MA in Counseling Psychology vs. MA in Clinical Mental Health Counseling

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Postdoctoral Fellow
10+ Year Member
Nov 17, 2008
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What is the difference between these two degrees? I know the curriculum may vary by school, but both degrees seem to be pretty similar. Are there any differences in job titles and/or income between the two? Any clarification at all between the two would be awesome. Additional information would be beneficial if anyone could help.

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Based on degree names, I would suspect the CMHC degree may be designed for those wanting to deal with a more clinical population; whereas a degree in counseling psych is more subclinical. Just a guess, though...
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Depending on the state licensing laws, both degrees could lead to a LPC or LMHC license. However, I know that this is not always the case. For instance, Western Michigan University has a Masters in CMHC and a Masters in Counseling Psychology. The CMHC degree leads to a licensing as a LPC, which has the ability to see clients privately after enough gaining enough post-graduate clinical hours. The Coun. Psych. degree, on the other hand, leads to a licensing as a Limited License Psychologist... which means that you can see clients, but can never do it in private practice.

I'm sure that it varies by state, and by degree program. As always check your state's counseling requirements before you chose any degree program for counseling.
MA in Counseling Psychology vs. MA in Clinical Mental Health Counseling is not same. If you are a MA in Counseling Psychology, you may work as a counselor of student or staff. But if you are a MA in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, you should work in hospital or clinic.

It's not as subjective as you make it seem. In fact, I have never heard of one degree in counseling catering to counseling students or staff, or one only leading to working in hospitals or clinics. It is a wide open career field with many different options.

There are many degrees in Counseling Psychology that lead to the same career and license eligibility as degrees in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. It all depends on whether or not a program meets a state's educational requirements for working as a professional counselor. Many Masters degrees in Counseling Psychology do not... but are usually attended by students who will be working toward their PhD and a license as a Licensed Psychologist. However, this is not always the case.
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