Mental Health Licensure

Licensure as a Mental Health Counselor

Our Ed.M. program provides license- and certification-eligible training for mental health and school counselors. However, we don't grant the licenses themselves — only state governments can do that. In addition to the information provided below, the website of the American Counseling Association is a good place to learn more about state licensure and certification.

In 2005, Teachers College received approval from the State of New York to offer a License-Qualifying Mental Health Counseling program. Along with completion of the coursework outlined below and those required by the broader Ed.M. program, students can become eligible for licensure when they complete 3000 hours of post-master's supervised experience inthe practice of mental health counseling and pass a national examination.

Mental health counselors can work in a variety of settings (clinics, schools, hospitals, agencies, human resource units, private practice, etc.) in the delivery of mental health services toclient and client systems. New York State describesmental health counseling as:

  • The evaluation, assessment, amelioration, treatment, modification, or adjustment to a disability, problem, or disorder of behavior, character, development, emotion, personality or relationships by the use of verbal or behavioral methods with individuals, couples, families or groups in private practice, group, or organized settings; and
  • The use of assessment instruments and mental health counseling and psychotherapy to identify, evaluate and treat dysfunctions and disorders for purposes of providing appropriate mental health counseling.

Policy and requirements regarding mental health counseling licensure are subject to change, so for the most up-to-date information, students should consult the websites of the state offices that oversee licensing regulations. In New York, that is the NYS Education Department's Office of the Professions.

Other states that offer licensure for masters-level counselors may have requirements that differ from New York's. Students who plan to apply for licensure in states other than New York are responsible for consulting the regulations in those states in order to supplement our program's coursework where possible.

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