How to Become a Licensed Counselor in Ohio

How Do I Become a Counselor in Ohio?

If you’re considering a career as a counselor in Ohio, there are a lot of great benefits: helping people, improving lives, a plethora of opportunities and excellent pay. The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services estimates that mental health counselor jobs alone will grow 23.6 percent through the year 2020. Counselors in the state are very much in demand, which means they’re being offered very competitive salaries – with averages reaching far beyond the national average.

What Are the Requirements to Become a Counselor in Ohio?

The foundation of any successful career is education, and in the state of Ohio, this is one of the requirements. Also required are some supervised experience which provides you with the confidence and knowledge you need to provide the best help. You will also need to pass a board-approved examination testing your knowledge of the industry.

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 first obtain at least a master’s degree in counseling or a closely related program. The program should be accredited by a highly recognized accreditation agency such as the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). It must include at least 60 semester hours and must include topics like clinical psychopathology, evaluation of mental and emotional disorders, diagnosis of mental and emotional disorders, etc. The full list of required topics can be found in section 4757.22 of the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker and Marriage and Family Therapist Board Laws and Rules.

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What Are the Supervised Experience Requirements to Become a Counselor in Ohio?

The level of supervised experience you must accumulate depends upon your highest degree. If you have obtained a master’s degree, you will need to complete 2 full years of supervised experience with counseling in a healthcare or private practice setting. However, if you have obtained a doctor’s degree, you will need only 1 year of experience. This should take place under the supervision of a licensed professional counselor in Ohio.

What are the Examination Requirements to Become a Counselor in the State of Ohio?

The examinations accepted by the board include the National Counselor Examination (NCE) and the National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Examination (NCMHCE) both administered by the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC). The NCE is a general counseling examination which is held in high esteem across the industry while the NCMHCE is for the purposes of licensing a professional clinical counselor.

Note: For more information on how to become a counselor in the state of Ohio, please visit the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker and Marriage and Family Therapist Board.

Counseling Career Outlook In Ohio

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that as of May 2011, there were 3,900 mental health counselors working in the state of Ohio. There were also 4,340 rehabilitation counselors and 2,080 substance abuse counselors. These professionals’ annual median salaries ranged from $40,130 to $45,040. This is significantly higher than the national average, and pay will also be dependent upon your location within the state as well as your level of experience.

Schools with Degree Programs Accepting Students from Ohio

Additional Resources for Ohio Applicants: