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Counseling Degrees and Programs in Michigan

The state of Michigan has several colleges and universities offering programs in counseling in the major fields of practice: marriage and family therapy, mental health counseling, rehabilitation counseling, school counseling, and substance abuse counseling. If you are interested in starting a career as a counselor in this Midwestern state, choosing the right school and the right program will be some of your first steps, because nearly all counseling careers require a degree. Most institutions in Michigan offer master’s degrees in counseling because this type of degree is most often required for licensure; however, some undergraduate programs are available. Many Michigan schools also offer online or hybrid program formats that enable working professionals and busy students to complete degree requirements in a more flexible way.

Quick Facts

  • There are 15 not-for-profit four-year colleges and universities that offer a program in marriage and family therapy, mental health counseling, school counseling, substance abuse counseling, and/or vocational rehabilitation counseling in Michigan.1,2
  • Of the counseling schools in Michigan, 0 offer an associate’s degree, 1 offers a bachelor’s degree, 2 offer a certificate, and 13 offer a master’s or advanced degree.1,2
  • 1 school offers a degree in marriage and family therapy.1,2
  • 8 schools offer a degree in mental health counseling.1,2
  • 3 schools offer a degree in vocational rehabilitation counseling.1,2
  • 11 schools offer a degree in school counseling.1,2
  • 7 schools offer a degree in substance abuse counseling.1,2
  • 4 counseling schools ranked in Kiplinger’s Best College Values 2019.3
  • No schools ranked in US News Best Student Counseling Programs 2019.4
  • 3 schools ranked in US News Best Rehabilitation Counseling Programs 2019.5
  • Across 8 schools, 19 counseling programs are accredited by CACREP.2

Comparison of Michigan Counseling Schools and Programs

Below you will find a table that summarizes the public and not-for-profit four-year colleges and universities in Michigan that offer counseling programs in the five main counseling areas: mental health counseling (MH), marriage and family therapy (MFT), vocational rehabilitation counseling (VR), school counseling (SC), and substance abuse counseling (SA). The table indicates the schools that offer programs accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP); CACREP-accredited programs are denoted with an asterisk (*). You can also compare schools by program type offered, graduation rate, and net price per year. To learn more about counseling licensure requirements in Michigan, visit our license requirements page.

School NameCACREP-
Accred
Program2
MHMFVRSCSAGrad Rate1Net Price1
Andrews UniversityYesYes*Yes*58%$21,820
Aquinas CollegeYes61%$18,513
Central Michigan UniversityYesYesYes62%$14,372
Eastern Michigan UniversityYesYes*Yes*45%$15,687
Grand Valley State UniversityYes66%$17,184
Madonna UniversityYes61%$16,415
Michigan State UniversityYesYes*80%$16,227
Northern Michigan UniversityYes47%$14,243
Oakland UniversityYesYes*Yes*Yes55%$12,384
Siena Heights UniversityYes43%$19,526
Spring Arbor UniversityYesYes*Yes*57%$20,000
University of Detroit MercyYesYes*Yes*Yes*65%$22,016
University of Michigan-DearbornYes56%$10,533
Wayne State UniversityYesYes*Yes*Yes*Yes47%$14,366
Western Michigan UniversityYesYes*Yes*Yes*Yes*Yes53%$15,863

Top-Ranked Schools with Counseling Programs in Michigan

Kiplinger’s Best College Values 2019

  • Grand Valley State University (#305)
  • Michigan State University (#328)
  • University of Detroit Mercy (#335)
  • Andrews University (#352)

US News Best Rehabilitation Counseling Programs 2019

  • Michigan State University (#1 tie)
  • Western Michigan University (#37 tie)
  • Wayne State University (#67 tie)

Schools in Michigan with Counseling Degrees

Traditional Undergraduate Programs

University of Detroit Mercy

The University of Detroit Mercy (UD Mercy) offers several options for individuals interested in addiction counseling. At the undergraduate level, a Bachelor of Science (BS) is offered with either a 63 to 72 credit major or a 21-credit minor in Addiction Studies. Students who already have an undergraduate degree can complete a 21-credit Post-Degree Certificate in Addiction Studies. These programs prepare graduates for entry-level careers in the addiction field or further study in counseling or addiction studies. The 60-credit CACREP-accredited Master of Arts (MA) in Addiction Counseling and the 18-credit Post-Graduate Certificate in Addiction Studies enable students to meet the training requirements to become a Certified Advanced Addictions Counselor (CAAC). UD Mercy also offers a 60-credit CACREP-accredited MA in Clinical Mental Health Counseling; a 57-credit CACREP-accredited MA in School Counseling for students who are not certified teachers; a 48-credit CACREP-accredited MA in School Counseling for certified teachers; an 18-credit Post-Graduate School Counseling License for licensed counselors; and a 30-credit Post-Graduate School Counseling Endorsement for certified teachers with a master’s degree in education.

University of Michigan-Dearborn

For students interested in addiction counseling, the University of Michigan-Dearborn (UM-Dearborn) has an 18-credit undergraduate Certificate in Addiction Studies that is open to current and new UM-Dearborn students. The certificate is designed to prepare graduates for careers in substance abuse counseling and related fields, such as research and addiction prevention. Students learn about the social and psychological factors of substance abuse and develop skills in assessment, case management, and counseling. The coursework in the certificate program can be applied towards the educational requirements to become a Certified Alcohol & Drug Counselor (CADC) in Michigan and prepares graduates to take the CADC certification exam.

Traditional Graduate Programs

Andrews University

Andrews University, located in Berrien Springs, offers CACREP-accredited graduate-level counseling education with a Christian worldview. The Master of Arts (MA) in Clinical Mental Health Counseling prepares students to become a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and work in community, mental health, and private practice settings. The MA in School Counseling meets state educational requirements to provide academic, emotional, and social support to students from kindergarten through twelfth grade. Both degrees consist of 60 credits including nine credits of practicum at the Andrews Community Counseling Center and an internship completed in a community setting. Each degree takes two years of full-time study to complete and admits students five times throughout the year. While transfer credit may be accepted, students must complete at least 80% of the required credits at Andrews University.

Eastern Michigan University

At Eastern Michigan University (EMU), prospective counselors can complete either a master’s degree or a post-master’s certificate in Clinical Mental Health Counseling or School Counseling to meet the state coursework requirements for licensure. The CACREP-accredited Master of Arts (MA) in Clinical Mental Health Counseling is a 60-credit degree comprised of 33 counseling core credits, 13 specialization credits, eight practicum and internship credits, and six credits of electives. The Post-Master’s Certificate in Clinical Mental Health Counseling is designed for individuals who already have a 48-credit degree in counseling and require additional coursework to meet state requirements. The certificate consists of 21 credits, but the university can waive coursework that has already been completed as part of the applicant’s degree. The CACREP-accredited MA in School Counseling is comprised of 50-56 credits depending on whether the applicant is a certified teacher in Michigan. The Post-Master’s Certificate in School Counseling is designed for individuals with graduate counseling degrees and consists of 14-55 credits depending on the individual’s previous coursework.

Oakland University

Oakland University provides prospective counselors with CACREP-accredited Master of Arts (MA) degrees in Clinical Mental Health and School Counseling. The MA in Clinical Mental Health encompasses 60 credits that meet state requirements for licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC). Students in the MA in School Counseling complete 50 credits and are prepared to become certified as school counselors in Michigan. Students in either program can complete an optional specialization in Child and Adolescent Counseling, Mental Health Counseling, or Addictions Counseling to gain further expertise. A CACREP-accredited Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Counselor Education and Supervision that prepares students for leadership roles in clinical practice, teaching, and research is also offered.

Online and Hybrid Programs

Central Michigan University

Central Michigan University (CMU) offers a hybrid Master of Arts (MA) in Counseling with specializations in Addiction Counseling, Clinical Mental Health, and School Counseling. Online courses are offered in eight-week blocks and can be taken in combination with traditional 16-week courses at the main campus in Mount Pleasant or eight-week courses offered at the university’s satellite campuses in Dearborn, Southfield, Grand Rapids, and Saginaw. Each degree consists of 60 credits with a 36-credit counseling core, 12 credits in the area of specialization, and 12 credits of electives and internship. New students are admitted in the fall, spring, and summer terms. The MA in Clinical Mental Health is designed for students who wish to become Licensed Professional Counselors (LPCs) in Michigan, while the MA in Addiction Counseling can be used to meet the education requirements for LPC licensure or substance abuse counselor certification. The MA in School Counseling meets state educational requirements of school counselor licensure for students with or without teacher certification in Michigan.

Wayne State University

At Wayne State University (WSU), prospective students can choose from numerous CACREP-accredited degree programs in counseling offered through hybrid methods. The Master of Arts (MA) in Counseling offers specializations in Clinical Mental Health Counseling with an optional concentration in Art Therapy; School Counseling; Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling; and combined Clinical Mental Health Counseling and School Counseling. Students must follow a structured curriculum and take 60 credits online and at the Detroit campus. All the specializations offered meet Michigan educational requirements for licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC). A 12-credit Graduate Certificate in Alcohol and Drug Studies can be completed simultaneously or by students who already have a master’s degree in a counseling-related field. The courses in the certificate program can be used towards state educational requirements to become a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor (CADC). WSU also offers a CACREP-accredited Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) and a Doctor of Education (EdD) in Counselor Education and Supervision for individuals who already have a master’s degree in counseling.

Western Michigan University

Western Michigan University (WMU) offers an online graduate certificate in Alcohol and Drug Abuse with a unique focus on the relationship between substance abuse and criminal justice. The certificate consists of 24 credits and is designed for working professionals in counseling-related fields. The courses and the required practicum meet state guidelines for the various substance abuse credentials in Michigan, such as the Certified Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor (CAADC) credential. WMU also offers this certificate at the Kalamazoo, Grand Rapids, and Traverse City campuses through a mix of evening and weekend classes. Undergraduate students can complete a 21-credit minor in Addiction Studies as part of their degree either online or at the Kalamazoo campus. These credits are accepted towards state educational requirements for the Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor (CADC) certification. WMU also offers numerous on-campus CACREP-accredited graduate degrees that meet state educational requirements for counseling licensure, including a Master of Arts (MA) in Counselor Education with concentrations in Clinical Mental Health Counseling; Marriage and Family Therapy; School Counseling; and Rehabilitation Counseling. A Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Counselor Education and Supervision is also available.

References:
1. National Center for Education Statistics College Navigator: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
2. Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP), Accredited Programs: https://www.cacrep.org/directory/
3. Kiplinger’s Best College Values, 2019: https://www.kiplinger.com/fronts/special-report/college-rankings/index.html
4. US News & World Report Best Student Counseling Programs, 2019: https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-education-schools/student-counseling-rankings
5. US News & World Report Best Rehabilitation Counseling Programs, 2019: https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-health-schools/rehabilitation-counseling-rankings