Education PhD, Counseling Emphasis

Admission Requirements

In addition to meeting the application and admissions requirements of the Graduate School, students must submit: 

  • Three letters of recommendation (at least two from individuals with earned doctorates, preferably prior instructors). 
  • A copy of a paper you have written on a scholarly topic, as a writing sample.
  • A professional resume. 
  • Evidence of above-average academic records. A GPA of 3.5 or higher is preferred.
  • GRE scores. Quantitative and verbal scores at or above the 50th percentile are preferred. An analytical writing score of 4.0 or higher is preferred.
  • Answers to these three questions (limit responses to 300 words or less per question), sent to
    • How do you envision the UMSL doctoral program preparing you to meet your career goals?
    • What are your experiences working with diverse populations and what you have learned from these experiences?
    • What personal qualities do you possess that relate to your interest in doctoral education in counseling?

Admission is competitive, and a favorable vote of an admission interview committee, composed of faculty in the emphasis area, is required.

Degree Program

  • Coursework: A minimum of 60 credit hours is required beyond the Master’s degree, including 6 hours of dissertation research. A minimum of 42 of these hours must be completed in residence. 
  • Dissertation: All students must defend orally a written dissertation proposal to their dissertation committee. A dissertation embodying the results of original research must be accepted by the dissertation committee and the Graduate School.

Admission Application

To ensure time for review and decision, applicants should submit the Graduate School application, college transcripts, and any program-specific materials (e.g. supplemental application, letters of recommendation, etc.) well in advance of the December 1st deadline. Please note that unofficial transcripts can be uploaded with the Graduate School application to expedite admissions decisions; however, official transcripts must be received directly from all prior institutions attended before regular admission to any program will be granted. In addition, applicants are urged to request transcripts and letters or recommendation two weeks before completing the online application. Consideration of applications cannot be undertaken until all materials are available.

Degree Requirements

Students in the Counseling emphasis area complete the following requirements:

Research Methods (21 hours)
ED REM 6710Educational Research Methods and Design 13
CNS ED 7020Seminar in Counseling Research3
CNS ED 7025Advanced Counseling Research3
ED REM 7771Quantitative Research Methods I3
ED REM 7781Qualitative Methods in Educational Research I3
One of the following:3
Quantitative Research Methods II
Qualitative Methods in Educational Research II
One of the following:3
Educational Program Development and Evaluation
Quantitative Research Methods II (if not taken above)
Qualitative Methods in Educational Research II (if not taken above)
Counseling Core (57 hours)
CNS ED 6010Theories of Counseling 13
CNS ED 6020Ethical and Professional Issues in Counseling 13
CNS ED 6030Foundations for Multicultural Counseling 13
CNS ED 6040Group Procedures in Counseling 13
CNS ED 6050Individual Inventory 13
CNS ED 6270School Counseling Practicum 13
or CNS ED 6370 Clinical Mental Health Counseling Practicum I
CNS ED 6280School Counseling Field Experience 16
or CNS ED 6380 Clinical Mental Health Counseling Field Experience
CNS ED 6400Career Information and Development 13
CNS ED 6410Advanced Career Development3
CNS ED 7000Advanced Theories and Practice of Counseling6
CNS ED 7010Advanced Multicultural Counseling3
CNS ED 7030Counselor Education and Supervision of Individuals and Groups6
CNS ED 7075Teaching, Learning, and Technology in Counselor Education3
ED PSY 6210Life-Span: Individual and Family Development 13
CNS ED 7780Doctoral Internship6
Dissertation Research
EDUC 7999Dissertation Research6
Total Hours90

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the program, graduates will be able to: 

  • Demonstrate and apply the ethical and culturally relevant practice of counseling
  • Be adept at conceptualizing clients using theory and integrating theory and research into counseling practice
  • Demonstrate skills in the process and practice of clinical supervision and consultation, including the use of theory, assessment, gatekeeping, and ethical and culturally relevant strategies
  • Develop skills in teaching, including course design, assessment, andragogy, differentiation, and gatekeeping.
  • Demonstrate the ethical practice of conducting rigorous and intentionally designed counseling research.
  • Develop and refine scholarship skills through advanced qualitative and quantitative coursework to be able to disseminate findings through professional presentations or publications
  • Demonstrate abilities to serve as leaders in the field and advocates for the profession, for clients, and with marginalized populations to stand up against issues of systemic inequity