2024-2025 Undergraduate/Graduate Catalog

Counselor Education with Specialization in School Counseling M.S.

Program Rationale:

The School Counseling Program prepares students for professional careers as counselors in elementary, middle, and high schools. Emphasis is on a comprehensive and developmental model of school counseling that is described in the National Standards for School Counseling of the American School Counseling Association and a document entitled "Best Practices for School Counseling in Connecticut." The curriculum follows the standards of the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Education Programs (CACREP) and the certification requirements of the Connecticut State Department of Education.

Program Learning Outcomes:

Students in this program will be expected to:

  • demonstrate knowledge of theory, practice, and ethical standards relative to the practice of school counseling;
  • demonstrate appropriate counseling techniques and interventions for use within the academic, career, and personal/social domains;
  • demonstrate the ability to consult and collaborate with teachers, staff, administrators, and community-based organizations in understanding and meeting the needs of all students;
  • promote understanding and appreciation for diverse populations and cultures; and
  • demonstrate knowledge of federal and state laws pertinent to the role, function, and services of the school counselor.

Admission Requirements for School Counseling:

Applicants must hold a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education. Admissions to the School Counseling, Clinical Professional Counseling, and Student Development in Higher Education programs are made on a competitive basis only one time per year. All applications must be completed and received by February 1 for fall admission. Candidates for admission will be considered on the basis of the following criteria:

  1. Grade point average: Minimum 2.70 grade point average (GPA) for all undergraduate courses and a 3.00 for all graduate courses, based on a 4.00 point scale where A is 4.00
  2. Three recommendations from individuals able to testify to the student’s suitability as a prospective counselor
  3. A 2–3 page typewritten (double spaced) essay describing the following:

         a. Reasons for entering the counseling profession.

         b. Personal and professional experiences that influenced you to pursue the counseling profession.

         c. Personal characteristics you believe will contribute to your success as a counselor.

    4. A personal interview by the program’s faculty admissions committee. The committee will assess the student’s personal attributes and life experiences that might contribute to the student’s potential for success as a professional counselor.                                                      

The admissions application, application fee, and official transcripts from each college/university (except CCSU) where any course has been taken must be sent directly to the Graduate Recruitment and Admissions Office.

Instructions for uploading the essay and for obtaining and submitting the recommendation letters will be found within the graduate online application. 
(Contact: 860-832-2154)    

Effective July 1, 2010, Connecticut law requires all students in teacher/educator certification programs to undergo state and national criminal history background checks before participating in school-based field experiences. The procedures for obtaining the background checks and the length of time they are valid will be established by the State Department of Education and cannot be changed. You Will be responsible for the cost of the background check and will be provided with the necessary consent forms and other documents needed to conduct it. As part of the background check, you will nee to be fingerprinted. If you fail to pass the background check, you may be unable to complete your chosen degree program at Central Connecticut State University. The University will not be responsible for your inability to complete your chose degree program.

Graduate students who are not currently employed in the Public School will need to complete the background check before being placed in field experiences or doing research in the schools. Current school employees with background checks in place but who are placed in field experiences or do research outside of the district where they are employed may also be required to complete a new background check.

Contact: 860-832-2154      

Course and Capstone Requirements

Graduates are prepared for positions as counselors in public and private schools. The program is designed to meet the certification requirements of the State of Connecticut and the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs.

Core Courses

CNSL 500The Dynamics of Group Behavior


CNSL 501Theories and Techniques in Counseling


CNSL 503Supervised Clinical Professional Counseling Practicum


CNSL 505/MFT 505Counseling and Human Development Across the Lifespan


SPED 501Education of the Exceptional Learner


CNSL 571Mindfulness-Based Mental Health Counseling


CNSL 572Assessment, Treatment and Recovery in Counseling


Electives (3 credits of advisor-approved electives)

All students must do a graduate level elective (3 credits) after meeting with their adviser. 

Specialized Courses

CNSL 504Professional Studies in Counseling


CNSL 506Counseling Children & Adolescents


CNSL 520Professional School Counseling I


CNSL 521Career Counseling and Development


CNSL 522Appraisal Procedures in Counseling


CNSL 524Collaborative Consultation in Schools


CNSL 525Multicultural Counseling


CNSL 526Professional School Counseling II


CNSL 568CNSL 568 Foundations of Addictions Counseling


CNSL 591Supervised School Counseling Internship


CNSL 591: three credits for two semesters


CNSL 598Research Methods in Counseling



Plan A:

CNSL 599Thesis


Plan B:

Comprehensive Exam

(consists of a major case presentation done in conjunction with the student's internship experience)

Prerequisite Courses for Plan B (To be completed while in the program):
Fingerprint Based Background Check

Total Credit Hours: 63