How to Become a Licensed Counselor in Utah
How Do I Become a Professional Counselor in Utah?
Whether you’ve always been a great listener, you have a knack for giving good advice or you simply feel the need to form a career around empowering and helping other people, counseling could be the answer. Utah’s education and health industry grows more than 2% each year, according to the Utah Department of Workforce Services, and with a blossoming counseling industry, it’s a great state to study and practice.
What Are the Requirements to Become a Counselor in Utah?
To become a substance abuse counselor, you need only obtain an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in counseling. However, if your ultimate goal is to practice independently, you will want to obtain Clinical Mental Health Counselor education and training. This requires a master’s or doctorate degree in the field of counseling, and the program should be accredited by The Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). This program will likely consist of 60 semester hours and will cover topics such as social and cultural diversity, human growth and development, various mental disorders, etc.
|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|
What Are the Supervised Experience Requirements to Become a Counselor in Utah?
Utah law (Clinical Mental Health Counselor Licensing Act Rule) requires that you gain at least 1,000 hours of supervised experience, part of which can consist of an internship you participate in while earning your degree. At least 400 of those hours should consist of providing mental health therapy to actual clients.
What Are the Examination Requirements to Become a Counselor in Utah?
After you have gained the necessary experience, it’s time to prove your knowledge and earn your license by taking the required examinations. To obtain your license, you will need a passing score on the National Counselor Examination (NCE) and the National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Examination (NCMHCE), both of which are administered by the National Board for Certified Counselors. The NCE is a general test that says you’re ready for counseling and you’ve gained the necessary knowledge while the NCMHCE measures your clinical mental health knowledge and verifies your experience on a more specialized level.
Note: To learn more about how to become a counselor in Utah, please visit the Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing.
Counseling Career Outlook In Utah
The Bureau of Labor Statistics has reported that as of May 2011, there were 750 mental health counselors occupied in the state of Utah. Those counselors earned an annual median salary of $48,850. This is on the level with the national average, and individuals can gain a higher rate of pay depending on where in the state of Utah they live as well as how much experience they have gathered.