Jun 13, 2024  
2019-2020 APU Catalog 
2019-2020 APU Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Counseling Psychology, M.S.

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The Master of Science in Counseling Psychology (MSCP) is a selective, rigorous program for the creative adult who plans to become a mental health practitioner or enter a doctoral program. It is eclectic in theoretical orientation and committed to celebrating diversity within the range of professional mental health approaches and techniques. The program embraces place-based learning and cultural relevancy as critical for mental health practitioners serving Alaska’s diverse communities.  While training students in a wide variety of counseling modalities, the MSCP also encourages students to explore and develop their own special interests within the field, to formulate their own philosophy of counseling, and to prepare for Alaska state licensure as a Professional Counselor. 

Program Outcomes

Upon completion of the degree, students will have:

  • Demonstrated foundational self-understanding as the basis of applying professional standards, skills, and theoretical concepts to the work of a counselor
  • Applied skills in assessment and analysis to work with individuals and study problems that move beyond those associated with everyday living
  • Used critical thinking and intentionality in the practice of counseling psychology and in the development of advanced knowledge and skills
  • Demonstrated self-reflection tied directly to the work of the self as a counselor and as a professional 
  • Demonstrated skills that are needed for practice in the field, evidencing self-direction as well as capacity to seek consultation and direction from more experienced professionals as a part of on-going practice
  • Focused on career goals and networking within the professional community
  • Completed all educational requirements for licensure including internship hours and documentation


MSCP admits students to the Fall semester only. The application deadline for MSCP is February 15th. The application for admission and all required supplemental documents must be received by the February 15th deadline in order to be considered for admission to the program.

The general requirements for admissions to graduate studies at APU are listed under the Admissions section of the catalog. In addition, there are supplemental requirements for MSCP as follows:

  1. Current Professional CV or Resume
  2. Three letters of professional recommendation dated within the past year
  3. Graduate Record Exam:  Alaska Pacific University’s reporting code is 4201
  4. A 1-2 page autobiography (personal as opposed to professional) that highlights your strengths
  5. An essay addressing the following areas relating to your professional interests in the program:
    1. What are your reasons for wanting to obtain an advanced degree in Counseling Psychology?
    2. What are your short-term and long-term goals, or how do you see yourself as contributing toward the improvement of a social or community problem in your area?
    3. The MSCP Program is designed to be an academically intense and experientially demanding program. Therefore, please describe how you plan to balance graduate school, work, and personal life (relationships, family, etc.).
  6. Completion of admission interview with the Program Director and APU faculty members
  7. After a student has been fully admitted to the program, authorization for a background check will be required. Results will be shared only with the Program Director, and will be used for advising purposes, as they may impact internship placement and potential for state licensure.


Students must have met the following prerequisites before beginning the MSCP.

One of the following courses must have been completed:

  • Abnormal Psychology
  • Personality Theories
  • History and Systems of Psychology
  • Social Psychology

Each of the following courses must have been completed:

  1. Statistics
  2. Research Methods or Experimental Psychology
  3. Human Development (e.g., Child Development, Adolescent Psychology, Life-span Development)

The Program Director will advise students who have questions about prerequisites and whether prior coursework is applicable. Students may complete prerequisites at Alaska Pacific as non-degree seeking students.

MSCP Format and Program Delivery

The MSCP program is designed to be completed in 6 semesters across 2 full years of enrollment, with students at full-time status.

Coursework is delivered in a hybrid format with synchronous eLearning sessions and on-campus intensives. Intensives allow for face-to-face knowledge and skill building, provide opportunities for students to practice skills in person, and prepare students for practicum and internship placements. Synchronous eLearning sessions allow for material delivery and seminar discussion. Student should expect to meet on campus for three 3-day intensives per semester; for each course, students should expect to meet in weekly eLearning sessions between intensives.

Minimum Graduation Credit Hour Requirement: 60

Admission to Candidacy

After the student has completed a full academic year (24 credits), a first year evaluation will be conducted. The student must pass the first year review and have received at least a cumulative 3.0 grade point average in order to be admitted to degree candidacy. The student must be admitted to candidacy before he or she will be approved for the internship and subsequent completion of the Counseling Psychology program.

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