Counseling Degree Programs in Idaho

Updated December 1, 2022

Students exploring Idaho counseling degrees can refer to this page to learn more about the best programs in the state, along with employment opportunities and discipline-specific data. is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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Counselors help patients cope with and overcome things like mental illness, addiction, and emotional disorders. These professionals pursue careers across many different specialty areas, each with different responsibilities. 

Substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselors work with individuals, families, and groups, providing treatment and guidance for mental health issues, behavioral disorders, and substance abuse problems. In contrast, rehabilitation counselors help individuals with difficulties from accidents, illnesses, or birth defects. Idaho employs about 1,540 substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselors. About 1,510 professionals work as rehabilitation counselors in the state. 

The Idaho Licensing Board of Professional Counselors and Marriage & Family Therapists regulates counseling and therapy professions. The board issues licenses for clinical practice counselors, marriage and family therapists, and associate marriage and family therapists.

A learner interested in earning a counseling degree in Idaho can refer to the rankings below to learn more about the state's best programs.

Top 10 Counseling Degree Programs in Idaho

Boise State University Boise, ID
Idaho State University Pocatello, ID
Northwest Nazarene University Nampa, ID

Featured Online Programs

Figuring out where to apply? These top, accredited schools offer a variety of online degrees. Consider one of these accredited programs, and discover their value today.

Career Outlook for Counselors in Idaho

Counselors can consider many different career opportunities, depending on their ideal patient population. Some common specialty areas of counseling include school and career counseling, genetic counselors, and substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors. 

Substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors in Idaho experience the highest levels of employment in outpatient care centers and the highest concentration of employment in residential intellectual and developmental disability, mental health, and substance abuse facilities. The junior college industry offers the highest pay for these professionals.

Genetic counselors, who work with individuals and families to assess the risks of inherited conditions, primarily work in state, local, and private hospitals. These counselors experience the highest employment levels in general medical and surgical hospitals, the highest concentration of jobs in medical and diagnostic laboratories, and the highest salaries in outpatient care centers.

Counseling Degree Programs in Idaho

  • Boise State University

    Boise, ID

    Department of Counselor Education

    Situated in the western region of the state in the capital city and population center of Idaho in the hub of Bronco Nation, Boise State University is a comprehensive major public research institution with more than 22,000 students on a 180-acre campus in the shadows of the Rocky Mountain foothills. The U.S. News and World Report survey currently ranks Boise State as the 65th best college, 21st top public university, and 18th best school for veterans in the West. Within the 132nd best school of education in the nation, the Department of Counselor Education is committed to attracting students from diverse underrepresented backgrounds and providing an education environment that is supportive to all.

    Master of Arts (M.A.) in Counseling

    With a mission to promote human development through training graduate level professional counselors who are qualified to practice in educational, public, and private settings to advance the profession, the M.A. in Counseling degree consists of a minimum of 60 semester hours of coursework with at least 700 hours of supervised internship experience. The program currently offers two concentration areas in Addictions Counseling for substance abuse intervention and School Counseling for academic intervention in K-12 school settings. Following the guidelines for knowledge and skill development by the CACREP, the program requires the culminating experiences of a written comprehensive examination, videotaped evidence of counseling skills, and theory integration supported by a comprehensive portfolio demonstration.


    • Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP)
    • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU)

    Contact Information

    Education Building Room 643
    1910 University Drive
    Boise, ID 83725
    (208) 426-1218

  • Idaho State University

    Pocatello, ID

    Department of Counseling

    As the state's designated lead institution in health professions classified as a doctoral research university with high research activity by the prestigious Carnegie Foundation, Idaho State University is a public institution based in the city of Pocatello in the southeast corner of the state. ISU has regional campuses in Meridian, Idaho Falls, and Twin Falls. Home to more than 14,500 students in an outdoor lover's paradise near some of the West's greatest natural wonders, Forbes magazine currently ranks ISU as the 243rd best research university in the nation and 101st top college in the West. Within the 177th best graduate school of psychology in the United States by the U.S. News and World Report, the Department of Counseling is committed to preparing quality counselors for diverse settings in Idaho and the nation.

    Master of Counseling (M.Coun.) in Clinical Mental Health Counseling

    Designed to prepare professional counselors for providing individual, group, family, and marriage counseling in various clinical settings, the Master of Counseling in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program emphasizes wellness, development, and advocacy related to clients and the community. Throughout the two-year 60-credit program, students are actively engaged in a curriculum based on counseling techniques, career development, cultural counseling, crisis intervention, professional ethics, conceptual theory, psychodiagnosis, psychological assessment, applied statistics, and continuum care. All students are expected to complete a minimum of 1,000 supervised clinical hours of internship in mental health centers, state hospitals, rehabilitation facilities, juvenile homes, private practices, or substance abuse centers.

    Master of Counseling (M.Coun.) in Marital, Couple, and Family Counseling

    The accredited Master of Counseling in Marital, Couple, and Family Counseling program track is designed to prepare graduate students with the interviewing, assessment, and case management skills needed for working with individuals, couples, families, and other systems for the appropriate intervention strategies. Strongly based on preventive approaches and family system theories to understand the implications of social or cultural issues relevant to the field, the program requires students to complete four semesters for a total of 60 semester hours and 1,000 supervised internship hours. For completion of the program, master's degree students must receive a passing score over 70 percent on the Counselor Preparation Comprehensive Examination (CPCE) in the eight common core areas.

    Master of Counseling (M.Coun.) in School Counseling

    Intended to prepare qualified counselors with the skills and knowledge needs to provide counseling, consulting, or guidance services to youth in elementary, middle, and secondary school settings, the Master of Counseling in School Counseling program requires a minimum of four full semesters of resident graduate studies beyond the bachelor's degree for a total of 60 semester hours and 1,000 clock hours of supervised internship in an approved K-12 setting. The major objectives of the program include producing graduates who can function on a child study team, make referrals inside or outside the school system for resources, implement program evaluation, function as a consultant to other school personnel, understand the process of coordinating guidance curriculum, and work with student families on a therapeutic and educational level.

    Master of Counseling (M.Coun.) in Student Affairs Counseling

    The Master of Counseling in Student Affairs program aims to provide a comprehensive view of college student services in preparation for graduate counselors to work in student affairs positions on college, university, and vocational technical school campuses. In addition to an emphasis on higher education, students receive a strong component in effective communication skills, which are essential for student affairs administrators to possess in any academic setting. Requiring students to complete a minimum of 60 semester hours in four full-time semesters, the didactic and experiential aspects of the program are combined in one counseling practicum and student affairs internship appropriate to students' post-degree career goals.

    Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Counselor Education and Counseling

    With the goal of preparing doctoral level counselor educators and supervisors to work primarily in institutions of higher education as faculty members with the knowledge to perform research applicable to the practice of counseling, the Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Counseling program places an emphasis on the supervision of counseling students who are providing individual, group, marital, couple, and family counseling. Following the bachelor's degree, each doctoral student must complete ten semesters of graduate study, including the master's degree and three years of doctoral residency to complete the Ph.D. degree. Through the program, students are asked to select a specialization area in School Counseling; Student Affairs Counseling; Marital, Couple, and Family Counseling; or Mental Health Counseling.


    • Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP)
    • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU)

    Contact Information

    Garrison Hall Room 725
    1440 East Terry Street
    Pocatello, ID 83209
    (208) 282-3156

  • Northwest Nazarene University

    Nampa, ID

    Counselor Education Department

    As one of just eight liberal arts colleges affiliated with the Church of Nazarene in the United States, Northwest Nazarene University is a private non-profit Christian institution that serves the Northwest region of the nation with more than 10,300 students. Based on a 90-acre campus situated in Nampa with satellite campuses in Boise, Idaho Falls, Twin Falls, and online, NNU is currently ranked as the 39th best college in the West by the U.S. News and World Report, and it is named among the "Best Western Colleges" by the prestigious Princeton Review. The NNU Counselor Education Department aims to prepare students with the professional competencies necessary for entry-level counseling and therapeutic direct service delivery as well as provide a base for students wishing to pursue doctoral studies.

    Master of Science (M.S.) in Clinical Counseling

    The Master of Science in Clinical Counseling program track provides theory, skill building, and field preparation necessary to produce qualified entry-level counselors in various clinical mental health settings. Focused on the development of students as counselors with leadership abilities and development of knowledge to offer ethical and professional counseling services to community members, the curriculum requires students to complete a minimum of 60 credit hours in major and elective coursework. Beyond the basic counseling skills, the program is designed to introduce students to the intricacies of the funding of mental health agencies, inter-agency consultation, and the current issues faced by those who are most in need of receiving clinical counseling assistance with limited ability to pay for mental health services.

    Master of Science (M.S.) in Marriage and Family Counseling

    Delivered in a traditional face-to-face on-campus format with a Wesleyan foundation in spiritual wellness, gratitude, community service, and good mental health practices, the Master of Science in Marriage and Family Counseling program is focused on preparing students with a strong understanding of both theory and therapy for individual, couple, and family counseling interventions. Throughout the eight-semester program, students must complete 60 credit hours of coursework, at least 1,000 hours of practicum/internship supervised experienced, the National Counselor Examination for licensure, a participatory field research project, and personal growth experiences as counseling clients. Most majors in the program also intern at the private non-profit counseling center on-campus, which provides individual or group counseling, play therapy, and youth assessment services.

    Master of Science (M.S.) in School Counseling

    Designed for preparing graduate students as professional counselors to serve in K-12 school settings in rural communities in Idaho with the components of the National Model, youth counseling skills, and intervention techniques for special learning problems, the Master of Science in School Counseling program is offered in a traditional method on-campus as well as through blended online coursework with face-to-face delivery on weekends. Through the eight-semester 60-credit program, students are asked to enroll in an emphasis area in Play Therapy, Trauma and Crisis, Advanced Clinical Skills, Spirituality and Wellness, Addictions, and Integration of Faith in Counseling. Upon completion of the program's 1,000 hours of required internship experience, graduates are prepared to apply for the Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) credential for K-12 School Counseling in Idaho.


    • Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP)
    • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU)

    Contact Information

    516 South University Blvd.
    Nampa, ID 83686
    (208) 467-8688

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