College of Education > Academics > Counseling & Special Education > Graduate Programs > Counseling (MA/MEd) > Specialty Area Requirements > Clinical Mental Health

Clinical Mental Health Counseling Specialty Area Requirements

The Clinical Mental Health Counseling (CMHC) specialty area is a practitioner-oriented program that is designed to prepare students to enter the professional field of clinical mental health counseling. Our program integrates counseling knowledge, skills, and clinical field experiences based on current research and best practices to help students develop their professional identities as clinical mental health counselors. With a sound foundation in counseling and mental health training, graduates will be able to work within a variety of clinical settings such as community mental health centers, day treatment and in-patient hospital settings, employee assistance plans, correctional facilities, foster care agencies, group homes, youth mentoring programs, colleges and universities, and private practice settings. Within these settings, our graduates are equipped to address and resolve personal, familial, and social concerns that interfere with clients’ abilities to lead healthy and productive lives.

Unique to the Counseling program at DePaul University are opportunities for our students to learn in our state-of-the-art training facility (Education and Counseling Center), and a rigorous education in multiculturalism and social justice. The program’s focus is on training students to become culturally competent practitioners who can serve as advocates and leaders for clients, communities, and the profession. Graduates of our program have become counselors and leaders serving culturally and linguistically diverse populations (e.g., clients who are LGBTQ, of varied racial and ethnic backgrounds, and economically disenfranchised).

Graduates of this specialty area are also competitive for admission into doctoral programs in counseling psychology, counselor education, and other mental health fields as long as they design their coursework and experiences during the program with this focus in mind. Students choosing to further their research knowledge and skills to better prepare for advanced degree programs often complete a master’s thesis or complete research with a faculty advisor.

Program Requirements

The CMHC specialty area is a 90-quarter hour program that requires at least three years to complete. Coursework plus an on-site practicum experience generally make up the first two years of the program, followed by a year of specialty coursework and professional practice in the field.
The course sequence below meets the educational requirements for both the Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC) as set by the State of Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR). The CMHC specialty area program of study generally meets the licensure requirements for other states; however, certain states have different requirements. It is the responsibility of the student to check with the state licensure board to verify the necessary requirements to be eligible for licensure and to plan on meeting those requirements. State licensure board contact information can be obtained through the American Counseling Association

Course Requirements

Social and Cultural Foundations Courses: 2 courses, 8 quarter hours required, grade of B- or better required

Counseling Courses: 17 courses, 62 quarter hours required, grade of B- or better required

Elective Courses: 8 quarter hours required, grade of B- or better required

Students may also take elective courses in another program approved by an advisor.

Practicum and Internship: 3 courses, 12 hours; grade of B or better is required

Choose one: Thesis (MA) or Capstone (MEd):

  • Master of Arts (MA) Degree Requirements: Non-credit, non-tuition, grade of B- or better required

The Master’s Thesis is written in conjunction with CSL 553 and CSL 554 and with faculty advisement.  Enrollment in CSL 559 and an oral defense of the thesis are required.  Consult the MA Thesis Handbook for additional information.

  • Master of Education (MEd) Degree Requirements

Capstone project with faculty supervision written in conjunction with CSL 552, CSL 553, and CSL 554. Does not require additional course enrollment.

Content displayed from DePaul University catalog.