Counseling helps patients deal with any issues they may have and enables them to make positive decisions in life. Counseling careers may be particularly appealing for people interested in unraveling how the human mind thinks, feels and reacts.
Types of Counselors:
There is a large variety of paths within counseling careers. Some of the most common ones include:
In collaboration with parents and teachers, school counselors help students by providing academic, emotional, social and personal guidance. Educational counselors, as they are also called, operate on all levels including university, elementary as well as high school.
Also referred to as vocational counselors, career counselors offer advice regarding career choices, based on assessments made about aptitude, need and interests.
Marriage and Family Counselors
Their job includes providing emotional help to families and couples. Sessions may focus on individuals or may be jointly conducted with a married couple or an entire family.
Behavioral and Addictions Counselors
They help individuals with behavioral and addiction issues and their families by providing counseling and support to overcome their afflictions. Some addictions that their clients may have can be to alcohol, gambling and drugs.
Mental Health Counselors
People going through distress, whether triggered by emotional upheaval (trauma) or psychological symptoms (self esteem issues or phobias), are counseled by these professionals.
These professionals help individuals with emotional or physical disabilities adjust to their lives. All aspects of rehabilitation are taken care of by them from personal counseling to vocational training and even job placements.
Education and Licensure
Counseling careers require a minimum of a bachelors’ degree program in Applied Psychology from an accredited school. The sub-specialty area chosen by a student decides the courses opted for at the graduate and postgraduate level.
Licensure criteria vary, based on:
State - At least a bachelor’s degree is required to earn a license in most states but some states require a master’s degree as well.
Specialty area - In some states a bachelor’s degree suffices for licensure as school counselors but other careers, such as marriage or a family counseling, require a master’s degree and two years of supervised clinical work experience.
Work setting - Public and private employment may have different licensure requirements.