“Mental Health Counselors combine traditional psychotherapy with a problem solving approach that creates a dynamic and efficient path for change and problem resolution.” (American Mental Health Counselors Association)
PROGRAM DESCRIPTION (M.A.)
The Master of Art (MA) CACREP accredited * program in Clinical Mental Health Counseling (CMHC) is a 60-credit course of study in which students are required to take a fixed sequence of courses including a one- year, 9-credit supervised internship and pass a comprehensive examination (MHC 800) in order to be awarded the MA degree.
The program is designed to fulfill the goals of: providing students with a thorough grounding in advanced principles of mental health counseling at a graduate level, and instilling students with an understanding of the tools of counseling that is suitable for building careers in private and public mental health agencies. Students will also gain advanced research-based knowledge in the area of group and individual counseling, counseling techniques, and testing and diagnosis. In addition, the program will fulfill an understanding of the professional and ethical issues relevant to mental health counseling and consultation, as well as detailed knowledge of multicultural and career issues in counseling.
*Buffalo and Rochester on-ground campuses are CACREP accredited.
PROGRAM DELIVERY FORMAT
Medaille’s CMHC on-ground delivery is offered as a fixed sequence of 17 courses (60 credits) over 6 semesters, with 9 credits taken each Fall and Spring and 12 credits taken each Summer (Fall starts) and 9 credits taken each Spring and Summer and 12 credits taken each Fall (Spring starts). Three of these courses (9 credits) are taken concurrently online. Online courses are comprised of professor-guided independent study, often combined with assigned group projects. Fourteen of these courses (48 credits) are taken on-ground, unless approval is granted to take online, due to extenuating circumstances. On-campus courses run 8 weeks and include 38 in-class hours (split between 2 weekends) and appropriate amounts of professor-guided study.
Medaille’s CMHC online delivery is offered as a fixed sequence of 14, 7-week courses (51 credits) taken one at a time, plus 3 semesters of practicum and internship (9 credits). Each 7-week course is comprised of professor-guided independent study, combined with assigned group and individual projects.
Students will proceed through the program as a cohort.
Please contact Adult & Graduate Admissions for specific information on admissions requirements.
Students may be admitted provisionally to the CMHC program pending receipt of documentation such as official transcripts or letters of recommendation. Students admitted as provisional students may take no more than 12 semester hours of credit (four courses) prior to formal admission.
Students who fail to satisfactorily meet the criteria for full admission into the CMHC program may be admitted with probationary status. Students admitted with this status need to meet with their advisor prior to the start of classes to discuss the terms of the probation, and to sign probationary contracts. Students admitted on probationary status, who are unable to fulfill the terms of the probationary contracts may be dismissed from the program.
REGISTERING FOR COURSES
Students in the CMHC Program are “block registered” for each class by the Registrar’s Office. If the student has a hold on his or her account (for financial, business or health office reasons), the Registrar will not be able to register the student for the term. It is the student’s responsibility to work with the appropriate office to remove the hold, and then contact the Registrar’s Office at 716.880.2365 to ensure they are registered for classes.
TRANSFER OF COURSEWORK TAKEN AT OTHER INSTITUTIONS OR AS AN ADVANCED SPECIAL STUDENT
Transfer courses must carry the same/or a similar title and have covered the same/similar objectives and goals as the course the student wishes to waive at Medaille College. Students must be aware that since this is a New York State licensure-qualifying program, very strict criteria is followed when transferring in courses. Graduate level coursework earned from regionally accredited institutions prior to or after matriculation to Medaille’s School of Adult and Graduate Education, may be applied towards a master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. All transfer credits must meet the following criteria:
- Courses must have been offered at the graduate level.
- Courses may not have been used to meet degree requirements for previously earned graduate degrees.
- Courses must have been completed within the last five years of matriculation in the Department.
- Courses must receive approval from the Registrar, the Division Head of Applied & Social Sciences, and the Vice President of Academic Affairs.
- A grade of “B” or above must have been earned in the requested transfer courses.
- The student may be subject to final review of all coursework transferred into the Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling.
- No credit is granted for correspondence courses or for “credit-by-examination” courses.
- A copy of the transfer course syllabus and textbook table of contents may be required for both New York State and the Program.
Students are required to complete the courses MHC 669 Prepracticum and MHC 670 Helping Relationships to prepare and reinforce the skills and training for clinical work out in the field. Anyone who does not pass MHC 669 will not be permitted to take MHC 670.
MHC 670 Helping Relationships is taken with the first clinical course MHC 677 Practicum, which is held over the course of one semester and includes 100 hours of clinical practice on site in an approved community setting; 40 of those hours must be direct contact hours with clients. You must pass MHC 677 and finish the hours to receive a grade in BOTH MHC 670 and MHC 677 and to move on to the next phase.
In the next phase of clinical hours, you are required to complete over the course of 2 full semesters a minimum of 600 total hours between MHC 678 Internship 1 and MHC 679 Internship 2 (240 of which must be direct contact hours, including both individual and group counseling). Your campus supervisor will evaluate your hours completed by the end of the year. If you need more time, you will register for a third section of Internship to finish. On average, to finish within the year, you will need to carve out approximately 14 hours per week toward your practicum and internship.
Practicum and Internship placements will be chosen in a collaborative effort between students and the Clinical Coordinator, Advisor, and/ or their campus supervisor. Each placement is considered on an individual basis and must first meet the approval of the Director of Clinical Training and/ or Clinical Coordinator.
Students are expected to complete their Practicum (100) hours and are strongly encouraged to start their Internship 1 and 2 immediately after finishing the Practicum. Students are expected to complete at least half (300) of their 600 internship hours in MHC 678 Internship 1, and the remaining (300 hours) in MHC 679 Internship 2. Your campus supervisor will evaluate your hours completed by the end of the year and if you need more time you will register for a third section of Internship to finish.
If a student does not meet the required hours in any term of MHC 677, MHC 678, or MHC 679 she/he will receive an Incomplete (I) grade for that term. If the student does not complete the full requirements of Practicum and Internship by the end of the third term, she/he must register for again for MHC 679 in order to complete the requirements. Students who do not complete their Practicum and Internship requirements by the end of the fourth term may be terminated from the Program and will not be recommended for graduation. Guidelines for the Clinical Placement can be found in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Clinical Placement Manual.