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2020 Guide to Counselor Education and Supervision

Guide to Counselor Education and Supervision - University of the Cumberlands

Tue, 11/24/2020 - 10:00am

The demand for trained counselors and therapists is on the rise. The National Institute of Mental Health estimates that 18.9 percent of all adults in the United States have a mental health condition. That is a total of 46.6 million people. These individuals need professional counseling and therapy to get help.

As the demand for mental health grows, the need for leaders in the field also grows. This has led to the development of a new doctoral degree program, the PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision. With a focus on training future educators and supervisors, this degree path can prepare students for a wide range of potential careers, from administration roles to professorships in colleges and universities.

If you are already working in the field of counseling and want to expand your career options beyond what is available with your master's degree program, consider a PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision. This guide will show everything you need to know about this degree path and the jobs available to graduates who hold a doctoral degree in this field.

Chapter 1: Intro to Counselor Education and Supervision

  • What is Counselor Education and Supervision?
  • Why Counselor Education and Supervision is important

Every field requires trained leaders, and counseling is no different. Counselor Education and Supervision training gives counselors the tools they need to become leaders in their field. Here is a closer look at what Counselor Education and Supervision training entails.

What is Counselor Education and Supervision?

The Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) indicates that Counselor Education and Supervision is a PhD training program designed to teach counselors how to assume leadership roles, particularly in institutions of higher education. Graduates of a Counselor Education and Supervision program receive the training they need to become leaders in the counseling profession. They also often serve as advocates in counseling. Graduates of counseling education and supervision programs will learn:

  • Skills needed to teach counselors in an institute of higher education
  • Administrative skills to serve in supervisory roles in clinical settings
  • Clinical skills to make counselors more effective and aid in research projects

Counselor Education and Supervision is an educational field that teaches students how to professionally apply the theory and principles used in counseling in both the educational and vocational development of others. In addition to holding roles in institutions of higher education, graduates of these programs can hold leadership roles in counseling organizations and medical facilities that assist with mental health.

Why Counselor Education and Supervision is important

The world of counseling is packed with theory and psychology. Applying that theory in real-world applications is sometimes challenging, and the industry needs more professionals who can teach others how to apply that theory effectively. Through Counselor Education and Supervision programs, counselors can gain the leadership skills they need to effectively train other counselors or supervise their work.

The demand for research in counseling and mental health is also high, and those who hold a degree in Counselor Education and Supervision are properly trained to work in research.

Finally, a degree in Counselor Education and Supervision can make a counseling professional more marketable. It opens the door to greater career possibilities, both in counseling and education. This means a greater potential income and future career satisfaction.

Chapter 2: How to Earn Your Degree in Counselor Education and Supervision

  • What are the requirements of a counselor education degree?
  • What skills do you learn in Counselor Education and Supervision programs?
  • How many years does it take to get a PhD in counseling?
  • Is a PhD in counseling worth it?

If you already have undergraduate training in counseling or are working in a counseling setting, the role of an educator or supervisor may appeal to you. Getting your degree in Counselor Education and Supervision ensures you have the tools to venture into this field. Here is a closer look at what is required to earn a degree in Counselor Education and Supervision.

What are the requirements of a counselor education degree?

A Counselor Education and Supervision degree is a PhD in the counseling field. It is a rigorous program of study, but it can open the door to greater income potential. It also has specific education requirements and prerequisites that students should know.

According to the CACREP, a doctoral program in Counselor Education and Supervision requires a minimum of 48 semester hours of doctoral-level training. This is beyond the undergraduate and master's degree requirements. The CACREP also publishes admission criteria for these programs. This includes:

  • Ability to handle doctoral-level work
  • Professional counseling experience
  • Proven fitness for the profession, which includes emotional stability and a measure of self-awareness
  • Communication skills for oral and written communication
  • Strong potential to be a leader and advocate in the field
  • Cultural sensitivity

Before graduation, students in one of these PhD programs must complete a dissertation that has counseling-specific research. The research can be in practice, education, and supervision.

What skills do you learn in Counselor Education and Supervision programs?

If you choose to pursue a degree in Counselor Education and Supervision, you will gain specific skills that can be applied immediately in your counseling work, while also gaining skills to help you transition into a leadership role.

First, these programs try to expand upon your knowledge base. You will get further training on counseling best practices and how to use your research skills to improve your abilities as a counselor. The goal is also to help extend the knowledge base of the profession as a whole, as the dissertations become part of the counseling profession's repository of knowledge.

These programs also provide instruction on how to teach counseling to others in the field. For students who desire to take on the role of professor, this is invaluable training. Many colleges and universities offer their Counselor Education and Supervision program as a collaboration between their counseling departments and their education departments.

Finally, these degree programs will deliver the skills necessary for administrative leadership roles. They teach students how to supervise other counselors effectively to improve outcomes for clients and patients on a clinical level.

How many years does it take to get a PhD in counseling?

The length of time it takes to complete a PhD in counseling will vary from one student to the next. It typically takes between 90 and 150 hours of study to complete, and the amount of time needed to complete the dissertation process also varies. This means it can take as many as 10 years to complete the training. This is above the amount of time it takes to complete an undergrad and master's degree program. For the actual classwork, students should plan to spend four-to-five years of full-time study.

Today's students benefit from online and accelerated programs. These make it possible to complete the coursework for a PhD in counseling much more quickly. It's not uncommon for students to complete their requirements in three-to-five years. The dissertation can take longer and will vary from one student to the next based on the level of research required.

Is a PhD in counseling worth it?

If you picture yourself in a leadership role in the counseling world, then a PhD in counseling is a worthwhile investment. Similarly, if you want to work in higher education, then this degree is the starting point for your educational career path.

Chapter 3: Counselor Education and Supervision Jobs & Salary

  • What can I do with a PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision?
  • How much do counselor educators make?

Investing in a PhD requires an investment of both money and time. Before you jump into your doctoral training, you may be wondering what you can do with this education. Here's a closer look at the doors opened with a PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision.

What can I do with a PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision?

A PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision typically opens the door to education and supervisory roles in the counseling field. Some specific job titles may include:

  • Post-secondary Teacher – This is the most common role that those holding a PhD in Counselor Education will pursue. Instilling counselor training in the next generation of counselors is a highly rewarding career path. Professors and college teachers also can be at the forefront of research and publishing in counseling. As the industry continues to demand more and more trained counselors, the demand for instructors will grow, as well. The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates a 9% job growth for postsecondary teachers from 2019 and 2029, and counseling is one of the fastest-growing fields, so it may have even stronger growth.
  • Psychologist – Though most psychologists will get their PhD in psychology, it is possible to pursue this career with a PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision. Psychologists study human behavior and the processes that lead to that behavior, including emotional, cognitive, and social processes. They are skilled at research and observation, and those holding a Counselor Education and Supervision degree may focus their efforts on clinical research rather than working directly with patients.
  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Counseling Administration – Substance abuse or mental health counseling administration roles are open to those with doctoral-level training. These allow students to continue working directly with patients if they wish, while also gaining the skills necessary to lead a team of therapists and counselors. The BLS does not track administrative roles specifically, but the estimated job growth for counselors, in general, is 25 percent.
  • Marriage and Family Counselors – Marriage and family counselors are in high demand. They help families and couples work through the problems within their relationships that can break apart families. This career requires a master's degree to practice, but a doctoral degree in Counselor Education and Superposition can allow students to fill management positions. The expected job growth is 22 percent.
  • Counseling Clinical Administration – A degree in Counseling Education and Supervision trains students on how to supervise other counselors, which opens the door to administrative positions. While the BLS does not track counseling clinical administrators, it does track medical and health services managers, which could include mental health clinics. These professionals are in high demand, with job growth of 32 percent anticipated between 2019 and 2029.

How much do counselor educators make?

The amount you can make after earning your PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision will vary depending on the career path you choose. Here are the income estimates for common jobs for those who hold this degree:

  • Psychologist – A psychologist earns on average $80,370 per year. Those in the top 10 percent of this field earn over $132,070 per year, while those in the lower 10 percent earn less than $45,380. Physiologists employed in the government have the highest average wage, with hospitals and private services falling second.
  • Post-Secondary Teachers – This is another field that varies significantly. The average wage for all college professors is $79,540. The Bureau of Labor Statistics does not have a category for counseling professors, but it estimates the average wage for psychology teachers to be $76,620 a year. Those in the top 10 percent earn over $174,960, while those in the lower 10 percent earn less than $40,480.
  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Counselors – Those in leadership roles in the substance abuse and mental health counseling fields will earn more than those just starting out. The BLS estimates the highest 10 percent of counselors earn over $76,080. They do not track the incomes of administrative roles within this profession.
  • Marriage and Family Counselors – Marriage and family counselors vary tremendously on their income. Those in the highest 10 percent, which is likely to be the case for supervisors with a PhD, earn over $87,700 on average.
  • Counseling Clinic Administrator – Administration roles in counseling and mental health clinics have one of the highest potential incomes. The BLS estimates an average salary of $100,980 for this field, with the highest 10 percent earning over $189,000 a year.

Frequently Asked Questions About Counselor Education and Supervision

  • What is the difference between a psychologist and a counselor?
  • How much more do counselors make with a PhD?
  • Can I get a PhD in counselor education and supervision online?
  • What is the Association for Counselor Education and Supervision (ACES)?
  • What counselor education and supervision programs does University of the Cumberlands offer?

Do you have questions about Counselor Education and Supervision degrees and what you can do with them? Here are some common questions and their answers from the team at University of the Cumberlands:

What is the difference between a psychologist and a counselor?

The main way a psychologist and a counselor differ is in the way they perform their clinical work. Both professionals work in mental health clinics and in offices. Psychologists focus strongly on research and assessment. Counselors focus primarily on counseling and therapy. The roles can overlap, and counselors who hold a PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision often handle the research and assessment tasks similar to a psychologist.

How much more do counselors make with a PhD?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics does not track the difference between PhD and master's counseling degree holders. Because the PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision is a relatively new degree, pay estimates for it are not yet readily available. Looking at the pay for psychologists and counselors is helpful in answering this question.

According to Payscale, a PhD degree in psychology allows someone to earn an average of $82,474 a year. A Master of Arts in Counseling earns an average of $51,685. While these two degrees are slightly different, they show the higher income potential possible with a PhD.

Can I get a PhD in counselor education and supervision online?

Yes. University of the Cumberlands offers a fully online PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision. This flexible degree program lets you earn this degree on your own timetable with an accelerated format.

What is the Association for Counselor Education and Supervision?

The Association for Counselor Education and Supervision (ACES) is the organization that oversees counselor education and supervision roles. This organization is made up of working counselors and supervisors, faculty members of counseling education programs, and grad students. All work together to improve the training of counselors and the supervision of counselors in practice. Students in PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision programs can benefit from ACES membership.

What Counselor Education and Supervision programs does University of the Cumberlands offer?

University of the Cumberlands offers an online PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision. This is a convenient program that allows students to earn a doctorate without stepping foot on campus. It is a CACREP accredited counseling education and doctoral program designed to give students marketable skills while also putting them at the forefront of modern research in the field.

Discover Your Potential with a PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision

A PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision opens the door to higher pay and leadership or research roles in the field of counseling. University of the Cumberlands provides the convenience of an online program to make this degree easier to earn. If you are interested in learning more about the PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision degree offered at the University of the Cumberlands, contact an admissions counselor or request more information today.  

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