Clinical Mental Health Counseling (MA)


Program Details

The Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling is designed to meet the educational requirements for licensure as a professional school and clinical counselor. Students in the clinical counseling program benefit from direct service counseling activities with individuals and/or groups, supervised activities in the area of diagnosis and treatment of mental and emotional disorders and face-to-face meetings with on-site PCC licensed supervisors. With a flexible curriculum based in the Jesuit tradition, Xavier shapes students into trustworthy, ethical, problem-solving school and clinical counselors.


We invite applications from students with a bachelor's degree and a solid academic background. You may begin the program in the summer, fall, or spring term.

To apply for official acceptance as a degree-seeking student, submit the following application materials online to the Office of Graduate Admission:

  • Completed online application (choose Counseling, then Clinical Mental Health)
  • One official transcript of all undergraduate and graduate work from accredited colleges or universities.
  • A resume.
  • A five hundred word minimum statement of purpose for graduate study.
  • Two letters of reference from individuals commenting on the applicant's academic/professional potential.
  • (Optional) Official test scores from the Miller Analogies Test (MAT) or the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). If you have previously taken the GRE and want to have your scores sent to Xavier, please contact GRE at 1-888-GRE-SCORE.

Applicants should have a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or above. If you do not have a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or above, taking the MAT or GRE may increase your chances of admittance. The following scores are recommended for each test:

  • MAT: Score of 390 or above
  • GRE: Score of 4.0 or above on the analytical section of the test.

Application deadlines are:

  • Spring Semester: October 1
  • Summer Semester: February 1
  • Fall Semester: February 1

Faculty will review the pool of applications after each of these dates and will then invite selected candidates to an on-campus interview to continue the application process.

Fully Accredited

The Clinical Mental Health Counseling program is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). The accreditation runs through March 31, 2031.


Group I

Total Hours............ 16cr.

  • COUN 501 Lifespan Development
  • COUN 533 Counseling Theories and Techniques
  • COUN 536 Group Process
  • COUN 579 Psychological and Achievement Testing
  • COUN 630 Intro to Mental Health Counseling
  • COUN 636 Career Counseling

Group II

Total Hours............ 11cr.

  • COUN 509 Counseling Research Methods
  • COUN 631 Counseling Issues and Ethics
  • COUN 638 Cross Cultural Counseling
  • COUN 640 Family Relations
  • COUN 669 Pre-Practicum/Counseling Lab

Group III

Total Hours............ 14cr.

  • COUN 642 Consultation and Supervision
  • COUN 765 Crisis Counseling
  • COUN 767 Treating Addictive Disorders
  • COUN 773 Counseling Practicum
  • 3 Elective Hours

Group IV

Total Hours............ 19cr.

  • COUN 671 Counseling Internship
  • COUN 760 Personality and Abnormal Behavior
  • COUN 762 Clinical and Personality Assessment
  • COUN 763 Diagnosis of Psychopathology
  • COUN 764 Counseling and Psychotherapy
  • COUN 766 Intervention Skills for the Severely Mentally Disabled

Sample Courses

Lifespan Development - COUN 501 - 3 credit hours - Lifespan Development involves the study of the nature and needs of individuals at all developmental levels. Knowledge and comprehension of issues of human adjustment faced at all stages of development from conception through retirement are addressed through the application of psychological principles in the field of counseling.

Counseling Issues and Ethics - COUN 631 - 2 credit hours - This course is designed to increase awareness of complexities present in counselor practice and to teach a process of ethical decision-making. In addition, the student will learn ethical and legal responsibilities of the counselor and the counseling profession.

Personality and Abnormal Behavior - COUN 760 - 3 credit hours - A study of the dynamics of the disturbed personality, symptoms, causes, treatment of psychoneuroses, psychoses, and abnormal personalities. Emphasis is placed on psychopathological conditions related to children, adolescents, young and middle-life adults, and the aged.

Counseling Practicum - COUN 773 - This practicum experience involves completing recorded interviews with bona fide clients and producing appropriate client reports and student self-evaluation forms. Students must complete a total of 40 clock hours of counseling sessions with approximately four clients, 8 hours of which must be recorded for supervisor review. Students will also be expected to lead a group counseling experience.

Tuition and Fees

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Practical and Field Experience

Exterior of Cincinnati Children's Hospital, a place where clinical counseling students can gain field experience

The Ohio Counselor, Social Worker, Marriage and Family Therapist Board requires that a minimum of 600 clock hours of supervised clinical counseling experience in an on-site setting be completed as part of the student's master's program. Xavier's program is designed to meet this requirement by offering four semester hours of internship activities.

Ethical and Professional Standards

Student earning their masters in clinical counseling learning in a classroom

Xavier's clinical counseling program's curriculum is founded in the Jesuit learning tradition, which emphasizes holistic, individualized care and focuses on ethical and professional standards within the field of clinical counseling. Courses focus on applying the theories of psychology to real-world situations.

Flexible Scheduling

Students in the clinical counseling program walking on campus

Since a majority of students in the clinical counseling program are employed, class and curricular offerings are scheduled in the late afternoon, evenings and weekends to accommodate student schedules.

Master of Arts in Counseling at Xavier

Clinical Mental Health Counseling (MA) Program at Xavier University

The Counseling Department, consistent with the mission of Xavier University, seeks to prepare individuals to serve as professional, multiculturally-competent and ethical school and clinical counselors in diverse practice environments. Our CACREP accredited programs emphasize service- learning, social justice, theory and evidence-based practice in both course work and practical experience. Students will identify with the counseling profession in general and actively participate in appropriate professional groups and professional development activities associated with the field, understand and demonstrate ethical behaviors in all domains with their counseling activities and so much more.

Xavier University's College of Professional Sciences prepares undergraduate and graduate students intellectually, morally and spiritually for careers and professions of service. CPS challenges students to strive for academic excellence and life-long learning through promoting collaboration and community partnerships, and incorporating research, scholarship and innovation.

Xavier University is a private university located in Cincinnati, Ohio, providing a liberal arts education in the Jesuit Catholic tradition. Founded in 1831, the University is the sixth-oldest Catholic university in the nation. It has been ranked among the top 10 master's-level universities in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report for the past two decades. The Princeton Review names it one of the "Best 385 Colleges in America."