Education

The mission of the Counseling Program is to train individuals to become competent professional counselors. Students in the program will face a challenging environment that requires academic excellence and promotes ethical behavior. They will develop skills that will enable them to provide counseling services in a variety of settings.

The Master of Science in Education in Counseling is designed for students who are seeking a career working as a counselor in settings such as community agencies, government, private practice, and elementary, middle or secondary schools. The mission of the Quincy University Master's of Education in Counseling (MEC) program is to train individuals to become competent professional counselors. The program facilitates personal and professional growth via a combination of academic rigor, experiential learning, personal and professional reflection, and service to the community. The MEC program is committed to the development of counselors as ethical, reflective practitioners and Servant-Leaders, who exhibit an affinity for lifelong learning, a commitment to social justice, and an appreciation for the diverse world in which they live and practice.


Program Requirements:

  • 30 hours of core coursework: MEC 500, MEC 512, MEC 513, MEC 516, MEC 517, MEC 520, MEC 521, MEC 526, MEC 527, and MEC 528
  • Courses specifically required for the School Counseling emphasis: MEC 555, MEC 556, MEC 580, and MEC 590 (6 hours) plus 3 hours of electives (Typically MEC 531 or other elective approved by advisor)
  • Courses specifically required for the Clinical Mental Health Counseling emphasis: MEC 542, MEC 545, MEC 546, MEC 580, and MEC 581 (6 hours) plus 12 hours of electives (approved by advisor)

Tracks

  • Clinical Mental Health Counseling
  • School Counseling

Learning Format

The program is designed for non-traditional students. Classes normally meet one evening a week for three to four hours or in some cases for extended weekend sessions. Most students take two courses each semester, including summer. Students are expected to take a minimum of one course per year. If a student takes two courses each semester, it will take approximately 3 years to complete the program.

Licensure/Certification

The Counseling Program is designed to meet the core curriculum recommended by the Council on Accreditation of Counseling and Related Programs (CACREP). It also meets the criteria set forth by the State of Illinois Department of Professional and Financial Regulation for those seeking licensure as a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC).

Graduates with an emphasis in Community Counseling are eligible to take the examination to become Licensed Professional Counselors (LPC). Upon completion of required clinical experience, graduates are eligible to take the examination for licensure as Licensed Clinical Professional Counselors (LCPC).

The School Counseling track is approved by the Illinois State Board of Education, allowing Quincy University to recommend candidates for certification by entitlement in the area of School Counseling.

Accreditation

Quincy University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission, a commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, 30 N. LaSalle St., Suite 2400, Chicago, Illinois 60602-2504 (800.621.7440).

The Master of Science in Education program is approved by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE), 100 N. First St., Springfield, Illinois 62707-0001 (217.782.4330), to offer education programs for school counselor certification.

Course Descriptions

MEC 500 Professional Orientation, Legal, and Ethical Issues in Counseling
Credit Hours: 3
This course explores the professional identity of counselors, professional organizations, publications, school certification, and clinical licensure. The roles and expectations of counselors in various settings are examined. Students will also explore legal and ethical issues associated with the role of the professional counselor. Special attention will be paid to current ethical standards, ethical decision-making processes, and self-reflection regarding the affect of personal biases on the process of making sound ethical decisions.

MEC 512 Counseling Theory
Credit Hours: 3
This course provides an overview of current major counseling approaches. Emphasis is on both theory and application of the approaches covered. Method of instruction consists of lecture, class discussion, readings, videotapes, writings, case studies and role-playing. Having evaluated one's own basic values and the philosophical assumptions about the human person underlying each theory, the student will be able to choose and critically integrate major counseling perspectives into his or her own personal approach to counseling.

MEC 513 Counseling Techniques
Credit Hours: 3
The purpose of this course is to teach students basic counseling skills. The students will focus on developing and enhancing their skills to facilitate their ability to intervene effectively with their clients. Students will be encouraged to explore their own style of counseling and begin to integrate at least one theoretical orientation into their practice of counseling.

MEC 516 Human Growth and Development
Credit Hours: 3
The purpose of this course is to review basic concepts pertaining to human development across the lifespan including characteristics of the physical, cognitive and psychosocial changes that occur from birth through adulthood. Research methods that underlie the empirical study of human development are presented. Historical and cultural perspectives on childhood, adolescence, adulthood and aging are reviewed.

MEC 517 Research Design and Statistics
Credit Hours: 3
The purpose of this course is to engage students in the process of conceptualizing counseling research from inception through completion of a research study. Students will develop skills needed to analyze, evaluate, and generate counseling research studies. From the development of initial research questions to corresponding statistical analysis to research design, the promotion of students to become developers and critical consumers of counseling research will be a major focal point of the course.

MEC 520 Family Dynamics in Counseling
Credit Hours: 3
The purpose of this course is to examine theories and practice of family counseling. Students will begin to develop skills in working with families. The special ethical and legal issues involved with family counseling will also be covered.
Prerequisites: MEC 500, 512, 513, and 516 or consent of instructor.

MEC 521 Group Dynamics in Counseling
Credit Hours: 3
As a result of this course students will develop an understanding of group dynamics and the roles of group members. Group leadership skills will be developed. The uses of groups in schools and community settings will be explored. Special attention will be paid to the use of groups with children and adolescents. Prerequisites: MEC 500, 512, 513 or consent of instructor.

MEC 526 Appraisal of the Individual
Credit Hours: 3
The purpose of this course is to explore methods of assessing various attributes of a person. Methodology includes standardized assessment, measurements, individual and group testing, case studies, observations, interviews and rating scales. The course will focus on the development of a comprehensive framework for understanding the individual.

MEC 527 Social and Cultural Issues in Counseling
Credit Hours: 3
This course will examine the nature of cross-cultural counseling. Students will be asked to engage in critical self, peer, and systems analysis in terms of counseling in a multicultural context. Topics such as racial identity development, oppression dynamics, various cultural movements in the profession, and counseling techniques most appropriate for specifics cultures will be covered.

MEC 528 Lifestyle and Career Counseling
Credit Hours: 3
The purpose of this course is to examine theories of career development and occupational choices. Areas to be included are theories of career choices, career and lifestyle developments, development and career choice, sources of information regarding careers and educational information and opportunities, resume writing and portfolio development.
Prerequisites: MEC 500, 512, 513 or consent of instructor.

MEC 531 Counseling Children and Adolescents
Credit Hours: 3
The purpose of this course is to examine the various psychological problems of childhood and adolescents. Various developmental perspectives on child and adolescent growth and possible resultant difficulties will be discussed. Special attention will be paid to system and environmental issues. The students will develop counseling skills needed in working with children, adolescents and their families. Prerequisites: MEC 500 and 516 or consent of instructor.

MEC 541 Substance Abuse Counseling
Credit Hours: 3
The purpose of this course is to examine chemical, psychological and treatment aspects of drug use, abuse and dependency. The effects of substance abuse on family members will be discussed. Skills in assessment, diagnosis and treatment approaches will be developed during this course. Alternative perspectives on the etiology and treatment of substance abusing individuals will also be covered. Prerequisites: MEC 500, 512, and 513 or consent of instructor.

MEC 545 Psychopathology
Credit Hours: 3
The purpose of this course is to cover the etiology, diagnosis, treatment planning, and prevention of mental and emotional disorders and dysfunctional behavior. Models for assessing mental status and identifying abnormal, deviant or psychopathological behavior will be discussed. Focus will be placed on diagnostic categories currently identified in the DSM IV-TR.
Prerequisites: MEC 500, 512, 513, 516 and 527 or consent of instructor.

MEC 546 Diagnostics and Treatment Planning
Credit Hours: 3
In this course, students will learn how to utilize the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) to develop diagnostic impressions and appropriate treatment plans to meet the needs of their clients. Students will also be introduced to psychopharmacology as it relates to specific mental disorders represented in the DSM.
Prerequisites: MEC 545 or consent of instructor.

MEC 555 Counseling and Consulting in the Schools I
Credit Hours: 3
The purpose of this course is to provide students with a broad overview of the school counseling profession, including the history of the profession, and the roles and functions of the professional school counselor. Students will study and understand the process of planning, developing, implementing, and evaluating school counseling programs that are comprehensive, preventive and developmental in nature, data-driven, and responsive to the academic, vocational, and personal-social needs of all students. Special emphasis will be placed on the components of the ASCA national model, including program foundation and systems for program management, accountability, and delivery. Multicultural considerations and legal and ethical issues will be addressed throughout the course. (Formerly MEC 515)

MEC 556 Counseling and Consulting in the Schools II
Credit Hours: 3
This course is a continuation of MEC 555, and will serve as an advanced techniques course for school counselors-in-training. Particular attention will be paid to developing individual and group counseling techniques and processes, as well as consultation models and methods. Students will research and study issues common to K-12 students, as well as learn best practices for effective, developmentally appropriate intervention. Students will also be provided with experiential activities in the use of data and technology for assessing school/student needs, developing responsive programming and interventions, and evaluating outcomes. Multicultural considerations and legal and ethical issues will be addressed throughout the course.
Prerequisites: MEC 513, MEC 521, or instructor permission (Formerly MEC 515)

MEC 570-2 Special Topics in Clinical Mental Health Counseling
Credit Hours: 1
The purpose of special topics is to acquaint the students and community members with aspects of counseling to which students need exposure but the subject matter does not warrant a three-semester hour course. Some special topics in clinical mental health counseling have been Assertiveness Training, Human Sexuality and Evidence Based Practice. These topics may be repeated and/or new "special topics" may replace some of the titles listed. May be taken for a maximum of 3 credit hours.

MEC 575-7 Special Topics in School Counseling
Credit Hours: 1
The purpose of special topics is to acquaint the students and community members with aspects of counseling to which students need exposure but the subject matter does not warrant a three semester hour course. The content of each may be repeated and/or new "special topics" may replace some course content for a maximum of 3 credit hours. May be taken for a maximum of 3 credit hours.

MEC 580 Counseling Practicum
Credit Hours: 3
This course will consist of supervised school counseling experience involving counseling with individuals and groups of school-aged children or supervised clinical mental health counseling experiences involving interaction with individuals, families or groups. In this 100 hour practicum experience, a minimum of 40 hours will involve direct service work with clients/students. The remainder of the hours may include indirect site experiences indicative of other professional counselors in that setting. Certified school counselors will provide field supervision of practicum students in the school counseling emphasis. Licensed mental health professionals will provide field supervision of practicum students in the clinical mental health counseling emphasis.
Prerequisites: All core counseling coursework completed or permission of Counseling Program Director

MEC 590 Counseling Internship
Credit Hours: 3-6
This course is intended to provide advanced clinical training for school and clinical mental health counseling students in a setting specific to their chosen counseling emphasis (i.e., school or clinical mental health). Students are required to complete 600 clock-hours of internship with 240 hours (40%) of direct client/student service. Clinical/school sites must be approved by the faculty supervisor of record. Only an approved certified school counselor may provide supervision to school counseling interns. Only an approved licensed mental health professional may provide clinical supervision to clinical mental health counseling interns. Students typically take 3 credit hours of internship per semester. In extraordinary circumstances, up to 6 credit hours may be taken with approval of clinical faculty supervisor. Prerequisite: MEC 580.

MEC 505 Advanced Legal and Ethical Issues in Counseling
Credit Hours: 3
The purpose of this course is to explore the complexity of ethical and legal considerations specifically related to the practice of counseling (e.g., confidentiality, professional liability, privileged communication, informed consent, etc.). Students will engage in ethical decision-making processes to derive solutions to counseling ethical dilemmas.
Prerequisites: MEC 500, MEC 512, MEC 513, MEC 521

MEC 530 Counseling and the Creative Arts
This course is intended as an introduction to integrating creative and expressive arts into counseling practice. Students will learn to utilize creative activities in various stages of the counseling process, including assessment, intervention, and outcome evaluation. Students will be given the opportunity to develop, present, and demonstrate therapeutic activities using the creative mediums of music, dance/movement, visual arts, literature, and drama. Special attention will be given to integrating creative activities into counseling plans in a way that is intentional, empirically supported, and developmentally appropriate.

MEC 510 Introduction to Counseling Supervision
The purpose of this course is to prepare counselors for future roles as effective supervisors in school and clinical mental health settings. Theories of counseling supervision, and their applications to practice, will be explored.
Prerequisites: MEC 500, MEC 512, MEC 513, MEC 521, MEC 526, MEC 580

MEC 540 Servant-Leadership and Advocacy in the Counseling Profession
This course intends to provide opportunities for counselors-in-training to develop as servant-leaders within their chosen profession. Students will engage in community-based service activities, professional advocacy initiatives, professional leadership roles, and community development activities intended to promote an active service-oriented agenda befitting a professional counselor.

MEC 551 Advanced Counseling Theory Seminar
This course serves as an advanced seminar in counseling theory. Students will have the opportunity to explore, in depth, a "school" of counseling theory that they believe best represents their own views of human development. Students, through experiential activities, will have opportunities to challenge their chosen theoretical orientation in both in and out of class. Students will also be challenged to write professionally on topics related to their chosen theoretical orientation.
Prerequisites: MEC 512, MEC 513

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