The Counselor Education program offers a Master of Arts degree with three possible concentrations: Clinical Mental Health; Marriage, Couples, and Family; and School Counseling. Admission requirements are the same for all three concentrations. The Clinical Mental Health and School Counseling concentrations are accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) and meet the academic and field experience requirements established by the Alabama Board of Examiners in Counseling (ABEC) for licensure as a professional counselor (LPC). The Marriage, Couples, and Family concentration prepares students for a path to licensure as marriage and family therapists (LMFT). Properly credentialed counselors provide mental health services to individuals, families, and groups to treat mental, behavioral, and emotional problems and disorders.

Clinical Mental Health Concentration

This concentration prepares students to work with clients in mental health agencies, private and group practice, substance abuse rehabilitation facilities, crisis centers, women’s counseling centers, child advocacy and family services facilities, and other domains. Mental health counselors work with clients suffering from emotional or mental disorders such as anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress, grief, poor self-esteem, and addiction. Students are required to participate in supervised field experiences and counseling internships and are strongly encouraged to become members of and to attend the local, state, and national conferences of relevant professional organizations.

Marriage, Couples, and Family Counseling Concentration

This concentration prepares students to counsel couples and families with the aim of resolving conflicts, fostering more effective ways of communicating, and building healthier interpersonal relationships. Couple and family counselors work in a range of professional settings such as hospitals, wellness centers, recovery programs, and private practice, where they address not only conflicts between partners and within families but also clinical issues such as depression, anxiety, grief, and addiction. Students are required to participate in supervised field experiences and counseling internships and are strongly encouraged to become members of and to attend the local, state, and national conferences of relevant professional organizations.

Marriage, Couples, and Family Counseling Certificate

Current counselor education graduate students concentrating in clinical mental health or school counseling as well as practitioners with a master’s degree in clinical mental health or school counseling may pursue a Marriage, Couples, and Family certificate. This certificate will enhance the versatility of counselors and expand the range of services they are able to offer their clients.

School Counseling Concentration

This concentration prepares individuals to work as school counselors in elementary, middle, and high schools where they promote learning and academic success by helping students resolve or cope with developmental, familial, social, and personal difficulties. Our program of study conforms not only to ABEC requirements but also to those of the State of Alabama Department of Education. Students must participate in supervised field experiences and counseling internships and are strongly encouraged to become members of and to attend the local, state, and national conferences of relevant professional organizations.

Nationally recognized researchers and award-winning faculty members

Counselor Education Degrees

The Counselor Education program in the Department of Human Studies offers a Master of Arts with three possible concentrations and a graduate certificate in Marriage, Couples, and Family counseling.

A = Available

AEC = Alabama Educator Certification

ConcentrationCertificateMasters
Clinical Mental Health   A
Marriage, Couples, and Family Counseling A A
School Counseling   A, AEC

Accreditation

The Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) provides recognition that the content and quality of a program has been evaluated and meets standards set by the profession. The UAB School Counseling and Clinical Mental Health specialty areas are both accredited by CACREP. In 2016, the Counselor Education Program introduced a new Marriage, Couples, and Family Counseling (MCFC) specialty. Per CACREP policy, new specialty areas must have documented graduates prior to seeking initial accreditation. In addition, students admitted to the MCFC program would be considered graduates of a CACREP program if they receive their degree within 18 months prior to the conferral of accreditation. In alignment with these policies, the UAB Counselor Education Program will seek CACREP accreditation for the new Marriage, Couples, and Family Counseling (MCFC) specialty once the first potential graduate is in the last term of their program plan of study (AY 2019).

Mission

The Counselor Education program at the University of Alabama at Birmingham creates an academically rigorous, student-centered, and supportive environment to help move students toward acquiring the knowledge and skills needed for entering the profession as effective school, mental health, and/or family counselors.

Vision

Producing competent and effective professional counselors.

Values

We promote the movement of individuals toward:

  • Self-Awareness - We promote and encourage reflective teaching, practice, and research.
  • Professional Relationships - We model caring, supportive, and stimulating relationships for our students that inspire their intellectual curiosity, ethical conduct, and professional excellence.
  • Excellence - We practice continuous improvement and innovation through our evidenced-based services, teaching, and research.
  • Diversity - We value individual differences and promote a multicultural and sensitive environment, free from discrimination and inequity.
  • Student-Centered Training - We train counselors, who can support the development of clients from adolescence through adulthood.
  • Client-centered Care - We train students to provide effective, sensitive, and collaborative care, uniquely tailored to the individual needs of clients.
  • Collaborative Engagement - We engage with our campus and community partners to support and develop new opportunities for the underserved in Alabama.

Community Counseling Clinic

Offering counseling services to local residents, the clinic is a training site for students fulfilling practicum and internship clinical requirements.

Achievement Awards

Achievement awards are presented to former professors and graduates who have made a significant contribution to the counseling profession.