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School of Medicine

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Rehabilitation Counseling

Many people struggle to navigate daily life because of a disability or because of societal barriers related to disability. Our on-campus and distance learning programs will prepare you to help enhance the quality of life for those living with disabilities.

What is Rehabilitation Counseling

We train our graduates to be professional counselors with a specialized understanding of disability and disadvantagement-related issues. Our curriculum and service activities are focused on providing counseling and employment-related support to persons who have physical or mental disabilities, including addictions. Additional service perspectives focus on individuals who are disadvantaged by cultural differences and educational and economic impoverishment throughout the state and beyond.


Programs Offered

  1. Masters of Arts (M.A.) degree in Counseling and Rehabilitation (60 credit hours)
  2. Certificate of Graduate Study (C.G.S.) in Psychiatric Rehabilitation (18 credits hours; pending CHE approval)


Accredited Program

Our 60 credit-hour Master of Arts degree is a CACREP-accredited rehabilitation counseling program. On July 1, 2017, the Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Educational Programs (CACREP) assumed responsibility for carrying out the mission and vision of the Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE). All graduate programs that were formerly accredited by CORE are now accredited by CACREP. The USC Rehabilitation Counseling Program was most recently accredited by CORE in 2012 and received a full 8-year accreditation (2012-2020). We are now accredited as a rehabilitation counseling program by CACREP through 2020.


Beyond the Classroom

We believe that the best way for you to learn is by doing. That's why we include many hands-on experiences in our master's degree curriculum. Not only will you get to work with persons with disabilities, you'll also be able to complete a 600-hour internship your final semester. 


Dedicated Faculty

Our dedicated faculty performs a broad spectrum of educational, scholarly and service activities to enhance your educational experience.

You'll get training in multiple areas, including: 

  • Individual and group counseling
  • Educational, vocational and psychosocial assessment
  • Clinical case management
  • Advocacy
  • Community program development


Distance Learning

We have a distance learning option that will make it easier to pursue your career without moving to Columbia, if you need more flexibility to allow you to continue to work. All coursework will be offered online and you'll be required to come to a few in-person meetings. 


Certificate Program

In addition to the master's degree, we also offer a certificate program in psychiatric rehabilitation that's designed for post-bachelor’s degree students and helping professionals who want to gain more knowledge and skills in working with individuals with severe mental illnesses. This program will give you the skills you need to provide superior client care.