Chatham University

Master of Science in Counseling Psychology (MSCP) FAQ's

What is unique about Chatham’s MSCP program?"

Chatham’s MSCP program focuses on both the personal and professional growth of students, emphasizing human-centered values and approaches reflected in the development of empathic, compassionate, and thoughtful counselors. We also feel that students in the program develop relationships with one another and with faculty that they are able to maintain as they move ahead in their professional and personal lives.

Who is the typical MSCP student?"

This is a hard question to answer! MSCP students are a diverse group in terms of race, gender (yes, Chatham’s graduate programs include men!), ethnicity, and income level. One of the most exciting aspects of the program is the age differences among the students – from 21 through 63! This works very well – the students of different ages seem to learn a great deal from one another. Another interesting characteristic of the group of students is the degree of prior work experience – some students have very little prior work experience in the field, but bring great curiosity and enthusiasm into the program; others have already worked for many years in related (or unrelated!) fields, and are willing to share their wisdom with other students and the professors.

How long does it take to earn the MS in Counseling Psychology degree?

Full-time students can earn the MS in Counseling Psychology degree of 48 credit hours in as few as 4 semesters if they follow the recommended course sequence. Sixty credit hours are required for eligibility for professional counseling licensure. Full-time students can earn the 60 credit hours required for professional counselor licensure in five semesters. Part-time students’ completion times vary, depending upon individual needs.

Does the Masters of Science in Counseling Psychology degree prepare an individual to become a licensed professional counselor (LPC)?"

Chatham’s MSCP curriculum does prepare students to take the National Counseling Examination, which is one of the requirements to become a licensed professional counselor. Other requirements for the LPC include a total of 60 hours of graduate coursework, all of which can be taken at Chatham, and 3000 hours of supervised work experience post-masters. At Chatham, students can earn a masters degree after 48 hours of coursework, and can thus begin to working on the post-masters supervised experience while simultaneously completing the remaining 12 hours of graduate coursework needed for licensure.

How large are the classes?

A few content courses have around 28 students. Courses involving both content and experiential work are usually limited to no more than 16 students. Practica and Internship Supervision courses typically have around 10 students.

Who teaches in the program?

The MSCP program has several full-time core faculty members, all of whom have had extensive clinical experience in addition to teaching experience. Some courses are taught by adjunct professors from the community who have experience in particular content areas (such as trauma, addictions, or family therapy).

Where do Chatham MSCP students do practicum and internships?

Chatham MSCP students do practicum and internships in a variety of different settings that serve individuals and families affected by emotional, behavioral, or other psychological difficulties. The field placement sites include outpatient mental health centers, inpatient and partial hospitalization programs, prisons and halfway houses, hospitals, and residential treatment centers, among many others. Among the sites are Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic (WPIC), Mercy Behavioral Health, The Bradley Center, Family Resources, and Catholic Charities.

What kind of work are Chatham students prepared to do after graduation?

Graduates of the Chatham MSCP program will be ready for employment in agencies providing mental, social, and physical health services and also in as other educational, professional, and business organizations. Many students are eventually hired by the sites in which they have done their field placements.

What opportunities are there for students to interact with one another?

There are lots! Students are encouraged in all of their courses to work collaboratively and cooperatively. Students frequently gather to study for exams, including the NCE, to work on projects, or just to hang out. Alums report that these friendships continue beyond the time spent at Chatham. In addition, there are three formal associations that provide more opportunities to meet and interact with other graduate students. These include Psi Chi, the psychology honor society and the campus-wide Graduate Student Association.