Program DescriptionAdults Getting Advanced Certificate in Professional Counseling

The Certificate in Professional Counseling (Post Master's) is designed for persons who hold a Master of Science or Master of Arts degree in counseling.

The intent is to assist students in meeting educational requirements for the licensed professional counselor in Virginia (LPC) or their Certified Rehabilitation Counselor credential (CRC). Applicants may also be interested in fulfilling the requirements to obtain their Certification in Substance Use Counseling (CSAC).

Applicants to the program designate a preferred area of specialization based upon interest and need. Specialization requirements may exceed or be under the minimum number of required credits for the certificate program as a whole.

An individual may apply to the Advanced Certificate in Professional Counseling Program to obtain the necessary coursework to apply for the CRC as a Category 2 or 3 candidate. The applicant must indicate on their Advanced Certificate application the candidate category under which they intend to apply for the CRC (Category 2 or 3). More information on candidate categories can be obtained at the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification site (

If you are applying to the certificate program to obtain courses toward your Virginia LPC, please submit a copy of your transcript to the Board of Counseling for a pre-review. (Only required if you did not graduate with your masters in counseling from VCU). If you have not yet submitted your transcript for a board review, please look for the "pre-review of education toward LPC licensure" on the board's website. By submitting the paperwork, The Board reviewers determine two things: 1) what courses you will need in the certificate program 2) verification that your previous masters degree is eligible for LPC licensure.

Admission Requirements

The applicant must:

  1. Have completed a master’s degree in counseling (e.g., rehabilitation, school, mental health), or a related discipline and
  2. submit an application to the Graduate School

To Apply

To apply to the program, applicants must complete forms provided by the Graduate School indicating “Certificate in Professional Counseling (Post Master's)” as the curriculum. 

Materials needed:

  1. Transcripts from all schools attended
  2. Two professional letters of reference
  3. Application questions
  4. Curriculum vita or resume
  5. Pre-approval letter from the board (if applicable)

See the Department’s Admission Deadlines and Requirements page for more information

Graduation Requirements

To qualify for graduation from the Advanced Certificate in Professional Counseling the following requirements must be satisfied:

  1. With an academic advisor, design and complete an approved course of study that leads to the completion of the educational requirements for desired licensure or certification.
  2. Complete a minimum of 15 graduate hours of course work in professional counseling with an overall grade point average of 3.0 or higher. The 15 credits must be nonduplicative of previous graduate work completed at Virginia Commonwealth University or other institutions. Additionally, all other Graduate School grade-point requirements are in effect.