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    Harding University
  Jul 28, 2017
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2012-2013 Graduate and Professional Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Professional Counseling: Clinical and School (MS)

Return to: Cannon-Clary College of Education

This degree is designed as a practical program preparing entrance-level professionals to become competent professional counselors/psychotherapists. Practice is given in utilizing current counseling principles in real-world settings through practicum and internship experiences. Candidates are equipped with strategies including cognitive, affective, behavioral or systemic interventions that address wellness, personal growth, crises and mental health including pathology. This base will provide candidates with competencies (as defined by CACREP and ACA) designed to positively impact a variety of people across the lifespan.

Courses meet current course requirements for P-16 licensure/practice for counseling in public or private schools, including higher education, as approved by the Arkansas Department of Education and may lead to credentialing as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Clinical Mental Health Counselor (CMHC) designation as defined by a state counselor licensing board.

NOTE: Application of this degree varies according to the graduate’s goals. Examples: Licensure as a School Counselor in some states (including Arkansas) requires teacher licensure in addition to this degree. Licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) may require additional work beyond this degree in a few states. Students should consult with their advisers and with licensing agencies or boards for specific requirements.

In addition to the required courses, a concentration in Rehabilitation Counseling can be added to the Master of Science in Professional Counseling: Clinical and School program.

Master of Science Degrees

Admission Requirements for the Master of Science Degree Programs

Admission to Harding University is determined on an individual basis with the following criteria considered: (1) academic preparation, (2) character, (3) educational interests and (4) academic potential. Effort is made to admit all students who qualify and who can benefit from the unique educational program and opportunities available at Harding irrespective of their religious faith, national origin, sex, race or color. When applying, students should be aware of the distinct purpose of Harding University and be willing to commit themselves to upholding institutional values.

Applicants for the Master of Science degree programs must:

  1. Hold a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution with a cumulative grade point average of 2.50 or more, or 2.75 on the last 60 hours, attested by official transcript(s); OR an earned master’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university, attested by an official transcript.
  2. Earn the required score on one of the following entrance exams or hold a current teaching license:
    • PRAXIS II Examinations, earning at least the Arkansas cut-off score for licensure (Principles of Learning and Teaching and Specialty area)
    • Miller Analogies Test, minimum target score of 380
    • GRE general exam, minimum score of 900 (Quantitative and Verbal combined).

Application Procedure

  1. An application form for admission may be obtained online at or by contacting the chair of Graduate Studies in Education, Box 12261, Searcy, AR 72149-2261; or e-mail
  2. Applications must be accompanied by a $40 application fee which is not refundable and will not apply against the general registration fee if the applicant enrolls.
  3. Applications must provide satisfactory references from three individuals attesting to the applicant’s professional or academic performance, including one related to professional ability in the degree area to which the student is applying.
  4. Professional Counseling applicants must complete a personal interview with the professional counseling faculty. The interview will include a writing prompt and assessment of the candidate’s professional objectives, professional commitment, level of self-awareness, and compatibility with the counseling program.
  5. Professional Counseling applicants must have on file a signed copy of the Limitations of Supervision Statement of Understanding.

Provisional Admission

A student who does not fully meet the requirements listed above may receive provisional admission, with the approval of counseling faculty, if he or she:

  1. Holds a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution with a cumulative grade point average below 2.50 but not less than 2.35, attested by official transcript(s). Provisional status is removed when the student completes 12 graduate level hours with at least a 3.0 grade point average, six of which must be in the academic area of concentration.
  2. Has not submitted the required test score. The student is required to submit an acceptable score during the first semester enrolled for provisional status to be removed.

Other Program Requirements

Upon acceptance into the program, students must consult with director of their program or assigned advisor concerning the required course of study, register for classes online through Campus Pipeline each semester, and complete financial registration with the Business Office online.

Leveling courses, if required, will not be included within the semester hour requirements for the Master of Science degree programs.

All coursework must be completed within a period of eight calendar years. Course work taken more than eight years before graduation will not be acceptable.

Admission to the Professional Counseling Program does not guarantee retention.

At least one semester before the initial practicum semester in the Professional Counseling Program, request for admission to field placement must be made by filing the required application forms with the director of field experiences in Professional Counseling. Applications must be submitted by week 9 of the semester preceding field placement.

Transfer and International Students

Correspondence credit will not apply toward the master’s degree. Students may transfer semester hours from other accredited graduate schools, subject to the approval of the chair of graduate studies in education. Counseling students may transfer a maximum of 9 semester hours and educational Technology students may transfer a maximum of six semester hours in which they have a grade of “B” or higher. All coursework to be transferred must be completed before a student’s last semester.

A minimum score of 550 on the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) is required for students whose native language is not English, unless the student already holds a degree from an American college or university.

Academic Standing Requirements

These requirements are common to all programs in education and are listed in the Cannon-Clary College of Education  section.

Degree Requirements and Curriculum

Requests for degree may be submitted prior to a student’s final semester but must be submitted no later than the first week of the final semester. The graduation fee must be paid to the Business Office the last semester before graduation.

Master of Science – Professional Counseling: Clinical and School

To earn this degree, a student must successfully complete the following 48 semester hours of coursework:

I. Required Courses (Total 48 hours)

II. Concentration in Rehabilitative Counseling (9 required hours)

Return to: Cannon-Clary College of Education