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Doctoral Degree Program

Graduate opportunities

The Counseling program at the University of North Texas has earned a national reputation for developing highly competent professionals through education, research and service. The program has frequently been ranked among the top counselor preparation programs in the nation and the best in Texas.

Our Doctor of Philosophy degree in Counseling stimulates student inquiry, develops advanced knowledge and enhances skills necessary for counseling practice, supervision, teaching, scholarship and leadership. A Ph.D. prepares you to work in schools, colleges, universities and the public sector as a(n):

  • administrator
  • counselor
  • counselor educator
  • counselor supervisor
  • director of guidance and counseling programs
  • researcher

The doctoral track is theoretical and experiential and meets state licensing specifications for professional counselors. The academic core emphasizes counseling and counseling-related areas while providing you the flexibility to develop an expertise in a specialized area. A research core and either a minor or electives are included in the course of study.

All students engage in a six-semester, on-campus clinical sequence under direct supervision. They also complete a portfolio designed to develop skills essential to the doctoral-level counselor and counselor educator.

Gain new perspectives

Many faculty members are recognized experts in their field. They have earned recognitions from the American Counseling Association, Association for Counselor Education and Supervision, Texas Counseling Association, and Chi Sigma Iota international honor society. Their research interests include:

  • counseling methods and techniques
  • current issues within the discipline
  • measurement and evaluation
  • theoretical perspectives

More targeted research has been conducted on suicide prevention, mental health services for lowincome clients, counseling and play therapy in schools, near-death experiences, and spiritual transformation.

Our doctoral counseling program is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (1001 North Fairfax St., Suite 510; Alexandria, Va. 22314; telephone 703-535- 5990, www.cacrep.org). This accreditation means we meet or exceed strict academic standards for excellence. We’ve also received the Association for Counselor Education and Supervision’s Outstanding Program Award and its Publication in Counselor Education and Supervision Award multiple times.

The College of Education is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (2010 Massachusetts Ave. NW, Suite 500; Washington, D.C. 20036; telephone 202-466-7496). The college is also one of the top producers of teachers, administrators, counselors and other school professionals in Texas.

Admission requirements

You will need to meet the admission requirements for the Toulouse Graduate School (available at catalog.unt.edu) as well as the following program requirements:

  • completed program admission application
  • master's degree from an accredited college or university that constitutes the equivalent of a CACREP-accredited counseling program master's degree
  • minimum 3.5 GPA on all graduate course work
  • submitted GRE verbal, quantitative and analytical writing scores with no minimum required score (This is for holistic review and scholarship and fellowship competition.)
  • three professional references (Forms are provided by the program.)
  • resume including professional experience and creative endeavors
  • personal statement
  • counseling skills demonstration video
  • written permission from the counseling program doctoral admissions committee chair to participate in the doctoral admissions examinations (This is granted only after the foregoing items are on file in the counseling program office.)
  • written and oral doctoral admission examinations (Admission examinations for the counseling program are offered once each academic year early in the spring semester.)

After the written and oral doctoral admission examinations, faculty members conduct a holistic review of all applicants. You will receive a letter regarding your admission within one month of the orientation and interview. If you are granted provisional admission, you should contact the counseling program for academic advising before registration.

Degree requirements

In addition to the following requirements, the doctoral degree also requires 9 semester hours of a research tool not included in the degree plan.

  • 48 semester hours of counseling core courses
  • 12 semester hours of electives or in a minor
  • 9 semester hours of counseling specialty courses
  • 6 semester hours of research core courses

The doctoral degree also requires 9 hours of a research tool not included on the degree plan.

Financial assistance

Our department funds many assistantships and scholarships to help you pursue a graduate degree. Students interested in an assistantship should submit an application with the doctoral program application. Visit www.coe.unt.edu/che for more information on scholarships. Information about other financial assistance programs is at gradschool.unt.edu or financialaid.unt.edu.

Counseling program services

Counseling and Human Development Center

The center offers individual counseling as well as couple, family and group counseling. Low-cost counseling services are provided by counselors-intraining under the supervision of faculty members using the latest in audiovisual technology.

Child and Family Resource Clinic

The clinic provides diagnostic and remedial services to children, adolescents, adults and families experiencing difficulties at home or school. Graduate students acquire valuable field experience by providing the clinic’s lowcost services under the supervision of faculty members.

Center for Play Therapy

The center encourages the development and emotional growth of children through the process of play therapy, a dynamic interpersonal relationship between a child and a trained therapist. The center provides training, research, publications, counseling services and scholarships, and it acts as a clearinghouse for literature in the field.

Center for Animal-Assisted Therapy

The center trains professionals and volunteers to work with their pets to facilitate the mental health, well-being and development of adults, adolescents and children through positive human-animal interactions. Workshops and courses are offered throughout the year.

Continuing education opportunities

Each year, our program offers conferences where nationally known speakers present current perspectives on counseling issues. Licensed professional counselors, nationally certified counselors and licensed chemical dependency counselors may earn continuing education credit by attending these conferences.

  • Animal-assisted therapy training workshops (September and April)
  • Play Therapy Conference (October)
  • Summer Play Therapy Institute (July)
  • Institute in Counselor Supervision (January or February)