Counseling Psychology FAQ

Counseling Psychology
Counseling Psychology FAQ


What distinguishes this program from other programs in Counseling Psychology?
  • The Counseling Psychology program at the University of Denver is distinguished by a small student-to-faculty ratio, small class size, opportunities for both research and clinical experience, and a variety of quality internship opportunities in the Denver Metro area.
Is this program accredited?
  • The Ph.D. degree program is accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA).
What does a typical schedule look like for M.A. and Ph.D. students?
  • More complete information about typical schedules can be found in the Handbooks section. Your advisor can help you create a comprehensive schedule that fits your needs.
What types of practicum and internship placements are available?
  • For the M.A. concentrations in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and School Counseling, there is a required practicum and M.A. Internship.  The Counseling Psychology Program has relationships with many sites in the Metro Denver area where practicum and internship placements are available. Students have an opportunity to work with adult and adolescent clients in schools, hospitals, residential centers and community counseling centers.
  • The Ph.D. Counseling Psychology program has two required practica. Students’ experience culminates in a required APA approved pre-doctoral psychology internship. Last year we had a 100 percent match for the students applying for internship. They are now across the country in California, Colorado, Pennsylvania, Washington State, and New Hampshire. Their match sites include university counseling centers, general hospital settings, and Veterans Affairs. We prepare students for teaching careers, research, and staff psychologist positions in a variety of treatment settings.
What kind of Careers can I pursue with this degree?
  • The Counseling Psychology program prepares students to work with adolescents and adults in a variety of settings including community counseling agencies, hospitals, schools and many other types of agencies. Selecting a practicum or internship site that corresponds with the setting in which you would like to work after graduation will give you experience in a particular setting.
  • Counseling psychologists encourage individuals to better understand themselves and their behavior, to develop an increased repertoire of adaptive coping skills and to more effectively approach life problems in light of this understanding and skill development. Life crises such as those that normally occur in the aging process – developing an identity, mid-life reevaluation, retirement and grief or loss – are of concern to the counseling psychologist.
  • Counseling psychologists also help individuals make vocational-educational decisions, take productive action in marriage or family systems and assist individuals with health-related crises. Within such roles, they may teach communication and other interpersonal skills, time and stress management, parenting, as well as help with normal developmental processes. Problems such as these are the primary province of counseling psychology although counseling psychologists may also work with issues involving atypical or disordered development.
  • Focusing on developmental issues or those involving atypical development, counseling psychologists may target individuals, families, groups, systems or organizations. They may do remedial work with individuals or groups in crisis, or work in a developmental, preventative role by providing information and training to prevent crises or more serious mental health problems. In these roles, they often function as educators.
  • Counseling psychologists may also function as researchers in agencies, organizations or academic settings. They may evaluate current practices and programs, develop and test new interventions or study the characteristics of the populations they serve. They may also do basic research on human development, behavior change or related issues. Consequently, doctoral students develop research skills that will enable them to contribute original research to the profession as well as to evaluate individual and program effectiveness.
Are there Career paths in Denver for Counseling Psychologists?
  • It should be noted that the Denver-Boulder-Colorado Springs metropolitan area is heavily subscribed with mental health professionals. Individuals who are accepted in the doctoral program should not necessarily expect to find employment in these geographical areas after graduation. Students should also be aware that faculty members believe that in light of managed care and other related events, the practice of psychology is changing.
  • We believe that within the next 5-10 years, the opportunities for private practitioners will decline and that doctoral-level psychologists should prepare themselves for positions that include research, supervision, program development and evaluation, and teaching. These positions will involve leadership and communication skills. The Counseling Psychology program at the University of Denver is committed to help students develop such skills.
What should I do to prepare for my practicum placement?
  • Near the Counseling Psychology faculty offices, there is a blue notebook containing information and reviews of sites with which students have worked in the past. Look through the notebook and talk to other students about their practicum and internship experiences.
I’m interested in eventually applying to a Ph.D. program; what can I do to ensure that the master’s program prepares me for that?
  • To prepare for your application to the Ph.D. program, it is helpful to make connections with faculty, be involved in research (including attending conferences and working on presentations and papers) during your M.A. program.
What programs lead to license in the state of Colorado?
  • With additional post-graduation hours, both the M.A. and Ph.D. programs lead to licensure in the state of Colorado.
Will I be able to obtain a license in another state after receiving my degree in Colorado?
  • Licensing requirements vary from state to state. Check with the licensing board for the state you are interested in. Some states may require specific classes or degrees for licensure that are not required for Colorado.
Are there opportunities to be involved in research during my program?
  • There are many opportunities for M.A. students to be involved in research with faculty members. Research experience is a fundamental component of the Ph.D. program.
Are there opportunities to teach during this program?
  • Opportunities for teaching are available to Ph.D. students, but not M.A. students.
Do I need an undergraduate degree in Psychology to apply to the program?
  • A major in Psychology is not required for acceptance into either program.
Do I need a master’s degree to apply to the Ph.D. program?
  • No.  We do not require applicants to have a master’s degree prior to applying to the Ph.D. program.
What factors are considered for acceptance into the programs?
  • The admissions committee will consider your transcript(s), letters of recommendation, statement of goals, GRE scores and prior experience, including volunteer work in the field or any training in counseling.
Is an interview required as part of the application process?
  • Yes. Individuals who cannot attend Interview Day will be scheduled for a phone or Skype interview with a faculty member.
Will I be able to waive a course based on previous graduate coursework?
  • Some courses can be waived with documentation that you’ve already taken a similar course.
Can I enroll in this program part time?
  • Both the M.A. and Ph.D. programs are full time (full time = 8 or more credits per quarter) but arrangements can be made for part-time enrollment.
When does this program begin?
  • For both the Ph.D. and M.A .programs, students begin during the fall quarter.

Admissions Contact
303-871-2509, KRH 110
Office Hours: By appointment only


When does the program start? Can I begin anytime?
  • Most programs begin each year in Fall Quarter which is typically the first or second week of September. Some programs, such as the Teacher Preparation Programs and the  Educational Leadership and Policy Studies Programs, begin in the Summer Quarter (early June). On rare occasions, students can begin their studies in a different quarter, however, this is arranged on a case-by-case basis only. Students should contact the Morgridge Office of Admissions at to explore this option.
What does full-time enrollment mean?
  • Full-time enrollment status in a graduate program is achieved by taking a minimum of 8 credit hours per quarter. However, specific funding may require a student to complete 9 credit hours per quarter.
Are classes offered online?
  • The majority of our classes are offered on campus, however, there are a few courses that are offered either in a blended format (online with some on-campus meeting times) or online. Blackboard is an online tool used by most faculty at DU to provide access to selected course materials, no matter the setting of the class meetings.
How many students are in a typical class?
  • Our average class size is generally between 20 and 25 students, but many classes will have 8 to 10 students.

Admissions Contact
303-871-2509, KRH 110
Office Hours: By appointment only

Learn More About DU and Programs

Can I set up an appointment to visit the campus and discuss program options?
  • Yes. Although not mandatory, we encourage prospective students to see the campus, meet current students, and attend classes. This is probably your best means of getting a feel for our program. To set up a campus visit call the Morgridge College of Education Office of Admissions and Enrollment Services at (303) 871-2509 or (800) 835-1607, or email at It is preferable if you would arrange for visits through the Admissions Office and not through individual faculty.
Can I talk to a student from the program?
  • Yes. We encourage prospective students to communicate with current students in order to get the clearest possible picture of graduate life at the University of Denver. We have current Student Ambassadors on hand to meet with prospective students to share their experiences and speak to life in the Morgridge culture.  Contact the Morgridge College of Education Office of Admissions at to be connected to a Student Ambassador or another current student in your program of interest.

Admissions Contact
303-871-2509, KRH 110
Office Hours: By appointment only

Application & Admissions

How important are my GRE scores for admission?
  • Not all programs require a GRE score. In most programs, GRE scores are not the deciding factor for admittance; they are only one of many criteria used for admissions evaluation.
What if I do not have GRE scores? Can I use another test I took?
  • When required for admissions consideration, the GRE is the only test accepted. Regardless of the requirement to submit GRE scores, all international applicants/non-native English speakers are required to submit an official, valid TOEFL score.
From whom should I get letters of recommendation?
  • It is best to obtain letters of recommendation from professors or professionals who know you well. For recent graduates, ask for recommendation letters from former professors that can speak to your academic abilities as well as your character. For individuals entering the program with years of work experience, letters of recommendation from professionals who have seen your ability to work with children, adolescents and/or families are recommended.Most importantly, choose individuals that are knowledgeable about your past experiences as well as your goals for the future, and who know you well enough to adequately discuss your accomplishments and potential.
Is an interview required for admission?
  • Yes, interviews are required as part of the admissions process. If you are selected for an interview, you will be notified of the interview dates and location details. If you are unable to come to your in-person interview, you may complete your interview via Skype or phone.  We strongly encourage you to attend the on-campus interview day as it will provide the best opportunity for you to learn about the program, see the campus, meet current students and experience the Morgridge culture for yourself.
What is required for application to Morgridge College of Education?
  • The application materials may include: a completed online application, a 2 to 3 page statement of goals, resume, official transcripts from every higher education institution attended, letters of recommendation (2 for MA, 2 or 3 for PhD, depending upon the program), a $65 application fee, and GRE scores for specific programs (which should be sent directly to the university).
When will I hear about the status of my application?
  • Applicants will receive an email that their application was received by the DU Graduate Studies Admissions Office and will be notified if there is any missing information. Students are encouraged to check on the status of their application materials by emailing Once an application file is complete, the file is sent to the Morgridge College of Education Office of Admissions to be reviewed by program faculty. Typically, decisions about acceptance into a program are made two to three weeks following the on-campus interview day. To check on admission decisions, you may contact the Morgridge College of Education Admissions office at (303) 871-2509 or (800) 835-1607 or email at
Can I defer my admissions or change my entry term if necessary?
  • Some graduate programs allow deposited students to request a one-time change of admit term to indicate a start term one quarter early or a deferment to the date of his/her intended enrollment for up to one academic year. Contact the Morgridge Office of Admissions at for more information about changing your admissions term.

Admissions Contact
303-871-2509, KRH 110
Office Hours: By appointment only

Waivers & Transfer Credits

Can I transfer credit from an undergraduate class?
  • No, only graduate-level courses can be transferred and the course must have been taken within the last five years and from an accredited program. Transfer credits cannot have been used toward another degree. There is a limit to the number of graduate credits you can transfer into DU based on the degree you are applying to (see below). If it is appropriate to waive a course (e.g. similar course already taken, content knowledge demonstrated, or successful test-out for certain research courses) the course credit hours must still be utilized for another course. A waived course does not mean a reduction in credit hours required. If your undergraduate work is similar in content to a required graduate course, you may be able to waive a required course after a review of the content with your advisor. A waived course allows you to take another graduate course in place of the one we require if you have already taken a course with very similar content. Transfer courses are different than waived courses since they reduce the number of credits you take at DU.
What graduate coursework is accepted as transfer credit?
  • Transferring graduate coursework into DU is discussed on an individual basis with your advisor. If you wish to transfer in comparable graduate-level coursework, you will need to bring in the syllabus, text, other course materials, and you must have an official transcript on file from the institution. The transfer must be initiated through your advisor in the first quarter of your program. The graduate coursework you wish to transfer must be no more than five years old, cannot have been counted toward another degree, and must be transferred in your first quarter of enrollment at the University of Denver. A maximum of 10 quarter hour credits may be transferred into the MA and a maximum of 15 quarter hour credits may be transferred into the EdS, PhD and EdD programs. Graduate coursework that is transferred in will reduce the total number of DU credits you will need to graduate.
Will my graduate coursework for my previous graduate degree count?
  • Credits that have already been applied to a degree cannot be counted again toward another degree. If the credit was not used toward another degree, see above for information on transfer credits. For more information or to discuss your specific situation, contact the Morgridge Office of Admissions at

Admissions Contact
303-871-2509, KRH 110
Office Hours: By appointment only

Internships & Assistantships

Does every student get a paid internship?
  • No, not all internships are paid.  Program faculty will work with you to set up an internship in the community or school of your choice. Some internships are paid and some are not.  All internship sites must meet all program standards and must be approved officially by the Program Chair or designee.
Can I take an internship out of state?
  • Yes. It is possible to complete your internship in another state for most programs; however it does require extra work and planning to ensure that the internship site and supervisor meet our internship requirements. To determine if this is an option for your program, contact the Morgridge Office of Admissions at
Does the program arrange for the internship placements?
  • Program faculty help mentor and facilitate the internship placement process, but students generally must apply and be selectedby the organization as interns. Students are required to actively pursue particular internships they desire and complete the interviewing process. All internships must be approved by the program director or designee prior to the beginning of the internship year.
What funding or assistantships are there for graduate students?
  • A variety of types of aid are available for graduate students. A select number of stipends are available for incoming students who are paired with a faculty mentor to conduct research in their area of interest. Advanced students often have the opportunity to obtain stipends for similar work. There are a limited number of Graduate Teaching Assistantships and Graduate Research Assistantships also available to advanced students in the program that provide some tuition reimbursement as well as monthly stipends.

Admissions Contact
303-871-2509, KRH 110
Office Hours: By appointment only

Tuition & Financial Aid

What is the cost of tuition?
Will I need to pay out-of-state tuition, or how do I get in-state tuition?
  • The University of Denver is a private institution, thus tuition is the same for both in-state and out-of-state students. For an estimate of yearly costs, visit the Office of Financial Aid.
Are scholarships available?
Is financial aid available?
  • In order to apply for financial aid at the University of Denver, and be considered for federal grants and scholarships, you must have a current Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form on file. Federal financial aid is available to qualified students. For information on financial aid, visit the Office of Financial Aid. Student employment may also be available for graduate students. Financial Aid requires students to be enrolled in a minimum of 4 quarter credit hours in a term.

Admissions Contact
303-871-2509, KRH 110
Office Hours: By appointment only

Insurance, Immunizations, and Housing

What kinds of insurance coverage do graduate students receive?
  • Graduate students have the option of obtaining their own private health insurance or using the health insurance provided by the University of Denver. For specific information regarding the coverage under the University of Denver’s plan, visit the Health and Counseling Center.
What immunizations are required for students?
  • All students must show proof of MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) immunization. (CO Revised Statuses 25-4-901 to 909) Students will NOT be able to register for classes without providing this information. Exemptions for medical, religious or personal reasons may be submitted. See the Health and Counseling Center website for more information on immunizations and a link to the Certificate of Immunization form.
What is the cost of housing?
  • Graduate students have the choice to live on or off the University of Denver campus. Information regarding on-campus housing can be found at Housing and Residential Education and includes information about building options, dining plans, parking and other related information. Off-campus housing information includes links to nearby apartment complexes as well as information about how to find roommates, transportation, childcare, banks and other information regarding living in the area.

Admissions Contact
303-871-2509, KRH 110
Office Hours: By appointment only

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