Counseling Degree Programs in Utah

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Individuals preparing to become counselors in Utah are joining a growing industry. The number of school and vocational counselors in Utah may grow by 31.6% from 2018 to 2028, according to Projections Central. In fact, the state ranks first in projected job growth for that profession.

The state also ranks second for projected job growth for substance abuse, behavioral, and mental health counselors, with data projecting a 38.9% job increase for those professionals in the next decade. In addition, counselors as a whole earned an average salary of $53,120 in the U.S. in 2019, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

To qualify for counseling licensure, you first need a master’s degree in counseling. Many schools offer a master’s in counseling in Utah, including online programs. These programs consist of psychology and counseling courses as well as supervised work experience. Distance learning programs also allow students to take advantage of a more flexible school schedule.

If you’re interested in pursuing a master’s in counseling in Utah, you can find a list of degrees below.

Top Counseling Degree Program in Utah

Rank School Location
1 University of Phoenix – Utah Salt Lake City, UT
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  • University of Phoenix – Utah
    Location

    Salt Lake City, UT

    The College of Social Sciences at the University of Phoenix - Utah offers a number of programs to those who are looking for a career focused on helping others. The college has designed their curriculum based on organizations like the American Counseling Association, National Organization for Human Services and the National Board for Certified Counselors. This benefits students in a variety of ways, as not only will they have their degrees, they will have the advantage over other students who have attended schools not focused on these ideals. There are a number of undergraduate and graduate level programs available through this college, and there is one CACREP accredited counseling program.

    Students interested in accredited counseling degree programs in Utah will find the M.S. in Counseling from the University of Phoenix-Utah will fit the bill. This program has been designed to give students the skills and knowledge they need to counsel others. With the clinical mental health counseling concentration, student will be even more prepared to work with the community, through agencies and with institutions that provide mental health services.

    The curriculum is heavy on teaching the foundations of counseling and introduces theories to students that they will use throughout their careers. Students will learn about dealing with individuals and groups, learn about assessing and evaluating individuals and counseling skills. Additionally, they will learn about research, issues facing those who work in the mental health field and be able to get out in the real world through supervised clinical sessions. Faculty are well respected in their field and have clinical counseling experience.

    Accreditation

    • The College of Social Sciences is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP).

Applying to a Counseling Degree Program

In order to apply for a master’s in counseling in Utah, prospective students should possess a bachelor’s degree. Although schools generally do not require applicants to have studied counseling for their undergraduate degree, they often look for candidates with some coursework in psychology or a related field. Prospective students should also meet a minimum GPA requirement, though higher GPAs make applicants more competitive.

Some schools require additional application material, including GRE scores, recommendation letters, and personal statements. Prospective students don’t necessarily need work experience, but they can build a stronger application with work, volunteer, or research experience in the field.

For more on becoming a licensed counselor, you can visit this resource.


Frequently Asked Questions

  • What are the most popular counseling specialties?

    Individuals who go into counseling can choose to specialize in several different areas. Some popular counseling concentrations include mental health, substance abuse, behavioral disorder, rehabilitation, school, and vocational or career counseling. Counseling students can also become marriage and family therapists, grief counselors, and art or music therapists.

  • How can you tell if a counseling program is accredited?

    Accreditation agencies evaluate schools and programs to make sure they offer students a quality education. Because of this, state regulatory boards only allow candidates with accredited degrees to apply for counseling licensure. Employers look for professionals with licensure and accredited degrees as well. Look for degrees accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs. Most schools list accreditation on their website.

  • Can a counselor prescribe medication?

    Counselors cannot prescribe medication, regardless of whether they possess licensure. When it comes to mental health, only licensed psychiatrists can prescribe medication. However, licensed counselors can make diagnoses and provide guidance.

  • Is a counselor the same as a therapist?

    People often refer to counselors and therapists interchangeably, even though the two professions have some distinctions. When it comes to licensed therapists and counselors, the state typically sets that difference. For instance, mental health counselors can work one-on-one with patients, while marriage and family therapists work with family units. That said, counseling as a general term can refer to non-licensed counselors who offer guidance and advice without a master’s degree.


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