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HDC Curriculum

The graduate program in HDC offers students two professional training options at the master’s degree level. Students may participate in either the Clinical Mental Health Counseling track that prepares counselors for work in human service agencies and mental health settings, or the School Counseling track that prepares elementary and secondary school counselors. While there is overlap in these programs, they are viewed as distinctly different options. Thus, students must indicate which program they intend to follow prior to the end of the second semester of study, or prior to completion of 12 graduate-level hours at Peabody, whichever comes first. 


The program is organized into the CACREP eight common core curriculum areas required of all students in the program. Students have courses and experience in each of the following eight areas:

I. Professional Orientation and Ethical Practice: Explains the origins and development of the counseling profession. Describes professional roles, functions, and relationships for counselors within communities, and includes discussion of self-care, supervision, professional organizations, credentialing, advocacy, social justice, ethical concerns, and legal considerations in professional counseling.

II. Social and Cultural Diversity: Provides a context for relationships, issues, and trends in a multicultural and diverse society. Relates such factors as culture, ethnicity, nationality, age, gender, sexual orientation, mental and physical characteristics, education, family values, religious and spiritual values, socioeconomic status, and unique characteristics of individuals, couples, families, and groups. Explains theories of multicultural counseling, self-awareness, advocacy and conflict resolution.

III. Human Growth and Development: Provides a broad understanding of the needs and tasks confronting individuals at all developmental levels. Emphasis is on human behavior, personality and learning theory, stage development, and the constructivist view of human development. Offers a view of the effects of extraordinary circumstances on an individual or group, and theories for facilitating wellness.

IV. Career Development: Covers career choice theory, occupational trends, vocational guidance, issues related to career and professional identity, and interrelationships among life roles. Explores the implications of counseling and service delivery for persons with disabilities, for women, for the elderly, and for minority groups.

V. Helping Relationship: Includes (a) philosophic and epistemological foundations of the helping relationship; and (b) counseling theory, supervised practice, and application. Provides an understanding of the counseling process in a multicultural society, orientation to wellness and prevention, crisis intervention strategies, and counselor characteristics and skills influencing the helping process. Aids in developing a personal model of counseling.

VI. Group Work: Provides theory and dynamics of groups and human service organizations. Topics include group and organizational theory and leadership skills. Students participate in direct group experience and analyze contemporary issues facing counselors.

VII. Assessment: Provides overall understanding, historical perspectives, basic techniques, statistical concepts and theories of reliability and validity related to assessment. Describes the establishment of a systematic framework for understanding an individual within a given social system or environment. Emphasis is placed on methods of data gathering and interpretation, individual and group testing, case study approaches, and the study of individual differences. Ethnic, cultural, social class, and gender-related factors are also considered.

VIII. Research and Program Evaluation: Provides an understanding of the importance and application of research and methods within analysis and assessment. Covers statistics, field studies, research design, ethical and cultural issues in research, program evaluation, and the development of research and evaluation proposals. 



Course descriptions for the Clinical Mental Health Track can be found here .

Course descriptions for the School Track can be found here.


Please contact with comments or questions.