Master of Arts (M.A.) in School Counseling


Program Details

Why Earn Your School Counseling Master’s Degree at Xavier?

Become a skilled, trusted school counselor with Xavier University’s Master of Arts (M.A.) in School Counseling degree program. Rooted in the Jesuit tradition, our approach to graduate education prepares you to serve with compassion and professionalism in diverse K-12 school counseling environments.

In our master’s in school counseling program, you participate in traditional classroom courses once a week with flexible weekend and evening schedules. You also take clinical internships to develop your theoretical and practical expertise. With the skills you gain, you graduate equipped to attend to student needs, operate ethically and effectively, and build a strong community.

Gain Transformative Clinical Experience

As a school counselor, you guide students through their academic and personal development. During your program, you acquire valuable clinical experience by working with students in various school settings and putting your theoretical knowledge into practice. While partnering with skilled faculty, you draw from their years of experience and create your personalized approach to supporting young learners.

Direct Pathway to Licensure

Our master’s in school counseling program helps students get career-ready by creating direct routes to licensure. While each state has its requirements for applying for and granting school counseling certification, our school counseling program meets the course requirements for Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana, along with numerous other states, which allows you to smoothly transition from graduate school to working in schools with students.


Xavier believes your unique educational background informs your critical work as a school counselor. No matter the subject area of your bachelor’s degree, we invite you to submit your application and continue building a solid academic foundation.

We allow you to begin the program in the summer, fall or spring term to accommodate your schedule. Application deadlines for the master’s in school counseling program are as follows:

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

After each of these deadlines, our dedicated faculty reviews the application pool and invites selected candidates to an on-campus interview to continue the application process.


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 résumé.
  • A 500-word minimum statement explaining your purpose for graduate study.
  • Two letters of reference from individuals commenting on your academic/professional potential.
  • (Optional) Official test scores from the Miller Analogies Test (MAT) or the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). If you previously took the GRE and want your scores sent to Xavier, please contact GRE at 1-888-GRE-SCORE.
  • You should have a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or above. Taking the MAT or GRE may increase your chances of admittance if you do not have a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or above. 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.


At Xavier University, we believe in nurturing the next generation of competent and compassionate school counselors. Our school counseling master's program equips you with the knowledge, skills and practical experience needed to make a meaningful impact on the lives of students, families and communities.

As an up-and-coming school counselor, you receive training in the three primary ways of helping students: counseling, consulting and coordinating.

  • Counseling is a complex helping process in which the counselor establishes a trusting and confidential working relationship. It focuses on problem-solving, decision-making, and discovering personal meaning related to learning and development.
  • Consultation is a cooperative process in which the counselor-consultant assists others to think through problems and to develop skills that make them more effective in working with students.
  • Coordination is a leadership process in which the counselor helps organize and manage a school's counseling program and related services.

Thoughtfully crafted, our integrative curriculum empowers you to grow in these core areas and more. You gain essential theoretical knowledge to help you understand children’s development, cross-cultural counseling and ethical best practices while building an effective, practical skill set in student assessment and evaluation, counseling techniques and crisis intervention.

With our holistic school counseling curriculum, you undergo transformative professional growth, refining your interpersonal skills, expertise and commitment to your students.

Group I (17 credits)

  • COUN 501 Lifespan Development
  • COUN 533 Counseling Theories and Techniques
  • COUN 536 Group Process
  • COUN 537 Intro to School Counseling
  • COUN 579 Psychological and Achievement Testing
  • COUN 636 Career Counseling

Group II (14 credits)

  • COUN 538 Advanced School Counseling
  • COUN 631 Counseling Issues and Ethics
  • COUN 638 Cross-Cultural Counseling
  • COUN 640 Family Relations
  • COUN 639 Substance Use and Prevention
  • COUN 669 Pre-Practicum/Counseling Lab

Group III (12 credits)

  • EDAD 565 School Law I
  • COUN 502 Intro to College Counseling
  • COUN 503 Crisis Intervention in Schools
  • COUN 540 School Culture
  • COUN 773 Counseling Practicum

Group IV (17 credits)

  • EDSP 500 Special Education: Identification & Issues
  • COUN 509 Counseling Research Methods
  • COUN 539 Child Psychopathology
  • COUN 670 Counseling Internship
  • Five elective hours

Sample Courses

  • COUN 501: Lifespan Development - This course explores the nature and needs of individuals at all developmental levels, learning theory and personality development, normal and abnormal behavior, and lifespan transitions.
  • COUN 533: Counseling Theories & Tech - Throughout this class, you receive a comprehensive overview of essential counseling theories and clinical procedures, case methods, ethics, relationships to testing and other data sources, and more.
  • COUN 537: Intro to School Counseling - Dive into an introductory course and explore the practicalities and logistics of school counseling, including administrative operations related to school counseling services, personnel and staffing, budget and public relations.
  • COUN 642: Consultation and Supervision - This course offers a full review of the historical development of consultation and consultation models and the application of theoretical material to case presentations. Additionally, you learn supervision techniques, strategies and the ethical responsibilities of supervisors in a counseling setting.

Tuition and Fees

At Xavier, students can pursue their M.A. in School Counseling cost-effectively. We offer a range of financial aid offerings to help students navigate the costs of earning a graduate degree.

Have questions along the way? Our dedicated staff supports students through the process of financial assistance, ensuring they have all the information necessary.

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Experiential Internships

Student in the masters in school counseling program working with children

Because effective school counselors rely on strong interpersonal skills and practical knowledge, Xavier ensures you have plenty of opportunities to build your expertise. During your program, you complete a 600-hour internship under the supervision of a current school counselor. This essential training helps you connect classroom concepts to real-world applications, preparing you to transition directly into a school counseling role after graduation.

CACREP-Accredited Program

A school counselor talking with a student athlete across a desk

At Xavier, we strive to provide you with a high-quality education that helps you graduate career-ready. Our school counseling program is fully accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). With this distinguished accreditation, we ensure you receive comprehensive training and acquire the necessary skills to support students of all backgrounds.

Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP)

Flexible Course Schedules

Graduate of the masters in school counseling program standing in front of a business

As graduate students, you and your peers have diverse needs and often balance work and personal obligations with your education. To accommodate your varied schedules, Xavier delivers class and curricular offerings once a week in the late afternoon, evenings and weekends, ensuring you can participate without sacrificing your careers.

Careers with a Master’s Degree in School Counseling

As our educational systems grow and children’s needs evolve, well-trained and qualified school counselors are essential to students' academic and personal success. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects the employment of school counselors to increase by 5% each year, resulting in more than 26,000 jobs annually through 2032.

On average, school counselors earn an annual wage of $60,140; however, the salary range can span from $38,280 to $98,530 based on the type of facility, school district, level of education and experience, or state.

Master of Arts (M.A.) in School Counseling Program at Xavier University

Xavier University’s Master of Arts in School Counseling program offers an immersive graduate education, allowing you to gain transformative clinical experience, work one-on-one with students and expand your theoretical expertise. With the comprehensive training you receive, you graduate well-prepared to serve students from all backgrounds, providing guidance, compassion and support to overcome any challenges that come their way. Ready to help cultivate a safe, inclusive learning environment? Begin your application for our M.A. in School Counseling program today.

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."