Department Mission Statement
The principle mission of the Department of Counseling is to prepare quality counselors for various settings in Idaho and the nation. More specifically, we seek to prepare quality School Counselors for public schools in K-12 settings; Marriage, Couple, and Family Counselors and Clinical Mental Health Counselors for community agencies and other mental health settings; and Student Affairs Counselors for working in college settings such as advising and residence halls, and career centers.
In addition, we prepare doctoral level counselor educators and supervisors to work primarily in institutions of higher learning as faculty members.
We believe that it is also our mission to:
- instill a strong sense of professional identity in students,
- help students gain an appreciation of the rich knowledge base in counselor education,
- develop student expertise in the skills of counseling,
- aid students to become certified and/or licensed,
- aid students/graduates in their initial job placement,
- teach and perform research applicable to the practice of counseling, and counselor education and supervision,
- aid students in understanding the diversity of views and cultures within our profession and the environment in which counselors practice.
The Department of Counseling also has a mission within the Kasiska Division of Health Sciences, College of Health Professions, which is to represent the mental health perspective within the Division and to consult with Division faculty and departments in encouraging a holistic perspective toward health care services.
Goals and Objectives
The general objective of the Master of Counseling (M.COUN.) degree is to prepare students to be professional counselors. The Department of Counseling faculty believe that the development of a strong professional identity, a rich knowledge base, and expertise in the skills of counseling are essential to functioning as a professional in each counseling setting.
The Master of Counseling degree is designed to be the strong foundation upon which graduates enter a lifetime career in the helping professions. This program prepares counselors to respond to the multitude of societal changes and to the ever-expanding counseling profession. In addition to knowledge and experience in the following eight common-core areas, graduates have specialized knowledge and skills as identified in the objectives of the Marriage, Couple, and Family Counseling, Clinical Mental Health Counseling, School Counseling, and Student Affairs Counseling majors.
The Department of Counseling has curricular and professional objectives for each Master of Counseling student. Each of these objectives has specific outcome measures:
- Students will have knowledge of Human Growth and Development in order to understand the nature and needs of persons at all developmental levels and in multicultural contexts.
- Students will have knowledge of Social and Cultural Foundations to be effective in a multicultural and diverse society.
- Students will be knowledgeable and skillful in Counseling and Consultation processes.
- Students will be knowledgeable about group development, dynamics, counseling theory, group counseling methods, and group work approaches.
- Students will be knowledgeable and understand career development and related factors.
- Students will understand and be knowledgeable about individual and group approaches to assessment and evaluation.
- Students will be knowledgeable about various research methods, statistical analysis, needs assessment, and program evaluation.
- Students will be knowledgeable about the profession of counseling including history, organizational structures, ethics, standards, and credentialing.
Student Professional Objectives:
In addition to the above curricular objectives, the Department of Counseling has program specific objectives. These include:
- School counseling students will obtain certification as school counselors.
- Students in all majors (Marriage, Couple, and Family Counseling; Clinical Mental Health Counseling; School Counseling; and Student Affairs Counseling) will obtain state licensure as professional counselors (i.e., LPC).
Graduate-level preparation for (1) counselors who seek employment in schools, universities, community mental health, and various other settings, and (2) college student affairs professionals.
Pre-Counseling and Pre-Student Affairs
Preparation should consist of a broad undergraduate course of study including some work in psychology (learning and personality theory), sociology, and the communication skills. For those seeking positions in public elementary and secondary schools, state certification requirements should be considered.
Undergraduates interested in continuing their education in the Master of Counseling program should consider enrolling in the Seminar course, COUN 4490 entitled Introduction to Counseling Services. This 1-credit course is offered each Fall semester.
Degree programs offered by the department, all at the graduate level, include Doctor of Philosophy, Educational Specialist, and Master of Counseling. Majors are available in Counselor Education and Counseling (Ph.D.); Counseling (Ed.S.), Marriage, Couple, and Family Counseling (M.COUN.); Clinical Mental Health Counseling (M.COUN.); School Counseling (M.COUN.); and Student Affairs Counseling (M.COUN.).
Admission to the Department of Counseling master’s program is based on a variety of criteria outlined in the Graduate Catalog. Because of limited class sizes and the large number of applicants, admission into the Department of Counseling is highly competitive.
For more information about the graduate programs offered through ISU's Department of Counseling, please refer to the College of Health Professions within the Graduate Catalog, or visit the department's website at: https://www.isu.edu/counseling/.
The program for school counselor preparation is credentialed by the State of Idaho.
The Counselor Education programs approved by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) are as follows: Marriage, Couple, and Family Counseling (M.COUN.), Clinical Mental Health Counseling (M.COUN.), School Counseling (M.COUN.), Student Affairs Counseling (M.COUN.), and Counselor Education and Counseling (Ph.D.).