSC concentration, we offer face-to-face, online, hybrid, blended, or any combination of for synchronous and asynchronous course delivery. Course instruction includes a variety of teaching and learning strategies, depending on the nature of the course, such as lectures, group discussion (synchronous and asynchronous), in class exercises, supervised case review, cooperative learning, service learning, guided practice, introspection and critical thinking. In addition to coursework, each student must successfully pass the Counselor Preparation Comprehensive Examination (CPCE).
The counselor education program holds accreditation from the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Education Programs (CACREP).
Clinical Mental Health Counseling Concentration (63 credits)
The clinical mental health counseling concentration requires a total of sixty-three credit hours of coursework and is designed to allow students to learn skills specifically related to treating clients facing acute problems and developmental life issues, as well as clients interested in enriching their present life through the establishment of greater coherence and well-being. Students’ learning is accomplished through our clinical training courses and specialized electives. These specialized electives allow students to choose an area of interest in which may include: children, family systems (which may also become an area of expertise), use of the creative arts, mind-body approaches, spirituality, substance-use, or college mental health.
New students to the clinical mental health concentration will be in the program’s clinical courses in an interactive, face-to-face, real-time classroom experience on campus with some in blended, hybrid, and/or online formats. Students in this concentration must complete 1/4 (25%) of their courses in a face-to-face format to enhance their experiential, interpersonal as well as counseling skill development during their academic and field placement experiences.
Through our classes, students can expect a comprehensive array of studies which integrates the historical, philosophical, societal, cultural, economic, and political dimensions of the mental health and human service system. The roles, functions, skills, and professional identity of clinical mental health counselors are highlighted. Coursework focuses on the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of mental and emotional disorders, psychological trauma, and the general principles and practices for the promotion of optimal mental health. During the final portion of their coursework, students will intern under the supervision of a licensed mental health clinician
Graduates are prepared to apply (or sit) for the National Counselor Examination (NCE) and prepared to apply to be licensed as a clinical professional counselor (LCPC) in Maine. Those students interested in substance abuse treatment skills may consider earning an area of expertise in Substance Abuse Counseling as part of this concentration to prepare for licensure as a drug and alcohol counselor (LADC). An area of expertise in Family Systems is also available.
Core Courses (36 credits)
EDU 600 Research Methods and Techniques
HCE 500 Orientation to the Counseling Profession
HCE 604 Career Development
HCE 605 Psychological Measurement and Evaluation
HCE 612 Multicultural Counseling: Social & Cultural Foundations of Helping Diverse Families
HCE 620 Fundamentals of Counseling Theories
HCE 621 Fundamentals of Counseling Skills
HCE 626 Group Process and Procedures
HCE 627 Group Counseling Practicum
HCE 668 Human Development
HCE 690 Individual Counseling Practicum Seminar
HCE 691 Individual Counseling Practicum Laboratory
Required Specialty Courses (21 credits)
HCE 640 Professional Issues for Mental Health Counselors
HCE 642 Perspectives in Chemical Dependency
HCE 644 Crisis Intervention
HCE 645 Diagnosis and Treatment Planning
HCE 686 Internship in Counselor Education (9 credits - 900 hours)
Electives (6 credits)
Expertise Certificate Area in Family Systems
For those persons interested in working in the area of family systems, the counselor education program offers coursework with a focus on counseling families, and in incorporating systemic perspectives even when counseling individuals. This area of expertise is available for master's and CAS students.
The following courses are required for this area of expertise:
HCE 650 Basic Concepts in Couple and Family Counseling
HCE 670 Application of Family Systems Theories
HCE 686 Internship in Counselor Education (3 credits, 300 hours focused on family counseling that is supervised by a supervisor trained in family systems approaches)
Expertise Certificate Area in Substance Abuse Counseling
For those students interested in working in the area of substance abuse, the counselor education program offers coursework which will enable students to obtain a Substance Abuse Counseling expertise area within their master's degree. This expertise certificate area is available as part of the clinical mental health counseling specialty. Students who complete this area as part of their master's degree will be prepared to sit for the licensed alcohol and drug counselor (LADC) exam in Maine.
The following courses are required for the expertise area:
HCE 643 Psychopharmacology, Substance-Related Disorders and Integrated Co-Occurring Treatment
HCE 650 Basic Concepts in Couple and Family Counseling
HCE 686 Internship in Counselor Education (6 credits - 600 hours in an in-patient/out-patient agency licensed as a substance abuse treatment facility)