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Train to be a mental health counselor

Gain hands-on experience counseling individuals in community settings

Clinical Mental Health Counseling (Master of Arts)

Offered by: Counseling and Development

Slippery Rock University's Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program leads to licensure eligibility as a Professional Counselor (LPC). Located in western Pennsylvania, our counseling degree program prepares students to work in a variety of behavioral health settings including community mental health agencies, residential treatment, hospitals, and independent practices.

Why get a master’s degree in mental health counseling?

Our 60-credit-hour Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree program guides our students to become mental health professionals in Pennsylvania through coursework and clinical training, typically completed in three years. The counseling program’s cohort model and small class sizes provide a supportive environment where all our counseling students can succeed. Late-afternoon or evening classes also offer flexibility to accommodate different schedules. 

Slippery Rock graduate students in our Clinical Mental Health Counseling program benefit from our network of agencies offering valuable professional experiences during practicums and internships. In addition, a collaboration with the SRU Counseling Center acts as real-world training for many of our students.

What will you learn?

The Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling coursework includes Helping Relationships, Social and Cultural Diversity, Contextual Dimensions of Diagnosis, and Group Counseling, to name a few. Students choose from three concentration areas: Youth Counseling, Adult Counseling, and Addiction Counseling; allowing them to focus on mental health management for a specific population. View the full course listing for the Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree. 

Additionally, the curriculum of the Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree grants the flexibility to add credits to become a National Certified Counselor (NCC).

Careers in Clinical Mental Health Counseling

After completing their counseling degree and meeting Pennsylvania requirements, graduates are prepared to become Licensed Professional Counselors. Our program emphasizes career readiness through partnerships with SRU’s Counseling Center and local mental health organizations. 

A counseling degree in Pennsylvania will be sought after in certain regions. Many rural counties in northern and central Pennsylvania have been designated Health Professional Shortage Areas for Mental Health by the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration. This systemic shortage of mental health professionals does offer opportunity to those interested in community mental health efforts. Nationwide, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that jobs for mental health counselors and similar professions will grow by 25% between 2019-2029. 

LPC Application for Licensure 

In the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, SRU’s Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree meets the educational requirements for licensure as a Professional Counselor (LPC). Passing the National Counselor Examination (NCE) is also required to obtain the LPC credential. The final steps to obtain licensure in Pennsylvania is to graduate or complete 60 credits after completion of a 48-credit counseling degree program and obtain 3000 hours of post-supervision experience. 

The requirements to submit an LPC application vary between states. If you wish to practice outside of Pennsylvania, we recommend you look at the specific state for their requirements; the American Counseling Association provides contact information for state boards.

Pennsylvania State Board of Social Workers, Marriage and Family Therapists and Professional Counselors

Clinical Mental Health Program Admissions

To apply for Slippery Rock’s graduate degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, the following are required: 

Attention: To apply for admission, please use the following link to apply now.

  • $25 Application Fee
  • A Personal Statement indicating interest in the program, experience, and career goals
  • Two Electronic Recommendation Forms: one from a former or current college or university faculty member with knowledge of the applicant's academic aptitude, suitability for intended program area, and ability to form interpersonal relationships
  • Official undergraduate degree transcript(s) and any graduate transcripts (Official transcripts must be sent by the institution via electronic transcript to or via mail.  Faxed copies are not considered official)
  • SRU current/Alumni/former students click here to order your official SRU final transcript and have it sent to
  • A minimum undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 to be considered for unconditional admission

Endorsement Only:

Attention: To apply for admission, please use the following link to apply now.

  • $25 Application Fee
  • Personal Statement that indicates the applicant's career goals and personal philosophy regarding the helping professions 
  • Official Transcripts- Undergraduate/Graduate (Official transcripts must be sent by institution via electronic transcript e-share to or via mail- faxed copies will not be considered official) 
  • Graduate GPA Requires 3.00 
  • SRU current/Alumni/former students click here to order your official SRU final transcript and have it sent to

*If you are requesting review of your graduate transcripts for transfer of credit, please complete the transfer of credit form and submit to the Office of Graduate Admissions with official graduate transcripts. Please review SRU's transfer of credit policy.

Earn your Master’s in Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree at SRU!

Embark on a fulfilling career through Slippery Rock’s Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. We offer concentrations in Addiction, Adult, and Youth Counseling alongside a career-focused curriculum to best prepare our students for their futures as counselors across the state of Pennsylvania. 

Request more information today about SRU’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling.