Page Header Image

Contact Information

Bldg 41, Suite 405
202.274.5194 | 202.274.5589  |

College Administration
Dean - April Massey, Ph.D.
Associate Dean Academic Affairs - Lena Walton, Ph.D.
Assistant Dean of Students - La Tanya Rogers, Ph.D.
Office Manager - Ms. Wilma Thompson
Receptionist - Mr. Terry D. Best


MS in Counseling

The Department of Psychology and Counseling offers the Master of Science degree in Counseling. The program prepares individuals to function professionally as school, community, and rehabilitation counselors; as treatment providers in mental health agencies, substance abuse facilities, employee assistance programs, career counseling, and in employment centers, therapeutic group homes, and rehabilitation centers.

Students entering the school counseling specialization are expected to complete field experience requirements for elementary and middle school or high school endorsement. Field placements for the school specialization are available during the Fall and Spring semesters only.

Students must commit a minimum of 20 hours weekly on site. Students enrolled in the mental health or rehabilitation specializations will have the option of extending their field experience during the summer sessions with the approval of the practicum faculty. Students interested in professional licensure or clinical certification should obtain copies of the licensure and certification standards from the state office or the appropriate professional association.

For whom is the program designed?

The program trains counselors to work with individuals and groups from diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds with a range of problems. Persons interested in counseling should have a strong desire to help others, must be capable of working independently or as a member of a team.

How long will it take to complete the program?

Full-time students can complete the 54 semester hour program in 2 years. Part-time study is possible, as most courses are scheduled in the evening or weekends.


The counseling faculty includes individuals trained as counselors, psychologists and researchers. Together they possess the technical skills, professional credentials and experience required to prepare students for unique opportunities in diverse professional careers.

Master of Science in Counseling

Requirements for Admission:

To be considered for admission to graduate study in counseling, the applicant must meet the following requirements:

  1. The applicant must hold a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university, preferably a major in education and/or social sciences.
  2. Submit one official transcript from all prior undergraduate and graduate work. Applicants must have an undergraduate
    grade point average of 2.8 or higher.
  3. Submit official scores from a recent administration (within the last two years) of the Graduate Record Exam Verbal, Quantitative, Analytical Reasoning & Essay tests.
  4. Submit three letters of recommendation.
    One letter should be from an individual familiar with the applicant’s capacity for
    relating to clients, professionalism and personal attributes.
  5. A 500-word essay articulating reasons for pursuing graduate studies in counseling, familiarity with the profession and related work experience.
  6. Office of Recruitment and Admissions; University of the District of Columbia; 4200 Connecticut Avenue, NW; Building 39, Room A-12; Washington, DC 20008.
  7. Students who do not register for classes for two consecutive semesters and students who are suspended for academic reasons will be required to apply for readmission to the

Curriculum Requirements:

The program of study requires the completion of 54 semester hours, that include a core of nine semester hours covering professional orientation, theoretical knowledge, research and evaluation; nine (9) hours of practicum experience, 30 hours of basic program requirements, and a minimum of six hours of course electives. Electives are chosen from specialization areas of preference and in consultation with faculty advisor. Students must maintain a grade point average of 3.0 or better to remain in good standing and a 3.0 in all major courses. A student may repeat a required course no more than one time. If the student is unable to achieve a B or better in the required course, the student may petition the faculty for a review of his/her status to continue in the program. The Psychology and Counseling Department reserves the right to revise the program requirements and standards without prior notice. The faculty in this department also reserves the right to dismiss any student who displays unprofessional and adverse behavior.

Advancement to Candidacy

Students must submit a request to advance to candidacy upon successfully completing a minimum of 21 semester hours. Readiness for candidacy will be determined by the cumulative grade point average, an acceptable score on a comprehensive examination, successful completion of all core requirements.

Graduation Requirements

Students must satisfy one of the following requirements to exit the Program:

  1. 48 semester hours, thesis (6 additional semester hours) and the Counselor Preparation Comprehensive Exam.
  2. 42 semester hours of core and basic requirements, 21 semester hours of electives that include a special project with a seminar
    paper and the Counselor Preparation Comprehensive Exam.
    The Counselor Preparation Comprehensive Exam is a standardized assessment provided by The Center for Credentialing and Education, an affiliate of the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC). The exam fee is determined by NBCC.

Graduate Writing Proficiency Examination

Writing proficiency must be demonstrated for continuance in the graduate program beyond the first semester. The student may satisfy the writing proficiency requirement by scoring above a cut-off score on the essay section of the GRE or by enrolling in the Writing Seminar Course (ENGL 290) during the first semester in the program. Credit for this course will not be counted as part of the credit-hour requirements for completion of a graduate program.

Core Requirements:

Course NumberCourse Name
1315 - 509Counseling Philosophies
1315 - 532Introduction to Research and Program Evaluation
1315 - 514Theories of Counseling
1315 - 531Ethics, Legal and Legislative Issues
1315 - 557Human Growth and Development
1315 - 517Career Theories and Development
1315 - 519Appraisal Techniques of Counseling

General Requirements:

Course NumberCourse Name
1315 - 530Techniques of Counseling
1315 - 510Group Counseling
1315 - 513Cultural Diversity Issues and Multicultural Counseling

Specialization Experience:

School Counseling

Course NumberCourse Name
1315 - 508Organization and Administration of Counseling
1315 - 546Counseling Children and Adolescents
1315 - 556Seminar in School Counseling

Mental Health Counseling

Course NumberCourse Name
1315 - 538Mental Health Treatment Techniques
1315 - 544Family Counseling
1171 - 504Psychopathology

Rehabilitation Counseling

Course NumberCourse Name
1318 - 500Foundations of Rehabilitation Counseling
1318 - 501Psychosocial and Medical Aspects of Disability and Rehabilitation Counseling
1318 - 502Career Counseling and Job Development and Placement in Rehabilitation
1318 - 503Introduction to Assisted Technology
1318 - 504Principles and Practices of Case Management in Rehabilitation
1318 - 505Directed Reading in Rehabilitation

Practicum & Field Experience

Course NumberCourse Name
1315 - 518Supervision in Practicum & Field Experience
1315 - 521Practicum I (Internship)
1315 - 522Practicum II (Internship)

Thesis Project Options:

Course NumberCourse Name
Graduate Thesis6 credits (enroll in 1315-545)
Graduate Project3 credits (enroll in 1315-545)


Course NumberCourse Name
1171 - 504Psychopathology
1315 - 528Drug Abuse Prevention/Treatment
1315 - 529Human Sexuality and Sexual Dysfunctions
1315 - 533Crisis Intervention
1315 - 538Mental Health Treatment Techniques (Advanced)
1315 - 543Addiction Disorders
1315 - 544Family Counseling
1315 - 545Independent Research Study
1315 - 546Counseling Children and Adolescents
1315 - 549Test in Counseling
1315 - 555Counseling the Elderly
1315 - 596Special Topics in Counseling
1315 - 507Grief Counseling

Program Admission Requirements

Graduate Counseling applicants must meet the following requirements:

  1. Hold a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university, preferably with an education or social science major, and a 2.8 GPA.
  2. Submit one official transcript of all prior college and graduate work.
  3. Secure a minimum of three letters of recommendation from individuals familiar with the applicant’s academic and/or personal qualifications for a career in mental health and professional counseling.
  4. Submit scores from the Graduate Record Examination. Complete all components of the UDC Graduate Application
  5. Schedule an interview with the department

Thesis/Non Thesis Option

Depending upon career goals, students have the option of pursuing a thesis involving original empirical research, or taking 6 credit hours of elective courses.

Alumni Highlights

Numerous of our graduates have completed or entered doctoral degree programs. Others have advanced their careers in education, mental health, rehabilitation and other human services, such as:

  • Public School Systems – DC, VA & MD
  • DC Rehabilitation Administration
  • Hospitals – Washington Hospital Center, St Elizabeth Hospital, etc.
  • DC Community Mental Health Centers
  • Whitman Walker Clinic
  • Washington Psychotherapy Institute
  • National Institute of Mental Health
  • DC Parole Board
  • DC Private Law firms (as specialists)
  • Universities (as faculty & counselors)
  • Licensed Professional Counselors
  • Employee Assistance Programs


For more information, please contact:

Dr. Philicia Jefferson, Director or Dr. Benson G. Cooke, Clinical Coordinator
Graduate Counseling Program
Department of Psychology and Counseling
Bldg. 44, Room 200-35
4200 Connecticut Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20008
Telephone: 202.274.7406

The department reserves the right to make changes in its programs without prior notification.