Licensed Professional Counselor Information
The Virginia professional counseling license requires a master's degree in counseling, 60 graduate credit hours, including 12 specified courses and a 600-hour internship. The LPC also requires completion of 4,000 supervised post-master’s degree residency hours in an applicable work setting and a passing score on a qualifying written examination. See the Virginia Board of Counseling for specific information regarding licensing in Virginia. For information on LPC licensure in other states see the American Counseling Association.
Disclaimer: All coursework reviews of the Department of Health Professions are based on the regulations that were in effect for applicants at the time they began their first supervision. It is the applicant's responsibility to stay aware of regulatory changes that may effect the results of the review. The Department of Rehabilitation Counseling and VCU are not responsible for the maintenance of content or security of the site of the Department of Health Professions.
LPC Educational Requirements
60 graduate credit hours, including one three-credit course from each of the following areas (parentheses include the relevant RHAB course):
- professional identity, function and ethics (RHAB 525)
- theories of counseling and psychotherapy (RHAB 611)
- counseling and psychotherapy techniques (RHAB 691)
- human growth and development (RHAB 685 or equivalent*)
- group counseling and psychotherapy, theories and techniques (RHAB 612)
- career counseling and development theories and techniques (RHAB 623)
- appraisal, evaluation and diagnostic procedures (RHAB 624)
- abnormal behavior and psychopathology (RHAB 642)
- multicultural counseling, theories and techniques (RHAB 654)
- research (RHAB 625)
- diagnosis and treatment of addictive disorders (RHAB 521)
- marriage and family systems theory (RHAB 616)
- supervised internship (RHAB 695/696, nine credits)
Note: Keep all of your course syllabi until you receive your LPC. These are occasionally requested in the review and the department does not keep copies of past course syllabi on hand.
Internship Requirements for LPC
For an internship to count toward the LPC, the 600 hours must include a minimum of 240 face-to-face client contact hours, confirmed by either the department chair, professional counseling track director or the student’s faculty supervisor.
For the LPC applicant to qualify for the optional 600-hour residency requirement deduction (out of 4,000 total post-master’s degree residency hours), the intern also must have:
- completed 30 graduate credit hours prior to the start of the internship,
- received 20 hours on-site and 20 hours off-site face-to-face supervision, with at least one of the two supervisors holding a qualifying professional license, and
- submitted form 2-VIR (Verification of Internship Hours toward the Residency), signed by both the on-site supervisor and either the faculty supervisor, department chair or professional counseling track director.
Note: Complete all relevant internship verification forms at the end of your internship and get appropriate signatures at that time. Do not wait to complete these forms until you are done with your residency hours, or you risk being unable to complete them due to absence of supervisors or department faculty.
Note: Before starting your internship, obtain a copy of the department internship tracking form, then record your weekly total internship hours, supervision hours for on-site and on-campus supervision and client contact hours. To be on the safe side, always follow the guideline “If it isn’t recorded, it didn’t happen.”
The Virginia Counseling Board requires that applicants for the LPC first complete 4,000 hours of work in the field following completion of their master’s degree. While not a requirement for admission, applicants who are seeking licensure or certification in the commonwealth of Virginia are strongly encouraged to verify that their counseling degrees will be accepted for licensing or certification.