Top 25 Most Accessible Online Bachelor’s Degrees in Counseling

Best Counseling Degrees - Online Counseling DegreesBy Kirsten Hughes
June 2015

In this article, we highlight the 25 most accessible accredited online counseling degree programs.

More and more schools are offering online undergraduate degrees to students looking for flexibility and convenience as they pursue their educational and professional goals. Self-motivated individuals who are committed to work and family will find that an online degree fits their lifestyle. Most schools will accommodate students with some college or transfer credits in an effort to support students in finishing their degrees in a timely manner. Additionally, students with strong work histories will find that some schools offer college credit for work experience. Online colleges and universities tend to place an emphasis on supporting the working adult with flexible scheduling and an accelerated format.

A bachelor’s degree in counseling can prepare graduates for work in the human services sector in a number of positions, such as case managers, crisis intervention specialists, rehabilitation specialists and chemical dependency counselors. A focus on counseling in undergraduate studies will also support students in pursuing graduate school in a range of fields, including psychology, counseling, and marriage and family therapy. For more information, see Psychology and Counseling Careers and Professional Organizations.

In general, the online bachelor of arts or science degree will consist of general education requirements and the major/specialization core curriculum. A number of bachelor of arts and science degrees in the field of counseling are featured on this list, including Substance Abuse Counseling, Addictions Counseling, Christian Counseling, Human Development, and Pastoral Care and Counseling. This list is sure to have a school offering programing to support you in reaching your careers goals.

Methodology

To develop the ranking for the Top 25 Most Accessible Online Bachelor’s Degrees in Counseling, we used the Institute of Education Sciences’ College Navigator to gather a list of schools that offered a counseling program as a bachelor’s degree in an online/distance education format. Data was gathered from the College Navigator website on the percent of undergraduate applicants that were admitted to the institution (data from fall of 2013). Schools were then ranked based on this acceptance rate.

#1 Ohio Christian University

Bachelor of Arts in Substance Abuse Counseling

Circleville, OH

max-center

The Bachelor of Arts in Substance Abuse Counseling at Ohio Christian University prepares graduates to work as counselors in the field of Chemical Dependency. Graduates may choose to pursue certification through their state licensing board. (Note that certification requirements vary from state to state.) The program aims to support students in integrating Christian principles into their assessment, diagnosis, and treatment with individuals, families, and groups.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 97%
  • Graduation Rate: 31%
  • Retention Rate: 64%
  • Net Price: $26,777

Courses Include: Research and Professional Development Skills, Christian Excellence, Psychopharmacology, Ethical and Legal issues in Counseling, Diagnostic Evaluation and Personal Assessment, Individual Chemical Dependency Counseling, Family Dynamics in Substance Abuse, and Spiritual Dimensions of Illness and Recovery.

Learn more about Ohio Christian University

#2 Indiana Wesleyan University

Bachelor of Science in Addictions Counseling

St. Marion, IN

housingiwu

Students can complete this Bachelor of Science in Addictions Counseling degree in as few as 22 months. Students will collaborate with Indiana Wesleyan University to identify practicum sites in their community to complete the on-site educational component of the program. Graduates of this program will be competent in the biopsychosocial-spiritual components of addiction. Graduates will be prepared to work in the field of chemical dependency or pursue graduate studies in counseling and therapy.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 95%
  • Graduation Rate: 65%
  • Retention Rate: 78%
  • Net Price: $24,546

Courses Include: Principles of Addictions Counseling, Addictions Theory, Minority Group Relations, Theory and Practice of Group Counseling, Physiological Psychology, Counseling Addicted and Dysfunctional Family Systems, and Addictions Counseling Practicum.

Learn more about Indiana Wesleyan University

#3 Lee University

Ministry Leadership Counseling Emphasis

Cleveland, TN

lee5

Lee University offers a Ministry Leadership Degree with six different Emphasis options including the Counseling Emphasis. This degree prepares individuals interested in focusing their career on church ministry. Developing strong leadership skills with a biblical and theological foundation is a focus of the program. The Counseling Emphasis explores theories and methods in church counseling.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 92%
  • Graduation Rate: 53%
  • Retention Rate: 77%
  • Net Price: $11,773

Courses Include: The Christian Family, Pastoral Counseling, Crisis Intervention Counseling, Psychology of Human Sexuality, Theories of Counseling, and Techniques of Counseling.

Learn more about Lee University

#4 Northwestern State University of Louisiana

Bachelor of Science in Psychology: Substance Abuse Counselor Concentration

Natchitoches, LA

Northwestern State University of Louisiana

This Bachelor of Science in Psychology degree offers a Substance Abuse Counselor Concentration. An Addictions Studies Minor is also available. This degree is offered in the traditional and online formats. This was the first program offering a bachelor’s of psychology completely online in the state of Louisiana. A Prevention Specialist Concentration is also available.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 84%
  • Graduation Rate: 37%
  • Retention Rate: 72%
  • Net Price: $7,950

Courses Include: Diversity Issues in Psychology, History of Psychology, Theories of Personality, Ethics in Psychology, and Addiction Studies.

Learn more about Northwestern State University of Louisiana

#5 World Mission University

Bachelor of Arts in Christian Counseling

Los Angeles, CA

WMU

The Bachelor of Arts in Christian Counseling from World Mission University prepares graduates for graduate study as well as for counseling-related ministries in the church. Students will integrate Christian faith and counseling as they develop and practice counseling skills. Graduation from this program requires passing of a comprehensive Bible exam.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 80%
  • Graduation Rate: 100%
  • Retention Rate: 100%
  • Net Price: $14,553

Courses Include: Essential Qualities of a Christian Counselor, Theology of Human Nature, Family Life Ministry, Counseling Children and Youth, Counseling Theory and Techniques.

Learn more about World Mission University

#6 Tennessee Temple University

Bachelor of Science in Psychology: Christian Counseling Concentration

Chattanooga, TN

ttu

The Christian Counseling Concentration at Tennessee Temple University will educate students in psychology with an emphasis on ministerial application. Graduates of the program will have a firm understanding of human behavior in the context of family and community and be prepared to serve in their churches and communities or continue on to their graduate education.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 78%
  • Graduation Rate: 19%
  • Retention Rate: 67%
  • Net Price: $14,876

Courses Include: Contemporary Issues in Counseling, Crisis Intervention, Pre-Marital/ Marital Counseling, Theories of Counseling, and Theories of Personality.

Learn more about Tennessee Temple University

#7 Messenger College

Bachelor of Arts in Counseling

Euless, TN

messenger

Messenger College states in their 2014-2016 Academic Catalog that they offer a Bachelor of Arts in Counseling. This program integrates a biblical worldview with the principles of counseling. This program has a field experience component for students to practice the techniques of counseling. The online learning format allows students to begin the program on the first of every month.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 76%
  • Graduation Rate: 16%
  • Retention Rate: 40%
  • Net Price: $13,533

Courses Include: Counseling Children and Adolescents, Addictive Behavior and Recovery, Healthy Sexuality, Counseling Adult Populations, and Advanced Counseling Methods and Social Work.

Learn more about Messenger College

#8 Prescott College

Bachelor of Arts in Human Development

Prescott, AZ

prescott

Students at Prescott College have the opportunity to develop their own degree program or choose from one of the popular Human Development Degree Specializations. This program prides itself on being “sensitive to the needs of working adults.” Students at Prescott College will collaborate with their faculty advisor to successfully complete the core curriculum, an individualized degree plan, a three day residency, a senior project, and any other necessary degree requirements.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 73%
  • Graduation Rate: 38%
  • Retention Rate: 73%
  • Net Price: $14,876

Human Development Degree Specializations Include: Counseling Psychology, Ecopsychology, Equine-Assisted Mental Health, Holistic Health, Human Services, Psychology, Therapeutic Use of Adventure Education, and Women’s Studies.

Learn more about Prescott College

#9 University of Cincinnati – Main Campus

Bachelor of Science in Substance Abuse Counseling

Cincinnati, OH

general campus shots
general campus shots

The University of Cincinnati offers the Bachelor of Science in Substance Abuse Counseling degree to students in the traditional face-to-face format as well as in the distance learning format, completely online with no on-campus requirements. This program is designed for students interested in careers in the field of chemical dependency prevention and treatment, featuring an evidenced-based approach to substance abuse counseling.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 73%
  • Graduation Rate: 58%
  • Retention Rate: 85%
  • Net Price: $19,310

Courses Include: Introduction to Substance Abuse Prevention, Historical Perspectives in Substance Abuse Counseling, Alcoholism, Drugs and Behavior, Stress Management in Clinical and Community Settings, Assessment and Diagnosis in Substance Abuse Counseling, Drug and Alcohol Use Impacting Children and Adolescents: A Developmental Concern, and Maintenance Strategies for Long-Term Substance Abuse Recovery.

Learn more about the University of Cincinnati

#10 Viterbo University

Bachelor of Science in Substance Abuse Counseling

La Crosse, WI

viterbo

The Bachelor of Science Degree in Substance Abuse Counseling at Viterbo University is geared towards students that have already completed a two-year degree in human services or AODA counseling. This program prepares graduates to pursue careers in the field of Substance Abuse Counseling or related fields. Courses are completed online with a one-week residency at the end of the program. Graduates will be prepared for careers in Psychology, Human Services, Criminal Justice, Ministry, Healthcare, and Educa­tion.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 71%
  • Graduation Rate: 47%
  • Retention Rate: 81%
  • Net Price: $17,929

Learn more about Viterbo University

#11 Thomas University

Bachelor of Science in Rehabilitation Studies: Addictions Concentration

Thomasville, GA

thomas

Thomas University offers an online degree in Rehabilitation Studies to prepare graduates for work with people with disabilities in both public and private agencies. Concentrations are available in a handful of areas, including Addictions, in order to support individuals struggling with substance abuse. Students in this program will complete an internship to develop practical and professional skills.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 69%
  • Graduation Rate: 28%
  • Retention Rate: 47%
  • Net Price: $14,992

Areas of Concentration: School to Work Transitions, Addictions, Gerontology, Criminal Justice.

Learn more about Thomas University

#12 Dallas Christian College

Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Bible

Dallas, TX

dcc

Dallas Christian College educates students from a biblical perspective in counseling and psychology. The Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Bible prepares students for graduate study in related fields. Courses are offered online at the time of the class through live web conferences or on demand by watching a class recording. Students choose the format that best fits their individual needs.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 55%
  • Graduation Rate: 30%
  • Retention Rate: 58%
  • Net Price: $19,179

Courses Include: Psychology as a Profession, Theories of Personality, Abnormal Psychology, Psychology and Christian Thought, Sports Psychology, Marriage and Family, and Pastoral Counseling.

Learn more about Dallas Christian College

#13 Johnson University

Bachelor of Arts / Bachelor of Science in Pastoral Care and Counseling

Knoxville, TN

ju

Johnson University offers associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, and Ph.D. programs on campus in East Tennessee and Central Florida, and online. The Pastoral Care and Counseling degree at Johnson University Online prepares students to apply biblical principles when supporting individuals with pastoral, personal, and interpersonal needs.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 55%
  • Graduation Rate: 57%
  • Retention Rate: 80%
  • Net Price: $13,417

Courses Include: Pastoral Counseling, Encountering Cultures, Biblical Teaching and Preaching, Introduction to Counseling Ministry, Family Services, and Conflict & Community in Ministry.

Learn more about Johnson University

#14 Crown College

Bachelor of Science in Psychology / Counseling

Saint Bonifacius, MN

crown

This Christian-based program prepares students to support others from a faith-based perspective. Graduates of the program pursue careers in human services and related fields, as well as graduate school. Students have the opportunity to add a minor in Drug and Alcohol Counseling.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 55%
  • Graduation Rate: 56%
  • Retention Rate: 70%
  • Net Price: $21,538

Courses Include: Developmental Psychology, Social Science Research Methods, Personality Theories, Theories of Counseling and Psychotherapy, Diversity Issues in Counseling, Group Dynamics, Crisis Intervention, and Marriage and Family Counseling.

Learn more about Crown College

#15 Grand Canyon University

Bachelor of Science in Counseling with an Emphasis in Addiction, Chemical Dependency, and Substance Abuse

Phoenix, AZ

gcu

This counseling degree from Grand Canyon University focuses on training students in Addiction, Chemical Dependency, and Substance Abuse to prepare them for work in private practice or public mental health clinics, as well as graduate school. Graduates will be prepared to work with children, adolescents, adults, and families struggling with addiction.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 55%
  • Graduation Rate: 30%
  • Retention Rate: 59%
  • Net Price: $20,084

Courses Include: Foundations of Addiction and Substance Use Disorders, Co-Occurring Disorders and HIV/AIDS, Multicultural Counseling in a Diverse Society, Domestic Violence, Child, Elder Abuse, Families with Addiction & Substance Use Disorders, and Trauma, Addiction, and Substance Use Disorders.

Learn more about Grand Canyon University

#16 Brescia University

Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Integrated Studies

Owensboro, KY

brescia

Brescia University Online offers a Bachelor of Arts or Science in Integrated Studies. This unique degree option allows students to take the initiative in developing their own individualized program to meet their educational and professional interests. Students can develop this plan of study from a combination of courses that Brescia University may or may not offer as individual majors.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 45%
  • Graduation Rate: 30%
  • Retention Rate: 57%
  • Net Price: $12,399

Online Degrees at Brescia University that students can draw courses from include: Associate of Arts in Human Services, Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, Bachelor of Arts in Theology, Bachelor of Social Work.

Learn more about Brescia University

#17 Oral Roberts University

Bachelor of Science in Christian Caregiving and Counseling

Tulsa, OK

oru

A number of bachelor’s degrees are available through the online learning program at Oral Roberts University. The Christian Caregiving and Counseling degree prepares graduates for lay counseling roles in the church or church-related agencies as well as for graduate school in related fields.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 44%
  • Graduation Rate: 53%
  • Retention Rate: 81%
  • Net Price: $21,523

Courses Include: Introduction to Christian Caregiving, Issues/Identity of Caregiver, Pastoral Approaches to Counseling, Lifespan Development, and Developing Helping Skills.

Learn more about Oral Roberts University

#18 The Baptist College of Florida

Bachelor of Arts in Christian Counseling

Graceville, FL

bcf

The Baptist College of Florida offers a Christian worldview undergraduate education. The Bachelor of Arts in Christian Counseling will appeal to students having the goal of working in the field of ministry and counseling, or those pursuing graduate studies in the field. Graduates of this program will be prepared to provide Biblical counsel to individuals, youth, and families.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 43%
  • Graduation Rate: 37%
  • Retention Rate: 83%
  • Net Price: $10,292

Courses Include: The Christian Counseling Community Mission Program, The Christian Marriage, Psychology of Parenting, Premarital and Marital Counseling, Theories of Counseling, and Mental Disorders and Their Treatments.

Learn more about The Baptist College of Florida

#19 Laurel University

Bachelor of Arts in Ministry: Counseling Concentration

High Point, NC

laurel

Graduates of this program pursue careers in fields ranging from Pastoral Leadership to Counseling, and working in a variety of settings from the church to social service agencies. Students will also leave this program prepared for graduate school. The Christian Counseling concentration prepares graduates to offer faith-based services to individuals, groups, and families.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 39%
  • Graduation Rate: 67%
  • Retention Rate: 77%
  • Net Price: $12,643

Courses Include: Human Growth and Development, Principles of Christian Counseling, Counseling Methods, Cross Cultural Counseling or Psychology of Abnormal Personality, and Research Methods and Development.

Learn more about Laurel University

#20 Southwestern Assemblies of God University

Bachelor’s in Counseling

Waxahachie, TX

sagu

Southwestern Assemblies of God University (SAGU) offers a flexible online program with classes available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. SAGU is currently offering a 20% tuition grant for students who begin their bachelor’s degree by Summer 2015. An Experiential Learning Credit is also available for students who qualify, offering up to 50% savings on the bachelor’s degree. Students in this Bachelor’s of Counseling program will learn to use Christ’s teachings to counsel individuals through life’s challenges.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 35%
  • Graduation Rate: 32%
  • Retention Rate: 67%
  • Net Price: $21,407

Courses Include: Counseling Children and Adolescents, Addictive Behavior and Recovery, Counseling Adult Populations, Behavioral Science Research, Methods and Techniques in Marriage and Family Counseling, Psychology of Selfhood and the Christian Faith, and Human Sexuality.

Learn more about Southwestern Assemblies of God University 

#21 Crossroads College

Bachelor of Science in Counseling

Rochester, MN

crossroads

Crossroads College prepares graduates prepared to work in the field of human services or to proceed to graduate school. Faculty and staff work to support students in strengthening character for service in their church and communities.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: 21%
  • Graduation Rate: 40%
  • Retention Rate: 62%
  • Net Price: $16,166

Courses Include: Techniques of Counseling, Group Counseling, Foundations of Marriage and Family Systems, Counseling and Ethnic Diversity, Theories of Personality and Psychotherapy, and Human Development.

Learn more about Crossroads College

#22 Azusa Pacific University College

Bachelor of Arts in Applied Psychology with Emphasis in Applied Pastoral Counseling or Clinical Psychology

St. Glendora, CA

apu

Students in the Applied Psychology program will learn from the standpoint of a Christian worldview. The program provides a knowledge base for all students in the field of psychology and then allows students to choose from one of ten areas of emphases, customizing their degree to meet their individual educational and professional goals.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: n/a
  • Graduation Rate: n/a
  • Retention Rate: 91%
  • Net Price: $21,840

Courses Include: Integration of Psychology and Christianity, Personality Theory, Cognition, Interviewing and Counseling Techniques, Social Psychology, and Psychology of Emotions.

Learn more about Azusa Pacific University 

#23 Nazarene Bible College

The Bachelor of Arts in Ministry Degree with a Counseling for Christian Ministries Major

Colorado Springs, CO

nbc

Nazarene Bible College offers an online program with two required intensive on-campus courses. Students in this program will work in a cohort following a specific plan of study. Students will learn counseling principles and practices from a Christian worldview.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: n/a
  • Graduation Rate: 25%
  • Retention Rate: n/a
  • Net Price: n/a

Courses Include: Orientation to Counseling for Christian Ministries, Developmental Issues in Counseling, Counseling and Christian Thought, Abnormal Psychology for Counseling, and Managing Change and Conflict.

#24 Trinity College of Florida

Bachelor of Science in Counseling

Trinity, FL

tcf

Trinity College emphasizes the integration of biblical and theological knowledge while covering a wide range of counseling topics and client populations. Students will become proficient in interviewing, diagnosis, and treatment planning, and be prepared to seek employment in a range of settings across the human services sector. This program also offers career coaching to support graduates in finding fulfilling careers.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: n/a
  • Graduation Rate: 42%
  • Retention Rate: 61%
  • Net Price: $15,785

Courses Include: Marriage and Family Communication, Counseling Adolescents, Premarital and Marital Counseling, Crisis Counseling, and Psychopathology.

#25 City Vision College

Bachelors of Addiction Studies

Kansas City, MO

cityvision

City Vision is a Christian College which offers a bachelor’s degree in Addiction Studies that prepares students to become certified as addiction counselors. Graduates of this program have a 91% job placement rate. City Vision offers a 25% discount to military/veterans as well as staff at Rescue Missions and the Salvation Army. Ministry interns may be eligible for a 40% tuition discount. Students can transfer up to 90 credits from any accredited college.

  • Percent of Applicants Admitted: n/a
  • Graduation Rate: n/a
  • Retention Rate: n/a
  • Net Price: $9,800

Courses Include: Managing Recovery Programs, Counseling in the City, Lifeskills Training, Recovery Dynamics, Counseling Foundations, Counseling Alcoholics, Sexual Issues in Addiction, and Family Issues and Recovery.

For a high resolution version of the award badge found in this article, click here. You are free to use the badge in your publications.

Related Rankings

This concludes our ranking of the 25 most accessible accredited online counseling degree programs.

Post Comment