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Master's in Counseling Program

The Master of Arts (M.A.) in Counseling program at Palo Alto University (PAU) is designed to help bachelor's degree holders pursue careers as Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists (LMFTs) and Licensed Practical Clinical Counselors (LPCCs). We've structured the curriculum to provide a quality, accredited education in formats that best fit our students' busy lifestyles.

Master of Arts in Counseling Curriculum

An academically rigorous program, PAU's M.A. in Counseling curriculum challenges students through progressively advancing coursework and practical applications, which are all completed over the course of approximately 2–3 years. The program involves 93 units of standard coursework, workshops, intensives, fieldwork, and culmination in a final capstone project. Mandatory fieldwork includes practicum, which is completed in two phases: Practicum A and Practicum B. Students complete a minimum of 700 hours, including a minimum of 280 face-to-face client hours with the student working in the role of Counselor Trainee or Therapist Trainee, over a minimum of 3 academic quarters (typically 9-12 months). PAU uses a quarter-unit academic system.

  • Fall Quarter: September to December
  • Winter Quarter: January to March
  • Spring Quarter: April to June
  • Summer Quarter: June to August

Course sequences vary slightly depending on when students begin their practicum fieldwork. Students are expected to be enrolled continuously and to complete their degrees on schedule with their cohorts.

Courses, required units, and all other aspects of this curriculum are subject to change as new offerings emerge. Please check this page periodically for updates.

Residential Hybrid (On-Campus) Course Sequence

Students enrolled in the residential hybrid (on-campus) program complete the curriculum in nine quarters and receive their official degree plan for their cohort prior to beginning the program. The following sample course sequence is the degree plan for students enrolled in the on-campus format beginning in the fall quarter. Click the links below to download the specific sequence for each quarter in which students can start the on-campus program. 

Distance Learning (Online Only) Course Sequence

Distance learning (online) students complete the counseling program in 11 quarters. While coursework is taken online, students are required to participate in practicum and on-site workshops. The following course sequence is the degree plan for students enrolled in the online format beginning in fall quarter. Click the links below to download the specific sequence for each quarter in which students can start the online program.

For course descriptions, please see the Palo Alto University Catalog.

Ideal for those with a bachelor's degree and the working professional seeking a career change, the Master of Arts in Counseling program at Palo Alto University is designed to help you achieve your goal of becoming a licensed counselor on a schedule that fits your life. Visit our admissions page to learn more about our application process.

 
 
 
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