How to Become a Counselor in Nebraska
How Do I Become a Licensed Professional Counselor in Nebraska?
Nebraska’s requirements for licensed professional counselors are somewhat unique. The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services requires any counselor who desires to use the title Licensed Professional Counselor(LPC) to be certified as both a Certified Professional Counselor(CPC) and a Licensed Mental Health Practitioner(LMHP). A future counselor must hold a LMHP license before they can receive the CPC license. As the regulatory environment in Nebraska continues to change the future of Licensed Professional Counseling is uncertain. For now, these are the requirements a future counselor must satisfy to use the title Licensed Professional Counselor(LPC) in Nebraska.
What are the Requirements to Become a Counselor in Nebraska?
Just like many other mid-western states Nebraska’s population continues to increase as people move from more expensive parts of the country and immigration fuels the low cost labor available in the center of the country. This mixture of people from all levels of the socioeconomic spectrum brings together a unique tapestry of cultures and values. The Nebraska Counseling Association’s(NCA) interest groups highlight this diversity. The NCA’s interest groups include the Nebraska Association for the Multicultural Counseling and Development(NAMCD), LGBT Interesest Group(LGBT), and the Nebraska Association for Spiritual, Ethical, and Religious Values in Counseling(NASERVC), amongst many others.
|Education Requirements||Education Length||Available Programs|
|Undergraduate Work||Earn a Bachelor's Degree in Counseling||4 Years||Online or Campus|
|Graduate Work||Earn a Master's Degree in Counseling||5-6 Years||Online or Campus|
|PHD or Doctoral Work||Earn a Doctorate in Counseling||7-8 Years||Online or Campus|
Nebraska’s future counselors are required to complete graduate coursework, receive a passing score on the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC) National Counselor Exam (NCE) or the National Clinical Mental Health Counselor Exam (NCMHCE), and complete the necessary supervised experience. This mixture of a qualified degree, from a program accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP), a passing score on a nationally recognized exam, and supervised experienced, in addition to their qualifications for their LMHP license, insures all LPCs in Nebraska are among some of the best and brightest in the nation.
What are the Supervised Experience Requirements for Becoming a Counselor in Nebraska?
Initially, future counselors will receive a provisional LMHP license until they log the required 3,000 required hours of supervised experience. Of these, 1,500 hours must be in direct contact with clients. The provisional license remains in good standing for up to 5 years, and an approved supervisor and supervisory plan is required as well. The supervision is intended to focus on raw data from the applicant’s clinical work made available directly to the supervisor. Amongst other things, the supervisor will discuss cases with the future counselor, provide guidance, and evaluate their performance. For more information, the requirements for initial certification are available as a PDF from the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services.
Regardless, dedication on the part of the supervisor and the licensee to maintain a detailed record of their time together will help in the final stages of application for a full license.
What are the Examination Requirements for Becoming a Counselor in Nebraska?
Nebraska's LCP equivalent, the CPC license, requires a passing score on the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC) National Counselor Exam (NCE) or the National Clinical Mental Health Counselor Exam (NCMHCE).
The NCE consists of 200 multiple choice questions designed to assess knowledge, skills and abilities of licensure candidates. You will receive your score within 8 weeks of the examination. Study guides are available via the NBCC.
The NCMHCE consists of 10 simulated clinical mental health counseling cases that are designed to sample a broad area of competencies. You will receive your score within 6 weeks of the examination. Study guides are also available via the NBCC.
Note: For more information on how to become a counselor in the state of Nebraska, please visit the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services.
Counselor Career Outlook In Nebraska
Data provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics for the state of Nebraska reveals an average income of between $34,000-$50,000 per year for professional counselors. Specific salaries will vary greatly depending on the setting; whether it is business, community agency, educational, government, health care, industry, private practice, or residential. Whether future counselors choose to provide care in the private sector or as part of a state program they’ll be joining the ranks of a growing and exciting career in Nebraska.
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