Master of Science, School Counseling

Program: Graduate 

School: School of Education & Behavioral Studies

You look around and you see a world in chaos at both a global and local level. You may not be able to create world peace or solve global hunger, but you are sure that you have the gift of compassion and can help make this a better world one person at a time. Palm Beach Atlantic University's Master of Science in School Counseling prepares you to serve the world at a higher level by pursuing state licensure to counsel clients in a professional setting. We offer guidance that focuses on biblical, historical, theoretical and practical studies. Combined with our thriving community connections, we help you develop skills in the field of counseling to reach your potential.


Program Details 

Distinctively PBA

The School of Education & Behavioral Studies is well-known throughout Florida and as such, has established solid partnerships with school districts and other organizations for meaningful hands-on student teaching and clinical opportunities. Our Christ-centered approach to teaching and learning will deepen your outlook on your chosen profession and the impact you can have on others. And our innovative range of programs, from education to athletic training, results in a dynamic range of students learning together and collaborating daily.

Features of our distinguished education and behavioral studies programs:

  • Experience an education grounded in the liberal arts with a Christian perspective.
  • Engage in hands-on learning through off-campus internships in various health and education-related fields.
  • Discover undergraduate research opportunities with HHP faculty
  • Develop the skills and knowledge you need to work in the exercise science field.

Program Learning Outcomes:

Through coursework and clinical training, students majoring in School Counseling will:

  • Exhibit proficiency in counseling skills unique to forming and utilizing professional relationships in school and community settings.
  • Perform competently in the foundational knowledge base, outlined by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Program (CACREP), as well as the specific subject matter (2016 CACREP Standards 5.G) required for delivery of ethical, professional care in a counseling specialization. The knowledge base required by CACREP include the following core area:
  • professional counseling orientation and ethical practice,
  • social and cultural diversity,
  • human growth and development,
  • career development,
  • counseling and helping relationships,
  • group counseling and group work,
  • assessment and testing, and
  • research and program evaluation (2016 CACREP Standards 2.F.1-8).
  • Demonstrate ability to integrate theologically informed and spiritually sensitive interventions in counseling practice when appropriate and desired by clients.
  • Effectively apply counseling knowledge, skills and dispositions in professional practice.

Our program delivers specific benefits including:

  • Quality instruction that prepares you for Florida licensure
  • Extensive internship, job listing and networking opportunities
  • Preparation for study at the doctoral level.
  • Courses are offered weeknight evenings at PBA’s Orlando and West Palm Beach campuses
  • Non-specialized General Counseling Studies- concentration available for students not seeking licensure
  • Two entry points per year: fall (August) and spring (January) with application deadlines August 1 and December 1

When you finish at PBA you will have:

  • The 60 graduate credits required for certification in School Counseling;
  • Or the 36 credits required for General Counseling, non-licensure.

Admission Requirements

  1. Earn a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution or a baccalaureate degree. International students should inquire about additional admission requirements.
  2. Achieve cumulative undergraduate minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  3. Submit:
    • A completed online application and $45 nonrefundable fee
    • Official transcript from college/university where bachelor’s degree was conferred and from college/university where prerequisite courses were taken
    • Three confidential counseling recommendations. Recommendations for transfer students must include a current adviser/faculty member.
    • Acceptable score on the GRE or MAT (Millers Analogy Test)
  4. Essay
  5. Faculty interview – Once candidates submit all required documents, the complete application is reviewed by the Graduate Admissions Committee to determine invitations for an interview. Skype/phone interviews are available for out-of-state applicants.

International students should inquire about additional Master's in School Counseling admission requirements.

GRE/MAT is not required for students with a 3.0 cumulative grade point average from a regionally accredited college or university. The requirement is waived for applicants with a previously earned master’s degree or those who have completed 15 or more graduate credits with transferable grades from a regionally accredited institution.

Degree Completion Requirements:

School Counseling major:  Successful completion of the prescribed curriculum of 60 credit hours with a 3.0 cumulative GPA and a grade of "B" or higher in COU 5133 - Counseling Skills and Characteristics, COU 5123 - Legal, Ethical, and Professional Standards, and COU 5322 - Psychosocial Issues of Childhood and Adolescence, as well as practicum and internship courses; 700 hours of supervised practicum and internship under a supervisor approved by the program faculty; and an exit exam.

Note: In addition to the graduation requirements specific to each major, student performance is assessed throughout the program in key performance indicators, overall progress, and professional dispositions, as outlined in the Counselor Education Handbook.

Admissions Decision and Notification

Applicants will be notified in writing of the Graduate Admissions Committee’s decision within two weeks after completing the interview. To secure a spot in the program, accepted students must, no later than 30 days before classes begin, submit:

  • A non-refundable $100 deposit, which is applied to tuition upon enrollment

Applying for Certification:

After successfully completing the program and passing the Florida Department of Education (FLDOE) Guidance and Counseling PK-12 certification exam, you will apply for a temporary certificate.

Florida Education Majors or Minors Who Have Not Completed a State-Approved Program

You will begin the process by applying for a Temporary Certificate, so that you may begin teaching full-time while you complete your remaining certification requirements. Your Statement of Status of Eligibility will provide you with specific and official information about your remaining requirements for the Professional Certificate.

These four steps lead to your initial Florida certificate:


Learn more about your classes and requirements in the course catalog


The estimated tuition for the entire Master of Science in School Counseling program is $30,030. This includes tuition for 51 credit hours ($560/credit) and the Resource Fee ($220/semester). For specifics about the Master of Science in Mental Health Counseling program, please review the degree section in the student catalog.

Additional fees may apply.

Click here for more about tuition and fees.

Financial Aid

Palm Beach Atlantic makes every effort to offer financial assistance through a variety of programs (federal and institutional) to deserving students. Scholarships are available for qualified students ranging from $1,000 - $4,000 based on full-time status. In addition, Federal Work-study awards and student loans may also be available. Students must apply for financial aid each year by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Assistance (FAFSA) online at

Learn more about opportunities for Financial Aid; for questions on work-study or loan eligibility please contact

After successfully completing the program and passing the Florida Department of Education Guidance and Counseling PK 12 certification exam, you will apply for a temporary certificate.

Graduates of Florida approved teacher preparation programs who have not passed all three portions of the Florida Teacher Certification Examination (FTCE), will qualify for a Temporary Certificate. The Temporary Certificate is valid for three school years, which allows you time to complete the certification tests while teaching full time. The Bureau of Educator Certification will provide you with official information about which test(s) to take to complete requirements for the Professional Certificate.

These four steps lead to your initial Florida certificate:

Step 1: Completing Your Initial Application Package
Step 2: The Official Statement of Status of Eligibility
Step 3: Employment in a Florida Elementary or Secondary School
Step 4: Submitting Fingerprints for Certification