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. While training students in a wide variety of counseling modalities, the MSCP program 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 state licensure as a Professional Counselor.
Mastering the following competencies are the degree objectives of APU’s Master of Science in Counseling Psychology Program:
Counseling Skills (CS): Demonstrates the ability to understand, and intentionally and authentically use culturally relevant and appropriate prevention/ intervention skills for positive change with individuals, groups, and programs.
Creative Expression (CE): Demonstrates the ability to express one’s passion positively in one’s own voice or through one’s own talents and/or share one’s self or world in unique ways, and helps others to do the same.
Self Understanding (SU): Demonstrates the ability to identify, understand, and value one’s unique way of being in the world, as well as actively working towards reaching one’s full potential, and helps others to do the same.
Critical Thinking (CT): Demonstrates the ability to understand the fullness of things, including the abilities to consistently analyze, synthesize, and evaluate information and research, to understand and challenge assumptions, as well as to design, implement, and evaluate projects, and helps others to do the same.
Activism/Leadership (AL): Demonstrates the ability to create significant positive influences on others and/or one’s environment through practice, writing, speaking, or other change modalities.
Professionalism (P): Demonstrates the ability to use professional skills and to live by the ACA professional codes by displaying behaviorally that one values responsibility, public service, accountability, clear communications, respect, excellence, and compassion in one’s work.
Knowledge of the Discipline (KD): Demonstrates the ability to identify, interpret, and apply facts, terms, concepts, theories and processes germane to the field of Counseling Psychology.
The catalog section on Graduate Student admissions lists university requirements. In addition, there are several specific requirements for the MSCP program as follows:
- Essay. Please address as completely as possible the following areas:
- What are your reasons for wanting to obtain an advanced degree in Counseling Psychology?
- 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?
- The MSCP Program is designed to be an academically intense and experientially demanding program. If admitted, we (the faculty) plan to create and maintain an intellectually and personally challenging experience for you. Therefore, please describe how you plan to balance graduate school, work, and personal life (i.e. relationships, family, etc.).
- Please provide a one page biography. The purpose of this application is to help us learn more about you. Please share any other personal information which you would like the Admissions Committee to take into consideration during the interview process.
- Letters of Recommendation. Submit three current letters of recommendation, using the recommendation form in the admissions packet.
- Standardized Test. Submit scores from the Miller Analogy Test (MAT). Alaska Pacific’s reporting code is 1841.
- Interview. Once your application is complete, the department will contact you to set up a personal interviews.
- Application Deadline. The deadline to submit an application is February 1.
After successful completion of the Personal Interview, the applicant will be requested to provide authorization for a background check. A background check is required because counseling involves work with a vulnerable population and the results may also impact the potential for state licensure. Full admission will be granted to the successful candidate based on favorable results of the background check.
Students must have met the following prerequisites before beginning the MSCP program:
One of the following:
- Abnormal Psychology
- Personality Theories
- History and Systems of Psychology
Each of the following:
- Research Methods or Experimental Psychology
- Human Development (e.g., Child Development, Adolescent Psychology, Life-span Development)
The program director will advise students who have questions on the prerequisites whether their specific coursework is applicable. Students may complete prerequisites at Alaska Pacific as non-degree seeking students.