The Department of Counselor Education Virginia Commonwealth University. Graduate Student Handbook

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1 The Department of Counselor Education Virginia Commonwealth University Graduate Student Handbook

2 Table of Contents I. Overview...4 Mission Statement Accreditation Program Objectives II. General Graduate Student Information.. 6 Advising Program Effective Bulletin Immunization Requirements III. Counselor Education Programs of Study.7 Orientation to the Counseling Program School Counseling Track School Counseling Endorsement Only College Student Development and Counseling Track Program of Study Agreements IV. Counselor Education Courses 13 Course Descriptions Schedule of Courses Offered Practicum and Internship V. Examination and Endorsement Master s Comprehensive Examination Endorsement Policy VI. Additional University Guidelines...23 Student Load Attendance and Enrollment Policies University Rules and Procedures Grades VII. Counselor Education Program Standards.. 24 Counselor Education Academic Program Standards Non-Academic Program Standards Student Retention Policy Dispositions Evaluation University Student Appeals Process VIII. Technology VCU Student Counselor Education Listserv IX. Important Deadlines X. Graduation...27 University Requirements XI. Licensure and Certification...27 XII. Professional Organizations..27 XIII. Counselor Education Student Organizations/Resources Counselor Education Student Networking Association (CESNA) Chi Sigma Iota Omega Lambda Iota Chapter International Honor Society XIV. Faculty Directory...30 XV. University Financial Information Revised 11/14/2012 2

3 Welcome to the Department of Counselor Education The faculty of the Department of Counselor Education is pleased that you chose Virginia Commonwealth University for your graduate studies. This handbook describes course offerings, policies, and program requirements. It is the student s responsibility to plan a program of study with the assistance of an advisor and to remain up to date on current policies. Additional sources of information include the VCU Graduate School, the School of Education website, and the Counselor Education website. Any questions not answered by these sources and the handbook may be directed to an advisor, other faculty members, departmental staff, or the department chair. We look forward to your participation in the Counselor Education program. Dr. Mary Hermann Department Chair Department of Counselor Education Box Virginia Commonwealth University School of Education Richmond, VA Telephone: Revised 11/14/2012 3

4 Mission Statement Department of Counselor Education The Department of Counselor Education at Virginia Commonwealth University is committed to excellence in the initial preparation and continuing development of professionals in the counseling field. The Department, located in an urban setting, provides graduate students with research-based professional studies and clinical experiences necessary for effective counseling, advocacy, and leadership in diverse geographic and socio-economic settings. Specifically, the Department prepares counselors with the specialized knowledge and skills required for placement in elementary, middle, and high schools, as well as postsecondary institutions, in the Commonwealth of Virginia and throughout the nation. Consistent with this approach are the program goals of graduating students who have knowledge of basic counseling theory and practice, possess competencies in essential counseling services, exhibit scholarly inquiry, have the skills necessary to evaluate relevant research, are committed to evaluating their counseling interventions, and participate in a variety of professional development activities. Accreditation Counselor Education, a department in the School of Education, is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). The School of Education is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and provides programs approved by the Virginia Department of Education. VCU is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. CACREP Accreditation Since the Fall of 2006, the Counselor Education curriculum reflected CACREP standards and students had an option of earning 48 hours with a 600 hour internship. The increase of required hours for graduation from 42 to 48 was effective for students entering Fall The increase of internship hours from 300 to 600 clock hours was effective for students entering Spring Many students voluntarily completed the 600 hour internship and 48 credit hours. Counselor Education students who graduated after 2007 and completed 48 credit hours are considered to have graduated from a CACREPaccredited program. Revised 11/14/2012 4

5 Program Objectives Objective One: Students will obtain theoretical knowledge grounded in research and reflective of current national and state standards. Evaluation Method: Throughout the counseling program, students must demonstrate proficiency in designing and utilizing programming based on national and state standards as well as current research. Students must also identify the theories and techniques with which they work in the Techniques, Group, Practicum, and Internship courses. Additionally, prior to graduation, students must pass a nationally standardized written comprehensive examination. Objective Two: Students will demonstrate competency in providing counseling services. Evaluation Method: There is an experiential component in which students demonstrate proficiency in counseling in the Techniques, Group, Practicum, and Internship courses. Objective Three: Students will demonstrate competency in evaluating research. Evaluation Method: Students are evaluated on their competency in reviewing and critiquing research in the Research Methods, Theories, and Career courses. Objective Four: Students will demonstrate advocacy and leadership skills. Evaluation Method: During both Practicum and Internship, students are evaluated on their leadership and advocacy skills by their on-site and university supervisors. Objective Five: Students will possess effective multicultural counseling skills and gain experience in diverse geographic and socio-economic settings. Evaluation Method: Multicultural competencies are infused throughout the program and students are assessed on their knowledge of multicultural issues in each course. Students complete their practicum and internship requirements at different sites which are geographically and socio-economically diverse. Objective Six: Students will be reflective practitioners. Evaluation Method: Students provide written and oral assessments of both the positive impact of their interventions and their opportunities for growth in the Techniques, Group, Practicum, and Internship courses. Objective Seven: Students will participate in a variety of professional development activities. Evaluation Method: Students are strongly encouraged to participate in numerous professional development opportunities. The VCU Counselor Education Student Revised 11/14/2012 5

6 Networking Association (CESNA) and Chi Sigma Iota - Omega Lambda Iota Chapter International Honor Society provide students with opportunities to engage in networking activities such as the Fall Ice Cream Social, the Alumni Dinner, and guest presentations. Students are also encouraged to join professional organizations such as the Richmond Area Counselor Association, the Virginia Counselors Association, the Virginia School Counselor Association, the American Counseling Association, the American School Counselor Association, the American College Personnel Association, the American College Counseling Association, the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators, and the Southern Association for College Student Affairs. Students are evaluated on their participation in professional development activities in Practicum and Internship. Students are also evaluated on their plans for continued professional development (including their ideas for increasing competence in knowledge, skills, and technology) in the Internship course. General Graduate Student Information The VCU Graduate School Bulletin provides academic regulations for all graduate students. In this document, excerpts from the Graduate School Bulletin are italicized. You can view the Bulletin in its entirety on the VCU Web site at It is the responsibility of all graduate students to be familiar with the Graduate Bulletin of record (the bulletin in effect at the time of official admission), as well as the academic regulations in individual school and department publications and on program Web sites; however, in all cases, the official policies and procedures of the University Graduate Council, as published on this Graduate Bulletin Web site and on the Graduate School Web site, take precedent over individual program policies and guidelines. Graduate students may contact the Graduate School at any time regarding questions relating to graduate study at VCU. Advising Program For information on the advising program, visit The Counselor Education faculty makes every effort to assist students in individualizing a graduate program to match their professional needs and interests. However, institutional, accreditation, and licensure requirements must be followed. Faculty members view each program as more than simply an aggregate of courses, and students should plan all program work with their faculty advisors. Revised 11/14/2012 6

7 Effective Bulletin For information on the effective bulletin, visit Immunization requirements For information on immunization requirements, visit Students in the School Counseling Track will need to submit proof of tuberculosis screening with Practicum and Internship applications. Counselor Education Programs of Study Orientation to the Counseling Program A mandatory orientation session for all new counselor education students is provided in the Fall of each year. Orientation to the program is also provided in the Introduction to Counseling course, a requirement for all students. Programs of Study The M.Ed. in Counselor Education is a 48-hour program that requires at least two years to complete. The Counselor Education Department offers two tracks, the School Counseling Track and The College Student Development and Counseling Track. School Counseling Track The School Counseling Track prepares students for positions as professional school counselors. Students who successfully complete the program are eligible for licensure or provisional licensure as school counselors in K-12 settings. In addition to meeting the academic requirements delineated below, students in the School Counseling Track must meet the Technology Standards approved by the Virginia Board of Education and supply proof of Child Abuse and Neglect Recognition Training. Foundation of Education Courses (9 credit hours) Human Development and Learning EDUS 605 Child and Adolescent Growth and Development Cultural, Historical, and Philosophical (choose one of the following) EDUS 601 Philosophy of Education EDUS 608 History of Western Education EDUS 610 Social Foundations of Education Revised 11/14/2012 7

8 EDUS 612 Education and the World s Future EDUS 614 Contemporary Educational Thought EDUS 673 Seminar on Educational Issues, Ethics, and Policy Research EDUS 660 Research Methods in Education Program Core (36 credit hours) CLED 600 Introduction to Counseling CLED 601 Theories of Counseling CLED 602 Techniques of Counseling CLED 603 Group Procedures in Counseling CLED 604 Practicum: School Counseling CLED 605 Career Information and Exploration CLED 606 Assessment Techniques for Counselors CLED 607 Multicultural Counseling in Education CLED 610 Counseling in Elementary and Middle Schools CLED 621 Secondary School Counseling Seminar CLED 672 Internship: : K-12 School Counseling (six credits) 600 hours in an appropriate setting. Students wanting placement in elementary, middle, or high schools may not fulfill this requirement during the summer. Approved Electives (3 credit hours) Total (48 credit hours) Program Planning Sequence of Courses School Counseling Track Counselor Education Courses: CLED 600 (required as prerequisite or corequisite for all other CLED courses) CLED 601 (required as prerequisite or corequisite for all other CLED courses; can be taken with CLED 600) CLED 603 (can be taken with CLED 600 and CLED 601; must be taken prior to CLED 604 Practicum) CLED 602 (must be taken before CLED 604 Practicum) CLED 610 (must be taken before CLED 604 Practicum) CLED 605 (recommended before CLED 604 Practicum; must be taken before CLED 672 Internship) Revised 11/14/2012 8

9 CLED 606 (recommended before CLED 604 Practicum; must be taken before CLED 672 Internship) CLED 621 (recommended before CLED 604 Practicum; must be taken before CLED 672 Internship) CLED 604 (must be taken before CLED 672 Internship) Foundation Courses: EDUS 605 (recommended before CLED 672 Internship) EDUS 660 (recommended before CLED 672 Internship) EDUS 601 or EDUS 608 or EDUS 610 or EDUS 612 or EDUS 614 or EDUS 673 (recommended before CLED 672 Internship) College Student Development and Counseling Track The College Student Development and Counseling Track prepares students for counseling and student affairs positions in postsecondary institutions. Foundation Courses (12 credit hours) Human Development and Learning EDUS 604 Adult Development Cultural, Historical, and Philosophical EDUS/CLED 631 American Colleges and Universities EDUS/CLED 633 American Leadership in Higher Education Research EDUS 660 Research Methods in Education Program Core (33 credit hours) CLED 600 Introduction to Counseling CLED 601 Theories of Counseling CLED 602 Techniques of Counseling CLED 603 Group Procedures in Counseling CLED 608 Practicum: College Student Development and Counseling CLED 605 Career Information and Exploration CLED 606 Assessment Techniques for Counselors Revised 11/14/2012 9

10 CLED 607 Multicultural Counseling in Education CLED 620 Student Development Services in Higher Education CLED 672 Internship: College Student Development and Counseling (six credits) 600 hours in an appropriate setting. Approved Electives (3 credit hours) Total (48 credit hours) Program Planning Sequence of Courses College Student Development and Counseling Track Counselor Education Courses: CLED 600 (required as prerequisite or corequisite for all other CLED courses) CLED 601 (required as prerequisite or corequisite for all other CLED courses; can be taken with CLED 600) CLED 603 (can be taken with CLED 600 and CLED 601; must be taken prior to CLED 608 Practicum) CLED 602 (must be taken before CLED 608 Practicum) CLED 620 (must be taken before CLED 608 Practicum) EDUS/CLED 631 (recommended before EDUS/CLED 633) CLED 605 (recommended before CLED 608 Practicum; must be taken before CLED 672 Internship) CLED 606 (recommended before CLED 608 Practicum; must be taken before CLED 672 Internship) CLED 608 (must be taken before CLED 672 Internship) Foundation Courses: EDUS 604 (recommended before CLED 672 Internship) EDUS 660 (recommended before CLED 672 Internship) EDUS/CLED 631 (recommended before EDUS/CLED 633 and CLED 672 Internship) EDUS/CLED 633 (recommended before CLED 672 Internship) Revised 11/14/

11 DEPARTMENT OF COUNSELOR EDUCATION GRADUATE PROGRAM OF STUDY AGREEMENT School Counseling Track Name: Student ID#: Address: Telephone: Work ( ) Address: Admitted for: (Semester) (Year) Home ( ) Cell ( ) Passed Comprehensive Exam: Date PROGRAM PLAN (48 CREDIT HOURS) SEMESTER CREDITS GRADE Program Core (33 credits) CLED 600 Introduction to Counseling * 3 CLED 601 Theories of Counseling * 3 CLED 602 Techniques for Counseling 3 CLED 603 Group Procedures in Counseling 3 CLED 604 Practicum: School Counseling 3 CLED 605 Career Information and Exploration 3 CLED 606 Assessment Techniques for Counselors 3 CLED 607 Multicultural Counseling 3 CLED 610 Counseling in Elementary and Middle School 3 CLED 621 Secondary School Counseling Seminar 3 CLED 672 Internship: K-12 School Counseling (600 hours) 6 ELECTIVE - to be approved by advisor 3 Foundations of Education Courses (9 credits) EDUS 601, 608, 610, 612, 614, or EDUS 605 Child and Adolescent Development 3 EDUS 660 Research Methods in Education 3 TOTAL 48 *Required as prerequisites or co-requisite to all other CLED courses. Note: All CLED courses must be completed prior to enrolling in CLED 672: Internship. Any exception to this policy must be approved in writing on this planning sheet. Procedures: 1. File this program plan with your advisor. 2. See Student Handbook on Counselor Education Website: 3. Apply for Candidacy after completing Techniques of Counseling course. 4. Deadlines for practicum application: Fall, February 1; Spring, September Deadlines for internship applications: Fall, February 1; Spring, September Register to take comprehensive examination 30 days prior to the exam: 1 st Sat. in October and March; 2 nd Sat. in July. 7. Apply for graduation by deadline in current bulletin. Student s Signature: Advisor s Signature: Department Chair s Signature: Date: Date: Date: Revised 11/14/

12 DEPARTMENT OF COUNSELOR EDUCATION GRADUATE PROGRAM OF STUDY AGREEMENT College Student Development and Counseling Name: Student ID#: Address: Telephone: Work ( ) Address: Admitted for: (Semester) (Year) Home ( ) Cell ( ) Passed Comprehensive Exam: Date PROGRAM PLAN (48 CREDIT HOURS) SEMESTER CREDITS GRADE Program Core (36 credits) CLED 600 Introduction to Counseling * 3 CLED 601 Theories of Counseling * 3 CLED 602 Techniques for Counseling 3 CLED 603 Group Procedures in Counseling 3 CLED 605 Career Information and Exploration 3 CLED 606 Assessment Techniques for Counselors 3 CLED 607 Multicultural Counseling 3 CLED 608 Practicum: College Student Development/Counseling 3 CLED 620 Student Development Services in Higher Education 3 CLED 672 Internship: College Student Development/Counseling (600 hours) 6 ELECTIVE - to be approved by advisor 3 Foundations of Education Courses (12 credits) EDUS 660 Research Methods in Education 3 EDUS 604 Adult Development 3 EDUS/CLED 631 American Colleges and Universities 3 EDUS/CLED 633 Academic Leadership in Higher Education 3 TOTAL 48 *Required as prerequisites or co-requisite to all other CLED courses. Note: All CLED courses must be completed prior to enrolling in CLED 672: Internship. Any exception to this policy must be approved in writing on this planning sheet. Procedures: 1. File this program plan with your advisor. 2. See Student Handbook on Counselor Education Website: 3. Apply for Candidacy after completing Techniques of Counseling course. 4. Deadlines for practicum application: Fall, February 1; Spring, September Deadlines for internship applications: Fall, February 1; Spring, September Register to take comprehensive examination 30 days prior to the exam: 1 st Sat. in October and March; 2 nd Sat. in July. 7. Apply for graduation by deadline in current bulletin. Student s Signature: Advisor s Signature: Department Chair s Signature: Date: Date: Date: Revised 11/14/

13 Counselor Education Courses Course Descriptions Foundation Courses EDUS 601 Philosophy of Education Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. A study of basic philosophies that have contributed to the present-day educational system. Attention will be given to contemporary philosophies and their impact on educational aims and methods. EDUS 604 Adult Development Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. An introductory study of adult development from the life cycle perspective with implications for educators working with adults. Emphasis will be placed on major physiological, psychological, sociological, and anthropological factors that make adults distinct from earlier developmental levels. EDUS 605 Child and Adolescent Development Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Examines theory and practical applications of the research about the cognitive, social and physical development of children and adolescents. Emphasizes issues that affect students in school environments. EDUS 608 History of Western Education Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. This course will explore the development of educational thought and practice from ancient times to the present, with special attention being given to the major issues confronting American education since its beginning. EDUS 610 Social Foundations of Education Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. A study of significant social issues involved in the development and operation of schools and other educational institutions and processes. EDUS 612 Education and the World's Future Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. An examination of education as it relates to future changes in other areas: population, energy, transportation, family, etc. The course will consist of readings dealing with educational change as well as a series of modules where students will engage in future exercises, games and projects. EDUS 614 Contemporary Educational Thought Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. This course will be devoted to a critical examination of educational ideas and programs emanating from contemporary writings on education. Students will be encouraged to develop critical skills of analysis in examining such writings utilizing historical and philosophical perspectives. Revised 11/14/

14 EDUS/CLED 631 American Colleges and Universities 3 credits. Examines historical and contemporary foundations of American higher education through the study of leading developments and of contemporary issues relating to the curriculum, aims and objectives and current directions of American colleges, universities and other institutional settings of higher education. EDUS/CLED 633 Academic Leadership in Higher Education 3 credits. Analyzes how leadership in higher education is similar to and different from leadership in other organizational settings; explores challenges for leadership (such as access, cost and social responsiveness) and examines emerging leadership roles at various levels of the academic organization. *Note: EDUS/CLED 631 should be taken before EDUS/CLED 633. EDUS 660 Research Methods in Education Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Designed to provide an introductory understanding of educational research and evaluation studies. Emphasizes fundamental concepts, procedures and processes appropriate for use in basic, applied and developmental research. Includes developing skills in critical analysis of research studies. Analyzes the assumptions, uses and limitations of different research designs. Explores methodological and ethical issues of educational research. Students either conduct or design a study in their area of educational specialization. EDUS 673 Seminar on Educational Issues, Ethics and Policy Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. An analysis of the ethical dimensions of educational policies and practices. Examines aspects of selected educational policies and practices, drawn in part from practical issues encountered in clinical settings. Investigates how educational policies and practices reflect ethical values and how those values are grounded. Counseling Courses CLED 600 Introduction to Counseling Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. An introductory course for all students in counselor education that provides an overview of the counseling profession and the foundation for other courses in the program. CLED 601 Theories of Counseling Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Selected theories upon which counseling is based, with particular attention placed on the research underlying the theories. Primary focus on providing students with a theoretical foundation upon which to base their personal counseling approaches. CLED 602 Techniques of Counseling SRV LRN Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Prerequisites: CLED 600 and 601 or permission of instructor. Theory and practice of counseling with emphasis on skill development. Revised 11/14/

15 *Designated as a Service Learning Course in which students participate in an organized service activity that meets community-identified needs. Students reflect on the service activity to increase understanding and application of course content and to enhance a sense of civic responsibility. CLED 603 Group Procedures in Counseling Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Pre- or co-requisites: CLED 600 and 601. Analyzes the theories and practice of group work, the relationship of group activities to counseling, and specific skills in group techniques. CLED 604 Practicum: School Counseling Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Prerequisites: CLED 602, 603, and 610. Seminar and supervised field experience in individual and group counseling and classroom group guidance. CLED 605 Career Information and Exploration Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Prerequisites: CLED 600 and 601. Designed to provide the potential counselor with an understanding of theoretical approaches to career development in grades K-adult. Emphasis will be given to the relationship between counselor and student(s) in the career development process. A review of occupational, educational and personal/social information resources will be made. CLED 606 Assessment Techniques for Counselors Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Pre- or co-requisites: CLED 600 and 601. Principles and techniques involved in selecting, scoring and interpreting standardized and non-standardized assessment instruments used by counselors. CLED 607 Multicultural Counseling in Educational Settings Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. A study of personal, social, political, affective and behavioral considerations of diversity. Multicultural competencies including awareness, knowledge and skills in counseling are emphasized. Efforts will be made to provide school counselors and postsecondary student affairs professionals with practical skills, strategies and techniques for use when working with students and families from a variety of cultural backgrounds. CLED 608 Practicum: College Student Development and Counseling Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Prerequisites: CLED 602, 603, and 620. Seminar and supervised field experience in student services in postsecondary educational settings. CLED 610 Counseling in Elementary and Middle Schools Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Prerequisites: CLED 600 and 601. An intensive study of school counseling programs for children and young adolescents. Emphasizes the role of elementary and middle school counselors in developmental guidance. Methods for classroom guidance will be discussed. Revised 11/14/

16 CLED 620 Student Development Services in Higher Education Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Pre- or corequisites: CLED 600 and 601. An overview of the organization and management of student services in postsecondary institutions. Areas such as admissions, career services, academic advising, residential life, financial aid, student development services, student union programming and management, and student activities are reviewed. CLED 621 Secondary School Counseling Seminar Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Prerequisites: CLED 600 and 601. An advanced course designed to provide a means for intensive study of secondary school counseling. The approach will be to integrate professional knowledge and skills from various disciplines as they relate to the work of the secondary school counselor. CLED 672 Internship Semester course. 3 or 6 credit hours. May be repeated for a total of six credit hours. Prerequisite: Completion of all other CLED courses required for program. Seminar and supervised field instruction experience for counselors in K-12 settings or professionals in postsecondary settings. Designed to extend professional competencies under supervision of an approved licensed professional school counselor (K-12 settings) or approved student services professional (postsecondary settings). A total of 600 clock hours is required. Approved Elective Courses EDUS 514 Parent-child Relations Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. A methods course in parent-child communications and problem solving. Designed to enable parents and professionals to understand and relate more effectively with children. EDUS 607/PSYC 607 Advanced Educational Psychology Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Application of the principles of psychology to the teaching-learning process. Discussion will focus on the comprehensive development of individual learning experiences and educational programs from the point of view of the educator and the administrator. EDUS 641 Independent Study Semester course; 1-6 credits. May be repeated for a maximum of 9 credits. Determination of the amount of credit and permission of the instructor and department chair must be procured prior to registration. Cannot be used in place of existing courses. An individual study of a specialized issue or problem in education. EDUS 651 Topics in Education Semester course; 1-3 credits. May be repeated for 9 credits. Check with department for specific prerequisites. A course for the examination of specialized issues, topics, readings or problems in education. Revised 11/14/

17 CLED 520 Gender Issues in Counseling Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Overview of gender issues and their relationship to the counseling process. Class focuses on understanding the unique issues men and women bring to counseling and providing appropriate counseling interventions. Focus is on appropriate gender developmental tasks and how diversity in age, religion, race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status and sexual orientation relates to relationships and to counseling men and women. *Additional courses can be used as electives if approved by advisor. Schedule of Courses Offered CLED Courses by Semester SUMMER PreSession CLED 603 CLED 605 CLED 606 CLED 607 Regular Session CLED 520 FALL CLED 600 CLED 601 CLED 602 CLED 603 CLED 604 CLED 605 CLED 607 CLED 608 CLED 610 CLED 620 CLED 621 EDUS/CLED 633 CLED 672 SPRING CLED 520 CLED 600 CLED 601 CLED 602 CLED 603 CLED 604 CLED 606 Revised 11/14/

18 CLED 608 CLED 610 CLED 621 EDUS/CLED 631 CLED 672 Course offerings depend upon staff availability and student enrollment. The Department cannot guarantee that every course will be offered as planned. Please visit for current course offerings. Practicum and Internship All master s students must complete a practicum and internship. The practicum is a 100 hour clinical experience including at least 40 hours of direct service to clients. The internship is a 600 hour clinical experience including at least 240 hours of direct service to clients. Each course has additional requirements as well. The Practicum and Internship courses are time-intensive. Thus, the faculty recommends that students in Practicum and Internship do not take more than 9 hours in those semesters. During Practicum and Internship, students are expected to work with a diverse clientele. Diversity includes culture, disability, ethnicity, race, religion/spirituality, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital status/partnership, language preference, or socioeconomic status. Students in the school counseling track must gain experience at the elementary level and the secondary (7-12 grade) level. Thus, Practicum and Internship must be at two different levels (elementary and 7-12 grade). Additionally, sites are limited to schools in Richmond, Henrico, Hanover, and Chesterfield. The Practicum must be completed in a coeducational environment in which at least 30% of the student population meets one of the following criteria: Limited English proficiency; ethnic/racial minorities; mental, emotional, or physical disabilities; or economically disadvantaged and participating in Title I, Head Start, or Free/reduced Lunch Program. Students in the college student development and counseling track are expected to gain a diverse experience by doing practicum and internship at a minimum of two different sites. Students can complete the 600 hour Internship in one semester or more than one semester. If a student is enrolled in the 6 credit (600 hour) internship, all of the hours must be completed in one semester. If 600 hours are not completed, students will be required to take at least 3 credits of internship until all of the hours are completed. Revised 11/14/

19 No direct hours for Practicum or Internship may be accrued before the VCU semester begins. If the student has liability insurance and with instructor permission, indirect hours may be accrued before the VCU semester begins. Application Deadlines: Practicum (CLED 604 or 608) Internship (CLED 672) Fall semester: February 1 Fall semester: February 1 Spring semester: September 1 Spring semester: September 1 *All completed practicum and internship applications must be submitted to the Department s Clinical Coordinator. Practicum and Internship applications for School Counseling Track students require a Tuberculosis skin test verification from a health care provider. See the application for more details. Applications can be found on the Counselor Education Web site. **The School of Education Student Services Department will place all school counseling Practicum and Internship students based on the information on their applications. Students in the College Student Development and Counseling track are expected to find sites at which they would like to interview and get approval from the Clinical Coordinator prior to contacting the sites. Policy on Paid Clinical Experiences The Counselor Education faculty strongly recommends that students complete all degree requirements prior to accepting paid employment as a counselor. It is only permissible to count hours accrued in a paid position as practicum or internship hours if students meet all VCU School of Education, Counselor Education, Virginia Department of Education (if applicable), CACREP, and course requirements. For example, students in the school counseling track must complete 100 hours of their clinical experience at a different level (i.e., elementary and secondary [grades 7-12]). Each student s on-site supervisor must have master s degree in counseling or a related field and a minimum of two years of relevant professional experience. Internship on-site supervisors must have three years of relevant professional experiences. And, students must maintain professional liability insurance. Examination and Endorsement Master s Comprehensive Examination A final, comprehensive examination is required of all degree candidates. In order to be eligible to take the comprehensive exam, students must have completed EDUS 604 or EDUS 605, EDUS 660, and all counseling core courses excluding Practicum and Internship. Students are exempt from these requirements if they are graduating in the semester in which the exam is given. Students must be enrolled during the semester in which they take the exam. Revised 11/14/

20 The comprehensive exam is a nationally standardized exam for counselors-in-training. It consists of 160 questions. There are 20 items in each of the following areas: Human Growth and Development - studies that provide an understanding of the nature and needs of individuals at all developmental levels. Social and Cultural Foundations - studies that provide an understanding of issues and trends in a multicultural and diverse society. Helping Relationships - studies that provide an understanding of counseling and consultation processes (Theories and Techniques). Group Work - studies that provide an understanding of group development, dynamics, counseling theories, group counseling methods and skills, and other group work approaches. Career and Lifestyle Development - studies that provide an understanding of career development and related life factors. Appraisal - studies that provide an understanding of individual and group approaches to assessment and evaluation. Research and Program Evaluation - studies that provide an understanding of types of research methods, basic statistics, and ethical and legal considerations in research. Professional Orientation and Ethics - studies that provide an understanding of all aspects of professional functioning including history, roles, organizational structures, ethics, standards, and credentialing (based on the ACA Code of Ethics). The comprehensive exam is given three times per year: on the first Saturday in October, on the first Saturday in March, and on the second Saturday in July. (Dates are subject to change if there is a conflict with University holidays.) Students must apply to take the exam 30 days prior to the exam date. Applications for the exam are available in the Counselor Education/Teaching and Learning Office, Oliver Hall Room 3096A. The cost of the exam is $45, due on the day of the exam. STUDY NOTES: Introduction to Counseling Child and Adolescent/Adult Development Theories of Counseling Techniques for Counseling Group Procedures in Counseling Career Information and Exploration Assessment Techniques in Counseling Research Methods in Education Multicultural Counseling Legal and Ethical Issues in Counseling **Practice Questions: The Encyclopedia of Counseling by Rosenthal National Counselor Exam (NCE) The National Counselor Exam is an optional examination for students and is offered in the Fall and Spring at VCU. In order to be eligible to take the NCE, students must have completed EDUS 604 or EDUS 605, EDUS 660, and all counseling core courses Revised 11/14/

21 excluding Practicum and Internship. Students are exempt from these requirements if they are graduating in the semester in which the exam is given. The NCE is comprised of 200 multiple choice questions. The following is an outline showing the eight CACREP domains on which the examination questions are based: Fundamentals Human Growth and Development - studies that provide an understanding of the nature and needs of individuals at all developmental levels. Social and Cultural Foundations - studies that provide an understanding of issues and trends in a multicultural and diverse society. Helping Relationships - studies that provide an understanding of counseling and consultation processes. Group Work - studies that provide an understanding of group development, dynamics, counseling theories, group counseling methods and skills, and other group work approaches. Career and Lifestyle Development - studies that provide an understanding of career development and related life factors. Appraisal - studies that provide an understanding of individual and group approaches to assessment and evaluation. Research and Program Evaluation - studies that provide an understanding of types of research methods, basic statistics, and ethical and legal considerations in research. Professional Orientation and Ethics - studies that provide an understanding of all aspects of professional functioning including history, roles, organizational structures, ethics, standards, and credentialing. In addition, the NCE is based on the following five work behavior domains: Fundamentals of Counseling For example: Assess client s progress toward counseling goals Assess client s psychological functioning Conduct diagnostic interview Assess need for client referral Diagnose based on DSM-IV-TR criteria Assessment and Career Counseling For example: Use test results for client decision making Select and administer assessment instruments for counseling Provide career counseling for persons with disabilities Administer and interpret achievement tests Assess client s educational preparation Group Counseling For example: Facilitate group process Assist group members in providing feedback to each other Conduct post-group follow-up procedures Identify behaviors that disrupt group process Assess progress toward group goals Revised 11/14/

22 Programmatic and Clinical Interventions For example: Participate as member of multi-disciplinary team Provide crisis counseling to victims of disaster Assess programmatic needs Conduct community outreach Administer and manage counseling program Professional Practice Issues For example: Evaluate the performance of other counselors Provide diversity training Provide clinical supervision for professionals Engage in data analysis Conduct community needs assessment The cost of the exam is $295, due with the application (to be turned in a few months before the exam). Students who pass the exam and complete the application process will become National Certified Counselors when they receive their degree. This is a nationally recognized credential. The NCE Handbook includes NCE information and sample examination questions ( For additional information on the NCE, visit Department of Counselor Education Endorsement Policy In order to be awarded a master s degree in Counselor Education and recommended for credentialing and employment, a student must complete all required coursework, fulfill all department and university requirements, pass the comprehensive examination, and obtain favorable evaluations on the Clinical Evaluation Continuum for Counselor Education from program faculty and clinical supervisors. Department of Counselor Education Policy on Electronic Devices in Counseling Classes Technology assists counselors in numerous ways. Developing the technological competence necessary to be effective in the profession will be addressed throughout the program. However, classroom activities in counselor education classes involve interaction and communication. Computers and other technology can present a barrier to that communication. Accordingly, the use of cell phones (including texting) in Revised 11/14/

23 classes is prohibited. Use of personal computers in classes may be allowed at the professor s discretion. Student load Additional University Guidelines For information on student load, visit Attendance and enrollment Policies For information on attendance and enrollment policies, visit Change in registration For information on change in registration, visit Leave of absence and withdrawal policies For information leave of absence and withdrawal policies, visit Note: Students requiring a leave of absence should see their advisor. Change of graduate degree program For information on change of graduate degree program, visit University rules and procedures For information on university rules and procedures, visit Time limit for completion of requirements and eligibility of courses For information on time limit for completion and eligibility of courses, visit Revised 11/14/

24 Grades For information on grades, visit At the end of each semester, graduate faculty advisers and program directors will review the academic progress of all graduate students in their programs. The academic standing of any graduate students who receive multiple grades of C or grades of D or F will be reviewed for possible termination from their programs. Counselor Education Program Standards Department of Counselor Education Academic Program Standards In addition to Graduate School requirements, students in the Counselor Education Program must earn a grade of A or B in courses involving demonstration of counseling skills (i.e., Techniques, Practicum, and Internship). Students are expected to abide by the VCU Honor Code, the ACA Code of Ethics, and demonstrate professional dispositions in a manner appropriate for the counseling field. Students must demonstrate skills necessary to work effectively with a diverse clientele. Department of Counselor Education Student Retention Policy Faculty members in the VCU Counselor Education Program owe a responsibility to consumers of mental health services and are bound by the American Counseling Association Code of Ethics. Faculty members will not endorse students who are unable to provide competent counseling services. Faculty members monitor students academic progress as well as students personal characteristics that may impact their performance as a counselor. Faculty members provide students with information on the academic and non-academic program standards in the first course in counseling curriculum, Introduction to Counseling. In this course, students become familiar with the Clinical Evaluation Continuum for Counselor Education. The purpose of the Continuum is to allow students to reflect on their practice and to provide a system for students, faculty, on-site supervisors, and university supervisors to assess growth over time. Included in the Continuum are dispositions by which students personal characteristics related to effective counseling are considered. Counseling skill level and competence in professional roles are evaluated throughout the program as well. At the end of the Techniques course, students are evaluated on dispositions and counseling skill level. Students are provided with feedback from this evaluation. In a department faculty meeting after these evaluations, the faculty members discuss the student evaluations and other relevant observations of students dispositions and course performance as part of the candidacy process. Students are not allowed to proceed to candidacy without meeting program standards in coursework and dispositions. On-site supervisors and university supervisors evaluate students on dispositions, Revised 11/14/

25 counseling skill level, and competence in professional roles during Practicum and Internships courses. Dispositions 1) Demonstrates optimism and a positive attitude 2) Seeks out, responds appropriately, and integrates feedback 3) Adheres to professional codes of ethics 4) Demonstrates honesty and integrity 5) Accepts responsibility 6) Demonstrates initiative 7) Practices wellness 8) Exhibits flexibility 9) Advocates for self and others 10) Exhibits professionalism 11) Demonstrates empathy, a nonjudgmental attitude and a sincere interest in the welfare of others 12) Exhibits authenticity, warmth, and appropriate interpersonal skills 13) Exhibits humor, when appropriate 14) Maintains appropriate boundaries 15) Manages conflict effectively 16) Exhibits maturity 17) Open to self-examination 18) Capable of handling stress Evaluating Student Dispositions and Performance Faculty may work on an informal basis with students experiencing academic and/or nonacademic difficulties. If this approach is appropriate under the circumstances, the faculty member will discuss the issue, review program expectations, and provide guidance for meeting those expectations. If a student is not making satisfactory progress, department faculty will hold a dispositional concern meeting. Faculty will implement a remediation plan, identifying the nature and scope of student s deficiencies, corresponding remedial actions, and consequences if remediation is not successful. A time limit for expected changes will be provided, when appropriate. On rare occasions, faculty members have indicators of serious student impairment and remedial measures have been unsuccessful. In such instances, students are transitioned out of the program and, when appropriate, provided with alternative courses of study. Students have the opportunity to appeal faculty dismissal decisions using the procedures outlined in the VCU Graduate School Bulletin. Student Appeals Process For information on the student appeals process, visit Revised 11/14/

26 Technology VCU Student Students are responsible for checking their VCU account on a regular basis. For information on VCU student , visit Counselor Education Listserv Faculty in the Counselor Education Department will send information to students using the Counselor Education Listserv. This information will be sent to students VCU accounts. Important Deadlines Program of Study Meet with your advisor to file Program of Study before you begin your program. Candidacy Apply for Candidacy after completing CLED 602, Techniques of Counseling. Practicum Applications for Fall Practicum are due February 1. Applications for Spring Practicum are due September 1. Internship Applications for Fall Internship are due February 1. Applications for Spring Internship are due September 1. Comprehensive Exam Register to take the comprehensive exam at least six weeks prior to the exam. The comprehensive exam is given three times per year, on the first Saturday in October, the first Saturday in March, and the second Saturday in July. (Dates are subject to change if there is a conflict with University holidays.) Applications for the exam are available in the Counselor Education/ Teaching and Learning Office, Oliver Hall Room 3096A. Before applying for the exam, see eligibility requirements in the Handbook. Apply for Graduation in the semester in which you will graduate. The deadline for submitting the application can be found in the current bulletin. Students must be enrolled during the semester in which they graduate. Revised 11/14/

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