Counseling, Administration, Supervision, and Adult Learning (CASAL)

Counselor Education - Graduate Programs


Counselor Education Degree Programs Offered

Program  Degree
Clinical Mental Health Counseling Master's
School Counseling Master's
Chemical Dependency Counseling Certificate
Early Childhood Mental Health Counseling Certificate
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Counselor Education Overview


The mission of the counseling program(s) at Cleveland State University is to provide exceptional training through curricular experiences for master’s-level graduate students leading to licensure to work in a variety of settings. We emphasize culturally competent generalist training in two specialty areas of Clinical Mental Health Counseling and School Counseling. Our Clinical Mental Health Counseling students are trained to address issues ranging from problems of daily living to more pronounced problems that manifest as symptoms of psychopathology. Our School Counseling students are trained to develop programs and deliver services following the American School Counseling Association (ASCA) national model. In addition, we aim to facilitate the personal development of our students since “self” and “relationship” are primary tools in successful counseling. We encourage students in the journey of making their personality and style of life an object of awareness throughout their training.


The American Counseling Association has offered the following definition of professional counseling:
"Counseling is a professional relationship that empowers diverse individuals, families and groups to accomplish mental health, wellness, education and career goals." (ACA)
Our School and Clinical Mental Health Counseling programs are accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP).
Counseling is one of several mental health professions in the United States. Cleveland State University offers programs in School Counseling and in Clinical Mental Health Counseling.
The mental health professions include counseling, clinical social work, clinical and counseling psychology, marriage and family therapy, substance abuse counseling, and psychiatry. Psychiatry is a medical specialization whereas the rest are non-medical mental health professions. Each state decides how to license or certify each of the therapeutic professions.
Although similar in their applied settings, each mental health discipline differs in the training model employed. The counseling training model has been described as an "educator-practitioner" model and more recently the emphasis on social justice has increased in counselor training. This model focuses more on clinical skills than research and encompasses treatment of psychopathology and facilitation of wellness.
Psychiatry is based in the medical model with a bias toward the biological bases of mental and emotional disorders. Social work uses an ecological model that focuses on client advocacy within small and large systems and psychology uses variations on the scientist-practitioner model (the Boulder and Vail Models) that tries to balance training in research and clinical skills.
Specializations across the mental health disciplines include substance abuse counseling (for which there is a separate licensure in Ohio), and Marriage and Family Therapy which also has its own license in Ohio.
Counseling and social work are master's level professions whereas licensure as a psychologist requires a doctoral degree and licensure as a psychiatrist requires a medical degree. A person should take into consideration their temperament and professional goals when trying to decide between different mental health professions and training models.
Dr. Ingersoll
Chair, and Professor Elliott Ingersoll Ph.D:

Chi Sigma Upsilon

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