Counselor Education (Ph.D.)
SCHOOL OF EDUCATION
The primary aim of the Ph.D. option is to educate and prepare doctoral students to serve as college and university-level school counseling educators, who can effectively teach and supervise graduate-level students and conduct publishable research and other scholarly work.
Some graduates may seek positions as supervisors/directors of counseling services. Opportunities for co-authoring professional publications are available.
The program's key emphases are multicultural approaches to school counseling, collaboration with families, implementation and evaluation of comprehensive school counseling programs, and the intersection of counseling and spirituality.
As such, the Ph.D. program emphasizes both cutting-edge counselor education theory and research. Best practice and supervisorial skills are included as well.
To apply, submit the following items to The Graduate Center to be considered for admissions:
- A doctoral application.
- A $50 processing fee. Make checks payable to "Seattle Pacific University."
- Official transcripts documenting excellent undergraduate and graduate-level GPA.
- Preferable: Master’s degree in school counseling or psychology, mental health counseling, counseling psychology, MFT, or related counseling discipline. ESA certification in school counseling. Highly qualified bachelor’s (B.A./B.S.) level students in psychology or related discipline may also apply.
- Master’s level applicants should have a minimum of two-years experience counseling in schools. B.A./B.S. to Ph.D. applicants should have experience serving (paid and/or volunteer) students in a educationally related settings.
- GRE-Revised Test score taken within five years of application. Preferred minimum combined score of 303/60th percentile on verbal + quantitative or 1200 on old GRE test.
- Three letters of recommendation (two must be academic recommendations).
- A writing sample demonstrating competency in academic writing.
- Personal Statement that includes professional academic goals and focus of study (no more than 500 words).
- Personal interview with two graduate-level faculty.
REQUIREMENTS FOR APPLICANTS WITH A BACHELOR'S DEGREE
The program requires 72 quarter credits for a M.Ed. in school counseling and the ESA certification (needed to practice school counseling in WA).
An additional 66 credits of doctoral level courses (total 138 credits [quarter]) are completed. You will earn a M.Ed. in school counseling, K-12 Washington state school counseling certification, and a Ph.D. in counselor education.
REQUIREMENTS FOR APPLICANTS WITH A MASTER'S DEGREE
Depending upon the applicant’s academic background, the Ph.D. in counselor education requires a minimum of 90 quarter credits.
LEADERSHIP COLLOQUIUM AND COMPREHENSIVE EXAMS
After approximately one year of coursework (24 credits), you may register for the leadership colloquium (EDU 7990). This requires you to write a scholarly paper and present that paper in a formal setting to the educational community.
Graduate faculty of the School of Education conduct an evaluation of the scholarship and colloquium. You must take the leadership colloquium before you can take the comprehensive exams.
Upon completion of all courses, you must pass written comprehensive examinations. These examinations will cover the foundations, professiona,l and research components of the core, and your area of specialization. Successful completion of the comprehensive examination advances you to the doctoral candidacy.
The doctoral dissertation is the culminating experience in the Ph.D. in counselor education degree. It is a scholarly inquiry into an area of professional and intellectual interest, and it is a highly individualized experience.
Working with faculty throughout the coursework and with a dissertation advisor, you will develop a research question and proposal. Using the expertise and knowledge developed in the research courses and under the direction of a faculty dissertation advisor and committee, you conduct the research and produce a quality report of the findings. As a final demonstration of scholarly competence, you conduct an oral presentation and defense of the research.
While it is expected that the dissertation will follow standard accepted research methodologies and format, the topic of the research may vary depending on your professional goals and area of specialization, and the expertise of the faculty.
PROGRAM AND ENROLLMENT POLICIES
At the time of admission, you may transfer up to 15 post-master's degree credits into the doctoral program with the approval of the director of doctoral studies. Courses transferred must be graduate level, from a regionally accredited institution and relevant to your course of doctoral study.
The courses must have been taken within the three years prior to your admission and must have been part of a planned program leading to a graduate degree or a professional certificate. Courses with grades below a 3.0 ("B"), or those receiving "pass" or "satisfactory" grades cannot transfer into the program.
Finally, transferred classes may be substituted for degree requirements if you can document in writing that they are comparable to required courses offered through SPU. Modifications to these transfer policies may be made at the discretion of the director of doctoral studies in consultation with the Doctoral Admissions Committee.
You are expected to complete the required cohort courses (7000-level) in sequence during the first two years of the program. Once you begin your classes, continuous enrollment must be maintained throughout the program. Students who interrupt the residency requirement may be dropped from the program.
GRADE POINT AVERAGE
A 3.2 overall GPA is required for graduation.
All requirements for the doctoral degree must be completed within five years from the quarter the first post-admission course was taken. Students who need more than five years to complete the degree must file a time-extension petition with the director of doctoral studies.
For more information about the program, contact Dr. Christopher Sink (firstname.lastname@example.org), program advisor, or Dr. Andrew Lumpe (email@example.com), director of doctoral studies.
Application questions should be addressed to The Graduate Center.
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