Students traveling along Trousdale Parkway
Coursework examines the roles of counselors and advisors within the various contexts of colleges and universities, while also focusing on the salient issues and needs of a diverse student population.

The admission committee seeks students whose academic background, professional goals, and communication skills meet the demands of the program and show promise for a successful career as a counselor in a higher education setting. Given this emphasis, the program may not be an appropriate choice for a student seeking a focus in educational leadership or in developing functional expertise in a non-counseling related area. Students interested in counseling careers in a K-12 environment should consider the Master of Education in School Counseling online program as an alternative.


Component Courses Units Purposes
Counseling 6 18 Ground students in theory and practice of counseling
Student Affairs 8 20 Ground students in the theory and practice of postsecondary education student affairs work
Research Methods and Data Analysis 1 3 Understand how inquiry tools are used by educational practitioners
Fieldwork Experience 1 3 Gain supervised experience in a variety of student affairs settings
Seminar or Thesis 2 4 Integrate learning from other program components

Field Experience

The required fieldwork component provides students with supervised experience in professionally relevant areas. Students may begin their field experience after the first semester of enrollment in the EC program. A total of 210 hours are required prior to the completion of the program. The concurrent fieldwork course, serves as a structured means for students to reflect on their field experiences, connect theory to practice, and strengthen their professional philosophy and identity.

Master’s Seminar or Thesis

Students completing their course of study can choose to enroll in seminar courses or complete a thesis.

Seminar students enroll in two semesters of coursework focused on the future of student affairs and of higher education. The seminar courses provide a summative, reflective and forward-looking experience that synthesizes learning and experiences in the program, while also preparing graduates to enter the professional work of postsecondary administration.

Thesis students work closely with a faculty committee and conduct original research. They complete the project by writing up and defending their research.

Optional: Pupil Personnel Services School Counseling Credential

Students can expand their professional opportunities for school counseling positions by completing the requirements to be recommended for a Pupil Personnel Services (PPS) School Counseling credential. The requirements for the PPS credential include the completion of 20 additional units through the School Counseling Post-Master’s Certificate program.