How to Become a Counselor in Arkansas

How to Become a Counselor in ArkansasEveryone looking to become a school counselor in the state of Arkansas must complete a graduate education and become licensed by the proper authorities in order to practice counseling. For those looking to become school counselors, you will received your credentials from the Department of Education. All other counselors will acquire their licensing through the Arkansas Board of Examiners.

Click here for more information on PhD programs for down the road.

Future Counselor: For Arkansas High School Student or High School Graduate

Your First Step:

Those looking to become school counselors in Arkansas will first need to become teachers, which means pursuing an undergraduate degree in a field such as education. School counselor is a title that can be added on based on an endorsement.

People looking to become a general counselor should obtaining licensing from the state board. This option has a lot more options as far as degrees and work environments. Typically people major in social sciences or services, but more majors can apply. Find out more about proper undergraduate majors here.

Most candidates pursuing a graduate education in counseling will spend their time as an undergraduate studying psychology.

Your Second Step:

Make sure that you do your research in advance about admission requirements for your schools of interest. Strongly consider gaining some excellent experience in the field either at paid or volunteer levels.

Bachelor’s Degree College Graduates

(CACREP– The Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Educational Programs). Rehabilitation counseling programs are usually accredited by CORE (The Council on Rehabilitation Education).

First:

Though most students apply with undergraduate majors in psychology or counseling. You can be accepted to graduate school with any degree as long as you have taken the required classes for the program. You must take the GRE or CAT prior to applying as most programs look for these scores. While choosing a program make sure they offer 60 credit hours in counseling.

Be sure that you apply to as many programs as possible to increase your chances of acceptance. Make sure to check the Arkansas state board in order to find out the exact course requirements you will need for licensing. Credentials are offered in a multitude of fields.

Second:

While completing your mandatory coursework and work experience, it is important that you maintain a B average in your graduate program.

Third:

It’s important that you complete the proper exams. For candidates looking to become a school counselor, you will need to take the Practice II exam for School Counseling and Guidance.

The required exam for professional licensure in Arkansas is the NCE which is available at a variety of facilities throughout the United States.

Arkansas also requires counselor hopefuls to pass an oral exam, as well.

Fourth:

Candidates looking to become LPC’s in Arkansas will need to complete three years of full time work experience in order to receive their credentials. For people who are enrolled in a doctoral program, some work experience may be substituted for education. Prospective counselors can also take the National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Examination to shorted the number of required hours of work experience.

  • Prior to being employed to provide counseling as an intern, you must apply for your license as a Licensed Associate Counselor.
  • Those interested will also have to submit professional references and pass a criminal background check.
  • Also, you must submit a Statement of Purpose.
  • Demonstrate proof of U.S. residency.
  • Your supervision must meet board requirements and be properly documented. The board will provide you with a list of approved supervisors.
  • Supervisions is documented accurately and fits the standards set by the board. Your supervised practice will need to be conducted by a board approved counselor.

Click here for more detailed information on LPC requirements in Arkansas.

Arkansas Counselor Licensing Agencies

Arkansas Board of Examiners in Counseling

Arkansas Department of Education

We wish you the best of success in your pursuit of becoming a counselor in Arkansas.