Counseling and Psychology Programs
Dr. Marta Garrett, Director
The Department of Graduate Counseling and Psychology at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor aspires to be the program of choice for persons seeking development as viable, competent, effective, and ethical professional mental health counselors and educators. Students and faculty collaboratively pursue knowledge, faith, compassion, justice and innovative ideas so that they may develop and provide counseling and educational services to diverse community populations throughout the nation and abroad.
The Graduate Programs in Counseling and Psychology seek to prepare students from diverse backgrounds and cultural experiences as master’s level clinicians for the mental health fields. The programs also equip students with skills needed to continue their academic training at the doctoral level. Our programs give students opportunities to develop knowledge and competence in counseling skills, theory, assessment, empirically based research and personal growth so that they may deliver professional mental health services in a variety of work settings. Our mission embodies the values of UMHB as a Christian-based institution and the ethical principles of the mental health professions: autonomy, beneficence, nonmalfeasance, justice, fidelity, and veracity. The programs are designed to meet the standards of the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) and educational requirements for Texas licensure and certification by the Texas State Board of Examiners for Licensed Professional Counselors, the Texas State Board of Examiners for Marriage and Family Therapists, and the State Board for Educator Certification.
GOAL I: To prepare students from diverse backgrounds and cultural experiences to become ethical master’s level clinicians for the counseling profession in a global society.
GOAL II: To provide students with knowledge and competence in counseling skills, theory, assessment, empirically based research and personal growth so that they are able to deliver counseling services in a variety of work settings.
GOAL III: To provide students with a broad-based counseling curriculum that meets the standards of the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP), educational requirements for Texas licensure and/or certification by the Texas State Board of Examiners for Licensed Professional Counselors, the Texas State Board of Examiners of Marriage and Family Therapists, and/or the State Board for Educator Certification as applicable to the student’s program of choice.
GOAL IV: To equip students with skills needed to continue their academic training at the doctoral level.
The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor offers the Master of Arts Degree in Counseling and Psychology as follows:
Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program – 60 hours
Marriage and Family Christian Counseling Program – 48 hours
School Counseling Program – 36 hours
Academic Specialization in Psychology Program – 36 hours (no licensure or certification)
All licensure and certification programs follow a core curriculum which is the basic building block for the professional counselor, regardless of setting. All students complete courses in the following areas:
group theories, dynamics, and process
lifestyle and career development
measurement and appraisal
research and evaluation
professional orientation and ethics
In addition, a sequence of specialized courses is offered within each program area (i.e., Clinical Mental Health Counseling, Marriage and Family Christian Counseling, and School Counseling). Clinical practicum and/or internship experiences in an appropriate clinical setting are offered in conjunction with most core and specialized counseling courses. Program requirements in School Counseling and the Academic Specialization allow students to take courses offered by other departments (e.g., Psychology of Learning and Research Techniques and Procedures) which enable students to broaden their knowledge base in their area of interest.
Applicants seeking enrollment in a Master of Arts program must submit
- A completed University admission application and fee. This can be done online at www.umhb.edu.
- Copies of all transcripts with official grade point average (GPA).
- Copy of official GRE scores. (May be waived if GPA is greater than 3.0.)
- Three (3) letters of recommendation (from professionals, i.e., counselors, school administraions, etc.) attesting to applicant’s character and ability to complete graduate work.
- A completed interview with the Departmental Graduate Admissions Committee.
Applicants who have been convicted of a felony will be considered for admission on a case by case basis and, in appropriate cases, may be admitted on probation admission status. Admission to a licensure program does not guarantee licensure by any State Boards of Exami n ers.
For Regular Admission status, an applicant must have completed a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited university and have undergraduate hours to meet specific program requirements as follows:
Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program
To enter this program the student must have completed a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited university with a major in psychology or closely related field with a minimum of twelve semester hours of psychology. The hours of undergraduate psychology must include, but are not necessarily limited to, a general introduction to psychology course, a human growth and development course, a course in abnormal behavior, and a statistics or research course.
Marriage and Family Christian Counseling Program
As prerequisites for admission the student must have completed (or completed as leveling courses) 12 hours of undergraduate study in psychology and 6 hours in Biblical studies - 3 hours in Old Testament Survey and 3 hours in New Testament Survey, or equivalent courses, from a regionally accredited college or university. The content of the psychology courses may vary but must be approved by the program director.
Public School Counselor Certification
The student must have completed a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited university, have four or more undergraduate courses with a grade of B or better in the behavioral sciences or a related field, hold a valid Texas teacher certificate or its equivalent. Additionally, two years of classroom teaching experience is required for some state licensure eligibility, including Texas.
Additionally all students must meet the following requirements:
- have a minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.75 (on a 4.00 scale) or have a minimum 3.00 GPA (on a 4.00 scale) on the last 60 semester hours of course work.
- have a minimum cumulative score of 300 on the verbal and quantitative portions (if GRE is taken after August, 2011 scores; 900 minimum if taken before August 2011); and a minimum score of 3.0 on the analytical section of the General Test of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE).
- have a departmental interview and recommendation for admission prior to the first semester of enrollment.
- in the opinion of the departmental graduate faculty committee, possess sufficient emotional/mental stability to meet the academic, interpersonal, and technical qualifications of mental health professions or other professional positions to which possession of the Master of Arts degree may lead.
- submit three letters of reference attesting to the applicant’s character and ability to complete graduate work.
Student Evaluation and Degree Requirements
To obtain the Master of Arts degree, students must demonstrate a depth and breadth of knowledge within their chosen field, an understanding of self, and the promise of skilled performance in cognitive and affective areas. To ensure that program standards are high, students will be evaluated at the following points:
- Upon admission.
- Within each course.
Students are graded on academic knowledge, class participation and interpersonal skills, writing ability (both content and construct), speaking and presentation skills, independent research, professional orientation, and self-reflection and self-care. Appropriateness of classroom demeanor, behavior, and ethics is also evaluated. “A” work is considered above average performance; “B” work is considered average performance; “C” work is considered below average performance. A minimum grade point average (GPA) of 3.00, semester and cumulative, is required of all graduate students enrolled in a Master of Arts program. Students with a semester and/or cumulative GPA of less than 3.00 will be placed on probation. Failure to correct the deficiency in the next semester of attendance will result in dismissal.
The Graduate Counseling and Psychology Programs are both academic and experiential. Therefore, the student must demonstrate more than cognitive abilities. Evaluation using the Counselor Competencies Scales (CCS) will be made at various points throughout the program. The Professional Performance Evaluation (PPE) supersedes all other requirements for a class, and no credit for the class may be earned in the event that a “0”, (does not meet criteria for program level) is indicated. A copy of the PPE and CCS can be electronically accessed at http://graduate.umhb.edu/counseling.
- Upon application for candidacy.
Students with a GPA of 3.00 or better must apply twice for admission to candidacy: after the completion of a minimum of 12 semester hours and a maximum of 18 semester hours and again after the completion of PSCO/MFCC 6395 Practicum. The departmental graduate faculty committee evaluates each student on the student’s overall performance in courses completed to determine if the student is qualified to be a candidate to receive the Master of Arts degree. Areas evaluated by the committee include academic knowledge, class participation and interpersonal skills, writing ability (both content and construct), speaking and presentation skills, independent research, professional orientation, self-reflection and self-care, and freedom from mental health problems that would interfere with occupational functioning.
The committee may decide to accept the applicant with qualification pending completion of the first semester of practicum or reject the applicant. “Acceptance with qualification pending completion of the first semester of practicum” means that the student will make improvements in the areas that the faculty have commented on in the “candidacy letter” and will demonstrate good use of counseling knowledge, skills, and ethics in the first semester of practicum. Rejection for candidacy means that the student has consistently performed at an unacceptable level and/or has made few attempts to remedy deficiencies as recommended by a professor or the committee. A student’s application for candidacy may be deferred if the committee has some question regarding the student’s appropriateness for candidacy.
Acceptance for candidacy will be made by a three-fourths affirmative vote of the departmental graduate faculty committee and rejection for or deferment of candidacy will be made by a one-half negative vote of the departmental graduate faculty committee. Students will be notified in writing (“candidacy letter”) of the response to their application for candidacy and of any recommendations or requirements for improvement.
- During clinical instruction.
Students must apply for and be approved to take clinical instruction classes prior to enrolling in the courses. Students are evaluated during Practicum and Internship by their Faculty Supervisor when working only at the Community Life Center or by their Faculty Supervisor and Site Supervisor when working at both the Community Life Center and an off-campus counseling site. All supervisors will use the Counseling Competencies Scales (CCS) to give their students evaluations at mid-term and at the end of the semester.
- Following administration of comprehensive examination.
Students accepted for candidacy must register for and successfully complete a comprehensive examination conducted by the graduate counseling and psychology faculty during the students’ last semester of course work prior to graduation. The exam is both written and oral and covers material presented in the courses required for degree specialization. Students not passing the exam will be required to complete additional course work as extra preparation for the examination and for professional employment. The comprehensive exam may only be retaken once. If the examination is failed a second time, the student will no longer be eligible to receive a Master of Arts degree with a major in Counseling and Psychology from UMHB.