Counselor Education - School Counseling P-12 (Master of Science)

Application Deadlines

Deadline dates for applications and receipt of all required application materials are:

Date Event
July 1 Fall Admission
November 1 Spring Admission
April 1 Summer Admission

Any exceptions to these deadlines must be granted by the graduate program chair.

Overview of Two Options for School Counseling Majors

Students applying to the School Counseling program have two options for application and degree completion:

  1. Traditional Certification Option (for applicants who already hold a professional educator certificate in some area of education)
  2. CACREP Option (for applicants who do not already hold a professional educator certificate)

Both options lead to eligibility for Master’s-level professional educator certification in School Counseling P-12.

Requirements Traditional Certification CACREP
Admission Requirements
Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution or the equivalent from an international institution Required Required
Valid Bachelor’s- or Master’s-level professional educator certificate in a teaching field or another area of instructional support Required Not Required
Two full years of full-time acceptable P-12 professional educational work experience prior to unconditional admission to program Required Not Required
Clear background check Required Required
Program Completion Requirements
Completion of all program coursework with a minimum 3.25 GPA Required Required
Passing score on the appropriate Praxis Subject Assessment (must be completed prior to ECG 593, Internship in School Counseling) Required Required
Satisfactory completion of oral and written examinations Required Required
Additional Certification Requirements1
Passing score on the National Counseling Exam (NCE) Not Required Required

Individuals seeking certification in states other than Alabama are responsible for contacting those state certification offices regarding school counseling certification requirements.

Application Materials Required for the MS in School Counseling P-12

Applicants for a master’s degree education program must submit all of the following documentation to Graduate Admissions to be considered for admission:

Graduate Admissions
Jacksonville State University
700 Pelham Road North
Jacksonville, Alabama, 36265-1602

  1. Completed JSU Graduate Application for Admission.
  2. Non-refundable $35.00 application processing fee.
  3. Official transcripts from the baccalaureate degree awarding institution and all transcripts from institutions where post-baccalaureate work has been completed. To be considered for admission, applicants must hold a degree form an institutionally accredited institution or its foreign equivalent. (Students who have previously attended JSU do not need to request a transcript from the university.) 
  4. Background check1. Any candidate applying for admission to a state approved teacher education program shall be required to be fingerprinted for a criminal history background check through the Alabama State Department of Education to the Alabama Bureau of Investigation (ABI) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Applicants should contact Cogent Systems for directions in completing this process.
  5. Professional resume.
  6. Three Graduate Reference Forms completed by individuals who can provide qualitative assessment of the applicant’s potential for success in graduate coursework. Reference forms will be submitted electronically. Instructions for submission will be sent through email to the applicant upon submission of the online graduate application.
  7. Traditional Certification Option Only: Applicants must have completed a minimum of two full years of full-time, acceptable P-12 professional educational work experience prior to unconditional admission to the program and will document their educational experience on the state-approved Supplemental EXP Form. Applicants should contact their superintendent’s office/central office for completion of this form.
  8. Traditional Certification Option Only: Valid Bachelor’s- or Master’s-level professional educator certificate in a teaching field or another area of instructional support. All certificate(s) must be valid throughout the program and at graduation.
  9. International student applicants must see the International Student Applicants section of this catalog for other application and enrollment requirements.
  10. Applicants whose packages are complete will be contacted to schedule an appointment for a writing sample and an interview with faculty members of the program.

If the candidate holds a valid Alabama professional educator certificate and has already completed a background check through that process, another background check will not be required.

Admission Requirements for the MS in School Counseling P-12

Applicants are admitted on a selective basis by the faculty members of the program, upon review of the completed application package.

With departmental approval, applicants may be permitted to enroll for one semester of graduate coursework while completing general application procedure requirements.                   

Minimum Requirements for the MS in School Counseling P-12

An overall 3.25 GPA is required on all coursework attempted for the master’s degree. Transfer credit cannot be used to raise the GPA to the required 3.25.

Successful completion of the Praxis Subject Assessment(s) is required prior to taking Internship.

The School Counseling program at Jacksonville State University is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP).

Course Title Credits
Special Education Requirement0-3
Survey Course in Special Education 1
Basic Requirements
ECG 501Assessment in Counseling3
EFD 500Research in Education3
EPY 525Lifespan Development3
Counseling Core Courses
ECG 506Professional Counseling Orientation and Technology (Required first semester of enrollment)3
ECG 525Pre-Practicum: Skills & Techniques in Counseling3
ECG 526Professional Ethics and Legal Issues3
ECG 553Theory and Process3
ECG 556Career Development3
ECG 585Practicum: Applied Skills & Techniques in Counseling3
ECG 591Group Procedures in Counseling3
ECG 593Internship in School Counseling3
ECG 594Internship in School Counseling3
School Counseling Concentration Courses
ECG 523Social & Cultural Diversity in Counseling3
ECG 527Organization and Administration of Counseling Services3
ECG 540Psychopathology: Diagnosis and Treatment of DSM Disorders3
ECG 558Counseling Children/Adolescents3
ECG 560Substance and Behavioral Addictions in Counseling3
ECG 565Psychopharmacology3
ECG 588Crisis Counseling Intervention Strategies3
ECG 589Psychological First Aid & Disaster Counseling3
Total Hours60-63

 60-63 Graduate Semester Hours Required for this Degree


Students who have not previously satisfied the special education requirement at the undergraduate or graduate level must take SPE 500 Survey Course in Special Education (3).

Graduation and Comprehensive Exam

A comprehensive exam is required for this degree; please see the graduate advisor for full details. All students must apply for graduation by the given deadline of the semester in which they plan to graduate. Please see the Graduation and Comprehensive Exam section of this catalog for more information.

Completion of this program leads to eligibility for Master’s-level professional educator certification in School Counseling P-12.

Please Note: Teacher education programs are approved by the Alabama State Board of Education and are, therefore, subject to periodic revision resulting from changes in State certification requirements. Subsequently, modifications in students’ programs may become necessary. Students in all graduate level teacher education programs must schedule their coursework each semester with approval of their faculty advisors.

Alabama Class A Professional Educator Certification Requirements

Issuance of Alabama professional educator certificates is the legal responsibility of the Alabama State Department of Education. Universities cannot issue a professional certificate. To be eligible to apply for certification, a student must complete an appropriate program of study at a college or university which has been approved by the State Board of Education to offer a program leading to the desired certificate. When a student completes the program of study, the institution recommends to the State Department of Education that the appropriate certificate be issued.

  1. Alabama State Department of Education regulations are subject to change; therefore, it is recommended that students apply for certification upon graduation. During their last semester of coursework, students should contact the Certification Office of the Department of Accreditation, Certification and Partnership Initiatives, CEPS Complex, Pod 4, Room 405, for information about this process. The university cannot recommend any student for certification who has not satisfied all state and university requirements for admission to and completion of an approved program. 
  2. Recommendation for certification must be made within 60 months of program completion. Recommendation after 60 months requires completion of current program requirements.