Counseling

Graduate programs

Master of Science, Counseling

Graduate Counseling Faculty:

Robert Paul Maddox, Program Coordinator, MS, Counseling
Park Central Office Building, Room 129
Phone 417-836-8708; RobertPaulMaddox@MissouriState.edu

Tamara Arthaud, Program Coordinator, EDS, Counseling and Assessment 
Park Central Office Building, Room 117; Phone 417-836-6951
TamaraArthaud@missouristate.edu

Joseph Hulgus
Park Central Office Building, Room 128
Phone 417-836-6522; JosephHulgus@missouristate.edu

A. Leslie Anderson
Park Central Office Building, Room 132
Phone 417-836-6519; ALAnderson@missouristate.edu

Amelia Chenoweth
Park Central Office Building, Room 100C
Phone 417-836-8466; Amelia3022missouristate.edu

Jeffrey Cornelius-White
Park Central Office Building, Room 123
Phone 417-836-6517; Jcornelius-white@missouristate.edu

Marci Dowdy
Park Central Office Building, Room 131
Phone 417-836-8809; MDowdy@missouristate.edu

Taryne Mingo
Park Central Office Building, Room 131
Phone 417-836-8526; TMingo@missouristate.edu

Rebecca Smotherman, Practicum/Internship Coordinator
Park Central Office Building, Room 117
Phone 417-836-6516; RSmotherman@MissouriState.edu

Program description

The Counseling program grants the Master of Science degree in Counseling with options in school counseling and clinical mental health counseling. Students interested in public school settings must either have a valid Missouri teaching certificate, or complete additional teaching course work, to be eligible for state certification as professional school counselors. The School Counseling (SC) option program requirements fulfill the professional counseling course requirements for both elementary (K-8) and secondary (7-12) school counselor certification in the State of Missouri. The Clinical Mental Health (CMHC) counseling option requirements fulfill the professional counseling course work requirements for licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in the State of Missouri (The LPC also requires 3000 hours of additional post-master’s supervised experience). Students who elect to complete either the School Counseling option may also meet the education requirements to apply for LPC licensure.

In accordance with standards set forth by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP), the foundational knowledge required of counselors is arranged in the following eight common core areas:

  1. Professional Counseling Orientation and Ethical Practice
  2. Social and Cultural Diversity
  3. Human Growth and Development
  4. Career Development
  5. Counseling and Helping Relationships
  6. Group Counseling and Group Work
  7. Assessment and Testing
  8. Research and Program Evaluation

The graduate programs in Counseling further the public affairs mission of Missouri State University in many ways. Some examples include: providing over a dozen intentional activities to foster cultural competence, including several cross-cultural experiences; engaging the community through service-learning practicums in the City Center Counseling Clinic, internships and other means; and offering courses in ethics and leadership and opportunities for leadership roles.

Admission to the Counseling program is selective. Minimum admission requirements and application materials include the following.

  1. Completed Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution.
  2. Cumulative undergraduate GPA of 2.75 or higher, or 3.00 for the last 60 hours of course work.
  3. Completed Application for Graduate Admission.
  4. Completed Counseling Admission Application.
  5. Official MAT or GRE test score reports (no cutoff scores).
  6. Three letters of reference, on department forms.
  7. Two official copies of transcripts showing your bachelor’s degree and any course work taken since then (transcripts must include the last 60 hours of credit).

Applications will be reviewed by a committee of faculty, and a subset of applicants, selected upon the basis of credentials and references, will be invited for an interview on campus, after which applicants will be selected for admission.  Applicants will be ranked by the admissions committee and selected applicants will be invited for admission into either the CMHE or SC program options. 

There are two admission reviews annually, one in the Spring for admission in the Summer/Fall semester; one in the Fall for admission in the Spring semester.  Approximately 30-40 new students will be selected for admission each semester, distributed among the two option areas.  Students who do not meet the minimum admission standards may still apply, and if ranked highly, may be admitted conditionally, at the discretion of the department.

Selection for admission is not based solely on academic credentials, but also upon the faculty’s assessment of candidates’ personal development, interpersonal relationship skills, emotional and psychological maturity, and potential for professional growth and success. These include the following professional dispositions:  Openness to diverse others, being non-judgmental, comfort with ambiguity, openness to feedback, openness to change, self-awareness, and empathy.  The small group interview interactions provide opportunities for this assessment, and allow potential candidates to assess their goodness of fit with the Counseling profession.

Retention requirements 

All Counseling students must obtain a 3.00 GPA in all courses required for the Master of Science degree in Counseling.  In addition to academic standards, students are expected to conform to the professional and ethical standards of the profession throughout their programs.  Each student’s academic and professional performance and progress in the program will be reviewed periodically by the faculty, who will provide feedback to the student.  Students whose performance or progress is unsatisfactory may be allowed to continue under a remedial, probationary status, or dismissed from the program.  Students may appeal unsatisfactory review outcomes or dismissal through the department, college and university grievance procedure.

To enroll in Practicum courses (COU 777, and COU 778 or COU 779), students must apply for and receive Departmental approval and permission.  Upon completion of prerequisites (COU 703, COU 705COU 708, or COU 710 and COU 711, COU 714, and or COU 751), students may apply for approval to enroll in the initial Counseling Practicum course (COU 777).  Upon the successful completion of the initial general Counseling Practicum Course (COU 777), student may enroll in either Mental Health Counseling Practicum (COU 778) or School Counseling Practicum (COU 779).  This is a review of progress checkpoint, during which faculty will review each student’s performance in prerequisites, and determine his/her readiness to take Practicum.  If students are not considered to be ready, faculty will provide specific feedback concerning what is needed to further prepare them.  Upon approval, students may enroll in Practicum, by permission only.  Students are also required to obtain and maintain their own professional liability insurance while enrolled in all Practicum courses and during Internships.

Beginning early in the program, students should start saving all course work products (papers, exams, tapes, transcripts, projects, logs, evaluations).  These will become the basis for the creation of a required Professional Portfolio, to be completed before graduation.  Information is available in COU 765 and on the Counseling program webpage (http://education/missouristate.edu/counseling/156387.htm). 

All students are required to complete a 47 hour professional counseling core and a minimum of 13 credit hours in one of two counseling options: (a) School Counseling or (b) Clinical Mental Health Counseling.  Students in each option will complete additional requirements as specified below and may complete additional courses as electives.  Students interested in K-12 School Counseling certification should complete the School Counseling option.  

Total required hours for each option area are:

School Counseling 60 hrs
Clinical Mental Health Counseling 60 hrs

Counseling Core

Course Code
Course Title
Credit Hours
COU 701 Assessment and Testing for Counselors 3 hrs
COU 703 Professional Orientation and Ethical Practice in School and Mental Health Counseling 3 hrs
COU 705 School and Mental Health Experiential Counseling for Personal and Professional Development 1 hr
COU 707 Human Development and Development 3 hrs
COU 708 Play Therapy and Child Counseling Techniques 3 hrs
COU 710 Counseling and Helping Relationship 2 hrs
COU 711 Counseling and Helping Relationships Lab 1 hr
COU 714 Social-Cultural Diversity in Counseling 3 hrs
COU 716 Adolescent and Young Adult Counseling in School and Mental Health Settings 1 hr
COU 720 Substance Abuse 3 hrs
COU 724 Assessment and Diagnosis 3 hrs
COU 733 Couples and Family Counseling 3 hrs
COU 751 Theories and Techniques in Counseling 3 hrs

COU 752

or

COU 754

Career Development

or

Counseling for Post-Secondary and Career Readiness K-12

3 hrs
COU 756
or
COU 757
Group Counseling
or
Group Counseling Through Play
3 hrs
COU 768 Crisis Counseling and Disaster Mental Health Response 3 hrs
COU 777 Counseling Practicum 2 hrs
COU 794 Introduction to Research and Program Evaluation in Counseling 2 hrs
COU 765 Research and Program Evaluatoin Seminar in Counseling 2 hrs
  Total 47 hrs

School Counseling option

Course Code
Course Title
Credit Hours
  Core Credit Hours 47 hrs
COU 704 Introduction to School Counseling  2 hrs
COU 779 School Counseling Practicum 2 hrs
COU 781 Secondary School Counseling Internship 3 hrs
COU 783 Elementary School Counseling Internship 3 hrs
  Counseling Electives 3 hrs
  Total 60 hrs


Clinical Mental Health Counseling option

Course Code
Course Title
Credit Hours
  Core Credit Hours 47 hrs
COU 709 Introduction to Mental Health Counseling 1 hr
COU 778 Mental Health Counseling Practicum 2 hrs
COU 785   Mental Health  Counseling Internship 6 hrs
  Counseling Electives 4 hrs
  Total 60 hrs

Courses that students may choose from to get to the 3-4 credit hours of required electives can include:

  • Any course in the two counseling option tracks
  • Any course in Ed.S, Counseling and Assessment degree not otherwise listed above
  • COU 700 - Problems in Counseling (1-3 hrs)
  • COU 753 - Analysis of Childhood Learning and Adjustment (3 hrs)
  • COU 766 - Psychopharmacology for Counselors (3 hrs)
  • COU 787 - Advanced Play Therapy Practicum (3 hrs)
  • COU 789 - Advanced Level:  Play Therapy Supervisor (3 hrs)
  • COU 795 - Topics in Counseling (1-3 hrs)
  • COU 799 - Thesis (1-6 hrs)

For students interested in school counselor certification who do not have a teaching degree and certificate, additional course work in teaching will be required in the following areas: Psychology of the Exceptional Child, Teaching Methods/Practices and Classroom Management. These courses are not part of the degree program, but are required for certification in Missouri.

Degree Requirements

Research Requirement

The research requirement is met through completion of either COU 765 (Research and Program Evaluation Seminar in Counseling), which shall require an extensive paper or major creative work, or COU 799 (Thesis).

Portfolio Requirement

The Portfolio requirement will be met upon completion of the student's curricular experiences and comprehensive examination, when the portfolio will be assembled and submitted to the student's advisor for approval.  Students will be required to purchase a subscription to Taskstream (comprehensive portfolio system).

Comprehensive Requirements

A four-hour, standardized, national Counselor Preparation Comprehensive Examination must be passed before a degree will be granted.  Students should have completed the majority of course work, and all courses in the eight CACREP common counseling core content areas previously specified, prior to taking the exam.  The Counseling Program will determine passing scores, based on national and local norms, for each administration.  If permission is obtained, students who fail the exam may retake it when next offered.  Students failing the comprehensive examination three times may be dismissed from the program, upon a vote of the program faculty.  In addition to the Comprehensive Exam, the student will complete a portfolio as described above.