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Counseling M.S.

All students must meet the Requirements for the Master's Degree


There are two tracks of study in the Graduate Counseling Program: the school counseling track (48 credits) and the mental health track (60 credits). Students may elect to enroll in both tracks - the Dual option, which is 68 credits. The Graduate Counseling Program (both tracks) is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). The school counseling track meets the requirements set by the State of Vermont Department of Education for preparing school counselors (K-12) for licensure in Vermont, and the mental health counseling track meets the academic requirements set by the Vermont Board of Allied Mental Health Practitioners for preparing clinical mental health counselors for licensure in Vermont.

Specific Requirements

Requirements for Admission to Graduate Studies for the Degree of Master of Science

Submit the following (below) to the University of Vermont Graduate Admissions Office. Please be advised that the UVM Graduate College uses an on-line admissions process. Applications received by February 1 will be considered for the following Fall matriculation.

  • Graduate Application Form: Available on-line from the Graduate College
  • Statement of Purpose: The Statement of Purpose will be reviewed for clarity of expression, grammatical construction, and insight regarding the applicant's reasons for pursuing study in the Counseling Program.
  • Three Letters of Recommendation: Letters written by individuals who have a professional relationship with the applicant and who are well acquainted with the applicant’s accomplishments and potential for becoming an effective counselor are considered valid letters of recommendation. At least one of these letters should be from an academic advisor or instructor. Please do not include letters written by personal friends or acquaintances.
  • Official College Transcripts: An official college transcript of course work (undergraduate and graduate) should be submitted from every college and/or university attended.
  • Official Graduate Record Examination (GRE): GRE scores must be no more than 5 years old.
  • Professional Resume: An up-to-date resume that attests to the applicant's education, work, and volunteer experience should be included in the application packet. Work experience in counseling or in a related field is highly desired.
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL): Applicants whose native or first language is not English must submit TOEFL (or IELTS) test scores for admission. Minimum acceptable scores for admission may be found on the Graduate College Admissions website.

After an initial review of applications, qualified applicants will be invited to participate in a group interview on the UVM campus. One or more faculty members and a graduate student currently enrolled in the program conduct the group interview. The applicant will be interviewed with a small group of others who are also applying to the Counseling Program. The group interview is critical in the application process. Faculty will be looking for evidence of candidates’ self-awareness, awareness of social and cultural issues, ability to communicate with others, and interest and commitment to the profession of counseling. The interview will also offer candidates an opportunity to receive information about the Counseling Program at UVM and meet other students applying to the program.

In extenuating circumstances, an applicant may be given permission to participate in a Skype interview. Arrangements will be made for these alternatives on an individual basis after full faculty consultation.

Admissions Prerequisites: Applicants seeking admissions to the School Track and wishing to be licensed in Vermont as a school counselor should have documentation of at least 30 credit hours in an Arts and Sciences undergraduate major (e.g., English, Mathematics, Psychology). This is a State of Vermont requirement for licensure to practice counseling in public schools in Vermont. For more information about this requirement or how a specific transcript may document this requirement, students should speak directly with the director of CESS Student Services, UVM (802-656-3468) prior to applying to the program.

Minimum Degree Requirements

The Graduate Counseling Program offers two specialty tracks: school counseling and mental health counseling. Students may also select the dual option which includes preparation in both specialty tracks. Forty-eight credits are required for completion of the school counseling track, sixty credits are required for the mental health counseling track and sixty-eight credits are required for the dual option. (Note: school counselor licensure in Vermont requires that the individual have at least a thirty-credit-hour liberal arts concentration at the undergraduate-level.) Successful completion of the program is based on the demonstration of appropriate knowledge, relevant skills, and personal characteristics, as well as the accumulation of credits.

Comprehensive Examination

The comprehensive exam for the Graduate Counseling program consists of the oral examination and the School Counseling Portfolio. They must be taken and turned in by the end of the student's last semester in the program.

The oral examination is designed to be a final assessment of a student's knowledge of fundamental elements of clinical mental health practice.  The exam process requires a written submission as well as a digital video recording of a clinical session.  A standard format for the oral exam is adhered to by the orals committee and communicated in advance to the students in oral and written format.

The School Counseling Portfolio is designed to be a comprehensive assessment of a student's knowledge and engagement in School Counseling practice.  A standard format for the portfolio is adhered to by the portfolio reviewers and communicated in advance to the student in oral and written format.

Requirements for Advancement to Candidacy for the Degree of Master of Science

Successful completion of any prerequisite courses, and at least 15 graded graduate credits with a 3.00 GPA or better, including all core courses.