The Top 10 Online Bachelor’s Degrees in Substance Abuse and Addictions Counseling

Best Counseling Degrees - Top Online Programs 2016
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By BCD Staff
March 2016

The bachelor’s degrees listed here will allow students with an interest in the field of substance abuse and addictions counseling to acquire an in depth education covering a range of relevant topics. The online accredited programs listed here will prepare graduates for entry level positions in the field of substance abuse and addictions counseling as well as for graduate school. This ranking is part of our series on Online Degrees in Substance Abuse and Addictions Counseling.

Methodology

For information about how this ranking was developed, see our methodology statement at the end of the article.

10. University of Cincinnati

Cincinnati, OH

Bachelor of Science in Substance Abuse Counseling

The College of Education, Criminal Justice, and Human Services at the University of Cincinnati offers an online Bachelor of Science in Substance Abuse Counseling. The program curriculum is built around the current research in the field of substance abuse. This is a full-time four year degree. Graduates of this program can pursue careers in chemical dependency counseling. This degree could lead to careers such as: probation officer; social worker; nurse; and guidance counselor to name a few.

Courses include: introduction to substance abuse counseling; introduction to substance abuse prevention; basic pharmacology; alcoholism; stress management in clinical and community settings; assessment and diagnosis in substance abuse counseling; foundations of cultural competence; ethics in substance abuse counseling; and substance abuse counseling for families and other relationships.

  • Credits Required: Not Listed
  • Cost: $474 / Credit Hour
  • Regional Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

For more on University of Cincinnati

9. Grand Canyon University

Phoenix, AZ

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

Grand Canyon University offers a Bachelor of Science in Counseling with an emphasis in Addiction, Chemical Dependency, and Substance Abuse. Frequent start dates for this program are available and courses are generally seven weeks long. Students in this program will learn core skills central to the profession of addiction counseling including: crisis intervention, case management; family dynamics, the role of spirituality in recovery; and prevention techniques. Graduates of this program will have the foundational courses to work towards state and national certification, requirements vary by state, consult your home state licensing board for details.

Courses include: introduction to counseling theories; foundations of addiction and substance use disorders; psychopharmacology in treatment of addiction and substance use disorders; co-occurring disorders and HIV/ AIDS; multicultural counseling in a diverse society; relapse prevention in the treatment of addiction and substance use disorder; domestic violence, child, and elder abuse; spirituality and addiction; advanced case management for addiction and substance use disorders; and trauma, addiction and substance use disorders.

  • Credits Required: 120
  • Cost: $470 / Credit Hour
  • Regional Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

For more on Grand Canyon University

8. Ohio Christian University

Circleville, OH

Bachelor of Arts in Substance Abuse Counseling

Ohio Christian University offers an online Bachelor of Arts in Substance Abuse Counseling. Students in this program will learn assessment, diagnosis, and treatment strategies for working in the field of addiction. Students will incorporate a Christian worldview in their approach to working with individuals, groups, and families. Graduates of this program will be prepared to work towards Certified Chemical Dependency Assistant status (CDCA) licensure in the state of Ohio. Students from other states should consult their home state licensure board for state specific requirements. Ohio Christian University offers qualified students a military tuition discount reducing tuition to $250 per credit hour.

Courses include: research and professional development skills; Christian excellence; introduction to substance abuse; transformed worldview; psychopharmacology; ethical and legal issues in counseling; prevention strategies; abnormal psychology; introduction to theology; diagnostic evaluation and personal assessment; individual chemical dependency counseling; family dynamics in substance abuse; and spiritual dimensions of illness and recovery.

  • Credits Required: 120
  • Cost: $415 / Credit Hour
  • Regional Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

For more on Ohio Christian University

7. Brescia University

Owensboro, KY

Bachelor of Science in Addictions Counseling

Brescia University offers an online Bachelor of Science in Addictions Counseling. Students can choose to complete the program at the speed that works for them. Students can also choose to complete a minor as a part of their course of study; psychology or social work are the recommended minors for this program. Graduates of this program will be able to shorten the time it takes to get state and nationally certified in the field of addiction counseling depending on home state requirements.

Courses include: psychology of addictions/ introduction to addictions; addictions and the family; theories and addiction; ethics and professional responsibility; individual addiction counseling; group addiction counseling; behavioral psychopharmacology; crisis and brief interventions counseling; screening, assessment, and treatment planning; and case management and documentation.

  • Credits Required: 128
  • Cost: $405 / Credit Hour
  • Regional Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

For more information on Brescia University

6. Kaplan University

Multiple Locations

Bachelor of Science in Psychology in Addictions

Kaplan University offers an online Bachelor of Science in Psychology in Addictions through their Augusta and Cedar Falls campuses. Kaplan University’s program is approved by the National Association for Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors (NAADAC). Frequent start dates are available. Students in this program will learn assessment, intervention, treatment, and case management skills. These skills can be used in a wide variety of professional settings for students interested in pursuing careers in the helping professions. New students in this program may be eligible for the Kaplan University Tuition Cap which can potentially make the cost of tuition less than the listed price per credit for the overall degree.

Courses include: interpersonal communications; human behavior and the environment; survey of social problems; introduction to management; introduction to psychology; neuroscience; child and adolescent psychology; ethical practice in a diverse world; personality development; health psychology; psychology of addiction; and psychopharmacology of alcohol and drugs.

  • Credits Required: 180
  • Cost: $371 / Credit Hour
  • Regional Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

For more on Kaplan University

5. Indiana Wesleyan University

Marion, IN

Bachelor of Science in Addictions Counseling

Indiana Wesleyan University is a Christian University offering an online Bachelor of Science in Addictions Counseling. This program emphasizes looking at addiction from a biopsychosocial-spiritual perspective. In an effort to be accessible numerous start dates are available and students can complete this program in as few as 22 months. Generally students complete one course at a time. Students will complete a practicum experience in their hometown at an addictions facility to develop and strengthen their drug and alcohol counseling skills.

Courses include: principles of addiction counseling; addictions theory; developmental psychology; addictions counseling skills; theory and practice of group counseling; theories of personality; counseling addicted and dysfunctional family systems; and addictions programs and professional development.

  • Credits Required: 45
  • Cost: $364 / Credit Hour
  • Regional Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

For more on Indiana Wesleyan University

4. University of South Dakota

Vermillion, SD

Bachelor of Science in Addiction Studies

The University of South Dakota offers an online Bachelor of Science in Addiction Studies. This program emphasises a science-based addiction education. Graduates of this program may qualify for state and national certification depending on home state requirements. Applicants that are interested in certification can contact their home state licensure and certification board. The addiction studies department and programs at the University of South Dakota are accredited by the National Addiction Studies Accreditation Commission. Graduates of this program will have the educational background and professional skills to pursue careers and graduate studies in the field of addiction.

Courses include: study of alcohol use and abuse; study of drug use and abuse; alcohol and drug helping skills; alcohol and drug group interactions; ethical and legal issues in the substance use profession; working with families on alcohol/drug issues; foundations of alcohol/drug prevention; adolescents and substance issues; alcohol and drug use in diverse populations; and alcohol and drug counseling theories.

  • Credits Required: 120
  • Cost: $325.25 / Credit Hour
  • Regional Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

For more information on The University of South Dakota

3. Northwestern State University of Louisiana

Natchitoches, LA

Bachelor of Science in Addiction Studies

Northwestern State University of Louisiana offers an online Bachelor of Science in Addiction Studies. Students in this program have access to all of their courses online while some students may choose to enroll in classroom courses or a combination of both. Regardless of venue, the coursework and the diploma will be the same and the diploma will not reflect that courses were taken online. Online students do not pay any out of state fees. Cost per credit hour is $325 for the first 12 credits each term and $100 per credit for each additional credit. Students that have the time to take additional courses each term can save on overall costs this way.

Courses include: introduction to addiction disorders; family dynamics; screening and assessment; case management; addiction counseling skills; dynamics of group counseling; special populations; co-occurring disorders; pharmacology of addiction; and ethics for psychology and addiction.

  • Credits Required: 120
  • Cost: $325 / Credit Hour
  • Regional Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

For more information on Northwestern State University of Louisiana

2. Southern New Hampshire University

Manchester, NH

Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with a concentration in Addictions Studies

Southern New Hampshire University offers over 100 online bachelor’s degrees, some of which allow students to transfer in with up to 90 credits. Southern New Hampshire University aims to offer low tuition rates for online students. Active-duty service members and their spouses may be eligible for a 30% tuition discount. Available online at Southern New Hampshire University is a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with a concentration in addiction studies. Students will learn to support individuals with issues of addiction in the context of their community. Additionally, students will explore current research in the field of addictions. Graduates of this program will be prepared for a variety of careers in the field of human services as well as for graduate school.

Unique feature:Graduates of this program can go on to pursue professional careers such as: case manager; court liaison; law enforcement advocate; probation officer; psychiatric assistant; treatment specialist; and victim’s advocate.

  • Credits Required: 120
  • Cost: $320 / Credit Hour
  • Regional Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges

For more information on Southern New Hampshire University

1. University of Maine at Augusta

Augusta, ME

Bachelor of Science in Mental Health & Human Services with a concentration in Addiction Counseling

The University of Maine at Augusta offers an online Bachelor of Science in Mental Health and Human Services with a concentration in Addiction Counseling. The program is designed to integrate liberal arts and human services courses with an internship to apply skills. Applicants are encouraged to consult with an admissions counselor regarding state reciprocity for their internship. Alternate capstone projects may be available.

Unique feature:Students in this program will learn skills including: handling crisis; developing individual service plans; job coaching; teaching life and career skills; conducting intake interviews; counseling; teaching parenting skills; writing reports; supervising positions; coordinating support services; maintaining records; and administering programs.

  • Credits Required: 121
  • Cost: $271 / Credit Hour
  • Regional Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges

For more information on The University of Maine at Augusta

Methodology: For the Top 10 Online Bachelor’s Degrees in Substance Abuse and Addictions Counseling, a list of schools was gathered from College Navigator. Schools were selected that had programs in “substance abuse/addiction counseling” and offered the programs as distance education. These programs were then checked for regional accreditation by the Council for Higher Education, only those that were regionally accredited were retained on the list. Next, each school’s website was searched for bachelor degree programs offered in an online format. Finally, schools were ranked by tuition (per credit hour) as listed on the program’s website for online and distance education degrees.

Note: Required residencies (if any) are listed when stated by program.

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