Master’s Degree in Clinical Counseling Overview
Clinical mental health counseling, like many of the helping professions, is vital to building a healthy and prosperous society. If you want to join this field as a professional mental health counselor, start your higher education with a CACREP-accredited master’s in clinical counseling (MACC) degree at the California School of Professional Psychology (CSPP) at Alliant today.
In your master’s in clinical counseling (MACC) degree program, you’ll develop skills and expertise in professional counseling, diagnosing, treating, and guiding individuals and groups as they work to overcome disability, grow, and embrace change. In the program you’ll gain valuable, hands-on experience counseling individuals who are struggling with anxiety, depression, grief, loss, anger management, infidelity, and other issues. Throughout the graduate program, you’ll receive the training and preparation you need in the counseling profession to become an outstanding clinical mental health counselor.
The master's degree program in clinical counseling is CACREP-accredited, the recognized training standard for counselors by the Institute of Medicine and the Veteran’s Administration and its curricula content areas are the required educational training for counseling licensure in most states, making CACREP-accreditation a pathway to portability.
The master’s program prepares you to earn your California Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC) credentials by providing the tools you need to enter this rewarding field.
You’ll get field training through an internship with supervised practice, where you’ll spend 700 hours gaining valuable experience, with a minimum of 280 hours under direct supervision and guidance.
In the graduate program you’ll develop methods of thinking critically and reflectively, breaking down walls of bias, and learning to help people of all cultures, communities, and backgrounds.
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Professional Training Through Supervised Clinical Experience
Starting in your first year of the CACREP-accredited master’s in clinical counseling, or MACC, program you can acquire real-world experience through unique observations of clients in clinical settings. As you progress in the MACC program, you’ll build on this initial exposure and develop your portfolio of clinical skills, gaining professional confidence along the way.
You’ll receive a total of 700 hours of clinical experience in individual counseling, family counseling, and group counseling individuals, families, and groups. Of these, a minimum of 280 hours will be directly supervised clinical experiences.
Through your fieldwork as an intern, you’ll have opportunities to engage in clinical training experiences that serve a broad range of client populations. You’ll grow through experience with individual, family, group, and couple therapy, as well as psycho-diagnostic and neuropsychological assessment services. You’ll also gain experience with adults, children, families, and couples, learning and developing your counseling skill to counsel individuals who are struggling with ADHD, anxiety and depression, social skills, difficult behavior, anger management, grief and loss, relationship problems, sexual concerns, divorce, infidelity, intimacy and emotional closeness, and more.
Your Opportunity to Help Those in Need
There are a variety of career paths available to clinical mental health counselors in the field of mental health counseling. Some options include:
- Community mental health clinics
- Couples and family services
- Outpatient and inpatient substance abuse centers
- Hospitals and health care agencies
- Government agencies and funded programs
- Public and private schools, universities and training programs
- Private and group practices
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Frequently Asked Questions
What scholarships and financial aid are available?
Private and public scholarships can help you meet the cost of your education, and Alliant offers institutional scholarships for many of our students. Learn more about these scholarship opportunities here. Additional financial aid is available for those who qualify in the form of loans, grants, federal work study, and military aid. Learn more in our Financial Options Guide.
Does graduation from this program lead to licensure?
The graduate study program is approved by the California Board of Behavioral Science, which means that graduates are eligible for licensure as licensed professional clinical counselors (LPCCs) in the state of California upon completion of post-degree intern hours and passing of the licensure exams. Candidates for licensure as an LPCC in California are required to complete a total of 3,000 hours of supervised professional experience after the completion of the master’s degree. Candidates must then pass written examinations for licensure. Continuing education is required to maintain the license. If you wish to practice in a state or region other than California, please contact that state/region’s licensure board for that specific information.
Notice for International Applicants
It is important to note that due to their visa status and The California Board of Behavioral Sciences’ post-graduate supervised hours requirement, international students will likely be unable to obtain certification/licensure in the US post-degree completion.
International applicants interested in obtaining licensure outside of California should review the certification/licensure requirements of those other states or countries
When does the MACC program start?
This program is offered as an eight-week term program and is open for enrollment during each of these respective enrollment periods. You can find a copy of our eight-week term academic calendar here.
How long does it take to complete the MACC degree program?
The program is a 60-credit program and takes a minimum of two years to complete, across 11 terms.
What is the modality of the program?
You can earn your MA in clinical counseling degree online or on-ground at our Fresno campus.
Take the next step in your career
"Alliant creates a foundation of not only clinical skills, but of duty to diversity and advocacy in its students. The education I received and the networking opportunities prepared me to become successful in my field."
At Alliant, our mission is to prepare students for professional careers of service and leadership and to promote the discovery and application of knowledge to improve lives. We offer an education that is accredited, focused on practical knowledge and skills, connected with diverse faculty and alumni, and aimed at the student experience.
Founded in 1969, CSPP was one of the nation’s first independent schools of professional psychology. Today, CSPP continues its commitment to preparing the next generation of mental health professionals through graduate-level degree programs in clinical psychology, marriage and family therapy, clinical counseling, organizational psychology, psychopharmacology, and more.