How to Become a Minnesota School Counselor
Where are you on your quest to become a Minnesota School Counselor?
Explore the information below and learn how you can become a school counselor in Minnesota. 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 Minnesota Department of Education licensing department at (651) 582-8691.
- Top Picks
Featured Universities with School Counseling Programs
NYU Steinhardt's accredited master of arts program in Counseling and Guidance: School and Bilingual School Counseling. Through this online program, you will gain the skills you need to become a professional Pre-K-12 school counselor, working with children and families in your community to foster academic achievement and success. Click here to contact New York University and request information about their programs.
Become a professional school counselor in K-12 settings with an online Master of Education (ME) in School Counseling from top-ranked USC Rossier School of Education. Complete in as few as 20 months. Click here to contact USC Rossier School of Education and request information about their programs.
Earn a Master's degree in School Counseling online from the University of Denver. Learn from doctoral-level faculty in live classes and gain experience through mock counseling and in-field training. No GRE required. Click here to contact University of Denver and request information about their programs.
I’m a High School Graduate…
As a high school graduate researching the Minnesota school counseling career, you are putting yourself in a fantastic position! You have the ability to learn whether a career in school counseling is right for you long before you need to commit to any one career path.
The following are recommended steps toward advancing your education and learning more about becoming a Minnesota school counselor.
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.
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 Minnesota:
- Mentoring Partnership of Minnesota
- Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Minnesota
- Minnesota Directory of Schools and School Districts
- Use this link to find schools near you as well as each school’s contact information. Contact these schools to find out if there are any volunteer programs you may participate in.
Finally, now that you have begun your career research, don’t stop! You are in a great position to start earning an associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree while learning more about whether a career in education or as a Minnesota school counselor is right for you.
I have already earned a college degree…
The following are the steps necessary for earning your school counseling certification in Minnesota:
Fulfill educational requirements through one of the following avenues:
- Earn a Master’s degree in School Counseling from an accredited school
- Capella University Master of Science (MS) in Human Services – School Counseling Specialization – CACREP and State Approved **
- New York University (NYU) Master of Arts in Counseling and Guidance – School Counseling and Bilingual School Counseling – MPCAC Accredited
- Grand Canyon University (GCU) Master of Education (MEd) School Counseling - leads to initial licensure
- Or find more school counseling programs in Minnesota here.
- Earn a Master’s in any other field and then separately, complete a Board of Teaching preparation program leading to school counseling certification.
You will need to fulfill experience requirements of a 400 clock hour internship, supervised by a counselor educator from an approved guidance and counseling program.
You will need to complete a criminal history background check by requesting fingerprint cards from the Minnesota Department of Education. You will complete the fingerprinting process at a local police station or designated fingerprinting location.
You can find more information on fingerprinting and the background check on the Minnesota Department of Education website, here.
You will find instructions for the application process and a link to Minnesota’s online application system here.
The application will have a contact phone number for questions, information about all that needs to be included in your application (transcripts, fees, etc.), and an address where the application will need to be sent.
For more information on standards for Minnesota school counselors, follow this link.
I’m a certified counselor from another state…
Minnesota will need to evaluate your credentials to make sure your qualifications are comparable to the Minnesota school counseling certification requirements.
You will find instructions for the application process here.
You will also have to request Minnesota Department of Education fingerprint cards in order to complete a background check.
For more information, call the Minnesota Department of Education at the following number: (651) 582-8691