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School Counseling

The M.Ed. in School Counseling program prepares candidates for rewarding careers in school-or community-based counseling, college readiness, career guidance, or transitional services.

Featuring a dynamic combination of course work and field work, the M.Ed. in School Counseling will empower you to confidently meet the needs of today’s youth.

Our program is designed with both recent college graduates and experienced practitioners in mind. It is ideal for human development or social service professionals, and career changers who wish to work in school environments. Current teachers, social workers and master’s degree holders may be able to customize their program to meet their needs.

About our program

Our program offers an accessible yet rigorous curriculum aligned with Massachusetts licensure requirements and the American School Counselors Association standards. Built on a foundation of theoretical understanding, the program progresses to a predominantly field based experience. You’ll complete 44 credit hours of classroom-based learning and 575 hours of field experience working in a school setting (field experience includes a full year practicum for 4 credits). You will learn from experienced faculty and develop the rich understanding of varied backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives you need to work with diverse youth populations.

An ongoing, progressively intense field experience requirement is the hallmark of our program. Through 75 hours of pre-practicum and 500 hours of field experience in schools and community-based organizations, you will develop a valuable, more holistic understanding of the school counseling profession.

This program is approved by the Massachusetts Department of Education for guidance counselor licensure for grades K-8 and 5-12.

Benefits of the M.Ed. in School Counseling Program

  • Prepare for your career in school- or community-based counseling with rigorous core courses and rich field experiences
  • Meet the Massachusetts requirements for endorsement for this license upon graduation
  • Develop a holistic counseling approach built on our values of diversity, community engagement, and social justice
  • Put course work into real-world practice through a choice of engaging field work settings
  • Pursue your desired role in school-based counseling, college readiness, or community services
  • Choose from full- or part-time tracks

Follow Your Path to a Career That Makes a Difference

U.S. News & World Report recently included school counseling on its 100 Best Jobs list. By 2022, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that the field will see nearly a 12 percent increase in demand—resulting in over 31,000 new job openings. School counselors continue to be drawn into the field by the satisfaction of working with youth from elementary school through college entry, and watching them achieve. The program is not only focused on school based counseling, graduates will also have the skills and knowledge competencies to work in the field of community services and higher education advising and student support.

Program Format

Courses are offered in the evenings to accommodate students who work or intern during the day. By choosing from our full- or part-time schedules, you can complete your degree at a pace that works for you:

  • Full-time students can complete our program in two years. This option is ideal for human development or social service professionals, or career changers who wish to work in school environments.
  • Part-time students can complete our program in three or more years. This option is designed for current teachers or social workers, or master’s degree holders who need course or field work for a school guidance license.

Admission Requirements

  • A Bachelor’s degree in Human Development, Psychology, or related major is required. Individuals with other majors may request a transcript audit to determine if their course work meets the minimum course content in: Introduction to human development or psychology; Human behavior; Developmental psychology (Ex. child development, adolescent development, lifespan); and Research or statistics.
  • Passing scores on MTEL communication tests (both reading and writing)
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Personal statement
  • Possible interview

 Check Out Our Program Brochure


For questions about the program, contact the Office of Graduate Studies at or 978-837-3563.

Take it to the next level - the graduate level - at Merrimack.