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Clinical Mental Health Counseling

Program Mission

The mission of the Master’s Program in Clinical Mental Health Counseling is to prepare highly competent professional counselors with an integrated counseling style, characterized by the recognition of the need to work with a client in a variety of areas including cognitive processes, feelings, and behavioral processes.

Program Objectives

Successful completion of the M.Ed. in clinical mental health counseling prepares students to:

  1. Become familiar with the requirements for a professional counselor, the body of literature and research that is central to the field, and professional preparation standards which impact the field as a whole.
  2. Become familiar with the typical characteristics of individuals and communities served by a variety of institutions and agencies that offer clinical mental health counseling services.
  3. Develop knowledge and understanding of models, methods, and principles of program development and service delivery for a clientele based on assumptions of human and organizational development, including prevention, implementation of support groups, peer facilitation training, parent education, career/occupational information and counseling, and encouragement of self-help.
  4. Learn to develop effective strategies for promoting client understanding of and access to community resources.
  5. Develop knowledge and application of principles and models of biopsychosocial assessment, case conceptualization, theories of human development and concepts of normalcy and psychopathology leading to diagnoses and appropriate counseling plans.
  6. Acquire knowledge of the principles of diagnosis and the use of current diagnostic tools, including the current edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual.
  7. Learn to develop effective strategies for client advocacy in public policy and other matters of equity and accessibility.
  8. Develop knowledge and application of appropriate individual, couple, family, group, and systems modalities for initiating, maintaining, and terminating counseling, including the use of crisis intervention, and brief, intermediate, and long-term approaches.
  9. Acquire an understanding of ethical and legal considerations related specifically to the practice of clinical mental health counseling.


The master's program in clinical mental health counseling consists of content areas in counseling including coursework in foundations of counseling, theory and techniques, appraisal, human development, research methodology, and group counseling. Additional coursework in four clinical areas is required for licensure as a professional counselor. All students must complete a supervised practicum and internship experience. Upon successful completion of the academic requirements in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program, the Counselor Education program will formally endorse the student for the Professional Counselor (PC) license and/or employment appropriate to the clinical mental health counseling program. Graduates of the program are eligible for certification as National Certified Counselors.

Program Outcomes

The Clinical Mental Health Counseling program at the Ohio University is fully accredited by the Council of Accreditation for Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) through 2016.

Currently, the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program has a total of 70 students. For the 2012-2013 academic year a total of 34 students graduated from the program.  All of the students passed their clinical coursework. All students take the National Counselor Exam (NCE) as a condition of successfully completing the portfolio class that is designed to assess overall comprehensive learning in the program. The national pass rate in 2012 for the NCE is 78% and 91% for Ohio schools. Of the OU graduates who take the NCE (Ohio PC licensure exam), 93% pass the exam and become licensed in Ohio as professional counselors. The national pass rate in 2012 for the National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Exam is 66% and 67.4% for Ohio schools. Of the OU graduates who take the NCMHCE, the pass rate is 86%.

Of the 2012-2013 graduates, approximately 90% were employed within six months of graduation or are pursuing advanced academic degrees. Graduates are employed in a wide variety of settings, including the state-federal public rehabilitation system, non-profit community-based rehabilitation programs, private rehabilitation centers, mental health centers, university disability services, and other specialized rehabilitation centers. Some graduates work in employment settings where a license is not required (Public School System, Veteran’s Administration, Community Mental Health, and Ohio Rehabilitation Services Commission), while others move to a different state or outside the country. The number of graduates remaining in Ohio is expected to increase with the availability of more job opportunities.

The program has 6 full-time tenure-track faculty, 3 part-time emeriti, and 4 part-time adjunct faculty who teach the CACREP accredited curriculum. We are seeking to hire a non-tenure track teaching faculty to replace a faculty member who left at the end of the 2010-2011 academic year. The instructor to student ratio is 10:1.

About twenty percent of the students are from underrepresented groups, including people with disabilities. The program has a total of approximately 50 semesters of university assistantships for a total of $500,000 each year in student stipend and tuition support.


The Master's program in Clinical Mental Health Counselor Education at Ohio University is accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). By maintaining CACREP accreditation, the program strives to provide the highest quality of faculty and curriculum standards.

For more information, please contact the Counselor Education Program Coordinator at


Adrienne Erby, PhD, NCC
Counselor Education Program Coordinator
Lecturer and Interim Director of the George E. Hill Center
Lindley Hall N160F
(740) 593-4457