How to Become a Licensed Professional Counselor in Illinois

How Do I Become a Licensed Professional Counselor in Illinois?


The state of Illinois had two different levels of licensing; Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor, also known as LCPC and Licensed Professional Counselor, also known as LPC. To become a LCPC, you will need to gradually work yourself up and complete any extra exams. You will need to make sure you reach the right credentials and pass all of your exams. You also must meet the minimum degree level. For the state of the Illinois, the minimum degree is a Master’s Degree. Doctoral Degrees are accepted as well.

What are the Requirements to Become a Counselor in Illinois?

You will need to hold a Master’s Degree or a Doctoral level Degree in counseling or a related field to be considered in the state of Illinois. In the state of Illinois, it is a little different from most states, you will not need to have graduated from an accredited program to be considered, but it will make things simpler if you did. If you were enrolled in a program that was CORE and CACREP accredited, you have met the requirements. It is required to ensure you have reached the minimum hours of supervised experience.

Counseling Educational Track
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

You must have studied each of the course content:

  • Counseling Technique
  • Counseling Theories
  • Research/Evaluation
  • Human Growth/Development
  • Group Dynamics, counseling, and processing
  • Professional, legal responsibilities, and ethical
  • Social/cultural foundations
  • Maladaptive behavior/Psychiatric Illness
  • Substance Abuse
  • Family Dynamics

It is required to have an internship or practicum. Correspondence or individual study might not be used follow the core requirements. If an individual had any academic deficiencies, they can meet them by attending further education classes/programs.

What are the Supervised Experience Requirements for Becoming a Counselor in Illinois?

You will need to be supervised for two years in order to earn higher licensing. There must be a minimum of 960 hours of direct, face-to-face counseling with different clients. This type of experience must be finished in a minimum of 48 weeks.

If you have your Master’s Degree, completing the degree requirements prior to beginning accumulation if the required experiences are necessary. You are allowed to count one-year maximum of experience that you completed when you did your internship, if you have a Doctoral Degree.

If the supervised experience was done in Illinois, the professional supervisor has to be licensed and one of the following: Psychiatrists, Clinical Social Worker, or Clinical Psychologist. If you did your supervised experience somewhere other than Illinois, the experience will still count toward the requirements. However, this is only if the supervisor had a Master’s Degree or a Doctoral Degree.

What are the Examination Requirements for Becoming a Counselor in Illinois?

When you are about to go through the examination to be an LCPC, it will be a similar process as it was for the LPC examination.

When you go to apply for the LCPC, you will need to fill out the application on paper or even via the internet. The following documentation will be necessary:

  • Transcripts, including the school seal
  • Proof of certification
  • Verification of experience/employment

The following may need to be sent

  • License Verification
  • Academic Criteria Document
  • Certification of Education

Counselor Career Outlook In Illinois

The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that the average counselor median salary is $34,690. The hourly wage is $16.68 per hour. The wage and the annual salary can change due to a different license an individual may hold. In addition, depending on where in the state and what type of counseling they provide can change the wage and salary amounts. Benefits and bonuses are all varied upon your specific career.

Research Additional Psychology Professional Licenses Granted by Illinois:

Schools with Degree Programs Accepting Students from Illinois