Counseling (MEd)

Counseling (MEd)

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The mission of the Counseling M.Ed. program is to prepare highly competent professionals who can respond to the lifespan mental health needs of a multicultural community. The Master of Education in Counseling offers two specializations: school counseling and clinical mental health counseling. Graduates of the UTRGV Counseling program are committed to advocacy and leadership in the communities they serve.

School Counseling Specialization

Upon completion, the professional school counselor is prepared to be an integral part of the academic services in P‐16 schools, trained to facilitate the growth and learning of students by providing services in guidance curriculum, responsive services, individual planning and systems support. The professional school counselor also provides direct services to students and coordinates services with programs and agencies within the school and in the community.

Clinical Mental Health Counseling Specialization

The clinical mental health counselor receives instruction in the required professional content areas, and practicum hours to apply for national and/or state Licensure. Upon licensure, the counselor is prepared to provide services across the lifespan in the areas of individual and group counseling in public, private, state and/or federal agencies. Once all program requirements are completed for the Counseling M.Ed., students are eligible to begin the application process for the Licensed Professional Counselor credential from the State of Texas. Information is available via the Texas Department of Health website at www.dshs.state.tx.us/counselor/.

 LPC Deficiency

Students who graduated prior to 2015 with a Master of Education in Counseling may find they lack courses required by the Texas State Board of Examiners of Licensed Professional Counselors due to changes by the Board.  Individuals in need of required courses for LPC should contact the department for advisement and complete the application for admission as a non-degree seeking student.  This is an expedited application that only requires submission of undergraduate and graduate transcripts. The department allows non-degree seeking students to enroll in up to 12 credit hours to meet licensure requirements.

CACREP Accreditation

The UTRGV Counseling M.Ed. program is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP), which is the premier accrediting body for determining the quality of a graduate counseling program. CACREP develops and maintains standards and procedures that ensure students in counseling and related programs receive high-quality, relevant education that prepares them for licensure and success in professional practice.

Benefits of CACREP Accreditation

Three federal agencies have made graduation from a CACREP-accredited Clinical Mental Health Counseling program a requirement for independent practice in counseling: The U.S. Veteran’s Administration, Tricare, and the Army Substance Abuse program. In addition, many doctoral programs require that applicants graduate from a CACREP-accredited master’s program.

Why UTRGV?

  • Ranked #79 among 300+ national universities by Washington Monthly in 2018
  • Accredited, cutting edge degree program
  • Experienced, dedicated faculty
  • Affordable tuition (ranked #1 in net price among national universities by Washington Monthly in 2018 and #3 most affordable university in America 2018 by BestValueSchools.com)
  • Demonstrated student success in research, professional certification and career advancement

Admission Requirements

Step #1: Submit a UTRGV Graduate Application at www.utrgv.edu/gradapply. There is no application fee.

Step #2: Request your official transcripts to be sent electronically to gradapps@utrgv.edu or mailed to:

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley
The Graduate College
Marialice Shary Shivers Bldg. 1.158
1201 W. University Drive
Edinburg, TX 78539-2999

 
*Please Note: If you are a graduate of UTPA, UTB/TSC, or UTRGV you do not need to request an official transcript to be sent to the Graduate College.

Review and submit all Program Requirements:

  • Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution in the United States or a recognized international equivalent in a similar or related field.
  • Undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0. If applicant does not meet minimum undergraduate GPA criterion, GRE general test with minimum scores of 150 Verbal, 141 Quantitative, and 4.0 Analytical are required for conditional admission. GRE test scores are valid for 5 years.
  • Official transcripts from each institution attended (must be submitted directly to UTRGV).
  • Personal  statement  detailing  professional  goals  and  reasons  for pursuing the graduate degree.
  • Three  letters  of  recommendation  from  professional  or  academic sources, at least one must be from a former professor.
  • Resume including educational background and work experience.
  • Personal Interview (Upon completing application).
  • Cleared Criminal Background Check
Additional requirements for domestic applicants who attended foreign universities:
  • TOEFL or IELTS Language Proficiency Test with minimum scores: 550 on paper-based, 213 on computer based, or 79 on Internet-based for the TOEFL; 6.5 for the IELTS. TOEFL and IELTS scores are valid for 2 years. For additional information, visit the Additional Documents for Domestic Applicants who Attend Foreign Universities section of our website.
  • Certified English translation of educational records.

Additional requirements for international applicants:

  • TOEFL or IELTS Language Proficiency Test with minimum scores: 550 on paper-based, 213 on computer based, or 79 on Internet-based for the TOEFL; 6.5 for the IELTS. For additional information, visit the English Proficiency Exam section of our website.
  • Certified English translation of educational records.
  • Financial   Documentation  showing sufficient funds to cover all expenses (living and academic) for the first year of study. For additional information, visit the Financial Documentation section of our website.
  • Immigration  documents, including a current copy of your valid passport. For additional information, visit the Immigration Documents section of our website.

UPDATE ON INTERNATIONAL ADMISSIONS FROM U.S. IMMIGRATION AND CUSTOMS ENFORCEMENT:

  • SEVP regulations prohibit the issuance of a Form I-20 based on conditional admission, effective July 13, 2016. University officials can only issue a Form I-20 when students have met all standards for admission for the program of study listed on the Form I-20. These standards for admission include any English proficiency requirements.

Program Contact

Department Chair: Dr. Suzanne Maniss

Phone: (956) 665-3449

Office: Edinburg Campus, EDUC 1.506

E-Mail: suzanne.maniss@utrgv.edu

 

School Counseling Specialization 

Coordinator: Dr. Selma Yznaga

Phone: (956) 882-7855

Office: Brownsville Campus, BNOBL 130

E-Mail: selma.yznaga@utrgv.edu

 

Clinical Mental Health Counseling Specialization

Coordinator: Dr. Selma Yznaga

Phone: (956) 882-7855

Office: Brownsville Campus, BNOBL 130

E-Mail: selma.yznaga@utrgv.edu

Deadlines

Fall Spring Summer I Summer II
Application Deadline: March 15 October 1 N/A N/A
 

Tuition Estimate

Residency Per 3-Credit Hour Course Semester (9-Credit Hours) Total Estimated Cost
Texas Resident $1,481.39 $3,894.17 $29,627.80
Non-Resident/International $2,708.39 $7,575.17 $54,167.80


*We estimate that tuition and fees will closely approximate the rates shown above; however, rates are subject to change. Please note that the rates above are estimated for on-campus students and those enrolled in 16-week online programs. The rate is different for Accelerated Online Programs (AOP). Visit the tuition and fees page for detailed information.

Course Requirements

Required Courses 57
COUN 6301: Introduction to Research Methods in Counseling 3
COUN 6304: Human Growth and Development for Counseling Professionals 3
COUN 6310: Professional Orienation to Counseling 3
COUN 6311: Professional, Ethical, and Legal Issues in Counseling 3
COUN 6313: Personal/Social Development of the Counselor 3
COUN 6314: Assessment and Appraisal Techniques in Counseling 3
COUN 6327: Counseling Theories, Methods and Techniques I 3
COUN 6328: Counseling Theories, Methods and Techniques II 3
COUN 6340: Abnormal Human Behavior 3
COUN 6345: Career Developmental Theories 3
COUN 6347: Addictions Counseling 3
COUN 6349: Child and Adolescent Counseling 3
COUN 6351: Treatment Planning and Crisis Intervention 3
COUN 6361: Couples and Family Counseling 3
COUN 6364: Social and Cultural Issues in Counseling 3
COUN 6365: Counseling Practicum 3
COUN 6368: Group Counseling Theories and Methods 3
COUN 6369: Counseling Internship I 3
COUN 6370: Counseling Internship II 3
 
Chosen from the following:
 
School Counseling 3
COUN 6344: School Counseling and Guidance 3
 
Clinical Mental Health Counseling 3
COUN 6367: Clinical Mental Health Counseling 3
 
Capstone Requirement
Counselor Preparation Comprehensive Exam (CPCE)
 
Total graduate hours for degree: 60
 

Course Descriptions

COUN 6301: Introduction to Research Methods in Counseling               [3‐0]

Introduction to research methods and statistical analysis in counseling. Emphasizes data-gathering techniques in social and behavioral science databases; critical review of literature used in clinical assessment, intervention and evaluation; planning and design of research proposal; and instruction in APA style.

COUN 6304: Human Growth and Development for Counseling Professionals               [3‐0]

Advanced study in the application of life span developmental theories to human behavior, learning, and personality. Includes understanding the nature and needs of all people at all developmental levels from prenatal through old age.

COUN 6310:Professional Orienation to Counseling              [3‐0]

Students will be introduced to the role of counselors in a variety of settings including their role in advocacy and social justice. They will become familiar with the history of counseling, preparation standards, professional organizations, ethical standards and legal issues pertaining to counseling, and the dynamics of the counseling process.

COUN 6311: Professional, Ethical, and Legal Issues in Counseling              [3‐0]

This course focuses on the ethics codes of professional organizations (APA & ACA) with a major emphasis on professional standards, ethical principles and legal considerations in the counseling profession.

Prerequisite: COUN 6310.

COUN 6313: Personal/Social Development of the Counselor              [3‐0]

The course facilitates the personal/social development of the counselor through self‐ understanding (intrapersonal) and understanding of self and others (interpersonal).  Knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary for effective human relationships and for creating a climate of mutual respect in systems will be emphasized.

COUN 6314: Assessment and Appraisal Techniques in Counseling              [3‐0]

This course explores the theory and techniques of administering, scoring, and interpreting educational and psychological tests. Includes test selection, administration, and the dynamics of test interpretation to enable the counselor to synthesize, integrate and evaluate appraisal data for use in guidance and counseling. In the last segment of the course, students will practice taking, administering and interpreting a variety of educational and psychological tests

Prerequisites: COUN 6301.

COUN 6327: Counseling Theories, Methods and Techniques I              [3‐0]

The following theories of individual and group counseling will be examined: Psychoanalytic, Adlerian, and Humanistic. Focus will be on understanding the importance of theory in counseling, building a theoretical knowledge base for counseling and critical examination of theories most appropriate for individual and group counseling. Assessment and intervention techniques for each theory will be addressed. Demonstrated competence for each theory will be required. Ethical and Legal issues will be examine for each.

Prerequisites: COUN 6310, COUN 6313.

COUN 6328: Counseling Theories, Methods and Techniques II              [3‐0]

The following theories of individual and group counseling will be examined: Behavioral, Cognitive, and Postmodern. Additional theories may be included as needed. Focus will be on understanding the importance of theory in counseling, building a theoretical knowledge base for counseling and critical examination of theories most appropriate for individual and group counseling. Assessment and intervention techniques for each theory will be addressed. Demonstrated competence for each theory will be required. Ethical and Legal issues will be examine for each.

Prerequisites: COUN 6310, COUN 6313, 6327.

COUN 6340: Abnormal Human Behavior              [3‐0]

The course introduces students to the concepts of psychopathology and to major diagnostic categories of the current DSM. Emphasis is placed on differential diagnosis and understanding of biological, psychological, and environmental factors impacting mental disorders.

COUN 6344: School Counseling and Guidance              [3‐0]

Students will learn the essential roles and responsibilities of school counselors as they relate to planning, implementation and evaluation of counseling and guidance programs. Students learn research-based practices in school counseling. Ethical, legal and multicultural issues are emphasized.

COUN 6345: Career Developmental Theories              [3‐0]

A survey and analysis of the processes of assisting people to choose, prepare for, enter and progress in an occupation. The course trains leaders who can help people make decisions and choices in planning a future and building a career.

Prerequisites: COUN 6310, 6313.

COUN 6347: Addictions Counseling              [3‐0]

This course will prepare individuals to counsel drug users, addicts and family members using various preventive strategies and treatment regimes. Includes instruction in outreach, patient education, therapeutic intervention methods, diagnostic procedures and addiction symptomology.

Prerequisites: COUN 6327, 6328.

COUN 6349: Child and Adolescent Counseling              [3‐0]

This course is an introduction to counseling theories and techniques applied to children and adolescents. Appropriate developmental and cultural issues will be presented. The course is designed to teach students about current research and approaches for working with this population.

Prerequisites: COUN 6310, 6313, 6327, 6328.

COUN 6351: Treatment Planning and Crisis Intervention              [3‐0]

The course introduces students to the process of treatment planning and crisis intervention. Special emphasis is given to documentation and evidence-based treatment approaches including contemporary theories of crisis intervention. Psychopharmacological treatment interventions are included.

COUN 6361: Couples and Family Counseling              [3‐0]

This course introduces students to the study of individual and family development, family dynamics, interpersonal relationships and marriage and family systems. The course will include selected theories, methods and techniques of marriage and family therapy with particular emphasis on multicultural, legal and ethical issues in the practice of marriage and family counseling.

COUN 6364: Social and Cultural Issues in Counseling              [3‐0]

This course will provide an understanding of the characteristics and needs of culturally diverse clients. The course will include issues related to ethnic groups, gender, family systems, differing lifestyles and the impact of social, political and economic factors on specific populations. Techniques for counseling culturally diverse populations will also be covered.

Prerequisites: COUN 6304, COUN 6310, COUN 6311, COUN 6313, COUN 6314, COUN 6327, COUN 6328, COUN 6340, COUN 6367 or 6344, COUN 6368, and program approval.

COUN 6365: Counseling Practicum              [3‐0]

A study of selected counseling theories and supervised experience in individual counseling. Cases assigned off campus in schools and community agencies. This course must be taken within last nine hours of program.

Prerequisites: COUN 6301, 6310, 6311, 6313, 6314, 6327, 6328, 6340, 6345, 6368, EPSY 6304, and program approval.

COUN 6367: Clinical Mental Health Counseling              [3‐0]

This course helps students gain knowledge and understanding of clinical mental health counseling issues including historical foundations, the role and function of the community counselor, and working with specific populations. The administration and function of clinical mental health counseling agencies are studied with emphasis on the ethical issues confronting various agencies.

Prerequisites: COUN 6310, 6313, 6327, 6328.

COUN 6368: Group Counseling Theories and Methods              [3‐0]

This course develops an understanding of group processes, theories and techniques. Demonstrated competence in this knowledge and in applying group procedures will be required.

Prerequisites: COUN 6365 and program approval.

COUN 6369: Counseling Internship I              [3‐0]

Supervised internship in counseling in an approved agency or school setting.

Prerequisites: COUN 6365 and program approval.

COUN 6370: Counseling Internship II              [3‐0]

Supervised internship in counseling in an approved agency or school setting.

Prerequisite: COUN 6369 and program approval.

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