Master of Science in Education in Counseling


The M.S.Ed. degree program consists of classes focused on developing a variety of skills and strategies that students will be able to utilize as they pursue counseling careers in schools, communities, hospitals, private sectors, and higher education institutions. Students will learn the necessary tools that counselors use in their daily practice and will be able to apply their learned techniques through hands-on experiences. We offer two specializations in our counseling department: 

School Counseling

Clinical Mental Health Counseling

Each specialty is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) as a 60-semester-hour program including:

  • 36 hours in the core curriculum
  • 15 hours in a chosen area of study (clinical mental health or school counseling)
  • 9 semester hours in supervised practicum (100 clock hours) and internship (600 clock hours)

Graduates of both areas of specialty are immediately eligible to sit for the National Counselor Examination (NCE). This exam is generally taken through NIU during the final semester of internship. 

Graduates of both areas of specialty are qualified to apply to become a Licensed Professional Counselors (LPC) in the state of Illinois.  The NCE exam is the first step to starting a career as a professional counselor.

Graduates of the school counseling specialty are also eligible to apply for the Illinois Professional Educator License (PEL) with School Counselor endorsement. This license is acknowledgment of the completion of school training and allows for an individual to work in a P-12 school environment. If a student is not teacher certified additional coursework may be required to meet state requirements.

The M.S.Ed program has been designed to meet the needs of a diverse body of degree-seeking students. The majority of our classes are offered at night to serve the working population of our students. The main campus is in DeKalb, but classes are also available at our satellite sites in Rockford, Naperville, and Hoffman Estates. Our program takes pride in helping students move swiftly through the program whether on the full or part-time course of study. Faculty and staff are also on-hand to assist students with coursework, internship, practicum, and assistantships. We believe it is important for students and faculty to have a collaborative relationship to enhance the student’s experience in the master’s program.

More information: