Download the program fact sheet here.
How long does it take to complete the program?
Students can complete the program in two years attending full time (summer course work may be necessary), but have the option to complete the degree part time. Students who attend part time typically complete the degree in 3-4 years. Some of the required courses may need to be taken online.
What time of the day are classes held?
Face-to-face classes meet once a week during the fall and spring and summer semesters, and are held at 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. Eastern. Online courses involve scheduled weekly synchronous web conferencing at varying times, typically in the evening. The cohort of Rehabilitation Counseling students begin the program with a one-week residential program in early summer to complete the requirements of the counseling classes that are only taught in a face-to-face format. Students who are unable to attend the week-long program can take the two in-person classes on campus during the fall and spring semesters.
Can I have a flexible program and take a combination of online and face-to-face classes?
Yes, you can choose a program schedule that meets your needs. Some classes must be taken online, but you can choose to take others face to face on campus or online. There are two classes that must be taken face to face. You can choose to do this by attending the one-week residential program, or come to campus each week to attend class.
How do I get licensed and certified?
Our program prepares you to sit for the Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC) exam, which you can take after having successfully completed 75% of the course work. The CRC exam is a national certification that is recognized across the country. Licensure requirements vary from state to state. Once you have completed your degree and passed the CRC exam, you meet the educational requirements for Massachusetts licensure as a Licensed Rehabilitation Counselor. Students who complete the Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling track are also eligible to sit for the National Certified Counselor and National Certified Mental Health Counselor exams. If you have completed the appropriate practicum and internship requirements, you may also be eligible for licensure as a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC) in Massachusetts after completing the post-master’s supervision requirements. LMHC licensure requirements vary from state to state.
Can I get licensed in another state as a rehabilitation counselor?
Licensure is a state issue, and the requirements vary widely from state to state. Our program is fully accredited by the Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE) and the Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Education Programs (CACREP), which increases the likelihood of licensure in another state.
What about accreditation?
Our university is regionally accredited through NEASC (New England Association of Schools and Colleges). In addition, the Rehabilitation Counseling Program is accredited as a Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling (clinical track) and Rehabilitation Counseling (vocational track) program with the Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Education Programs (CACREP).
What type of settings do rehabilitation counselors work in?
Rehabilitation counselors work in a variety of settings, including state-federal rehabilitation services; Veterans Administration; community-based programs for people with specific disabilities such as mental health disabilities, intellectual disabilities, autism, or brain injury; outpatient agencies; residential treatment facilities; schools; and insurance companies. Some choose to become self-employed. The average starting annual wage of a rehabilitation counselor is between $45,000 and $50,000. You can read more about the field by visiting the websites for the National Rehabilitation Association or the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification.
How many courses do I have to take to complete the master's degree program?
Students take a total of 19 courses, as well as a one-credit portfolio course. Three of the courses include practice on the field: a practicum, and two semesters of internship.
How many courses do I have to take to complete the rehabilitation counseling certificate?
The rehabilitation counseling certificate consists of 7 classes. Many students who already have a master’s degree choose this certificate to help them become a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC). There are additional requirements to certification that you can review at the Certified Rehabilitation Counseling Commission website.
Is there a culminating final project required for the master's degree program?
Yes. Students complete a capstone project during the internship seminar. It is a case analysis of a client that you are exposed to during the course of the internship. Students apply various theories and skills they have learned throughout their course work to this client case. You can also choose to complete a research project in place of the case analysis, or a professional project related to your internship site. In all cases, your advisor will need to approve your choice of capstone project.
How many practicum and internship hours do I complete?
The practicum is a total of 100 hours and the internship is a total of 600 hours (300 hours/semester).
What is the difference between the practicum and internship?
The practicum is an introduction to clinical practice as a rehabilitation counselor. Therefore, students begin by observing a professional in the field. During the internship, the student begins undertaking the professional role of a counselor in that organization, and by the end of the internship has been managing a small caseload of their own.
Where can I complete the practicum and internship?
Students complete the placement at a variety of locations, including state–federal rehabilitation services; Veterans Administration; community-based programs for people with specific disabilities, such as mental health disabilities, intellectual disabilities, autism, or brain injury; outpatient agencies; residential treatment facilities; schools; or insurance companies. Students are provided support to identify sites that match their interests and needs. It is possible to complete the practicum and internship at two different locations or at the same location. Students who are working full time will have to take a leave or arrange flexible work hours to complete their internship. In our experience, it has NOT been possible for students to complete the practicum and internship experiences on the weekends or after hours.
Can I take a class or two to see what the program is like?
It is possible to take courses as a non-degree student as long as there is space available in the course and you have met the pre-requisites. Students can transfer up to six graduate credits (two courses) taken at UMass Boston into the program as long as a grade of B or better is earned, the classes were completed in the past 4 years, and you are accepted into the program. Typically, non-degree registration is held just before the semester begins. Contact Kaitlyn Siner-Cappas at Kaitlyn.Siner@umb.edu to discuss this process.
How much does it cost to attend?
The online classes and summer residential classes are offered through Continuing and Professional Studies. CAPS provides information on the cost of each class. The cost for the traditional face-to-face classes can be reviewed at found through the Office of the Bursar.
What opportunities for funding exist?
Training scholarships are available to eligible graduate students via a long-term training grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Education, Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA). Please contact the program director, Dr. Dimity Peter, for information and scholarship application materials.
We also offer a limited number of graduate research and administrative assistantships in our department. There are also research assistantship opportunities offered across the university. These opportunities provide varying tuition and fee waivers and stipends dependent on hours per week of work. Students can apply once they are accepted to the program. You can search for these positions under employment opportunities on the Human Resources website. Students can also apply for financial aid by filling out the FAFSA.
How do I know which track is better suited for me?
For students who wish to work for the state–federal rehabilitation services, the vocational rehabilitation track will best meet their needs. For students who have a particular interest in a more clinical emphasis and working with individuals with psychiatric disabilities, the clinical track is recommended. You will receive support from your academic advisor about the best track to select based on your career aspirations.
Is it possible to switch tracks?
Yes, it is possible to switch tracks. You should discuss this with your advisor. You may need to take additional classes depending on how far along in the program you are.