What is Rehabilitation Counseling?

Updated November 22, 2022 · 2 Min Read

Learn more about a career as a Rehabilitation Counselor including education requirements, certifications and licensing, and more.

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Rehabilitation counseling is a specific practice of counseling within the discipline where professionals work to help people who have emotional and physical disabilities so that they are able to live more independently.

If you are trying to choose a professional specialty in the field of counseling to pursue, the rehabilitation practice is a practical one to consider. If you would like to learn what a rehabilitation counselor does and what settings they may work in, read this guide so that you can make an informed decision when mapping out your career path.

What Does a Rehabilitation Counselor Do?

Becoming an adult and a contributing member of society means that you can live an independent life where you are able to take care of yourself and you are able to seek and maintain gainful employment. Unfortunately, some individuals have personal, physical, social issues or disabilities that can affect their ability to live independently or to be employed.

Rehabilitation counselors work with these individuals in an effort to evaluate strengths and also limitations of their patients. They may arrange medical care, provide the patient with training, assist in job placement, evaluate medical reports, and help the person develop job skills so that they can work and live independently. The actual role of the counselor depends upon the setting and the demographic of patient that the counselor is working with. The purpose, however, is to give guidance and assistance to those who want to live more independent lives.

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What Settings do Rehabilitation Counselors Work in?

A rehabilitation counselor can work in a variety of settings. Many counselors work for government agents and in mental health facilities. Counselors may also be found in health agencies or with community agencies where people are ordered to get counseling after being convicted of a crime. Family centers that help spouses or parents with common problems that lead to personal issues may also employ counselors. A small percentage of counselors in this specialty area are self employed.

What is the Demand for Rehabilitation Counselors?

Whenever you are comparing specialties within counseling, you must consider what the prospects are before you attend school. When you consider demand and job outlook, you can predict whether or not there will be sufficient jobs when you are approaching your graduation. Luckily, the Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected that the field will grow by 20% by the year 2022. This means that there will about 23,400 new jobs for rehabilitation counselors in the next 7 years.

How to Become a Rehabilitation Counselor

A majority of rehabilitation counselors have a minimum of a Bachelor's degree, but some agencies prefer their candidates have a Master's in rehabilitation. You should check to see if there is a license or certification requirement in your state before you plan to attend any educational programs.

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Rehabilitation counselors can provide both individual and group counseling to patients who have disabilities or other issues that require the need for medical care or for other types of treatment. The primary goal is to make it so that the client can cope with mental, physical, emotional or social issues so that they can adapt their way of living. If you would like to become a specialist in rehabilitation counseling, it is time to pursue a formal degree.

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