School Counseling Licensing
School Counseling Licensing Requirements
Licensing requirements will be determined by where applicants attend their master’s program (in-state versus out-of-state). The following information outlines the requirements for those who attend an in-state program versus an out-of-state program. There is not an Alternate Pathway for School Counseling.
In-State Licensing Requirements
Applicants for Utah School Counseling Licensure, who have attended an institution in-state, and who are not licensed in school counseling must meet the following requirements:
- Earn a minimum of a master's degree in school counseling from either Utah State University, University of Utah, Utah Valley University, or Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions (these are the only accredited institutions in Utah who offer a master’s level school counseling program). Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions also offers a license-only program for candidates who already have a master’s degree in a related field (contact Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions directly for further questions);
- Pass the PRAXIS 5421 Test with a score of 164 or higher; and
- Receive a recommendation for licensure from the university in which the program was completed. A recommendation from an in-state program qualifies candidates to receive the College and Career Readiness Certificate upon licensure based on adherence to R277-921-3: Incorporation of College and Career Readiness Certificate Program Standards Document
Out-of-State Licensing Requirements
Applicants for Utah School Counseling Licensure, who have attended an institution out-of-state (including an online program), and who are not licensed in school counseling must meet the following requirements:
- Earn a minimum of a master’s degree in school counseling from an institution that is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Education Program (CACREP), or another regionally recognized accrediting body that meets the Board approved Standards for Utah School Counselor Education Programs.
- Pass the PRAXIS 5421 Test with a score of 164 or higher;
- Be licensed in the state in which the program was completed;
- Complete the Utah State Board of Education College and Career Readiness Certificate Program; and
- Complete the Utah State Board of Education Out-of-State (OOS) License Application Process.
Current/Expired Educator Renewal for a Utah Educator License
School counselors looking to renew a current/expired license will need to follow procedures outlined by the Utah State Board of Education Renew/Upgrade a Utah Educator License.
For further information regarding Utah Educator Licensing, refer to the Utah State Board of Education Educator Licensing website.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Do I need to have a master’s degree in school counseling to become a practicing school counselor in Utah?
Yes, there is not an alternate pathway to becoming a school counselor in Utah. Applicants must have a minimum of a master’s degree or higher in school counseling as well as meet the requirements outlined under the School Counseling Licensing Requirements tab. Related master’s degrees (i.e., Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), etc.) do not fulfill the requirements needed to be licensed as a school counselor in Utah.
2. Can a Utah State Board of Education School Counseling Program Specialist verify that an out-of-state (online) program meets accreditation criteria?
No, it is the responsibility of the applicant to verify that the school counseling master’s program is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Education Program (CACREP) approved or meets the Board approved Standards for Utah School Counselor Education Programs.
3. Is an undergraduate degree in education (example, teaching) required in order to apply for a school counseling master’s degree program?
Applicants should work with the graduate department of the program of interest directly to determine admission requirements. In most circumstances, an undergraduate degree in education is not required.
4. Is a Professional Educator License in Utah required to obtain a license in school counseling?
All educators in Utah practice under a Professional Educator License. To receive a Professional Educator License for school counseling, applicants must meet the requirements outlined under the School Counseling Licensing Requirements tab.
5. How can I earn Professional Learning Points to renew an expired school counseling license that is relative to my profession?
There are many ways to earn Professional Learning Points when renewing an expired school counseling license. Some examples of professional learning opportunities, offered by the Utah State Board of Education, that support the role of the school counselor are:
College and Career Readiness (CCR) Certificate Program
In the 2015 General Session, House Bill 198 created the Strengthening Career Readiness for All Students. The goal of this program is to improve students’ college and career readiness by enhancing the skill level of school counselors who provide college and career counseling. Under this legislation, the State Board, in collaboration with educational entities and business/industry partners, developed a certificate for school counselors that certifies that a school counselor is highly skilled at providing college and career counseling.
This certificate program is governed by the Utah State Board of Education (USBE) Administrative Rules R277-921: Strengthening College and Career Readiness Program and is comprised of three components.
- Component One: Building a College-Going Culture for All Students
This component focuses on helping 100% of students in Utah be prepared to succeed in all post-secondary options.
- Component Two: Strategic Alignment and Implementation of a Systemic College and Career
Readiness School Counseling Program
Through online coursework via Canvas, this component emphasizes the importance of implementing a systemic framework for the delivery of school counseling services to ensure students complete high school with the social capital necessary to participate in a global society. Through this systemic approach, counselors and administrators align school counseling program goals with school improvement goals and student needs.
- Component Three: Strengthening Career Readiness for All Students
This component focuses on helping students become career-ready to meet the demands of Utah's economy.
Components One and Three Information
Components One and Three are offered through Utah Microcredentials, and will be available beginning August 1, 2023.
Component One Stack: Building a College-Going Culture for All Students. To complete Component One, you must complete the full stack of three (3) microcredentials.
Microcredentials for Component One:
- Academic Planning for Postsecondary Opportunities
- Economic Benefits of Postsecondary Education
- Promoting a College-Going Culture in the School
Component Three Stack: Strengthening Career Readiness for All Students. To complete Component Three, you must complete the full stack of three (3) microcredentials
Microcredentials for Component Three:
- Career Development and Implementation
- Career Development Planning and Evaluation
- Career Readiness Collaboration and Removal of Barriers
Enrolling for Component Two
Registration information for Component 2 is outlined below. Requirements necessary to satisfy Component 2 differs for those who have already obtained a Utah Professional Educator License and those seeking licensure. Please read the information carefully to ensure appropriate enrollment.
Practicing Utah School Counselors who hold a Professional Educator License satisfy Component Two requirements by completing the School Counseling Program Updates and Essentials training (within the last six years of applying for the certificate). Registration information for the School Counseling Program Updates and Essentials training can be found on the School Counseling Programs Calendar page.
Applicants seeking Utah School Counseling Licensure who have attended or are currently enrolled in an out-of-state school counselor master’s program (including an online program), can satisfy Component Two requirements by completing the Strategic Alignment and Implementation of a Systemic College and Career Readiness School Counseling Program Canvas course. This course is not for school counselors who hold a Utah Professional Educator License and are currently practicing as a school counselor in a Utah school. This course is designed for participants to work and complete at their own pace. Therefore, participants can self-enroll at any time. There is no cost or fees associated with this course. To begin this course, participants must self-enroll into the course by completing the following steps:
- If you already have a USBE Canvas account, go to Enroll in Strategic Alignment and Implementation of a Systemic College and Career Readiness School Counseling Program module.
- If you do not have a USBE Canvas account, go to Create a Canvas Account to register.
- Click on I'm a Student.
- Enter the Join Code DKB9JF
- Complete the Student Sign Up Form. Check that you agree to the terms, and then click on Start Learning.
For technical assistance, please contact Tina Morandy, Executive Secretary, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Application for Adding Certificate to School Counseling Educator License
After successful completion of all three components, school counselors must complete the application, and include transcripts, to add the certificate to their license.