How to Become a School Counselor in Massachusetts

In America, today’s school counselors do a lot more than their predecessors. It may be hard to tell from the outside looking in, but they help teachers and staff handle various issues, counsel parents, and sometimes play a crucial part in shaping education policy. They are a pivotal part of the student success equation, and they help schools create supportive and safe environments for students.

Want to become a school counselor in the United States, but want to know how? Don’t worry; the Edvocate has your back. Check out this guide that we created explaining how to become a school counselor in Massachusetts.

Academics: Master’s degree with a major in counseling, a practicum of 450 hours in an educational setting.

Necessary Courses: Subject matter in these classes: (1) understand the advising responsibilities of the guidance counselor, (2) understanding of MCAS and other academic test results to learners, teachers, and parents, (3) psychology of education, (4) understanding the diagnosis and treatment of disorders, (5) theories of development, (6) knowledge of tactics used for the prevention and treatment of abuse, (7) principles and practices in guidance counseling, (8) school laws and regulations, (9) career counseling, (10) resources within the community, (11) knowledge of statistics, (12) group counseling, (13) development of skills for consultations (14) college counseling.

Experience Requirements: A practicum of 450 hours.

Assessment: Passing score on Massachusetts Communication and Literacy Skills Test
Is an Institutional Recommendation Needed?: Yes, must recommend for certification

Licensure: (1) Elementary: grades pre-K–8, (2) Secondary: grades 5-12

Licensure Reciprocity: Yes

Criminal Background Investigation: National background check done at the point of hire, not as a certification component.

Massachusetts Department of Education/school counseling

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