Master of Science in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling

The rehabilitation and mental health counseling program, fully accredited by the Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE) since 1975, and dually accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Programs (CACREP), is designed to prepare students to function as rehabilitation and/or clinical mental health counselors for persons with a variety of needs including mental health issues impacting the individual and/or family, and persons with physical or mental disabilities to address psychosocial and vocational adjustment. The program is grounded in a strengths-based philosophy of client empowerment where the counselor’s role is to assist individuals to realize their optimum level of mental health and personal wellness, including vocational adjustment and independent living. This is done through the use of a variety of therapeutic interventions, including individual, group and/or family counseling, diagnosis, case management, the provision or coordination of evaluation, training, placement, and follow-up services. The demand for rehabilitation and clinical mental health counselors has exceeded the supply in recent years in public, private, nonprofit, and for-profit sectors.

Core graduate courses provide the basic knowledge and skills necessary to the fields of rehabilitation and mental health counseling. These include counseling theory, rehabilitation and mental health counseling principles and practices with an emphasis on psychiatric rehabilitation, individual and group counseling, assessment in rehabilitation and mental health counseling, diagnosis of mental disorders, evidence-based treatment of mental disorders, job placement, medical and psychosocial aspects of disability, human growth, career development, and research methods.

Concurrently, fieldwork of progressively increasing complexity takes place at a variety of community-based mental health and rehabilitation sites in the Chicago area. These include mental health and counseling centers, community rehabilitation facilities, the state department of vocational rehabilitation, rehabilitation centers, mental health centers, medical hospitals, and other facilities for persons with mental health concerns and/or disabilities.

This is a two-year, 60 credit hour program.

Curriculum

Required Courses (42)
PSYC 410Introduction to Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling3
PSYC 411Medical Aspects of Disabling Conditions3
PSYC 412Multicultural and Psychosocial Issues in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling3
PSYC 513Assessment in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling3
PSYC 523Theories of Psychotherapy3
PSYC 526Psychopathology3
PSYC 547Evidence-Based Practice in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling3
PSYC 557Pre-Practicum in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling3
PSYC 561Applied Counseling Techniques: Group Counseling3
PSYC 562Job Placement3
PSYC 563Human Growth and Career Development3
PSYC 564Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling Research Seminar3
PSYC 583Rehabilitation Engineering Technology I: Survey of Interdisciplinary Application of RET3
PSYC 590Psychiatric Rehabilitation3
Community-Based Clinical Experience (15)
PSYC 549Practicum in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling3
PSYC 578Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling Internship I6
PSYC 579Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling Internship II6
Research Project (3)
PSYC 594Special Projects3
or PSYC 576 Research in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling
Total Credit Hours60

For individuals currently working in the rehabilitation and mental health counseling field who are interested in pursuing a M.S. in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling at a slower pace, there is a part-time option available which is designed to meet the needs of the working professional. Courses are generally offered in the evening and via distance education, and the required fieldwork experiences (practicum and internship) are typically worked out with the student’s place of employment if it meets fieldwork site requirements. The part-time program takes approximately three years to complete.

There are opportunities to apply for scholarships and traineeships, including the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) traineeships awarded based on commitment to working in the state/federal vocational rehabilitation (VR) system, academic performance, and economic need.