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Mental Health Counseling Major

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Mental Health Counseling

35 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
5,836 Master's Degrees Annually
#90 in Popularity

Types of Degrees Mental Health Counseling Majors Are Getting

The following table lists how many mental health counseling/counselor graduations there were in 2019-2020 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Master’s Degree 6,272
Graduate Certificate 320
Associate Degree 86
Basic Certificate 63
Doctor’s Degree 57
Bachelor’s Degree 43
Undergraduate Certificate 10

What Mental Health Counseling Majors Need to Know

O*NET surveyed people in occupations related to mental health counseling/counselor and asked them what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important for their jobs. The responses were rated on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being most important.

Knowledge Areas for Mental Health Counseling/Counselor Majors

Mental Health Counseling/Counselor majors often go into careers in which the following knowledge areas are important:

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  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Therapy and Counseling - Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Sociology and Anthropology - Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

Skills for Mental Health Counseling/Counselor Majors

A major in mental health counseling/counselor prepares you for careers in which the following skill-sets are crucial:

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  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Abilities for Mental Health Counseling/Counselor Majors

As you progress with your mental health counseling/counselor degree, there are several abilities you should pick up that will help you in whatever related career you choose. These abilities include:

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  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.

What Can You Do With a Mental Health Counseling Major?

Below is a list of occupations associated with mental health counseling/counselor:

Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary
Mental Health Counselors 23.1% NA

Who Is Getting a Bachelor’s Degree in Mental Health Counseling?

43 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
95% Percent Women
37% Percent Racial-Ethnic Minorities*
This major is dominated by women with about 95% of recent graduates being female.

Racial-Ethnic Diversity

At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of mental health counseling/counselor majors is as follows:

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Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 2
Black or African American 3
Hispanic or Latino 6
White 27
International Students 0
Other Races/Ethnicities 5

Some degrees associated with mental health counseling/counselor may require an advanced degree, while others may not even require a bachelor’s in the field. In general, the more advanced your degree the more career options will open up to you. However, there is significant time and money that needs to be invested into your education so weigh the pros and cons.

Find out what the typical degree level is for mental health counseling/counselor careers below.

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Education Level Percentage of Workers
Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree) 1.5%
Bachelor’s Degree 34.8%
Master’s Degree 63.0%
Post-Master’s Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Master’s degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees at the doctoral level. 1.4%
Doctoral Degree 0.7%

Online Mental Health Counseling Programs

In the 2019-2020 academic year, 254 schools offered some type of mental health counseling/counselor program. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.

Degree Level Colleges Offering Programs Colleges Offering Online Classes
Certificate (Less Than 1 Year) 0 0
Certificate (1-2 years) 4 2
Certificate (2-4 Years) 0 0
Associate’s Degree 12 0
Bachelor’s Degree 15 4
Post-Baccalaureate 0 0
Master’s Degree 225 30
Post-Master’s 32 0
Doctor’s Degree (Research) 13 2
Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice) 4 0
Doctor’s Degree (Other) 0 0

You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to mental health counseling/counselor.

Major Number of Grads
Substance Abuse/Addiction Counseling 5,728
Other Mental and Social Health Services and Allied Professions 3,818
Marriage and Family Therapy/Counseling 3,308
Psychiatric/Mental Health Services Technician 2,805
Community Health Services/Liaison/Counseling 2,389
Clinical/Medical Social Work 2,060
Clinical Pastoral Counseling/Patient Counseling 273
Genetic Counseling/Counselor 230
Trauma Counseling 30
Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy 16
Medical Family Therapy/Therapist 8

References

*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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