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General School Counseling Master of Science in School Counseling

School of Counseling and Human Services

Grow to Become a Guide and Advocate for Students

As someone who cares about young people’s future, you know how important it is to find the right path. The online master’s in school counseling from Capella is designed to put that passion into practice. This flexible, CACREP-accredited degree program is designed to help you prepare to pursue licensure as a school counselor; it is part of the Capella Professional Education Unit, which is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education.

The curriculum will cover such topics as contemporary issues in school counseling, theories of counseling and guidance for children and adolescents, and counseling and advocacy with diverse populations.

At a Glance

  • Online & In Person
  • 7 Core Courses
  • 5 Specialization Courses
  • 1 Integrative Project
  • 2 Residencies
  • Practicum
  • 2 Internships
  • CACREP and CAEP Accreditation

Classes Start January 7th

Ready to get started? We’re ready for you. Chat with an enrollment counselor or apply now to take the first step on the journey toward your future.

$50 Application Fee (waived w/promo WINTER)

MS in School Counseling Program Highlights

Skills to Lead as a Clinician

Gain real-world skills with a combination of online, theory-based coursework and in-person learning experiences.

Preparation to Pursue Licensure

Learn with curriculum that’s aligned with school counseling education standards to help you prepare for professional credentialing.

All Core Faculty Hold Doctorates

Our faculty is made up of scholar-practitioners who are active within their professions and bring real-world experience to the courseroom.


Apply your skills and knowledge in the field with direct client contact and supervision during your program.

Learn more about practicum/internship »


Enhance the skills you develop in your program through interaction with faculty and students in a supportive environment.

Learn more about residency »

Strategic Alignment

Our curriculum is designed to incorporate the values, principles, and ethical standards of national, regional, and state professional counseling associations and honor societies, including the American School Counseling Association.

Meet Your Counseling Faculty

Our distinguished faculty members hold top credentials in their fields. They’re here to teach you critical knowledge and skills and to help enrich your education and career by bringing real-world relevance to the courseroom. Our faculty include:

Joshua Stanley, EdD, NCC, ACS

Faculty Chair, School Counseling

Ellen Smith, PhD, NCC

Program Lead & Core Faculty, School Counseling

DA Erickson, PhD, LPC, NCC, ACS

Core Faculty, School Counseling

Get the Support You Need for Success

You’re never going it alone at Capella. Our dedicated support teams are waiting to guide, help, and advise you through every step of your educational journey.


Want to learn more about courses, instructors, or resources? Ask our advisors—they know all about the details of your program.

Career Center

For this team, it’s more than résumés and interview tips. It’s about thoughtful and strategic career planning—beyond graduation.

Licensure Support

Our licensure team supports you through the license application process, and is there for you even beyond graduation.

Cost & Learning Format

Online education isn’t one-size-fits-all. We know you’re busy—you need a learning experience tailored to your life, not the other way around. Capella has learning and tuition formats to suit you, however you learn. 

Our original learning format offers extra structure for those who want it. We'll set the schedule, you meet the deadlines. 

  • Based on the quarter system; 1-3 courses per 10-week quarter
  • 1 semester credit = 1.5 quarter credits
  • Weekly assignments and courseroom discussions
  • Pay for what you take, price varies by courseload or term
$487 per credit, 72 total quarter credits, 12 max transfer credits

*This is only an estimate, using general program pricing, and it does not include fees (including application and resource kit fees).  Your price may be higher or lower depending on your specialization, transfer credits, and tuition discounts. If transfer credits are allowed in this offering, the prices above show what you would pay if you brought in the average number of transfer credits and the price if you brought in the maximum allowed transfer credits.  

Get the Details

Speak with an enrollment counselor to get a personalized cost estimate for what you can expect to pay.

Accredited & Respected

Capella University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Accreditation and recognitions provide the assurance we meet standards for quality of faculty, curriculum, learner services, and fiscal stability. See all of our accreditations and recognitions

Ways to Save

At Capella, we believe your education is an investment in your future. It’s also an investment within your grasp. Your goals are achievable—there are more ways to save than you might think. 

Transfer Credits

We can accept many transfer credits from regionally accredited schools. 

Employer Reimbursements

Many employers offer tuition reimbursement to employees, even if there’s no formal program. Check with your manager or HR dept.

Scholarships for New Students

Capella scholarships, available for qualifying students, aren’t need-based and never have to be repaid.

MS in School Counseling—Sample Courses

The curriculum for our online master in school counseling program emphasizes assessment, intervention, and individual and group counseling. Gain knowledge of classroom guidance, consultation, and advocacy of systemic change in schools.

Course Number Course Title
COUN5241 Group Counseling and Psychotherapy
COUN5280 Introduction to School Counseling
COUN5284 School Counseling Program Development and Evaluation
COUN5422 Counseling for College and Career Readiness
COUN5812 Theories of Counseling with Children and Adolescents

What You’ll Learn

The right education can change everything. Discover your path to gaining real-world skills to support young people as a licensed school counselor.

  • Apply counseling and child development theories to school practice.
  • Connect with students using counseling services that support diversity.
  • Think critically, write effectively in a professional school counseling context.

  • Uphold American Counseling Association and the American School Counselor Association codes of ethics.
  • Communicate with compassion in all professional interactions.
  • Champion the highest standards based on the ASCA National Model for Comprehensive School Counseling.

MS in School Counseling—Career Insights

Preparing Counselors to Handle Violence in Schools

Educating future school counselors includes training on violence: prevention, de-escalation, and post-trauma support.

School Counselors vs. School Psychologists

A comparison of responsibilities, licensure, and degree requirements of school counselors and psychologists.

Capella Faculty Member to Lead American Counseling Association

As president of the American Counseling Association, Simone Lambert, PhD, hopes to advocate for the profession.

MS in School Counseling—Professional Paths

Your education can help you reach your goals, professionally and personally. Here are some of the job titles and employment settings to explore as you consider a master’s in school counseling.

Related Job Titles to Explore*

  • School counselor
  • School counseling coordinator
  • Academic advisor
  • Career counselor
  • College counselor
  • Academic counselor
  • Advisor
  • Guidance counselor
  • Student life counselor
  • Counselor

Related Employment Settings to Explore

  • P-12 public schools
  • P-12 private schools
  • Private boarding school
  • Non-profit educational organization
  • Educational corporation
  • Government- state and federal departments of education

*These are examples intended to serve as a general guide. Some positions may prefer or even require previous experience, licensure, certifications, and/or other designations along with a degree. Because many factors determine what position an individual may attain, Capella cannot guarantee that a graduate will secure any specific job title, a promotion, salary increase, or other career outcome. We encourage you to research requirements for your job target and career goals.

Other Programs to Explore

Is this program close to what you need, but maybe not a perfect fit? The programs below might be interesting. Check them out to find one that suits your academic and professional goals. 

Ready for the Next Step?

Learning online doesn't mean going it alone. Help is here. From faculty, coaches, advisors, and more. Plus a supportive community of students who are as passionate about their careers as you are about yours.