How to Become a Career Counselor in 5 Steps (With Tips)

How to Become a Career Counselor
  1. Complete a bachelor’s degree in a behavioral, social science, or human services field.
  2. Earn a master’s degree in counseling.
  3. Complete graduate and postgraduate internship experience for certification/licensure requirements.
  4. Pass any required exams for certification/licensure.

Become a Career Counselor

What does a career counselor do?

In the end, a career counselor’s duties center on assisting clients in applying their skills and techniques to reach their career goals. When a career counselor works with someone, they frequently take on a range of duties that assist others in achieving these goals, such as:

What is a career counselor?

A career counselor is a person who helps people identify and use their skills and abilities to achieve career goals by using career development theories and informal and formal assessments. High school and college students, career veterans in transition, and even military veterans making the transition to the civilian workforce are all common clients of career counselors. Basically, career counselors will support others’ overall professional and career development, help people find ways to develop critical skills, and help people set career objectives. Furthermore, career counselors are crucial experts who can give people the instruments and resources they need to accomplish their professional goals.

What is the job outlook for a career counselor?

To work in career counseling roles, the majority of employers demand that career counselors possess a master’s or other graduate-level degree. How to pursue this career path can be outlined in the steps that follow:

1. Earn your bachelors degree

Get a bachelor’s degree in a field related to human services, like social or behavioral science, psychology, or sociology. Human development, counseling techniques, and other psychological and sociological studies ought to be the main focus of a four-year degree program that trains you to work as a career counselor. These kinds of prerequisites are necessary in order to enroll in a master’s program in career counseling.

2. Pursue your graduate degree

Those with master’s degrees in counseling or career services are preferred by most employers when hiring career counselors. The prerequisites you studied in your four-year program, such as career counseling theories and practices, assessment counseling, research practices and standards, and professional counseling ethics, will serve as the foundation for a graduate degree program in career counseling.

3. Gain work experience

Most academic programs, including those at the undergraduate and graduate levels, might ask you to complete an internship or practicum. These kinds of practical work experiences can assist you in developing skills that are necessary for your career. Additionally, completing internships or practicums while pursuing your education will assist you in gaining the relevant professional experience you’ll need to start your career as an entry-level counselor.

4. Obtain your certification

You’ll need to obtain your professional certification after earning your master’s degree in career counseling. The National Counselor Examination (NCE), which awards the Certified Career Counselor (CCC) credential, is administered by the National Career Development Association (NCDA). To work as a career counselor, you might also need to obtain state licensure, though not all states demand it.

5. Keep your license current

Every two to three years, or as often as your state requires, you will need to renew your professional counseling certification. Typically, this entails earning credits for continuing education through seminars, workshops, and even research. The NCDA also mandates ongoing education with a focus on advancement in the field of career services in order to maintain your national career counseling certification.

Tips for working as a career counselor

There are many duties you’ll undertake as a career counselor, from developing your soft skills to using particular techniques that aid others in goal achievement and development. For more information on working as a career counselor, take into account the following suggestions:


How do I get into career Counselling?

Below are five of the top techniques used in career counseling.
  1. Developing a therapeutic relationship. …
  2. Defining goals. …
  3. Creating room for self-exploration. …
  4. Understanding the job market. …
  5. Helping turn life themes into career goals.

What degree should I get to be a career counselor?

The majority of careers in career counseling begin with bachelor’s degrees in disciplines like psychology, counseling, or vocational psychology. Numerous institutions also provide graduate degree programs in career guidance, which may open up more lucrative job opportunities.

Are career counselors worth the money?

Perhaps you have been applying to the incorrect positions or using the incorrect strategy. However, if you’ve come to the point where you’re beginning to lose hope, a counselor’s assistance could be extremely helpful. Additionally, a professional’s fee will be well worth the expense if working with them helps you land a job sooner rather than later.

What is the role of a career counselor?

To assist students and alumni in making informed career decisions, exploring possible careers, preparing for an effective job search, and connecting with part-time, internship, and full-time employment opportunities, career counselors offer individual and group career counseling and job search coaching.

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