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The Master of Rehabilitation Counseling (MRC) degree is a 54-semester credit hour graduate program that provides a strong foundation in the philosophy, process, and profession of rehabilitation counseling through didactic coursework, field experiences, and extracurricular experiences. It develops expertise in the independent living, medical, social, and psychological aspects of disability and in the vocational rehabilitation process. Students are trained in applied processes such as vocational assessment, job placement, career development, and disability management. Graduates are eligible to sit for the national certification exam, the Certified Rehabilitation Counselor Exam, offered by the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification. Individuals with graduate degrees in rehabilitation counseling are highly sought after by a number of rehabilitation agencies in El Paso, the state of Texas, and across the nation. These agencies include organizations such as the Texas Division of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, CIGNA Corporation, and many other rehabilitation service agencies.

Requirements for Admission

In addition to the general requirements for admission into a graduate program as specified by the Graduate School, applicants should have a minimum GPA of 3.0 in their undergraduate programs or in the last 60 credit hours of coursework. Applicants must separately submit to the MRC Admissions Committee via the Program Director:

  1. Unofficial copies of transcripts
  2. GRE/TOEFL scores
  3. A brief statement summarizing professional goals
  4. At least three (3) letters of recommendation, two (2) of which should be from former professors or academic instructors.

Prior to making a recommendation on acceptance to the Graduate School, the MRC Admissions Committee will review the academic preparation of applicants. There are no requirements regarding undergraduate majors for acceptance in the program; however, students with backgrounds in psychology, social work, sociology, and special education are encouraged to apply. Potential applicants should make early inquiry of the Program Director for consultation regarding undergraduate courses that will prepare them for the MRC program.

Degree Requirements

The MRC degree consists of 54 graduate hours comprising required courses and electives. The program of study is intended to be a course-intensive experience requiring two years of full-time academic work, including field experiences in either public or private sector rehabilitation agencies. Students who participate in internships with agencies requiring background checks must successfully pass the background checks to complete the practicum requirement. A thesis is not a requirement for this degree.

With the approval of the MRC Program Director and the Graduate School, up to six (6) semester hours of graduate work can be transferred from another accredited institution to replace equivalent courses listed above. Only credit hours that have not been counted towards a previously awarded degree are allowed to be transferred.

Electives. In addition, students will take a total of six (6) semester hours of elective coursework and/or project work. A list of pre-approved electives is available from the Program Director. Approval is required by the student's Graduate Advisor for elective courses not on this list.

Practicum. The student will complete a 100-clock-hour practicum, with 40 hours of direct client service, REHC 5390, at a practicum site at a government institution, community rehabilitation program, or other location that is a current or potential employer of rehabilitation counselors. Students are required to consult with their advisor regarding the rehabilitation services offered at different practicum sites and their preference for placement at specific practicum sites.

Internship. The student will complete a 600-clock-hour internship, with 240 hours of direct client service, REHC 5990, at an internship site at a government institution, community rehabilitation program, or other location that is a current or potential employer of rehabilitation counselors. The student must receive a grade of Satisfactory or better in order to fulfill the internship requirement of this degree. Students are required to consult their advisor regarding the rehabilitation services offered at different internship sites and their preference for placement at specific sites. This consultation will include a review of students' long-term goals and professional focus.

Degree Plan

Required Credits: 54

Master of Rehab Counseling (All courses require a grade of B or better)
Required Courses:
DRSC 5389Research in Health Science3
REHC 5300Ethcl Legl Prof Issues in Rhab3
REHC 5310Rehab Counseling Theory3
REHC 5320Medical Aspects of Disability3
REHC 5330Psychosocial Aspects of Disab3
REHC 5338Grp Counseling Rehb Counseling3
REHC 5339Techniques in Rehab Counseling3
REHC 5340Rehab Counseling Methods3
REHC 5350Psychiatric Rehabilitation3
REHC 5360Career Placement3
REHC 5370Diversity-Disab. across Lifesp3
REHC 5375Assessm & Res. in REHC3
REHC 5390Practicum in Rehabilitation3
REHC 5990Internship in Rehabilitation9
Select six additional hours of masters coursework6
Total Hours54

CHAIR: Dr. Barbara Schoen


Kathleen Curtis 
Contact Information:; 915-747-7201 
Education: BS, Northeastern University; MA, San Jose State University; Ph D, University of California

Assistant Professors

Barbara Schoen 
Contact Information:; 915-747-8240
Education: MA, University of Texas at Austin; Ph D, Michigan State University