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    Sep 28, 2023  
2015-2016 Graduate Catalog 
2015-2016 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Counselor Education Major, PhD

The doctoral major in counselor education at the University of Tennessee is designed to prepare experienced counseling professionals to advance their careers in the education, supervision, and research of counselors. The doctoral program is for those students who have completed a master’s degree in counseling or counseling-related fields who aspire to careers in areas such as college, university, or community college teaching positions in counselor education or related fields; supervisory positions in schools, community agencies, state departments of education; counseling positions in student development programs and counseling centers in higher education; and/or private mental health counseling/consultation practice employee assistance programs.

The major requires advanced course work, practicum, internship, and dissertation hours of study beyond the master’s degree. Students in the PhD major in counselor education can work toward endorsement for counseling licensure, if licensure has not been received prior to entering the doctoral program. Preference is given to those with a 3.5 GPA on any graduate work completed prior to application. Preference is also given to students who score equal to or higher than the 70th percentile on the verbal area and the 50th percentile on the quantitative area of the GRE, based on the norms that were in effect when the test was taken, and a 4.5 on the analytic writing subtest.

Doctoral program admission criteria include the following:

  • Academic aptitude for doctoral-level study.
  • Previous professional experience, counseling preferred.
  • Fitness for the profession, including self-awareness and emotional stability.
  • Oral and written communication skills.
  • Potential for scholarship, professional leadership, and advocacy.

In addition, general graduate admission standards for international students require a transcript from the home country indicating an equivalent of the University of Tennessee grade point average of 3.0 or higher. Official results of TOEFL must be submitted. A minimum score of 550 on the paper test or 80 on the Internet-based Test typically with a score of 20 on each of the sections of the test (reading, listening, writing, and speaking), and scores on the GRE that meet the admission requirements are preferred.


Course work for the counselor education doctoral program includes the following.

  Hours Credit
Major 24
Professional Orientation 7
Cognate 6
Research 12
Dissertation 24
  Total 73

More detailed information about course work is available in the program handbook and through the advising process.