Clinical Mental Health Counseling


M.A. in Counseling
Option: Clinical Mental Health Counseling


  • Main Campus (Union, NJ)
  • Kean Ocean Campus (Toms River, NJ)** 
    *Students may have to take courses at our Kean Union campus to complete all degree requirements.


Fall Entry:       March 1 (Main/Union Campus)
                      May 1 (Ocean Campus)

Spring Entry:  November 1 (Main/Union Campus)
                      December 1 (Ocean Campus)


The Master of Arts in Counseling, Clinical Mental Health Counseling option was accredited by CACREP in January 2012 (formerly accredited as Community Counseling) and provides education and training in professional counseling for work in a variety of settings including agencies, community organizations, mental health centers, hospitals, private practice, etc.  Kean's program is CACREP accredited and the outcome standards and assessments reflect CACREP's processes, which are intended to accredit counselor preparation program.  Also, the profession is moving toward national portability and common licensing standards, hence the emphasis on accredited programs.

The program meets the 2015 requirement for students who also pass the National Clinical Mental Health Counselor (NCMHC) Exam to qualify for employment by the Veteran's Administration, Department of Defense and receive TRICARE reimbursement.

The program provides comprehensive training involving the knowledge and skills required to work effectively as a professional counselor. Based on the CACREP standards, graduates from this program will have completed the requirements for the New Jersey Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC). Students may take the National Counselor Exam (NCE) prior to graduation and will be eligible to apply for the Licensed Associate Counselor (LAC), opening up opportunities to work in for-profit and private practice settings under supervision while accruing hours toward the LPC.

The intent of the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Master's degree is to provide a terminal degree that allows graduates to apply for the LAC in New Jersey (and elsewhere), while accumulating the remaining part of 4,500 hours toward the LPC while under supervision. Students may take the National Counselor Examination (NCE) as part of licensing process while enrolled in the program, or wait until after applying. The courses are practitioner-oriented, skills based experiences (essentially a vocational training program) that equip students with the clinical skills necessary to meet the counselor licensing laws across the country. The scope of practice ranges from assessment, diagnosis, treatment, consultation, and prevention. Typically graduates go on to work in community agencies initially.

The primary orientation is that of a counselor, not a psychologist, and the professional affiliation is the American Counseling Association. The ACA code of ethics and scope are consistent with moves to make counselor licenses portable nationwide. It is not a research oriented program as students do not write a master's thesis, and in 95% of the cases, students do not intend on pursuing a doctoral degree in Counselor Education and Supervision; therefore, it is not an ideal preparation for those seeking to go on for a terminal degree in psychology. The curriculum does not prepare students for an orientation as a psychologist, nor does it offer the prerequisite courses that would offer a strong application to APA clinical or counseling psychology programs.

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In addition to the University’s admissions requirements:

  • Baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university
  • 3.0 cumulative grade point average (lower GPA’s will be considered based on overall strength of application)
  • Official transcripts from all institutions attended
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Departmental interview may be required
  • Personal statement
  • Professional Resume/CV
  • TOEFL or IELTS scores (for applicants whose native language is not English). Exceptions can be made for students who have completed at least 6 credits of college level English courses from a U.S. institution, or who have submitted SAT or ACT exam scores.

This program does NOT require the GRE for admission

The overall decision on an applicant's candidacy weighs multiple factors on the application, with the GPA being only one part.  Experiences (volunteer, personal life events, etc.) and/or employment that enhance the applicant’s chances of being employed in their chosen option after graduating and a maturity in their career choice are considered in the decision making process.  The Personal Statement reflecting the aforementioned qualities plays a significant role in the applicant’s overall ranking and whether an interview may be required.


  • All applicants who are offered admission are conditionally accepted; following successful completion of the nine credit core courses, students participate in a selections session to advance to full matriculation
  • 60 credits
  • Practica and internships
  • Counselor Preparation Comprehensive Exam (CPCE)


CED 5910

Orientation to Professional Counseling

3 credits

CED 5962

Group Process in Counseling

3 credits

CED 5950

Counseling Skills

3 credits

Students must be fully admitted by the selection committee following completion of the three core courses


CED 5050

Appraisal and Assessment in Counseling

3 credits

CED 5915

Multicultural Counseling

3 credits

CED 5952

Theories of Counseling

3 credits

CED 5963

Theory and Practice of Group Counseling

3 credits

CED 5975

Career Counseling and Development

3 credits

CED 5925

Counseling Perspectives in Human Development

3 credits

CED 5945

Selected Topics in Counseling Children & Adolescents

3 credits

CED 5997

Research Methods in Counseling

3 credits



CED 5501

Introduction to Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counseling

3 credits

CED 5972

Clinical Mental Health Counseling

3 credits

CED 5979

Diagnosis and Treatment of Psychopathology

3 credits

CED 5965

Introduction to Family Counseling

3 credits

CED 5989

Clinical Counseling Supervision

3 credits

CED 5993

Legal, Ethical & Professional Issues in Counseling

3 credits



CED 5980 Practicum in Counseling 3 credits

CED 5985

Internship in Counseling I

3 credits

CED 5986

Internship in Counseling II

3 credits  


Program Mission and SLOs




Program coordinator

East Campus, Room 307
T. 908.737.5954



Updated  11/26/17