The PhD in Counseling program provides an exciting and life-changing experience for individuals who desire to attain the next level in the counseling profession. Our program is accredited through the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs, (CACREP). Students have the opportunity to develop scholarly expertise, while also learning and engaging in faculty research. Intentional diversity is the signature of our program and is reflected in our faculty and students, research areas, commitment to advocacy and social justice, and community engagement within local, regional, national and international communities. Our community includes both full-time and part-time students who pursue individualized study in areas such as college counseling, higher education, counselor supervision, marriage and family counseling, clinical mental health counseling, play therapy, school counseling, career counseling and addictions counseling. Our graduates work as faculty and administrators in colleges and universities; advanced clinicians and supervisors in mental health agencies and private practice; consultants; and school and agency leaders.
All prospective applicants must have completed a master’s degree in counseling or closely related field.
Along with the Counseling (PhD) degree, the following degrees are also offered: Master’s degree in Addiction Counseling, Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, Master’s degree in School Counseling, Master’s degree in Student Affairs/Counseling in Higher Education, and a certificate in Director of School Counseling Services.
Please refer to our programs of study page for a comprehensive list of all of the graduate programs offered within the university.
All prospective applicants must have completed a master’s degree in counseling or closely related field. Applicants may be required to take prerequisites prior to enrollment.
In order to make applying for graduate school as seamless as possible for you, we have
created an application checklist. This checklist can be a reference point for you during the
application process to ensure that you have a comprehensive understanding of the steps
needed to apply, as well as all corresponding supplemental materials for your specific
program of interest.
- Application Deadline: November 15 (priority deadline); February 1 (traditional deadline). Fall admission only.
- Submit Online Application: Please create your online account and submit your application by following the general application instructions and pay (or waive) the non-refundable $60 application fee. Once this step has been completed, the online portal will allow you to upload your supplemental materials.
The following is a list of the supplemental materials that will accompany your application for the Counseling (PhD) program:
- Transcript: One from each college attended.
- Essays/Personal Statement: Please write three separate essays addressing the following prompts:
- A personal statement in which you describe past accomplishments, educational, and work experience that serve as foundational activities to your development as a scholar-practitioner. Explain your rationale for selecting Montclair State University’s Counseling PhD program.
- Share your strengths and areas of growth in relation to being a culturally responsive counselor and social justice advocate.
- Please discuss your current research interests and how you hope to incorporate them.
- Letters of Recommendation: Three (3) professional letters of recommendation from individuals who know the applicant’s clinical work and/or educational abilities. At least one letter from a faculty member and one from a supervisor must be included with the application.
- Standardized Test Scores: GRE (see test waiver policies)
- Students holding degrees from non-US institutions must request a course-by-course transcript evaluation from a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services or by Educated Choices. TOEFL (Test of English as a foreign language), IELTS (International English Language Testing System) or Duolingo English Test are required for applicants to any program who earned their degree in a country where English is not the official language. Please check our International Applicants page for more information and for our current TOEFL/IELTS Waiver Policy.
- Resume: Required.
- Interview: Students who are evaluated as potential candidates for our program will be invited to spend a day on campus for a personal interview. The interview day includes a writing sample, interview by faculty and time with current students.
Complete 66 semester hours. For more information, please refer to the Counseling (PhD) program listing in the University Catalog.
If you have any general questions regarding the application process and requirements, please email or call us:
The Graduate School
If you have specific inquiries regarding your program of interest, please contact the Counseling (PhD) Program Coordinator:
*During the summer months, there will be a rotating department chair available to answer your inquiry. Click to find the updated summer chair for this program.*
Dr. Leslie Kooyman
Director, PhD in Counseling