UMass Boston

Mental Health Counseling MS

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Prepare for a career as a licensed mental health counselor with hands-on field experiences.

UMass Boston’s Mental Health Counseling MS focuses on a challenging and rewarding academic program to prepare you for a career as a mental health counselor. It’s designed for people interested in pursuing an advanced degree and state licensure to work in mental health counseling. The program begins with a two-week in-person study at or near the UMass Boston campus where you’ll get to know your cohort and complete two courses (6 credits) of your degree. Throughout the program, you’ll get hands-on experience as you complete some of your required clinical fieldwork hours through an approved field placement under appropriate supervision.

UMass Boston's 60-credit hour MPCAC-accredited Mental Health Counseling online master's program meets the educational requirements for licensure as a Mental Health Counselor (LMHC) in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Our students intern in diverse settings and leave with substantial skills and knowledge around mental health, counseling, and advocacy, ready for counseling positions that will prepare them to obtain licensure. Please check with an admissions counselor at to determine if our program meets educational requirements for practice in your state.

Students also have the option of adding an adjustment counseling concentration to their plan of study, which requires one additional course, as well as additional internship hours. The adjustment counseling concentration allows students to be eligible for the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education K-12 initial level licensure as a school adjustment counselor.

UMass Boston is regionally accredited through NEASC (New England Association of Schools and Colleges). The Mental Health Counseling MS is accredited by the Masters in Psychology and Counseling Accreditation Council (MPCAC) for the period of March 2024 through March 2032.

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How to Apply

To apply to the program, students must submit:

  • A completed application and application fee
  • Two letters of recommendation where at least one letter should be from a person who knows your academic work. We strongly recommend getting letters from professors whenever possible but we will accept a letter of recommendation from a supervisor if you have been out of a school for some time.
  • A statement of purpose detailing your goals, professional experience, and reasons for applying to the program. Your essay should consist of your reasons for wishing to pursue graduate study in 300 words (part 1). Then, indicate your specific interests and discuss the kind of work you would like to do in your intended field in no more than 1200 words (part 2).
  • Official undergraduate and graduate official transcripts from all universities you attended. All transcripts must be official and sealed.
  • Please include an updated résumé
  • Optional: writing sample
  • Other: one year of experience in the field (preferred)
  • All application materials can be submitted online or mailed to UMass Boston’s Office of Graduate Admissions at:
    • UMass Boston Graduate Admissions
      100 Morrissey Boulevard
      Boston, MA 02125

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Deadlines & Cost

Deadlines: January 2 (priority) and February 15 (final) for fall on-campus; January 2 (priority) and February 15 (final) for summer online

Application Fee: The nonrefundable application fee is $75. UMass Boston alumni and current students that plan to complete degree requirements prior to graduate enrollment can submit the application without paying the application fee.

Program Cost Information: Bursar's website


Core Courses (48 Credits)

  • COUNSL 601 - Research and Evaluation in Psychology 3 Credit(s)
  • COUNSL 605 - Principles of Vocational, Educational, and Psychological Assessment 3 Credit(s)
  • COUNSL 606 - Ethical Standards and Professional Issues in Counseling 3 Credit(s)
  • COUNSL 608 - Psychopathology and Diagnosis 3 Credit(s)
  • COUNSL 613 - Vocational Development and Career Information 3 Credit(s)
  • COUNSL 614 - Counseling Theory and Practice I 3 Credit(s)
  • COUNSL 615 - Counseling Theory and Practice II 3 Credit(s)
  • COUNSL 616 - Group Counseling and Group Dynamics 3 Credit(s)
  • COUNSL 617 - Child and Adolescent Counseling 3 Credit(s)
  • COUNSL 620 - Life Span Human Development 3 Credit(s)
  • COUNSL 653 - Sociocultural Considerations in Counseling 3 Credit(s)
  • COUNSL 665 - Trauma and Crisis Counseling 3 Credit(s)
  • COUNSL 666 - Sex and Sexuality in Counseling Practice 3 Credit(s)
  • COUNSL 667 - Counseling Families and Couples: Theories and Practice 3 Credit(s)
    COUNSL 670 - Substance Abuse in Counseling Practice 3 Credit(s)
    COUNSL 674 - Psychopharmacology for Counselors 3 Credit(s)

Field Work Courses (12 Credits)

  • COUNSL 699 - Advanced Practice I and II 6 Credit(s) - complete two times

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Graduation Criteria

Complete 60 credits from 18 courses including 16 core courses and two field work course.

Capstone: Completion of a clinical case study.

Practicum: Complete 100 hours of practicum experience. A practicum must include a minimum of 40 hours of direct service work with clients, 10 hours of individual supervision by an approved supervisor, and 10 hours of group supervision, and 10 hours of either group or individual supervision by an approved supervisor.

Statute of limitations: Six years.

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