Non-RA Psych MS for Substance Abuse Counseling

Discussion in 'Accreditation Discussions (RA, DETC, state approva' started by jimwe, Sep 2, 2015.

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  1. jimwe

    jimwe Member

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    Occupation:
    Case Manager
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    Ohio
    I'm currently working as a substance abuse counselor in Ohio. They have different grades of license, depending on your degree. I have a minor is psych and an MS Ed. I'm considering an MS Psych degree from California Coast U to be able to get the higher level license. The test is the same, it just depends on if you have a social science degree. I'm not sure how having a non-RA degree will affect me in a job search as a substance abuse counselor? Anyone?
     
  2. Garp

    Garp New Member

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    I don't actually know as there are many variables. I suspect that if you can use the nationally accredited degree for licensure then many jobs will look at whether you are licensed or not as most important added to the fact that you have an accredited degree (which you would). Some jobs might specify RA.

    Have you considered California Southern (don't they have an MA in Psych)? They are distance learning and RA. What about getting their PsyD?
     
  3. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

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    I think there's one thing that Garp said that's critical. If the degree will get you the license then the degree is a good one. Employers hire based on the license, not the school you attended. Check with your state licensing board and ask if a NA deree will work. If there's any doubt it will be worth whatever else you need to do to get the RA degree as you're counting on this for years and years of income. There are plenty of RA Counseling programs around. There's no need to settle for less.
     
  4. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator

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    As with everything else, every state has their own standards, although the differences aren't so major that most states allow reciprocity. Here in Massachusetts, there are three levels of licensed alcohol & drug counselors (LADC), with only the highest (LADC I) requiring a graduate degree in a behavioral science.

    Licensing Requirements

    Even then, the standard is defined as a degree from "an accredited post-secondary institution". There's no further clarification for accredited, which may mean that any legitimate accreditation is acceptable, or it could also mean that they mean RA, but don't know any better that there is other accreditation.

    It would be very cheap insurance to make some phone calls/send some e-mails to the state licensing division before investing in a NA degree.
     

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