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Counseling Degrees and Programs in New York

There are many colleges and universities in New York that offer counseling programs in the five main areas of specialization: marriage and family therapy, mental health counseling, rehabilitation counseling, school counseling, and substance abuse counseling. If you plan to pursue a career as a professional counselor in New York, you will first need to choose a school and a program, because almost all counseling careers require a degree. Most often, counseling degrees are offered at the graduate level to meet state licensing requirements, although some undergraduate programs, such as associate and bachelor’s degrees, are available. Counseling degree programs in New York may be offered as on-campus, online, or hybrid combinations, providing students with more flexibility and better access to a wider range of educational options.

Quick Facts

  • There are 49 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 New York.1,2
  • Of the counseling schools in New York, no schools offer an associate’s degree, 2 offer a bachelor’s degree, 3 offer a certificate, and 47 offer a master’s or advanced degree.1
  • 11 schools offer a degree in marriage and family therapy.1,2
  • 38 schools offer a degree in mental health counseling.1,2
  • 5 schools offer a degree in vocational rehabilitation counseling. 1,2
  • 35 schools offer a degree in school counseling.1,2
  • 5 schools offer degree in substance abuse counseling.1,2
  • 23 counseling schools ranked in Kiplinger’s Best College Values 2019.2
  • No schools ranked in US News Best Student Counseling Programs of 2019.3
  • 3 schools ranked in US News Best Rehabilitation Counseling Programs 2019.4
  • Across 21 schools, 32 counseling programs are accredited by CACREP.5

Comparison of New York Counseling Schools and Programs

In the table below, you can compare the public and not-for-profit four-year colleges and universities in New York that offer counseling programs in the following five main 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 (*). Keep in mind that some schools offer a joint program in clinical mental health counseling and clinical rehabilitation counseling, so check with the school for more information on the programs offered. You can also compare schools by program type offered, graduation rate, and net price per year. You can learn more about the requirements to become a licensed counselor in New York by reading our license requirements page.

School NameCACREP-
Accred
Program2
MHMFVRSCSAGrad Rate1Net Price1
Adelphi UniversityYes70%$28,406
Alfred UniversityYesYes*Yes*60%$20,892
Canisius CollegeYesYes*Yes*68%$20,542
College of Saint RoseYesYesYes61%$21,892
College of Staten Island CUNYYesYes31%$6,761
CUNY Bernard M Baruch CollegeYes69%$4,119
CUNY Brooklyn CollegeYesYesYes*58%$4,211
CUNY City CollegeYesYes55%$4,674
CUNY Hunter CollegeYesYes*Yes*Yes*56%$4,332
CUNY John Jay College of Criminal JusticeYes46%$4,745
CUNY Lehman CollegeYesYes*49%$3,467
CUNY New York City College of TechnologyYes17%$5,638
CUNY Queens CollegeYesYesYes55%$4,776
Fordham UniversityYesYesYes83%$39,011
Hofstra UniversityYesYes*YesYes*Yes63%$32,443
Iona CollegeYesYesYes67%$28,131
Long Island UniversityYesYes*YesYes*46%$24,266
Manhattan CollegeYesYes74%$34,143
Marist CollegeYes83%$37,421
Medaille CollegeYesYesYes37%$11,929
Mercy CollegeYesYesYes44%$13,972
Molloy CollegeYesYes*75%$29,189
Nazareth CollegeYes66%$29,881
New York Institute of TechnologyYesYes*51%$22,187
New York UniversityYesYes85%$39,935
Niagara UniversityYesYes*Yes71%$19,106
Nyack CollegeYesYes42%$20,217
Pace UniversityYesYes*56%$31,923
Roberts Wesleyan CollegeYes68%$23,673
The Sage CollegesYes62%$21,340
Saint John Fisher CollegeYesYes*73%$27,794
St Bonaventure UniversityYesYes*Yes*68%$21,613
St John’s University-New YorkYesYes*Yes*61%$25,816
St Lawrence UniversityYes82%$33,580
State University of New York at New PaltzYesYes76%$14,882
SUNY at AlbanyYesYesYes64%$15,844
SUNY Buffalo StateYesYes*Yes48%$12,024
SUNY College at BrockportYesYes*Yes*Yes65%$14,723
SUNY College at Old WestburyYes47%$10,710
SUNY College at OswegoYesYes*Yes64%$15,780
SUNY College at PlattsburghYesYes*Yes68%$13,614
SUNY Empire State CollegeYes26%$13,415
SUNY OneontaYes76%$15,012
Syracuse UniversityYesYes*YesYes*Yes83%$39,005
Teachers College at Columbia UniversityYesN.Av.N.Av.
Touro CollegeYesYesYes47%$19,643
University at BuffaloYesYesYesYes76%$15,895
University of RochesterYesYes*YesYes*86%$35,452
Yeshiva UniversityYes83%$32,995

Top-Ranked Schools with Counseling Programs in New York

Kiplinger’s Best College Values 2019

  • Columbia University (#33)
  • Yeshiva University (#72)
  • St. Lawrence University (#88)
  • University of Rochester (#108)
  • New York University (#131)
  • State University of New York at New Paltz (#173)
  • Syracuse University (#176)
  • Marist College (#180)
  • SUNY Oneonta (#182)
  • Baruch College (CUNY) (#193)
  • University at Buffalo (SUNY) (#221)
  • Canisius College (#229)
  • St. Bonaventure University (#268)
  • Hunter College (CUNY) (#275)
  • St. John Fisher College (#291)
  • University at Albany (SUNY) (#298)
  • City College (CUNY) (#307)
  • State University of New York at Plattsburgh (#311)
  • Niagara University (#319)
  • Nazareth College (#333)
  • SUNY Brockport (#345)
  • Queens College (CUNY) (#383)
  • Roberts Wesleyan University (#400)

US News Best Rehabilitation Counseling Programs 2019

  • Hofstra University (#27 tie)
  • CUNY Hunter College (#37 tie)
  • University at Buffalo (SUNY) (#37 tie)

Schools in New York with Counseling Degrees

Traditional Undergraduate Programs

SUNY College at Brockport

SUNY College at Brockport offers an undergraduate addiction program and several counseling graduate degree options. The Alcohol and Substance Abuse Studies Program (ASAS) is a concentration within the Bachelor of Science (BS) in Healthcare Studies and can be taken as a clinical major (45 credits) or a non-clinical minor (18 credits). New students are admitted to start the program in the fall term or students can declare an ASAS major or minor at any time during undergraduate study. The graduate-level offerings at SUNY College at Brockport include a Master of Science (MS) in Mental Health Counseling (60 credits) and a Master of Science in Education (MSEd) in School Counseling (K-12) (48 credits). Both degrees meet initial state educational requirements for licensure and are accredited by CACREP. Counseling degree holders who need to complete additional coursework to be eligible for full licensure in New York can register for the on-campus Certificate of Advanced Study in Mental Health Counseling or the Certificate of Advanced Study in School Counseling, which is offered on-campus, online, or as a hybrid.

SUNY Empire State College

The Bachelor of Science (BS) in Addiction Studies at SUNY Empire State College in Saratoga Springs is a new program comprised of 124 credits and can be taken on campus, online, or through blended means. The first enrollment of students will begin in the 2020 spring term. The program teaches students about addiction theories, the impacts of addiction, and models to assess and intervene in human service settings. Although the degree takes four years of full-time study to complete, associate degree holders may be eligible to transfer credit from previous study to complete the degree more quickly. Those who choose to complete the degree fully online work with faculty advisors to create a degree plan that meets their interests and needs. Graduates may continue their studies at the graduate level or apply to become a Credentialed Alcoholism Substance Abuse Counselor (CASAC) in New York.

Traditional Graduate Programs

Hofstra University

Hofstra University offers numerous graduate degree programs in counseling. The Master of Science in Education (MSEd) is offered with a concentration in School Counseling. This program meets state educational requirements for school counseling licensure, although 18 credits of prerequisite courses are required for admission. A Professional Diploma in School Counseling is also offered for applicants with a graduate degree in mental health counseling. The Master of Arts (MA) in Mental Health Counseling prepares students to become Licensed Mental Health Counselors (LMHCs) and meets the educational requirements for licensure in New York. School counseling degree holders can complete the Advanced Certificate in Mental Health Counseling to be eligible for LMHC licensure. Hofstra University also offers an Advanced Certificate in Addiction and Substance Abuse; an MSEd, Advanced Certificate, and Professional Diploma in Rehabilitation Counseling; an MSEd in Rehabilitation Counseling in Mental Health; and an MA in Marriage and Family Therapy.

Long Island University

At Long Island University (LIU), students can choose from a Master of Science (MS) in School Counselor, an MS in Marriage and Family Therapy, or an MS or Advanced Certificate in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. The MS in School Counseling consists of 48 credits and prepares graduates to work with students from K-12 in the public and private school systems. The MS in Marriage and Family Therapy is a 60-credit program that meets the coursework requirements to become a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapy (LMFT) in New York. The Clinical Mental Health Counseling programs prepare students to work as professional counselors in clinical health settings. This MS program is comprised of 60 credits and meets the educational requirements for licensure as a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC) or a Certified Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Counselor Trainee (CASAC-T) in New York. The Advanced Certificate enables individuals with a graduate degree in counseling to complete any additional coursework necessary for full LMHC licensure in the state.

St. John’s University

St John’s University offers counseling degrees with a Catholic worldview. The Master of Science in Education (MSEd) in Clinical Mental Health Counseling is a CACREP-accredited, 60-credit program offered at the Queens campus that meets New York educational requirements for Licensed Mental Health Counselors (LMHCs) and Certified Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Counselors in Training (CASAC-Ts). St. John’s University also offers a 48-credit MSEd in School Counseling with a bilingual extension program that prepares graduates to work in multicultural school settings with children from diverse backgrounds. This program is offered at the Queens and Staten Island campuses, is CACREP-accredited, and meets state educational requirements to become licensed as a school counselor. While the MSEd programs only admits new students in the fall, a 24-credit Advanced Certificate in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and a 12-credit Advanced Certificate in School Counseling, for individuals seeking full LMHC or school counseling licensure in New York, begin in the spring term at the Queens campus.

University of Rochester

The University of Rochester has the following CACREP-accredited counseling programs: a Master of Science (MS) in Mental Health Counseling and an MS in School Counseling. The 60-credit MS in Mental Health Counseling prepares graduates for careers as clinical counselors and meets the educational requirements to become a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC) in New York. The program can be completed in two years of full-time study if started in the fall, although new students are admitted in the fall, spring, and summer terms and part-time study is possible. Individuals who are already licensed as LMHCs or school counselors may be eligible for the university’s bridging programs. The Advanced Certificate Bridge from Mental Health to School Counseling requires nine to 12 additional credits and meets state coursework requirements for school counseling certification while the Advanced Certificate Bridge from School to Mental Health Counseling encompasses 12-24 credits including required internships. The MS in Marriage and Family Therapy based at the University of Rochester Medical Center offers prospective Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists (LMFTs) the chance to gain experience in a clinical, interdisciplinary setting.

Online and Hybrid Programs

New York University

New York University (NYU) offers two online counseling degrees including the Master of Arts (MA) in Counseling for Mental Health and Wellness and an MA in Counseling and Guidance with an optional concentration in bilingual school counseling. These degrees meet state educational requirements for counseling licensure. The MA in Counseling for Mental Health and Wellness is comprised of 60 credits and takes at least 21 months to complete, while the MA in Counseling and Guidance requires 48 credits and takes at least 18 months to complete. Although classes are taught online, students must attend an on-campus immersion experience in New York City, complete on-site counseling practicums in their local community, and attend synchronous virtual classes. The programs have a cohort structure that enables students to progress through the program with the same group of peers. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis for fall, spring, and summer term start dates.

University at Buffalo

The University at Buffalo (SUNY Buffalo) offers online advanced graduate certificates in Mental Health Counseling and Rehabilitation Counseling that are open to applicants with a graduate degree in counseling. The Mental Health Counseling Certificate is a 15-27 credit, full-time program that prepares students for the New York professional counseling licensure exam and can be completed in two months. The Rehabilitation Counseling Certificate requires 15-28 credits and can be completed in as few as three part-time semesters. Other online counseling programs at the University at Buffalo include a CACREP-accredited 48-credit Master of Science (MS) in Rehabilitation Counseling that can be taken either online or on-campus and an 18-credit minor in counseling that can be completed as part of an online, hybrid, or on-campus undergraduate degree. On-campus counseling programs are available as well, including an MS in Mental Health Counseling and a Master of Education (EdM) or Advanced Certificate in School Counseling.

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