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How to become a Counselor in Iowa

Learn how to earn your counseling licensure in IA

Click on the link that best describes your current situation...

Below are basic guidelines for those wishing to earn their counseling certification in Iowa. Most requirements such as earning your Master's degree, completing 3000 hours of supervised experience and passing the NCE examination have been and will continue to be mandatory in the Iowa counseling licensure process. However, it is wise to contact the Iowa Department of Public Health at (515) 281-7689 to make sure you are on the right track.

I'm a High School Graduate...

At present, you will need to enroll in an associate or bachelor degree program. Iowa counseling licensure requires the applicant to have completed the minimum of a master's degree program.

However, as a high school graduate in Iowa, you are ahead of the curve. You will have ample time to learn more about the career of counseling while also advancing your education.

Click on the links below to browse schools offering programs in psychology or counseling.

Once you have enrolled in a program, take advantage of your school's career services department and learn how you can find employment or volunteer opportunities that are related to the counseling career path.

I've already received my Bachelor's degree...

Once you have your bachelor's degree, you will need to find a school offering a master's or doctoral degree program in counseling.

Step One:

Click on the links below to contact schools offering Master's or PhD programs in counseling or related field.

Or request information from additional schools offering counseling programs in Iowa.

Step Two:

After earning your degree, you will need to obtain at least 2 years of supervised full-time experience. The supervisor needs to be Iowa Board of Counseling Licensure approved and provide 200 hours of supervision for each 1000 hours of experience logged.

More details are available regarding supervision requirements for Iowa counseling licensure under the "Licensure Rules" link on the following webpage.

Step Three:

Once these requirements have been met, you can download the Iowa Counseling Certification application and submit the application and any other necessary forms and fees to the Iowa Board of Behavioral Sciences.

You can download the Iowa Counseling Licensure application from the following Iowa Board webpage.

Step Four:

The Iowa Board will review your application. Once approved, the Iowa Board of Behavioral Sciences will contact you about taking the National Counselor Examination of NBCC, the National Clinical Mental Health Counselor Examination, or the Certified Rehabilitation Counselor Examination of the CRCC.

You can access more information on the required examination contents, dates, locations and registration and the following NBCC website.


Iowa Counseling Certificate Programs
Note: This list contains online and campus schools that accept students from Iowa.
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Regent University prepares students with the knowledge to excel and the faith to live with purpose. Our 20,000 alumni, from more than 110 countries, are changing the world as accomplished professionals. Named a top-15 school nationally for online bachelor's programs (U.S. News & World Report, 2015), Regent is among the most affordable undergraduate Christian colleges (CCCU 2015). Fully accredited, challenging programs are available online and on campus. New classes begin every eight weeks.

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