M.S. Clinical Mental Health Counseling

https://www.tamuct.edu/degrees/graduate/mental-health-counseling.html

OVERVIEW

The Master of Science in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, a 60 semester hour program, prepares professional counselors to work in community agencies, educational settings, as well as private practice. Our faculty are committed to graduating students who have exemplary theory-based knowledge and skills in counseling and who have demonstrated aptitude in providing counseling and mental health services to people from diverse backgrounds.

Our master’s in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program is intended for students seeking licensure as Licensed Professional Counselors (LPC) in Texas.   

Program Level Student Learning Outcomes

The student will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate competency in CACREP’s eight core areas of curricular experience.

  2. Practice foundational counseling techniques and micro-skills.

  3. Apply ethical standards and engage in ethical counseling in professional practice.

  4. Counsel diverse populations.

  5. Maintain a professional identity, as well as professionalism and fitness to practice as a professional counselor.

  6. Conduct research and statistical analysis.

Entry Requirements

Students will be admitted into the M.S. Clinical Mental Health Counseling program by the faculty once the following application criteria are met:

  • Successful admission to graduate school.
  • Completed Counseling and Psychology Department application.
  • Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution.
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0.
  • Submission of GRE test scores.  This requirement is waived only for applicants who have already earned a graduate degree from a regionally accredited institution. 
  • Clinical/Work/Volunteer Experience: While specific experience is not required, previous related work experience may make the applicant more competitive.
  • Timely submission of admission materials.

Students will be admitted to the M.S. Clinical Mental Health Counseling with School Counselor Certification Preparation program by the faculty once the following application criteria are met:

  • Graduate School admission
  • Admission to the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program.
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0 or in last 60 hours to include semester where 60th hour occurred.
  • Completed School Counselor application with essay.
  • Valid Teacher Certificate.
  • Two years creditable service as a teacher of record or one year creditable service with letter indicating continuing employment at a TEA approved site.
  • Interview.
  • Letter of Intent to pursue certification.

Master of Science - Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program Requirements

All courses applicable to the program must be attained, at least 60 hours are required for the degree.

COUN 5302Intro to Research3
COUN 5304Human Development3
COUN 5307Abnormal Behavior3
COUN 5311Multicultural Counseling3
COUN 5350Foundations of Counseling3
COUN 5351Career Counseling and Guidance3
COUN 5353Theories of Counseling3
COUN 5354Group Procedure for Counselors3
COUN 5356Introduction to Family Counseling3
COUN 5357Methods and Practices in Counseling3
COUN 5358Counseling Perspective on Psychopathology3
COUN 5363Addictions Counseling3
COUN 5365Ethical Foundation of Counseling3
COUN 5381Assessment and Evaluation Fundamentals3
COUN 5386Clinical Mental Health Internship (1)3
COUN 5386Clinical Mental Health Internship (2)3
Graduate-level elective9
COUN 5393Clinical Mental Health Practicum3
Total Credit Hours60

Master of Science - Clinical Mental Health Counseling with School Counseling Certification Preparation Requirements

All courses applicable to the program must be attained, at least 60 hours are required for the degree.

COUN 5302Intro to Research3
COUN 5304Human Development3
COUN 5307Abnormal Behavior3
COUN 5311Multicultural Counseling 13
COUN 5350Foundations of Counseling3
COUN 5351Career Counseling and Guidance 13
COUN 5352Foundations of Professional School Counseling 13
COUN 5353Theories of Counseling 13
COUN 5354Group Procedure for Counselors3
COUN 5356Introduction to Family Counseling3
COUN 5357Methods and Practices in Counseling 13
COUN 5358Counseling Perspective on Psychopathology3
COUN 5363Addictions Counseling3
COUN 5365Ethical Foundation of Counseling3
COUN 5381Assessment and Evaluation Fundamentals3
COUN 5386Clinical Mental Health Internship 1,23
COUN 5386Clinical Mental Health Internship 1,23
Graduate-level elective6
COUN 5393Clinical Mental Health Practicum3
Total Credit Hours60

Courses

COUN 5090. Comprehensive Examination. 0 Credit Hours.

Study for and take the behavioral examination for Non-thesis students. Register for the comprehensive examination during final semester of graduate coursework, or upon permission of advisor. All comprehensive examinations will be written, but an oral component may also be required. A maximum of three attempts will be allowed. Thesis students do not take this examination.

COUN 5300. Behavioral Statistics. 3 Credit Hours.

Study descriptive statistics with inferential statistics, correlation, one-way and two-way analysis of variance, regression analysis and experimental design. Use computer software with emphasis on experience with SPSS.

COUN 5301. Research Methods. 3 Credit Hours.

Study the scientific method of research, types of research and research design. Develop a research project with the assistance of instructor. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5300 or equivalent graduate statistics course or permission of department chair.

COUN 5302. Intro to Research. 3 Credit Hours.

This is an introductory graduate-level course in research design and methods and program evaluation. It is designed to introduce the student to the fundamentals of research in education and applied behavioral sciences. That is, students will explore what research involves, the various types of research, the techniques for conducting research studies, ethical behavior in the conduct of research, and research in educational settings. Descriptive and inferential statistics will be presented in the context of the research study. Social issues related to educational research will also be presented and discussed. Prerequisite(s): None.

COUN 5304. Human Development. 3 Credit Hours.

Study the development of human beings from conception to death. Learn research and theory of physical, cognitive, social and personality development in each of the different age groups, prenatal, infancy, childhood, adolescence, and adulthood also covers related ethical concerns.

COUN 5307. Abnormal Behavior. 3 Credit Hours.

Counselors need to understand the construct of abnormal behavior is a social construction and thus may be defined differently by cultures, families and society. We will examine the theories of abnormal psychology, current research through the lens of a socio-cultural model. We will also examine social and group dynamics that can elicit abnormal behavior from “normal” people. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5350 or permission of department chair.

COUN 5309. Assessment and Treatment of Marital and Family Systems. 3 Credit Hours.

Study evaluative methods and assessment techniques as well as treatment plans and strategies for examining and treating problematic and dysfunctional marital and family systems. Emphasis is placed on case analysis, management and treatment. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5350 and COUN 5356 or permission of department chair.

COUN 5311. Multicultural Counseling. 3 Credit Hours.

Study the interaction of social/cultural groups in America, problems of minorities and ethnic groups, problems related to gender and age, problems within family systems and contemporary sources of positive change also covers related ethical concerns. Development of counseling skills and strategies based upon the special needs and characteristics of culturally and ethnically diverse clients. Prerequisite(s): None.

COUN 5313. Crisis Intervention and Management. 3 Credit Hours.

Examine the dynamics and treatment of situation crises in various settings. Study theories and approaches to crisis intervention and management. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5350 or permission of department chair.

COUN 5320. Advanced Family Systems Theory. 3 Credit Hours.

Examine theories of family systems in relation to internal functioning and the external environment, including concepts of multi-generational transmission, fusion, emotional cutoff, differentiation, family projection and triangulation among others.

COUN 5350. Foundations of Counseling. 3 Credit Hours.

Study individual and group counseling, testing career planning and placement, referral, and consultation. Examine related theories and concepts with emphasis on counseling skills, as well as history and ethical and professional issues.

COUN 5351. Career Counseling and Guidance. 3 Credit Hours.

Study career counseling and guidance services that focus on occupational, educational, and personal/social issues for general and special populations. Examine theoretical bases for career counseling and guidance, study of organization and delivery of information through individual and group activities, and related ethical concerns. Additional purchase of occupational and education information materials may be required.

COUN 5352. Foundations of Professional School Counseling. 3 Credit Hours.

This course serves as an introduction to the field of professional school counseling with emphasis on the historical and current trends in school counseling. Historical evolution from school counselor as a position to the school counselor as a mental health professional delivering a comprehensive school counseling program will be explored. Professional school counselor identity development, legal and ethical concerns in school counseling, and the comprehensive school counseling program implementation cycle is covered to foster the educational, career, social, and personal well-being of all students. Certification Fee - $150. Prerequisite(s): Admission to School Counselor program.

COUN 5353. Theories of Counseling. 3 Credit Hours.

Investigate personality and counseling theories with an emphasis on how theories influence practice. Special emphasis on applications to various populations, role play, other experiential methods, and related ethical concerns. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5350 or PSYC 5360 or approval of the Department Chair.

COUN 5354. Group Procedure for Counselors. 3 Credit Hours.

Explore group therapy and group procedures with special emphasis on the development of group counseling skills with children, adolescents, adults, special populations, and related ethical concerns while supervised. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5350 and COUN 5357 or permission of department chair.

COUN 5356. Introduction to Family Counseling. 3 Credit Hours.

Learn family systems theory as applied to the study of family dynamics, family development, and the resolution of both family and ethical concerns.

COUN 5357. Methods and Practices in Counseling. 3 Credit Hours.

Study counseling pre-interns to methodology that goes beyond building basic counseling skills and techniques. Learn the basics of professional documentation, treatment planning, legal issues related to counseling, psychological services, and basic business practices. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5350 or PSYC 5360 or approval of the Department Chair.

COUN 5358. Counseling Perspective on Psychopathology. 3 Credit Hours.

Explore psychopathology that includes the history of abnormal behavior and an in-depth study of the specific diagnostic psychological disorders. Emphasis will be on classification systems currently used in clinical settings, treatment alternatives from a counseling perspective, and related ethical concerns. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5350 or PSYC 5360 or approval of the Department Chair.

COUN 5359. Brief Therapy. 3 Credit Hours.

Explore psychopathology that includes the history of abnormal behavior and an in-depth study of the specific diagnostic psychological disorders. Emphasis will be on classification systems currently used in clinical settings, treatment alternatives from a counseling perspective, and related ethical concerns. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5350 or permission of department chair.

COUN 5363. Addictions Counseling. 3 Credit Hours.

Study addiction counseling. Special emphasis is given to models of addiction, chemical dependence, process addictions, co-dependence and related ethical concerns.

COUN 5365. Ethical Foundation of Counseling. 3 Credit Hours.

Explore ethical principles of counselors, related codes of ethics, models for ethical decision making, and how to apply them to counseling practice.

COUN 5366. Sandtray Therapy. 3 Credit Hours.

This course is designed to provide students with extensive practical experience related to Sandtray as a therapeutic intervention for children, adolescents, adults, and families. This course uses both didactic and experiential methods to enhance student’s knowledge, skills and competence in using sandtray as a play therapy modality with clients. The curricula for this course include (1) knowledge of the literature of the discipline of sandtray in play therapy and (2) ongoing student engagement in professional play therapy practice. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5357.

COUN 5367. Play Therapy. 3 Credit Hours.

Students will explore the therapeutic powers of play within a counseling relationship. Enhance basic counseling skills and techniques using play as the medium of communication. Analyze the background, history, ethical concerns, and professional credentialing requirements of play therapists. Demonstrate play therapy skills and techniques with a child and participate in observation of and supervision in play therapy. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5350 Foundations of Counseling, COUN 5357 Methods and Practices of Counseling, Co-requisite COUN 5393 Practicum I: Field Experience or permission of department chair.

COUN 5381. Assessment and Evaluation Fundamentals. 3 Credit Hours.

Examine nature and development of standardized tests, with emphasis on ethical standards, psychometric theory, test standards, and test construction. Selection criteria and utilization of standardized or other instruments in various environments are considered. Analyze evaluations and critiques of published tests and experiential exposure to different types of psychological tests. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5300 or permission of department chair.

COUN 5386. Clinical Mental Health Internship. 3 Credit Hours.

Explore professional activities in counseling and become familiar with a variety of professional activities and resources. Must complete 600 clock hours, of which at least 240 are direct client contact, in no less than two semesters and no more than three semesters. Interns will receive a minimum of 1.5 hours per week of group supervision and 1 hour per week of individual/triadic supervision. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5393 and permission of Practicum/Internship Director. Field experience fee - $75.

COUN 5388. Counseling Problems. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Study of selected problems in counseling. Open to graduate students in counseling who are independently capable of developing a problem in the area of counseling and guidance. Engage in independent research, reading and discussions under the personal direction of the instructor, topics may vary according to student need.

COUN 5389. Special Topics in Counseling. 3 Credit Hours.

Examine current advanced study material on a specialized topic of interest to counseling and psychology. Explore required readings from current counseling and psychology publications and other related periodicals. Course may be repeated for credit as topics vary.

COUN 5391. School-Counseling Practicum I. 3 Credit Hours.

Explore professional activities in guidance and counseling. Major emphasis is placed on the involvement in successful practices at the educational level of interest. Students must have met all academic and professional standards of practice before placement and lab experiences are included. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5350, COUN 5351, COUN 5353, COUN 5354, COUN 5357, COUN 5352. Field experience fee - $75.

COUN 5392. School-Counseling Practicum II. 3 Credit Hours.

Experience professional activities in counseling and guidance in area of interest. Major emphasis is placed on the integration of theoretical and conceptual principles, as well as professional and personal skill development, and related ethical concerns. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5391 and the application for internship. Field experience fee - $75.

COUN 5393. Clinical Mental Health Practicum. 3 Credit Hours.

Gain professional experience in marriage and family, mental health, and/or counseling and guidance placements in the Community Counseling and Family Therapy Center, or in placements outside the university. The field experience will consist of 100 clock hours with 40 client contact hours. Weekly individual and group supervision is included. Prerequisite(s): COUN 5350, COUN 5353, COUN 5354, COUN 5357, COUN 5358 and COUN 5365 with a B or better in each course; and consent of the practicum/internship director. Field Experience fee - $75.