Chatham University

Master of Science in Counseling Psychology (MSCP) Learning Outcomes

I. Knowledge Base of Psychology


  1. Human Development

    1. theories of individual and family development and transitions across the life-span
    2. theories of learning and personality development
    3. human behavior, including an understanding of developmental crises, disability, exceptional behavior, psychopathology, and situational and environmental factors that affect both normal and abnormal behavior
    4. theories and etiology of addictions and addictive behavior
    5. strategies for facilitating optimum development over the life-span
  2. Social and cultural diversity

    1. multicultural and pluralistic trends, including characteristics and concerns between and within diverse groups nationally and internationally
    2. attitudes, beliefs, understandings, and acculturative experiences, including specific experiential learning activities
    3. individual, couple, family, group, and community strategies for working with diverse populations and ethnic groups
    4. counselors' roles in social justice, advocacy and conflict resolution, cultural self-awareness, the nature of biases, prejudices, processes of intentional and unintentional oppression and discrimination, and other culturally supported behaviors that are detrimental to the growth of the human spirit, mind, or body
    5. theories of multicultural counseling, theories of identity development, and multicultural competencies
  3. Helping relationships

    1. counselor characteristics and behaviors that influence helping processes
    2. an understanding of essential interviewing and counseling skills
    3. a systems perspective that provides an understanding of family and other systems theories and major models of family and related interventions
    4. a general framework for understanding and practicing consultation
  4. Counseling theories

    1. Counseling theories that provide the student with consistent models to conceptualize client presentation and select appropriate counseling interventions. Students will be exposed to models of counseling that are consistent with current professional research and practice in the field so that they can begin to develop a personal model of counseling
  5. Group Work

    1. principles of group dynamics, including group process components, developmental stage theories, group members' roles and behaviors, and therapeutic factors of group work
    2. group leadership or facilitation styles and approaches, including characteristics of various types of group leaders and leadership styles
    3. theories of group counseling, including commonalties, distinguishing characteristics, and pertinent research and literature
    4. group counseling methods, including group counselor orientations and behaviors, appropriate selection criteria and methods, and methods of evaluation of effectiveness
    5. approaches used for other types of group work
  6. Career and lifestyle development

    1. career development theories and decision-making models
    2. career, avocational, educational, occupational and labor market information resources, visual and print media, computer-based career information systems, and other electronic career information systems
    3. career development program planning, organization, implementation, administration, and evaluation
    4. interrelationships among and between work, family, and other life roles and factors including the role of diversity and gender in career development
    5. career and educational planning, placement, follow-up, and evaluation
    6. assessment instruments and techniques that are relevant to career planning and decision making
    7. career counseling processes, techniques, and resources, including those applicable to specific populations
  7. Appraisal and Assessment

    1. historical perspectives concerning the nature and meaning of assessment
    2. basic concepts of standardized and nonstandardized testing and other assessment techniques including norm-referenced and criterion-referenced assessment, environmental assessment, performance assessment, individual and group test and inventory methods, behavioral observations, and computer-managed and computer-assisted methods
    3. statistical concepts, including scales of measurement, measures of central tendency, indices of variability, shapes and types of distributions, and correlations
    4. reliability (i.e., theory of measurement error, models of reliability, and the use of reliability information)
    5. validity (i.e., evidence of validity, types of validity, and the relationship between reliability and validity)
    6. social and cultural factors related to the assessment and evaluation of individuals, groups, and specific populations
    7. ethical strategies for selecting, administering, and interpreting assessment and evaluation instruments and techniques in counseling
  8. Research and program evaluation

    1. the importance of research and opportunities and difficulties in conducting research in the counseling profession
    2. research methods such as qualitative, quantitative, single-case designs, action research, and outcome-based research
    3. use of technology and statistical methods in conducting research and program evaluation
    4. principles, models, and applications of needs assessment, program evaluation, and use of findings to effect program modifications
    5. use of research to improve counseling effectiveness
  9. Professional orientation and ethical practice

    1. history and philosophy of the counseling profession, including significant factors and events
    2. professional roles, functions, and relationships with other human service providers
    3. professional organizations, primarily ACA, its divisions, branches, and affiliates, including membership benefits, activities, services to members, and current emphases
    4. professional credentialing, including certification, licensure, and accreditation practices and standards, and the effects of public policy on these issues
    5. the role and process of the professional counselor advocating on behalf of the profession
    6. advocacy processes needed to address institutional and social barriers that impede access, equity, and success for clients
    7. ethical standards of ACA and related entities, and applications of ethical and legal considerations in professional counseling

II. Application of Counseling Psychology


  1. Assessment and Appraisal
  2. Counseling and Psychotherapy
  3. Ethics and Professional Behavior
    1. Professional responsibility
    2. Maturity
    3. Integrity