Online Career Counseling Programs
Most online career counseling programs result in master's degrees, and can take as many as 39 credits or 75 quarter credits to complete. In many cases, administrators lay out the sequence of the courses and expect students to follow that sequence exactly. Typically, this sequence begins with introductory courses in the field of psychology and ends with classes more specific to career counseling. Some examples of online courses in career counseling programs include ethics, preparing and interpreting career aptitude assessment tools, and occupational research.
In addition to internship requirements, online career counseling programs generally require at least two on-campus residencies of about two weeks. Because many people are now choosing to obtain career counseling online instead of in a face-to-face environment, students may find that an online career counseling program specifically prepares them to offer virtual as well as face-to-face services. Online schools also give students practice working and communicating professionally in a virtual environment.
Online Career Counseling Degrees to Consider:
Colorado-based University of the Rockies offers an online master's degree in psychology with a career management and counseling specialization. The 39-credit-hour program includes a combination of theory, research practices and counseling methods. Typically, students take only one course at a time, completing each in about six weeks. A comprehensive exam is required.
Walden University's online master's in career counseling program allows students to participate in courses using MobileLearn, the university's own online learning application that lets students access their classes from mobile devices. Walden career counseling students exit the program with an electronic portfolio of their work that can be sent to potential employers.
Finally, Capella University offers an online master's in career counseling program that prepares students to provide career counseling services both face-to-face and in online environments. The program requires a 100-hour practicum, a 600-hour internship and two six-day residencies. Students earn credit for taking the 10-week academic courses with practicum/internship requirements.
Introduction to Career Counseling Careers
Career counselors, also referred to as vocational or employment counselors, help both the employed and unemployed deal with all kinds of professional difficulties, from choosing a career path to coping with the trauma of getting laid off.
Career Counseling Job Description
Career counselors may work independently, for private career services organizations or for publicly-funded social organizations. The majority of a career counselor's work involves meetings with individuals or groups to discuss career problems, prospects and advice. Career counselors may also give presentations or run seminars for groups on topics such as dealing with work stress or finding a career that is a "good fit."
The ultimate goal is to help people deal with professional decisions, no matter what stage of their career they're in. For individuals who are looking to pursue a new position but aren't sure which direction to go in, the career counselor may use tools such as personal interviews and aptitude tests in order to help determine what jobs might be of interest. A career counselor may also work with clients in the job application process, provide support to stressed employees, or help the recently unemployed deal with the stress of finding and transitioning to a new job.
Career Counseling Requirements
Career counselors usually hold a master's degree in counseling or a similar field in order to practice independently. Many counseling education programs offer pertinent coursework, including career development, cultural diversity and professional identity.
In order to become licensed, aspiring counselors must pass a state-recognized exam. A license, though, is not mandatory. Someone employed at a college or university career office may not need a license; however, someone working for a private career counseling service will.
Career Counseling Career Outlook
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that job opportunities for all types of counselors are projected to grow through 2018, with the number of jobs available for educational, vocational and school counselors as a group estimated to grow by 14 percent from 2008 to 2018. The median annual salary for educational, vocational and school counselors is approximately $52,550, with the annual mean wage of counselors employed by vocational rehabilitation services around $39,710.
Career Counseling Trends
Career counseling is likely to become more popular as Americans shaken by the recent recession continue to worry about job security and future employment prospects. In addition, "career switching" is becoming a more prominent practice. As people transition into entirely new positions, they can often benefit from a career counselor's guidance.
Career Counseling Degree Programs
Welcome to the most complete directory on the Web of Career Counseling programs. It contains all the nationally accredited programs, from 21 schools across the country.