Published November 2016
Welcome to our ranking of the ten top master’s degrees in counseling in Texas.
Between all the public and private institutions of higher education in Texas, one thing is for sure: you’ll never be short of options in the Lone Star State! While this plethora of programs is great news for students pursuing a master’s degree in counseling in Texas, it could also be bad news for the perpetually indecisive – so get ready to put your thinking cap on.
Click here to see the methodology we used for this best master’s in counseling degree ranking.
A big perk of UT San Antonio’s top master’s degree in counseling is the school’s focus on research. As an emerging Tier One research institution, UTSA is putting plenty of resources into boosting its research facilities, and the school’s Sarabia Family Counseling Center is no exception. In addition to specialized counseling suites covering individual, group, and child therapy, the center features one of the few certified neurofeedback training centers in the United States. Students interested in learning about this cutting-edge counseling field should look closely at UT San Antonio’s affordable Texas counseling graduate degree.
Tuition & Fees: $13,765/yr
If family, couples, and children’s counseling is where your interests lie, Sam Houston State University’s Marriage, Couple, and Family Counseling track — although not yet accredited by CACREP – provides all counseling students with plenty of opportunities for coursework in those subjects. Elective classes like Child and Adolescent Issues in Counseling, Advanced Play Therapy, and Techniques of Marriage and Family Therapy means students can dig into those counseling fields as a part of their accredited counseling master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. SHSU is also home to two different counseling clinics, both of which provide opportunities for family, couples, and child counseling training.
Tuition & Fees: $10,723/yr
Texas A&M University Commerce has built its degree to support a broad range of career goals, from serving at a community clinic or counseling center to working in student affairs at a college or university. Both of the school’s affordable master’s in counseling degrees can be modified to ensure that students are eligible for a variety of professional licensures, and because both tracks are built on the same core classes, it’s easy for students to customize their coursework based on their professional interests. There’s even an optional thesis for those who want to prepare for a PhD.
Tuition & Fees: $9,010/yr
The UT Tyler College of Education and Psychology, which runs the school’s accredited graduate degree in counseling, is a dynamic and innovative college. With small class sizes and access to UT Tyler’s Ingenuity Center for research labs and resources, counseling students benefit from one-on-one attention and plenty of cutting-edge coursework in topics like cognitive behavioral therapy. Reflecting that focus on innovation and research is the program’s tilt toward the more scientific and clinical aspects of counseling; required classes include Tests and Measurement and Research and Program Evaluation, plus a set of Clinical Skills core courses.
Tuition & Fees: $9,674/yr
Texas A&M Corpus Christi is one of the only schools on this Texas counseling graduate degree ranking to offer a specialization in Addictions Counseling, making it a strong choice for students interested in entering that field. But that’s not the only unique feature of Corpus Christi’s program. The school’s on-campus Counseling and Training Clinic has a special Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Teens program that provides an invaluable training opportunity for students hoping to use cognitive behavioral therapy with adolescents. That initiative makes Corpus Christi’s one of the best counseling master’s degrees for students hoping to work with young people.
Tuition & Fees: $9,674/yr
As one of only three Catholic Marianist Universities in the world, St. Mary’s builds its Catholic mission of social justice and peace into every aspect of the institution. The school was the first fair trade-certified university in Texas and encourages its students to undertake service projects instead of partying during spring break. As you might imagine, St. Mary’s counseling programs are especially reflective of that ethic — the school aims to prepare its students to promote justice, peace and humanity dignity as professional counselors. This top Texas graduate degree in counseling is ideal for students whose sense of mission pushes them toward public service.
Tuition & Fees: $15,600/yr
The University of Houston at Victoria offers a highly career-focused degree and is one of the few schools on this master’s degree in counseling ranking to designate both of its programs as Masters of Education. That doesn’t mean students are limited to careers in education — graduates of this top Texas Counseling graduate degree program work at non-profits, hospitals, and in private practice — but it certainly gives students hoping to work in education settings a leg up. And since the school also offers a Student Affairs and College Counseling track (which is not yet CACREP-accredited), students in the CMHC and School Counseling programs have access to a number of uncommon education-focused electives.
Tuition & Fees: $10,230/yr
Texas State University is home to two of the best master’s in counseling degrees in Texas thanks to the school’s focus on integrating theory and research with field experiences. The School Counseling degree is particularly robust, with specializations in either elementary or secondary school counseling. For students hoping to work with children, the school’s state-of-the-art Institute for Play Therapy (IPT) provides a valuable opportunity to partake in both experiential learning and cutting-edge research related to play therapy. And because the institute also offers four counseling courses directly through its program, it’s easy for students to get involved.
Tuition & Fees: $11,695/yr
The University of North Texas’s School Counseling degree comes in two flavors – Elementary School Counseling and Secondary School Counseling – both of which offer impressively robust curricula that take an even deeper dive into those fields than some of the other schools on this top counseling master’s degree ranking. This feature alone makes UNT’s one of the best master’s in counseling degrees in Texas for any student hoping to build a career as a school counselor, but the benefits don’t stop there. Those who opt for the Clinical Mental Health Counseling track enjoy their own set of diverse course options – plus the ability to explore an unusually broad range of electives in educational counseling.
Tuition & Fees: $10,675/yr
Stephen F. Austin State University is home to an enticing 48-credit CACREP-accredited School Counseling degree that sets students up for credentialing as both Certified School Counselors and Licensed Professional Counselors (although obtaining the former requires previous teaching experience). Although most of the students who pursue this affordable graduate degree in counseling choose to attend part-time, the 48-credit structure enables a full-time student to graduate relatively quickly. But that efficiency won’t come at the cost of a good education; courses in less common subjects like Finance in Student Affairs and Supervision of School Counselors provide future professionals with the valuable, broad-based experiences they need to gain an advantage in the working world.
Tuition & Fees: $9,820/yr
This concludes our ranking of the best graduate degrees in counseling in Texas. If you’re looking for doctoral degrees in counseling, Texas has plenty of those, too!