Ph.D. in Counselor Education

Program Description | Admission | Degree RequirementsCourses

Program Description

The Counselor Education doctoral program provides the highest professional degree available to students who aspire to leadership positions in counselor education and school counseling. The degree includes a prescribed curriculum of required and elective courses for a minimum of sixty-nine hours of graduate credit. However, the doctoral degree is awarded on the basis of successful completion of this coursework and completion of a major research study resulting in the presentation and defense of a dissertation.

Students who complete the doctoral degree in counselor education will be able to:

  • apply counseling theory and research to the counselor education and/or school counseling leadership functions
  • plan and deliver research-based counselor education didactic courses
  • apply counselor supervision theory and research to individual and group supervision in counselor education and school counseling programs
  • use advanced level communication and interpersonal skills in consultation, counseling, counselor education, supervision, and evaluation
  • interpret the relationships among federal, state, and local agencies and the laws and ethical considerations applicable to the counselor education and school counseling program management fields
  • apply advanced level diagnostic and assessment methodology, and develop the capacity to teach appropriate treatment plans for a wide range of psychological concerns to master’s level students
  • demonstrate multicultural awareness and competence during doctoral level counseling, supervision, and consultation
  • incorporate adult education pedagogy and research as a basic tool in administering counselor education and staff development programs
  • design doctoral-level counseling research and interpret results
  • apply data to advanced level counseling capabilities and school counseling leadership functions
  • successfully complete extensive internship experiences directly related to the student’s individual professional goals.


Admission requires devoting a significant amount of time to the program. The inability to devote the necessary time will require the individual to drop out of the program.

This program follows a cohort model. This means that individuals are admitted to a specific group, called a cohort, and are required to take their coursework at the same time as the other individuals in the cohort. Cohorts begin in May or June of each year. In the event that students encounter personal emergencies that result in dropping out of the normal schedule, they may be required to join another cohort with a different schedule.

The application deadline is December 1st.

Applicants seeking admission to the doctoral program in Counselor Education must submit the following directly to the Office of Graduate Admissions:

  1. Graduate Application
  2. Application fee
  3. Official transcript(s) showing receipt of a baccalaureate degree and a master's degree from an accredited institution
  4. Official GRE scores
  5. Program application and fee
  6. Personal statement (1000 words maximum)
  7. Five Reference Evaluation Forms, three from officials in schools or mental health agencies where the applicant has been employed and two from current or former graduate-level professors (Note: These must be “closed” recommendations)

The master’s degree and additional coursework should be substantially equivalent to a core of 48 hours of Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) required curriculum areas. The graduate GPA should be 3.5 or higher.

Applicant Interview and Selection Process

The Counselor Education doctoral admissions committee will consider all applications through a holistic review process, taking into account GPAs, GRE scores, work experience, recommendations, and interview scores. After reviewing the pool of applicants, the doctoral admissions committee will recommend the top candidates for the on-campus interview process. Applicants invited for the interview will be given specific guidelines for the process, which will include an interview with the doctoral admissions committee and an on-site writing proficiency assessment. All qualified doctoral students are admitted under regular admission to the program.

Degree Requirements

The program requires completion of a minimum of sixty-nine hours of graduate credit, as prescribed in the plan below. A comprehensive examination will be taken during the sixth semester of coursework. Students must be enrolled during the semester the comprehensive examination is taken.

After admission to candidacy, students and their dissertation chair will jointly select their doctoral dissertation committee. 

Ph.D. in Counselor Education

Choose all from:
COUN 7110 <CNE 710> Doctoral Seminar (taken three times)
COUN 7331 <CNE 731> Advanced Counseling Theories
COUN 7332 <CNE 732> Advanced Appraisal Techniques
COUN 7334 <CNE 734> Theories of Counselor Supervision
COUN 7335 <CNE 735> Practice of Counselor Supervision
COUN 7337 <CNE 737> Advanced Counseling Practicum and Techniques
COUN 7362 <CNE 762> Methods of Counseling Research
COUN 7363 <CNE 763> Application of Counseling Research
COUN 7372 <CNE 772> Qualitative Methodology
COUN 7373 <CNE 773> Statistical Methods for Counselor Education Research
COUN 7374 <CNE 774> Multivariate Methods for Counselor Education Research
Choose one specialization:
School Counseling
Choose all from:
COUN 7339 <CNE 739> Doctoral Internship in Counseling (taken two times)
COUN 7110 <CNE 710> Doctoral Seminar (taken three times)
Choose four from:
Graduate courses in COUN
Choose two from:
Graduate courses outside COUN

Counselor Education
COUN 7339 <CNE 739> Doctoral Internship in Counseling
(taken two times)
COUN 7336 <CNE 736> College Teaching in Counseling
COUN 7110 <CNE 710> Doctoral Seminar
(taken three times)
Choose three from:
Graduate courses in COUN
Choose two from:
Graduate courses outside COUN

3 Dissertation Choose all from:
COUN 8333 <CNE 833> Dissertation (taken three times)



Counseling (COUN)

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