School of Education - George Mason University

Counseling, MEd Concentration in Clinical Mental Health Counseling

Students are prepared to work as mental health counselors in community, state, federal, and private counseling agencies; employee assistance programs; and private practice.

The 60-credit Clinical Mental Health Counseling concentration prepares students for positions as mental health counselors in community, state, federal, and private counseling agencies; employee assistance programs; and private practice. Graduates provide services such as individual, couple, family, group, career, psycho-educational, health, multicultural, and substance abuse counseling for a variety of ages and populations. The degree must be completed within six years of enrollment.

The Clinical Mental Health Counseling program assists candidates in meeting the educational requirements for the Virginia Licensed Professional Counselor credential which includes 60 hours of coursework. Additional licensure requirements are outlined in the Licensed Professional Counselors Application including post-master's supervision and experience and a passing score on the National Clinical Mental Health Counselors Examination (NCMHCE).

Matriculation Requirements

Grading Policy: Students enrolled in this degree program must earn a B or higher in counseling courses and in all licensure coursework, including practicum and internship courses. Students are permitted to repeat a course only once.

Methods of Instruction

Courses are held in person on the GMU Fairfax campus. Several courses may utilize online modules, but all courses require in person, on campus meetings.

Note: Due to COVID-19, the program may utilize online learning. Course instructors will provide specific information to students.

Admissions and Financial Aid

Admissions Criteria:

  • Completed application
  • College transcripts
  • Goals statement
  • 2 professional letters of recommendation
  • Resume
  • 3.0 undergraduate GPA
  • 12 credits of behavioral science or closely related coursework
  • Recommended: prior counseling-related work or volunteer experience

Application information is available here.

Tuition and Financial Aid Information is available here.

Program Outcomes and Reports

Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program Outcomes: 2019-2020

  1. The number of graduates for the past academic year (2018-2019) was 14.
  2. The National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Examination (NCMHCE) is the credentialing examination required to be a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in Virginia. The Virginia Department of Health Professions reported the following information on the George Mason University graduates who took the NCMHCE in 2018: 10 took the exam, 8 passed, and 2 failed (pass rate: 80%).
  3. Data on completion rates show that 91% of Clinical Mental Health Counseling (formerly Community Agency Counseling) students completed their degree within the 6-year limit. This data is from the most recent group of students to reach the 6-year limit, those students admitted in 2013-2014. The following table shows the length of time it took students in this group to complete the program.
  4. # of 2013-14 Admits % Finished in 2 years % Finished in 3 years % Finished in 4 years % Finished in 5 years % Finished in 6 years Did Not Complete within 6 years

  5. The GMU Career Survey administered in 2019 provides the following information on job placement: of 6 respondents, 100% had obtained employment. Five were employed or had accepted a position and one was a post-graduate intern or fellow.
Accreditation Status

Information regarding the accreditation of George Mason University can be found on the Provost’s webpage at

Licensure Disclosure

This program has been identified by George Mason University as one that may lead to a career requiring professional licensure/certification. Federal regulations require Mason to disclose information as to whether this program meets/does not meet the educational requirements for licensure/certification in your state, or whether such a determination has not been made. Please consult our Licensure Disclosure Tool for the disclosure statement specific to your desired state/program combination.

George Mason University will verify completion of the requirements of a Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) state-approved preparation program at the graduate or undergraduate level. Such verification does not guarantee the issuance of a Virginia Collegiate Professional, Postgraduate Professional, or Pupil Personnel license from the Commonwealth of Virginia. It is solely the student's responsibility to comply with all requirements for licensure by the Commonwealth. Under Virginia law, a social security number is required for licensure.