Best Counseling Schools in New Jersey
New Jersey has many quality schools that offer counseling degrees. Here’s how to find the right one for you, from among some of the best counseling programs in New Jersey.
There are many high-quality counseling programs in New Jersey, but none of these are right for all students. The program that you choose must match your scheduling needs, financial situation, and career goals.
Counseling Degree Pathways in New Jersey
As you explore counseling programs, begin with the degree that's offered. Several different degrees are available:
- Associate degree programs – Takes two years and requires only a high school diploma. You can quickly complete a program, and begin working in the field.
- Bachelor's degree programs – Takes four years, and also requires only high school. You'll be more credentialed with a bachelor's, and thus likely have more job opportunities.
- Master's degree programs – Takes one to two years, but you must first attain a bachelor's. You'll need a master's degree if you want to be licensed.
- Doctorate degree programs – Takes at least three years, possibly much longer, and you must first attain a bachelor's or master's. You can focus on research with a Ph.D. or clinical work with a Psy.D.
- Graduate certificate programs – Takes one year at most, and you must first have a bachelor's. You can specialize by completing a certificate.
You'll be limited to whatever level of degree you currently have the prerequisite for. From among the options available to you, choose the degree that'll best prepare you for the next step (whether academic or vocational).
Choose a Counseling Specialty
Within your chosen degree, consider whether you want a program that has a specialized counseling track. Specialized tracks include focus areas such as:
- Clinical mental health counseling
- School counseling
- Career counseling
- Rehabilitation counseling
- Gerontological counseling
If you know what type of counseling you would like to offer, a specialized track could help you get started.
Check School Accreditation
An accredited counseling degree program has been verified, and it'll be recognized by other schools. You'll need an accredited degree if you ever transfer or pursue a more advanced degree, and only accredited master's and doctorate programs qualify for licensing.
Some of the main accrediting organizations for counseling degrees are the CACREP(the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Education Programs), and the APA (the American Psychological Association)
Next, decide whether you pursue a counseling degree via online learning or the traditional classroom. Online education tends to be more affordable, doesn't require you to move, and usually has more flexible schedules. You won't get the same in-person interaction with fellow students and faculty members, though. Which of these is more important to you should heavily influence your decision between online and traditional programs.
Before applying for licensure as a counselor in New Jersey, you first need to complete a master's degree, 600-hour practicum, and 4,500 hours of supervised experience. The practicum is also called an internship and will be part of any properly accredited program. The supervised hours can be completed over three years after you graduate.
The final steps for applying are to earn a passing score on the National Counselor Examination, pay a licensing fee, and submit your application.
Once you're licensed, the license must be renewed biennially. You renew by completing 40 hours of continuing education, paying the renewal fee, and submitting your renewal application.
Are you searching for a counseling degree program in New Jersey? Browse our comprehensive list of schools offering counseling programs, both online and on-campus, and follow the links to learn more about what each program has to offer.
Glassboro, NJ 08028
Jersey City, NJ
- Counseling - Clinical Mental Health Counseling Option, M.A. Campus
- Counseling - School Counseling Option, M.A. Campus
Jersey City, NJ 07305
South Orange, NJ
South Orange, NJ 07079-2697
West Long Branch, NJ
- Master of Science in Clinical Mental Health Counseling Campus
- Clinical Mental Health Counseling Specializations Campus
West Long Branch, NJ 07764-1898
Are we missing your school's program or need to update information listed? Please contact us so we can make the necessary changes.