MA in Counseling

Coordinator: Dr. Matthew Shurts
Office: University Hall, Room 3230
Phone Number: (973) 655-7216
Email: shurtsm@mail.montclair.edu

Overview

‌The Counseling programs at Montclair State University prepare students to become multiculturally competent counselors in a variety of work settings. Students are prepared to work with diverse populations in elementary and secondary schools, community agencies, student affairs positions in colleges and universities, and substance abuse treatment facilities. The academic preparation follows guidelines established by state licensure and certification boards.

The graduate programs in Counseling offer several advantages:

  • Opportunities for alternative scheduling in the form of face-to-face, hybrid, or Saturday classes to meet the needs of the working student
  • The opportunity to master counseling skills in a technologically state-of-the-art counseling laboratory, which allows students to record, archive, and review their own counseling practice sessions, which enhances their ability to serve future clients
  • A diverse group of faculty members actively engaged in scholarly research who hold national leadership positions in professional associations, including the American Counseling Association (ACA)
  • A theory-to-practice model of instruction that allows students to gain practical experience in schools, community agencies, and colleges and universities
  • An emphasis on the infusion of multicultural counseling and social justice practice in all courses
  • A vibrant and diverse student body that has the opportunity to engage with faculty members on research and present at professional conferences

Mission Statement

The mission of the Counseling Program is to provide graduate education fostering professional behavior in counselors.  Clients of all ages need assistance in developing skills in critical thinking, decision-making, and human relations. Qualified and trained professionals in counseling must possess a variety of skills, competencies, and insights in order to help students, clients, and colleagues function successfully, and establish positive collaborative relationships. 

Specifically, the Counseling Program focuses on providing opportunities for professionals to develop skills and competencies in a variety of settings and areas to include: school counseling, individual/group clinical mental health counseling, student services in higher education, and addictions counseling.

The Counseling Program is committed to preparing professionals who:

  1. Apply critical thinking approaches and skills to their respective disciplines and exhibit both theoretical and practical application of these approaches and skills in their professional fields.
  2. Use critical thinking to make sound, responsible judgments and decisions in working with clients, students, and other professionals in their respective fields.
  3. Act with sound ethical principles when carrying out the role of counselor in each of the three areas, keeping in mind the key responsibility this professional has toward student and client.
  4. Function as a responsible professional in his or her specialty field, seeking to promote the best interests of the clients and students to whom they serve.
  5. Display an understanding of the political and social environment and the professional and personal roles each citizen must play in order to ensure that society remains a free and open democracy.
  6. Commit to a professional life that will enhance the lives of others.
  7. Engage in self-renewal and encourage others in the profession to seek careers devoted to the advancement of the principles and standards of their respective fields of interest.

Program Objectives

In the M.A. in Counseling program, courses and fieldwork experiences are designed to assist graduate students seeking positions in agencies, schools, corporations, and nonprofit organizations in:

  1. Demonstrating the meaning and significance of fundamental counseling concepts, principles and theories.
  2. Interacting effectively with others (colleagues, parents, clients, students, and administrators).
  3. Analyzing individual behavior within group structures.
  4. Interpreting research and measurement results in light of social and psychological factors.
  5. Interviewing and counseling on an individual basis.
  6. Relating theories and principles of group dynamics, group practices, and facilitative skills to professional practice.
  7. Assessing the professional abilities and limitations, professionally and personally.
  8. Writing professionally and effectively (e.g. research proposals/reports, case studies).
  9. Infusing and integrating diversity into professional practice to meet the needs of a pluralistic society.

CACREP Outcomes Summary

Approximately 491 students are enrolled in Montclair State University’s three CACREP-accredited counseling programs: Clinical Mental Health Counseling, School Counseling, and Student Affairs Counseling.  In 2014, the Community Counseling program converted to a 60 credit Clinical Mental Health Counseling program. Ninety-nine percent of accepted students graduate within the expected time period, three years for full-time students and five years for part-time students, and about 80 students graduate each year from these programs. Our courses are taught by fourteen full-time faculty members and accommodate both part-time and full-time students.

There are 189 students currently enrolled in our Community Counseling program with approximately 19 graduating in the last year. These students consistently achieve a high pass rate of 95% on licensing examinations and have a 90% job placement rate upon graduation.

Our School Counseling program is comprised of 231 currently enrolled students. Fifty school counselors graduated last year from this program. Data on licensure pass rates is not available for this program because graduates are automatically eligible to become certified school counselors in the state of New Jersey. The job placement rate for school counseling students is 85% upon graduation.

Seventy-one graduate students are currently enrolled in our Higher Ed/Student Affairs Counseling program with 11 graduating in the last year. Data is not available for licensure pass rates for this program because licensure is not required; 100% of our student affairs students find job placement upon graduation.

Master of Arts in Counseling available with concentrations in:

woman in a chair  

Counseling - Masters, Certification and Certificate Programs Brochure
The Counseling programs at Montclair State University prepare students to become multiculturally competent counselors in a variety of work settings. Students are prepared to work with diverse populations in elementary and secondary schools, community agencies, student affairs positions in colleges and universities, and substance abuse treatment facilities.

View Program Brochure - Counseling MCCP