Best Online Schools for Doctoral Degrees in Counseling

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Professional counselors help a tremendous portion of the world’s populations in every country. These individuals have the tools, skills, and understanding to help individuals through difficult emotional and psychological trauma to feel better about their lives. Engaging people in this way requires a huge amount of education and understanding of numerous platforms that can be incredibly complex. These institutions represent some of the finest schools in the nation who support outstanding faculty members and produce the most prestigious professionals in the job market.

Methodology:

  • All information is cited from the unbiased, independent NCES.gov’s College Navigator
  • To ensure our rankings methodology cannot be duplicated without our knowledge, we have withheld some aspects of the calculations. Please contact us at the email address provided below for more in-depth calculations and criteria
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LIBERTY UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Liberty University is one of the most well-known and popular online schools in the nation, offering programs grounded in Christian faith, including what is perhaps the best online Ph.D. in Counselor Education available at a distance. This program is rich with field experience learning opportunities and a diverse array of coursework.

Campus Location: Lynchburg, VA

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
    230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
    Chicago, Illinois, 60614-1413
    www.hlcommission.org, (800) 621-7400
  • Council for Accreditation of Counseling Related and Educational Programs

Retention Rate: 69%

Acceptance Rate: 20.2%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official transcripts from all accredited colleges and universities attended, and a statement of purpose. TOEFL scores are required from applicants who use English as a second language.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Dissemination of Research and Scholarship
  • Supervision Internship
  • Counseling, Research, and Leadership Internship

Degree Outcomes:
Some potential careers for these graduates include positions such as college and university faculty or administrator, advanced professional counselor, an administrator in community/public/private/government/healthcare/educational settings, and advanced researcher and scholar.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE LIBERTY UNIVERSITY ONLINE DOCTORAL DEGREE PROGRAM

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REGENT UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Regent University is another of the country’s most outstanding online schools in America that are also grounded in the tenets of Christianity. The School of Psychology and Counseling offers three unique opportunities to enhance students’ skills and understanding in clinical practice, research, or education.

Campus Location: Virginia Beach, VA

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
    230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
    Chicago, Illinois, 60614-1413
    www.hlcommission.org, (800) 621-7400

Acceptance Rate: 79.8%

Retention Rate: 80%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official transcripts from an accredited graduate institutions representing an exemplary GPA, a writing sample, a current résumé, and an admissions survey. All applicants must complete an admissions interview.

Program Options:

  • Counseling and Psychological Studies – Clinical
  • Counseling and Psychological Studies – Research
  • Counselor Education and Supervision

Degree Outcomes:
Depending on their area of concentration, graduates from this fine online school go on to fill various much-needed roles in the field of counseling, particularly in the areas of research and education. With breakthroughs in modern science and understandings of human behavior, Regent University maintains a state-of-the-art facility.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE REGENT UNIVERSITY ONLINE DOCTORAL DEGREE PROGRAM

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OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Oregon State University Ecampus provides one of the most vastly celebrated Ph.D. in Counseling programs in the entire discipline. In this coursework, students work as advanced practitioners, clinical supervisors, and counselor educators in clinical and academic settings, learning the ins-and-outs of the field as a whole.

Campus Location: Corvallis, OR

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
    230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
    Chicago, Illinois, 60614-1413
    www.hlcommission.org, (800) 621-7400
  • Council for Accreditation of Counseling Related and Educational Programs

Acceptance Rate: 78.4%

Retention Rate: 85%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended representing cumulative GPAs of 3.0 or higher, three letters of recommendation, an educational and professional statement of goals, a current résumé with relevant experience, and a writing sample.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Advanced Theory and Practice
  • Diversity and Social Justice
  • Counseling Education

Degree Outcomes:
This program emphasizes student contribution to the counseling profession through research while understanding and addressing the societal changes of today’s communities. Graduates are well-positioned to take on social justice advocacy and advanced practice to change the profession and their communities for the better.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY ONLINE DOCTORAL DEGREE PROGRAM

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ADAMS STATE UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Adams State University’s online Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision is focused around preparing students to work as counselor teachers and educators, supervisors, research, and practitioners. Therefore, the coursework offers an incredibly well-rounded and in-depth perspective and approach to the discipline.

Campus Location: Alamosa, CO

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
    230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
    Chicago, Illinois, 60614-1413
    www.hlcommission.org, (800) 621-7400
  • Council for Accreditation of Counseling Related and Educational Programs

Acceptance Rate: 64%

Retention Rate: 53%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended representing cumulative GPAs of 3.5 or higher, GRE scores, a letter of intent, and a current résumé and CV.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Advanced Group Counseling
  • Qualitative Research Methodology
  • Supervision and Consultation

Degree Outcomes:
Graduates from Adams State go on to work as educators and supervisors, researchers and practitioners in academic and clinical settings. These professionals have an extensive knowledge base of the counseling profession in a climate of scholarly inquiry and practice.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE ADAMS STATE UNIVERSITYONLINE DOCTORAL DEGREE PROGRAM

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UNIVERSITY OF THE CUMBERLANDS

Program Standouts:
This highly regarded online school offers a Ph.D./Ed.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision that prepares students for careers in education or clinical practice. The focus of the curriculum is to provide doctorate in leadership graduates with the knowledge and skills for higher education instruction.

Campus Location: Williamsburg, KY

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
    230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
    Chicago, Illinois, 60614-1413
    www.hlcommission.org, (800) 621-7400
  • Council for Accreditation of Counseling Related and Educational Programs

Acceptance Rate: 68%

Retention Rate: 71.2%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official transcripts from an accredited graduate institution representing a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher, GRE scores, three letters of recommendation, a successfully completed background check, and TOEFL scores from students who use English as a second language.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Program Planning and Assessment
  • Learning in Adulthood
  • Grant Writing and Proposal Development

Degree Outcomes:
Results of this program include the ability to earn qualifications and skills that prepare graduates for teaching careers in colleges and universities, administrative positions in leadership, and advanced clinical practice. A great focus of the program is around advanced leadership skills to be an administrator for behavioral health agencies!

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE UNIVERSITY OF THE CUMBERLANDS ONLINE DOCTORAL DEGREE PROGRAM

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UNIVERSITY OF WEST GEORGIA

Program Standouts:
The University of West Georgia provides an online Ed.D. in Professional Counseling and Supervision to prepare counseling professionals for service to their communities through effective practices and programs, leadership, and advocacy. The coursework is designed to equip students with the skills needed for advancement in counseling.

Campus Location: Carrolton, GA

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
    230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
    Chicago, Illinois, 60614-1413
    www.hlcommission.org, (800) 621-7400

Acceptance Rate: 48.6%

Retention Rate: 72%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official transcripts from an accredited graduate institution, a successfully passed graduate entrance exam, GRE scores, three letters of recommendation, a current résumé or CV, and a personal essay.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Professional Issues
  • Advocacy for Marginalized and Underserved Populations
  • Quantitative/Qualitative Research Methods

Degree Outcomes:
Specific objectives of this online program from UWG include the ability to evaluate intervention programs in their work settings, review and write literature surrounding the discipline, identify data-driven program improvements, and make appropriate recommendations to improve such programs.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE ONLINE DOCTORAL DEGREE PROGRAM

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WALDEN UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Walden University is yet another of the country’s most popular and well-regarded online schools that also offers a Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision. In this program, students gain the knowledge and experience to assume leadership roles in a clinical, community, academic, nonprofit, or research setting.

Campus Location: Minneapolis, MN

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
    230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
    Chicago, Illinois, 60614-1413
    www.hlcommission.org, (800) 621-7400
  • Council for Accreditation of Counseling Related and Educational Programs

Acceptance Rate: unavailable

Retention Rate: unavailable

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, and official transcripts from all accredited colleges and universities attended.

Program Options:

  • General Program
  • Advanced Research Methods
  • Consultation
  • Counseling and Social Change
  • Forensic Mental Health Counseling
  • Leadership and Program Evaluation
  • Trauma and Crisis

Degree Outcomes:
Depending on their area of specialization, graduates from Walden University’s counseling program go on to fill positions in a huge variety of areas within the field. Some environments occupied by alumni include hospitals and clinics, government agencies, colleges and universities, nonprofit organizations, mental health facilities, rehabilitation centers.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE WALDEN UNIVERSITY ONLINE DOCTORAL DEGREE PROGRAM

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GRAND CANYON UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Grand Canyon University has been included on an innumerable amount of indexes listing the nation’s most impressive online schools. The Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision shadows many through the provision of its exciting opportunities for learners to demonstrate their “God-given purpose in teaching counseling students and supervising clinical counselors.”

Campus Location: Phoenix, AZ

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
    230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
    Chicago, Illinois, 60614-1413
    www.hlcommission.org, (800) 621-7400

Retention Rate: 67%

Acceptance Rate: 58%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, official transcripts from accredited graduate institutions representing an exemplary GPA, and financial aid documentation. Applicants must also contact an admissions professional.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Ethics, Laws, and Multicultural Issues
  • Pedagogy of Counselor Education and Models of Supervision
  • Theories of Inquiry

Degree Outcomes:
Some potential career fields for GCU grads include roles as faculty members, advanced clinicians, couples and family counselors, director of school guidance, and director of counseling agencies. Some other titles occupied by graduates include behavior analyst, behavior support specialist, case manager, clinician, correctional counselor, and more!

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE GRAND CANYON UNIVERSITY ONLINE DOCTORAL DEGREE PROGRAM

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HAMPTON UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Hampton University’s online Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision is designed for licensed counselors and builds on foundational counseling principles while cultivating clinical and supervisory skills. The coursework is offered at an accelerated rate and provides students with an enormous amount of flexibility.

Campus Location: Hampton, VA

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
    230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
    Chicago, Illinois, 60614-1413
    www.hlcommission.org, (800) 621-7400

Acceptance Rate: 69%

Retention Rate: 81%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official transcripts from all accredited colleges and universities attended, a writing sample, a personal statement, and proof of current licensure.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Analysis of Behavioral Data
  • Ethics and Legal Aspects of Counseling
  • Advanced Group and Systems Theory

Degree Outcomes:
This degree prepares graduates with advanced understanding and enhanced skills in teaching, counseling, and supervision, with concentrations in school counseling and community mental health counseling. The coursework expands upon knowledge in clinical, academic, and research contexts.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE HAMPTON UNIVERSITY ONLINE DOCTORAL DEGREE PROGRAM

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AMRIDGE UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
The Amridge University online Ph.D. in Professional Counseling is a rigorous, research-oriented degree program that emphasizes quantitative and qualitative research methodologies, as well as skills and research in teaching and clinical practice.

Campus Location: Montgomery, AL

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
    230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
    Chicago, Illinois, 60614-1413
    www.hlcommission.org, (800) 621-7400

Acceptance Rate: unavailable

Retention Rate: 67%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official transcripts from all accredited colleges and universities attended with a Master’s in Social Work degree representing an exemplary GPA, and a writing sample.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Synthesis of Counseling and Psychotherapy Theories
  • Relational Sexual Therapy
  • Strategies to Reduce Marriage and Family Dysfunction

Degree Outcomes:
Graduates from this fine online program have gone on to work in universities and colleges, community mental health centers, social service agencies, and private practices. The university is affiliated with professional organizations such as the ACA, the APA, and the APS, all of which help to aid in one’s job acquisition.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE AMRIDGE UNIVERSITYONLINE DOCTORAL DEGREE PROGRAM

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MISSISSIPPI COLLEGE

Program Standouts:
According to their website, the focus of the Mississippi College online Doctor of Professional Counseling program is clinical specialization to achieve parity with other allied health professionals. The professional degree is designed to enhance the understanding of master’s in the discipline with relevant experience under their belts.

Campus Location: Clinton, MS

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
    230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
    Chicago, Illinois, 60614-1413
    www.hlcommission.org, (800) 621-7400

Acceptance Rate: 82%

Retention Rate: 79%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official transcripts from all accredited colleges and universities attended representing cumulative GPAs of 3.5 or higher, GRE scores, proof of current licensure, a personal and professional goals statement, a current résumé with relevant experience, three letters of recommendation, and a portfolio of work as a professional counselor.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Planning Consultation and Leadership
  • Advanced Clinical Assessment, Diagnosis, and Treatment Planning
  • Professional Growth and Wellbeing

Degree Outcomes:
This online curriculum is designed to train students for a variety of clinical settings and leadership in professional organizations. Graduates go on to become leaders in the field within their communities who provide crucial research and exemplary advanced clinical practice.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE ONLINE DOCTORAL DEGREE PROGRAM

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SHIPPENSBURG UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Shippensburg University offers an Ed.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision to students seeking to advance their professional knowledge and standing across advanced practitioner, clinical supervisory, counselor educator, and leadership positions throughout the nation.

Campus Location: Shippensburg, PA

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
    230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
    Chicago, Illinois, 60614-1413
    www.hlcommission.org, (800) 621-7400

Acceptance Rate: 89.1%

Retention Rate: 69%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official transcripts from all accredited colleges and universities attended, GRE scores, proof of current licensure, a personal and professional goals statement, a current résumé with relevant experience, and three letters of recommendation.

Program Options:

  • Dual (K-12) School Counseling
  • College Student Personnel
  • College Counseling
  • Mental Health Counseling

Degree Outcomes:
A direct and overarching goal of this program is to increase professionals’ understanding and work in the aid and improvement of client welfare by providing advanced scholars with professional doctoral degree balances across a rigorous curriculum, as well as through the production of relevant research.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE SHIPPENSBURG UNIVERSITY ONLINE DOCTORAL DEGREE PROGRAM

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CALIFORNIA SOUTHERN UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
While it is a Psy.D. from California Southern University, it strongly focuses on and emphasizes counseling and therapy and gives students leverage and opportunity in their careers with the ability to move into virtually any position in any organizational hierarchy.

Campus Location: Irvine, CA

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
    230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
    Chicago, Illinois, 60614-1413
    www.hlcommission.org, (800) 621-7400

Acceptance Rate: unavailable

Retention Rate: unavailable

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official transcripts from all accredited colleges and universities attended with a Master’s in Social Work degree representing an exemplary GPA, GRE scores, a current résumé with relevant work experience, a statement of purpose, four letters of recommendation, a goals statement, a writing sample, and financial aid documentation. TOEFL scores are required from students who use English as a second language.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Cognition, Emotion, and Motivation
  • Crisis and Trauma Counseling
  • Career Counseling

Degree Outcomes:
There is a great deal of vastly beneficial outcomes from this online degree program, include enhanced critical thinking, quantitative and scientific reasoning, personal development, cultural and social understanding, information literacy, as well as knowledge of ethical, legal, and professional issues.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE CALIFORNIA SOUTHERN UNIVERSITY ONLINE DOCTORAL DEGREE PROGRAM

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