M.A. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling


  • Completed application form.
  • Application fee of $75.
  • A minimum 3.0 grade point average (on a four-point scale) in all previous undergraduate and graduate study. (Occasionally, applicants with a GPA lower than 3.0 may be admitted conditionally upon the recommendation of the department.)
  • Official transcripts of all undergraduate study, including evidence of having received a bachelor's degree from an accredited university. (Those applying during their final undergraduate year will be required to submit a final transcript after completion of their bachelor's degree and before enrolling in their first semester of graduate study.)
  • Official transcripts of all graduate study.
  • Goals statement. See Application Guidelines for more information.
  • TOEFL is required from all international applicants from non-English speaking countries. (Use 5240 for the ETS institutional code)

Additional Program Requirements

  • Three letters of recommendation - At least one letter should address your sign language skills. 
  • Each applicant is required to submit a short essay answer to each of the topics listed below. These short essays are required in addition to the general application requirements (including the goal statements). These essays will be evaluated by the Selection Committee for clarity in describing the factors that contributed to your choice of clinical mental health counseling as a profession and to your decision to undertake graduate study at this time. Each essay should be typed, double-spaced, and about one-half to three-fourths of a page in length.

    Clinical Mental Health Counseling Essay Questions:
    1. Identify and discuss your character strengths and attributes and how you perceive them to contribute to your desire to become a professional counselor and, particularly, a counselor who works with deaf/hh populations. Identify and describe your weaknesses and how these may present potential challenges in your journey to becoming a professional counselor?
    2. Describe a "helping" situation where you were the "helper" and/or provided support to another person(s) and/or organization/community. How did you understand the need and how did this impact your feelings, thoughts, behaviors? What was your motivation to take on this "helping" role? How did you provide the "help" and/or "support"? What outcome did you expect, and how did it compare to the actual outcome? In hindsight, what, if anything, would you have done differently today?
    3. Describe either a "work" situation OR an interpersonal interaction with someone in which you experienced considerable disagreement, conflict, discriminatory behavior and/or attitude. Identify and reflect on specific feelings, thoughts and critical analyses that came up for you during the "situation"—what was your reaction, the reaction and response of the other person(s) involved? How did you end up handling the situation? What insights did you gain about yourself, your ability to relate to other people, and how you deal with the kind of circumstances with which you were faced?
    4. The Department has a strong emphasis on multiculturalism and social justice in counseling. We consider a professional counselor to be a "social change agent" who not only addresses change on an individual level but has the responsibility to address change on the group/organizational and systemic levels. In your personal and/or professional life, can you provide an example of your participation, advocacy, or leadership in helping to improve and/or change the current social status, for the better, of a cultural/racial-ethnic/or religious group? Describe your role in detail, your motivations, how you became involved, and the result of your participation as a social change agent for that group of people. In addition, as you consider making a professional commitment to becoming a counselor specializing in working with deaf/hh populations, describe what it means to you to be a "social change agent" within, and on behalf of the American Deaf/HH community in our society today? What do you consider are the most relevant social justice issues that need to be addressed for this community?
  • If you have taken any courses in the Department of Counseling as a special student, please list them on a separate sheet. Please include course names, dates of attendance, and instructors' names.
  • An interview, in person of by videophone with program faculty is required.
  • American Sign Language proficiency at a level sufficient to successfully complete the Admissions Interview. This interview, conducted in ASL with program faculty who have scored 4 or higher on the ASLPI, insures, among other things, the applicant's potential for full linguistic access to and participation in instruction and other curricular activities in this graduate program. "Successful completion" is achieved when the applicant demonstrates both receptive and expressive ASL skills such that the interview flows without significant interruptions.
  • Required Prior Coursework
    Nine undergraduate or graduate credits in Psychology; each course must be completed with a grade of "B" or better:
    • Child/Adolescent or Human Development (3),
    • Abnormal Psychology (3), and
    • any other three credit Psychology course (may be completed during the summer prior to starting this program).

Incomplete files WILL NOT be reviewed by the selection committee. Please be sure you have submitted all of the standard required parts of the application as well as any Counseling Program specific requirements.

Please call the Department of Counseling if you have questions concerning program requirements or need further information: (202) 651-5515 (voice) or (202) 618-6852 (VP). Thank you for your interest in the Department of Counseling.