Earning your Doctor of Counseling degree is an important step, although, most states only require a master’s degree to be a licensed counselor. However, if you would like to be an educator or obtain a supervisory position, conduct research or use your skills in a clinical practice, a doctorate degree is recommended and sometimes a career requirement.

An online Doctor of Counseling degree program can be hard to locate. However, for convenience, a hybrid program may accommodate your needs. Through a hybrid program, you can complete most of your coursework through an online format, although, some on-campus work will also be required. You will also need to complete clinical hours in person, as well, before graduation.

Prerequisites for earning your online Doctor of Counseling degree will include the completion of a master’s degree program in counseling or a related field from an accredited institution, excellent GRE scores, and previous work experience. Some schools require a video of you demonstrating your counseling skills, a sample writing or statement of intent, outlining your future goals and hopes for the program. As counseling doctorate programs can be competitive to enter, be sure to adhere to all requirements and deadlines to increase your chances of getting into the school you desire.

Most doctoral degree programs will take you between five and six years to complete. Through a doctoral program in counseling, your coursework will typically consist of three portions, such as, your coursework, clinical rotations, and of course, the research culminating in a dissertation.

Coursework offered in your online Doctor of Counseling degree program may include classes in group counseling, parenting, child development, statistics, abnormal psychology and Christian thought. You will also learn about group dynamics, social psychology, drama therapy, as well as, about theory and research methodologies, marriage and family counseling and multicultural issues.

Would you like to concentrate in any particular specialization of counseling? If so, you must develop an understanding of the human emotions and psychological development related to your field. If possible, find a doctorate program that will concentrate on topics that will help you achieve your goals. There are many to choose from such as, school counseling, marriage and family counseling, drug and alcohol addiction, gerontology, and grief counseling for those who have lost loved ones or dealing with trauma and natural disasters, in addition to many other relevant areas.

With an online doctorate program, you will need a laptop and a dependable high-speed Internet connection. You will be able to view lectures through video streaming or through audio recordings. In addition, you will be able to communicate with fellow students and professors through chat forums, message boards and e-mail. Most schools allow access to their school library, support services and mentors to help you every step of the way.

An online Doctor of Counseling degree program will prepare you for testing and licensure in your state, if required. Helping others through counseling is a rewarding and satisfying career choice. If you are interested in this field, please see our choices for the Best Online Schools for Doctor of Counseling degree programs.