In contrast to masters level programs offered in counseling, doctoral level students are seeking advanced skills to take leadership or teaching roles. They have already been licensed counselors and are looking to take their skills up to the next level. These professionals begin to see counseling in theoretical terms, and seek to learn the art as well as the tools to best analyze and interpret everything learned from past and future research on the topic. Many feel driven to create their own research studies in order to dig deeper into an area of counseling they find particularly interesting.
These PhD graduates can use these newly developed skills to work in any of the following positions:
• Clinical Director of Counseling
• Faculty Member
• Church Administrator
• Professional Counselor
• Family Therapist
• Pastor/Youth Pastor
• University Administrator
• Director of NonProfit Organization
• Residential Treatment Center Director
The job market for counselors is widely believed to be strong and is expected to remain positive and even grow in the future. The public’s increasingly positive perception of counseling will continue to see increases in the number of people who seek out counseling/therapy services each year. This higher demand will mean that qualified PhD graduates will be sought after and will see better job prospects because of it.
The extra education and experience of these graduates will find them likely to receive salaries that average on a national basis in a range from $70,000-$115,000. The lower salaries will be for positions in religious institutions or medical facilities, and the higher salaries seem to be in academia or higher level positions in clinical facilities. Directors of Nonprofit Organizations receive some of the highest salaries of all of these graduates.
The following list provides our recommended online doctoral level degree programs available to people looking to advance their counseling career:
- PhD in Marriage and Family Therapy-Child and Adolescent Therapy: Northcentral University offers this degree for those interested in being practitioner to families with children. They would receive the most modern teachings that research and study have shown in this profession. This program will equip them with the tools to best address the dynamics going on in troubled families.
- Doctor of Education in Counseling Psychology: Argosy University makes this online degree available to students that have already been working in counseling environments, but want to advance their ability to take leadership roles in the field of counseling psychology. In addition to leadership roles, successful graduates of this program often times return in a teaching capacity at an institute of higher learning.
- Doctor of Education in Pastoral Community Counseling: This degree offered at Argosy University provides the teachings to students interested in becoming strong leaders in their religious communities. The coursework address both the educational side of counseling, but also works on developing strengths in leadership that can be put to action in the community to provide stronger growth and more responsible treatment of the people involved.
- Doctor of Education in Counselor Education and Supervision: Argosy University provides the opportunity for currently licensed counselors to advance their education to the doctorate level. This would advance their abilities by helping to teach them the skills to become a leader, either in supervising licensed counselors or by teaching counseling in an educational setting.
- Doctor of Philosophy in Advanced Studies in Human Behavior: Capella University offers this degree as a very theoretical study of counseling and the research that has been done to explain it. They look to new studies and ways evaluate why people react as they do, and to take that information to improve the human condition. Coursework for this program includes child and adolescent studies, family in social context, eating disturbances, addictive behaviors, and advanced study in many types of research methods.
- Doctor of Philosophy in General Counselor Education and Supervision: Capella University aims for its students to become highly qualified to be pioneers in the counseling field after graduating with this degree. Combining online classes, residency, and clinical experiences, the program empowers them with the ability to better address how counseling can best address the issues of its clients. Equipped with extensive coursework in the research and statistical analysis of behaviors, they can better assess their success.
- Doctor of Philosophy in Counseling: Liberty University offers this program to those interested in public practice, private practice, or to teach counseling courses at the college level. On beginning one’s studies, they must choose which path they are interested in specializing, either pastoral care and counseling or professional counseling.
- PhD in Counseling: Oregon State University prepares its students to re-enter the workforce as advanced counselors that can put the skills learned to practice. That can be assuming leadership roles in their current positions or to become educators in the workplace or in the educational setting. Coursework addresses assessments, group counseling, consultation, advanced theory and practice.
- Doctor of Christian Counseling: The Christian Leadership University makes part of its broad Christian-based offerings for those who seek formal degrees to add to their skill in offering wisdom and advice to members of their congregations. Focus is on applying things to real world situations as they are learned through coursework. Helps to learn how to channel faith and religion-based ideals to the struggles and hardships that their members deal with.
- PhD in Counselor Education and Practice: At Georgia State University, each student is required to select their specialization, and has many choices to pick from. College counseling, marriage counseling, therapy, and rehabilitation in a counseling setting, are a few. This curriculum takes an artistic view of counseling, and considers philosophically how the current practice of counseling works in fulfilling its duties to the clients.
- PhD in Counseling Psychology: The Georgia State University intends this program to sharpen the skills of practicing counselors in order to become university professors or to lead departments of counseling in larger organizations. These skills can be used in working with clients of all ages, all walks of life, all income levels, by assessing the internal components making each person do what they do. Considering positives of each person, rather than focusing on negatives or undesirable behaviors is what separates a counseling psychology practitioner.