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Program FAQ

1. How long does it take to complete the program? 

In the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program, students can complete the program in two, two and a half, or three years. Most students in the CMHC program complete it in two and a half years. Students in the School Counseling program complete the program in two years. 

2. Can I work while I am in the program? 

Many of our students work part-time and maintain their family commitments while in the program. 

3. When are classes held? 

Classes are held Monday through Friday in the morning, afternoon, and evening. Students are usually on campus for classes three to four days per weeks. 

4. Are online classes available? 

Although the CMHC and School Counseling programs are in-person, some courses are hybrid and online. Students must live within driving distance for regular attendance and should expect to be on campus about three days per week.

5. Where do students complete their fieldwork placements? 

Both the Clinical Mental Health and School Counseling programs are affiliated with many counseling and school traineeship sites throughout Sonoma County and the greater bay area. 

In the spring semester of the CMHC students' first year, they attend a mandatory traineeship fair hosted by the Counseling Department. Here students have an opportunity to learn more about the various agencies that work with our trainees before beginning the process of applying to secure a traineeship. 

6. What is the time commitment for direct service experiences? 

For CMHC students, spring practicum involves approximately 15 hours per week in addition to other coursework. CMHC traineeship, usually completed in the second year of the program, involves a 17-22 hour a week commitment, in addition to other coursework. 

For School Counseling students, spring practicum (COUN 510B) involves approximately 8 hours per week during one full or two half days per week. For School Counseling students, advanced field placements (COUN 514AB) are completed during the second year of the program and involve approximately two and a half days per week. 

7. How does the CMHC program meet the educational requirements for licensure? 

The CMHC program meets the California Board of Behavioral Sciences educational requirements for the marriage and family therapy and professional clinical counselor licenses in California. The program also meets the licensing requirements set forth by the licensing bodies in other states. If you are seeking licensure in another state, it is your responsibility to understand the licensure requirements of that state. We recommend that you contact the state's licensing board to ensure our program meets the educational requirements. If you are admitted to the department as a student, we can help you. 

8. Is there a possibility of getting a PPS School Counseling credential without getting the master's degree? 

The PPS program can provide a credential-only option for students with a master's degree in counseling or a closely related field (i.e., social work). Education degrees do not apply to this option. However, due to space limitations, this option is not always available, so potential applicants are encouraged to check with the PPS Program Coordinator after the application cycle opens during the Fall semester. 

9. Is it possible to complete both the CMHC and School Counseling tracks?

Yes, occasionally we have students who complete a dual-track program. If you are considering both tracks, please contact the department to discuss the details of this option with a member of our faculty.