How to Become a Montana School Counselor

Where are you on your quest to become a Montana School Counselor?

Explore the information below and learn how you can become a school counselor in Montana. Some of the information below may be subject to change. In order to make sure you have the most current information, please feel free to contact your school counseling education program advisor or contact the Montana Department of Education licensing department at (406) 444-3150.

I'm a High School Graduate...

As a high school graduate researching the Montana school counseling career, you are in a fantastic position to make the best decisions regarding your future career. Few individuals have the motivation and maturity to research professional careers before earning a bachelor's degree.

So, keep reading and don't hesitate to learn more about the Montana school counselor career. The following are recommended steps for learning how to earn an associate's degree or bachelor's degree and for learning more about whether a career in counseling or education is right for you.

Step One:

Gather information from schools offering associate degree programs or bachelor degree programs in psychology, counseling or any type of program you are currently interested in. It is not imperative you enroll in a counseling program at this point. The only necessity is that you begin earning your associate's degree or bachelor's degree.

Step Two:

A great way to find out if you are interested in a social service type of career, like school counseling, is to find volunteering organizations who work with children or young adults. The following are links to organizations who can place you in volunteering positions across the state of Montana:

Finally, as stated before, you are way ahead of the curve, so don't stop now. Take advantage of your position and find the right school to earn your associate's or bachelor's degree and start volunteering or working with school-aged individuals. Learn whether a career in Montana school counseling is right for you.

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I have already earned a college degree...

The following are the steps necessary for earning your school counseling certification in Montana:

Step One:

Fulfill educational requirements through one of the following avenues:

  1. Earn a Master's degree in School Counseling
  2. Earn a Master's in any other field and then separately, complete a school counseling program from an approved educational institution.

Step Two:

You will need to complete the Montana school counselor certification experience requirement of at least 600 clock hours of a supervised internship in a school or school setting. Typically coordinated through your school counseling preparation program.

Step Three:

You will need to request a fingerprint packet from the Montana Department of Education. You can request the fingerprint packet at the following location.

Step Four:

Here you can download a class 6 certification application for school psychologists and school counselors.

Directions for completing the application, as well as specific requirements, are included in the application.

If you have any further questions regarding the process for applying for a Montana school counselor certification, call the following number: (406) 444-3150

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I'm a certified counselor from another state...

The Montana Office of Public Instruction does recognize school counseling certifications from other states. However, your certification and transcripts will still need to be evaluated to make sure all Montana certification requirements are met by your current qualifications.

You can download the class 6 application form here. You will find directions for completion of the application as well as a checklist to make sure you have included every necessary piece of information for processing.

If you have any questions, we recommend you call the Montana Office of Public Instruction at the following number: (406) 444-3150

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**Some states require completion of a state-approved School Counselor preparation program from a regionally accredited institution in order to be licensed as a school counselor. Capella University is regionally accredited and their School Counseling specialization is state-approved by the Arizona Department of Education. We recommend that you follow up with your state Department of Education (DOE) to determine whether Capella's Arizona- approved School Counseling specialization meets your state's licensure requirements.