Program Outline: Master of Education (MEd)
in School Counseling
Incoming students are introduced to the MEd in School Counseling program through an experiential course in Autumn quarter. EDCO 6600 Introduction to Systems Theory, conducted at SPU’s Blakely Island Field Station, provides new students with a clear understanding of the School Counseling program, including its requirements, expectations, faculty, mission, and philosophy.
Coursework for the MEd in School Counseling with ESA (School Counseling) Certification includes the following:
- Professional Core (15 credits).
- School Counseling Major Core (48 credits).
- Internship (9 credits, 600 hours; the internship extends over an entire school year).
The goal of the Education Block is to provide the non-certified teacher with practical experience in a school and the opportunity to learn about the life and issues of a classroom teacher. It is also intended to provide you with more credibility in the hiring process.
The Education Block consists of 100 hours of work in one classroom where you actively work with students. The situation should require only a minimal level of administrative/clerical work and may be a paid or volunteer activity with no course credit attached. You may also fulfill this requirement by paid employment in a school (e.g., as a paraprofessional or teaching assistant).
One or two 3-credit minimum education classes are also required during the Education Block. The goal is practical experience in education. The minimum required course is EDCO 6130 Classroom Management (3 credits).
The 600-hour internship is a vital, integrative experience in which students conduct supervised counseling in a school setting over the course of an entire school year (three quarters). You are expected to begin your work at your internship school site at the beginning of the school year and finish the experience the last week of the K–12 school year.
This internship’s primary objective is the provision of practical experiences in the duties and activities of the school counselor. It requires the cooperative efforts of the student, a faculty supervisor from the SPU School of Education, and an approved school district site supervisor who is certified as an ESA school counselor with a minimum of three years’ experience as a school counselor and training in supervision. To correspond with CACREP standards for the counselor education program, the internship includes a minimum of 600 hours. A thesis option is also available.
A written Comprehensive Examination is required for this program as a tool to help synthesize and apply information gained throughout the course of study. The exam consists of two essay questions, designated at the time of the exam. The test lasts for two hours, with approximately one hour allotted per question.
ESA Certification in School Counseling Only
People who otherwise qualify to enter the MEd in School Counseling program and already have a master's or other advanced degree need not complete a second master's degree in school counseling in order to obtain Educational Staff Associate Certification as a school counselor.
It is generally only necessary to complete the major courses (minimum of 48 credits), the internship (9 credits) and the comprehensive exam. If you do not already have a background in education, you will be assigned the Education Block requirement.
The MEd in School Counseling coursework is generally spread over a three-year period, beginning in Autumn quarter. During the regular academic year, each class meets one night a week from 4:30–7:05 p.m. In the second and third year of the program, students are required to take intensive Summer Session courses, which meet two to four days a week over four weeks. The Professional Core classes can be taken on campus or online. During the first two years, students can expect to take two or three classes each quarter.
Suggested Course Sequence
Your Three-Plus-Year Course Plan may be customized to meet your needs.