Masters In Mental Health Counseling Florida

The thought of going to school for a Masters in Mental Health Counseling is daunting for anyone. The choices involved, the requirements, and the applications may seem too much for one person. This is because it’s hard to know where to start when there are so many details and aspects to the application process. If you’re interested in a Masters degree in Mental Health Counseling and would like an easier path than other applicants, then this article is perfect for you.

You will also find related articles on university of florida masters in mental health counseling, masters in clinical mental health counseling florida & university of central florida masters in mental health counseling on infolearners.  

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University of Florida Masters in Mental Health Counseling

The entry-level 72-credit hour Mental Health Counseling program prepares students for positions as Mental Health Counselors in community, state, federal, and private social service agencies and for EAP positions in business and industry. Graduates provide services, such as child, youth, couple, family, employment, health, gerontological, substance abuse, and wellness counseling.

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Counselors in Florida are known as Licensed Mental Health Counselors (LMHCs), or Registered Mental Health Counselor Interns (RMHCIs) if they are in the supervision period of the licensure process. The state’s premier professional association for LMHCs and RMHCIs is the Florida Mental Health Counselors Association, which seeks to “provide education, legislative oversight, and networking” for the field.

LMHC licensure in Florida is handled by the state Board of Clinical Social Work, Marriage and Family Therapy, and Mental Health Counseling. Licensure details, including requirements for education, supervision, examination, and renewal, are examined further below, along with salary information from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics as well as scholarships available to aspiring LMHCs in Florida.

The Master of Education degree in Counselor Education with a specialization in Clinical Mental Health Counseling is designed to prepare graduates to assess, diagnose and treat clients with mental disorders as well as those with problems in living. Graduates will have completed all the academic requirements to become a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC) in Florida. The emphasis of this Master’s degree program is on developing skills in counseling individuals, families and groups, using the best theoretical and research-based practices. The goals are to help clients to become stabilized and to achieve as optimal functioning as possible.

Counselor Education in Florida

LMHC licensure in Florida requires the completion of a master’s degree in mental health counseling from a program accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs. Programs that meet all of the coursework requirements listed below may also be acceptable.

Clinical Mental Health Counseling | College of Education

The master’s program in mental health counseling or a related field should consist of at least 60 semester hours of clinical and didactic instruction. Furthermore, a minimum of three semester hours of graduate-level coursework in each of the following content areas should be completed:

  1. Counseling Theories and Practice
  2. Human Growth and Development
  3. Diagnosis and Treatment of Psychopathology
  4. Human Sexuality
  5. Group Theories and Practice
  6. Individual Evaluation and Assessment
  7. Career and Lifestyle Assessment
  8. Research and Program Evaluation
  9. Social and Cultural Foundations
  10. Counseling in Community Settings
  11. Substance Abuse
  12. Legal, Ethical, and Professional Standards

In addition to the master’s program coursework, Florida LMHC licensure requires the completion of an eight-hour course on laws and rules, a three-hour course on HIV and AIDs, a two-hour course in domestic violence and a two-hour course on domestic violence within six months of licensure—all of which may be obtained from board-approved providers.

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Internship Requirements

In addition to the coursework listed above, LMHC licensure applicants should complete at least 1,000 hours of university-sponsored supervised clinical practicum, internship, or field experience. This experience may not be used to satisfy the post-master’s clinical experience requirement, sometimes also referred to as “supervision.” For more on supervision, see below.

Supervision Hours

LMHC licensure in Florida requires two years of post-master’s supervised experience under the supervision of an LMHC or equivalent. During this time, counselors are considered Registered Mental Health Counselor Interns (RMHCI). Supervised experience must consist of at least 1,500 hours of providing psychotherapy face to face with clients and should be accrued in no less than 100 weeks. Additionally, there should be at least one hour of supervision every two weeks and at least one hour every 15 hours of psychotherapy. Each hour of group supervision must alternate with an hour of individual supervision, which may actually include up to two RMHCIs for each supervisor.


Florida LMHC licensure requires a passing score on the National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Examination (NCMHCE). The NCMHCE tests knowledge of assessment, diagnosis, counseling, psychotherapy, administration, consultation, and supervision. It consists of 10 clinical mental health counseling cases and assesses clinical problem-solving ability by testing identification, analysis, and treatment. It is administered by the National Board for Certified Counselors.

Welcome to our ranking of the eight top value master’s degrees in counseling in Florida.

If you’re thinking about earning your master’s or Ph.D. in counseling and you live in Florida, take a look at these top-ranked schools. As the largest of the Southern states, Florida boasts more graduate counseling degrees than almost any other state in the region. You’ll find plenty of unique options here, including one of the country’s only accredited career counseling programs and a dual M.S./Ed.S. program.

Click here to see the methodology we used for this best master’s in counseling degree ranking.

8. University of Central Florida

Orlando, FL

Clinical Mental Health Counseling, M.A.

Marriage, Couple and Family Counseling, M.A.

Counselor Education and Supervision, Ph.D.

School Counseling, M.A./M.Ed.

Live, work, and play in the East Orlando / UCF area!


It’s hard for just one person to change the world, but if you can change another person’s life, you’ve made their world and your own that much better. The University of Central Florida’s CACREP-accredited programs in Mental Health Counseling, School Counseling, and Counselor Education are a great way to gain the skills and experience you need to improve the lives of troubled students and mental health patients in an intimate way. These affordable master’s degrees in counseling provide cultural, psychological, and sociological insights that are an asset for interacting positively with people from all backgrounds.

Tuition and Fees: $18,294/yr

Score: 53

7. Barry University

Miami, FL

School Counseling, M.S.

Marriage, Couple and Family Counseling, M.S.

Counselor Education and Supervision, Ph.D.

Clinical Mental Health Counseling, M.S.


Diversity is the cornerstone of American exceptionalism and individuality, and that’s why Barry University’s Department of Counseling is committed to providing its counseling students with a multicultural educational environment and curriculum. Whether they choose to study Clinical Mental Health Counseling; Marital, Couple, and Family Counseling; or School Counseling, Barry students are able to develop their sensitivity and empathy for all peoples at the Dr. Maureen Duffy Family Enrichment Center, an on-site clinic devoted to the needs of the community. Unlike those students who are forced to seek internships to round out their top graduate degrees in counseling, Barry students gain hands-on experience in the field without ever leaving campus.

Tuition and Fees: $17,820/yr

Score: 53

6. Florida Atlantic University

Boca Raton, FL

Counselor Education and Supervision, Ph.D.

School Counseling, M.Ed.

Clinical Mental Health Counseling, M.Ed.

FAU | Boca Raton Campus


Florida Atlantic University elevates the standards for counseling education with its array of accredited counseling graduate degrees in Florida. From master’s degrees in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and School Counseling to a doctoral program in Counselor Education, FAU offers a wide range of CACREP-accredited programs that meet state- and nationwide requirements for multiple professional licensures. While all of FAU’s counseling programs are well known for balancing heavy interdisciplinary material that span the health and social sciences, they are most remarkable for their practicum capstone component, which provides advanced students with the opportunity to gain experience in their field under close faculty supervision.

Tuition and Fees: $12,271/yr

Score: 63

5. Rollins College

Winter Park, FL

Clinical Mental Health Counseling, M.A.

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Counseling is a demanding occupation on its own, but it can be even harder to break into the field while you are already working another full-time job. Fortunately, the master’s counseling degree program at Rollins College is specifically designed to accommodate working professionals, operating via weekly evening classes and a team-based cohort education model that prioritizes cooperation over competition. But don’t think they take it easy on you in the classroom! With a 12:1 student-faculty ratio and a 200-hour service requirement in addition to required internships and clinical practicum experiences, a Rollins education is a rigorous as it is rewarding.

Tuition and Fees: $22,941/yr

Score: 68

4. Florida International University

Miami, FL

School Counseling, M.S.

Clinical Mental Health Counseling, M.S.

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Counseling is the art of human interaction, the science of the mind, and the work of a lifetime all rolled into one. At Florida International University, students who are up for the challenge of this higher calling are rewarded with an intensely practical education that puts them on the front lines of patient and student advocacy right from day one. In fact, due to the strict list of requirements and the commitment students must show toward both their clinical and in-school experiences, FIU advises them not to hold full-time jobs for the duration of this top counseling graduate degree.

Tuition and Fees: $17,337/yr

Score: 70

3. University of Florida

Gainesville, FL

Counselor Education and Supervision, Ed.D./Ph.D.

School Counseling, M.S./Ed.S.

Clinical Mental Health Counseling, M.S./Ed.S.

Marriage, Couple and Family Counseling, M.S./Ed.S.

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Earning a top Florida counseling degree ranking from U.S. News every year since 1998 (and placing in the top echelon nationally, too), the University of Florida is a recognized leader in counseling education throughout the country. For UF, quality of education and brand-name prestige go hand-in-hand: students in this competitive program enjoy every advantage the university has to offer, including a CACREP-accredited curriculum, influential faculty, and student counseling organizations such as UF Counselors for Social Justice and a chapter of Chi Sigma Iota, the international counseling honor society.

Tuition and Fees: $21,020/yr

Score: 94

2. Florida State University

Tallahassee, FL

Clinical Mental Health Counseling, M.S./Ed.S.

Career Counseling, M.S./Ed.S.

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With one of only ten CACREP-accredited career counseling programs in the country, Florida State University without a doubt has one of the best counseling master’s degrees in Florida for students seeking a top-notch education in this important field. Yet FSU’s top counseling degree ranking is a measure not only of the scarcity of its programs, but also their quality. Career counseling students at FSU have the unique opportunity to learn from some of the most acclaimed faculty in the nation, all while earning two degrees (M.S. and Ed.S.) simultaneously. In fact, students gain some of their most valuable experience working alongside these professors in paid graduate assistantships.

Tuition and Fees: $18,759/yr

Score: 98

1. Stetson University

Deland, FL

School Counseling, M.S.

Clinical Mental Health Counseling, M.S.

Marriage, Couple and Family Counseling, M.S.

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Stetson University’s Department of Counseling Education offers a comprehensive selection of advanced counseling specialties that range from Clinical Mental Health Counseling to School Counseling. These top master’s degrees in counseling equip students to provide world-class human services to students and patients in a range of clinical, educational, and other rehabilitative settings through sociological theory courses, professional development, and ethical and multicultural training. With an education from Stetson, students go on to perform meaningful interventions in the lives of others through their work at hospitals, elementary and secondary schools, churches, and family counseling centers.

Tuition and Fees: $16,336/yr

Score: 100

This concludes our ranking of the best value graduate degrees in counseling in Florida.

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Online Counseling Programs

There are numerous online Master’s in Counseling programs are available in the state of Florida. One of the most important factors in choosing an online degree program may be the reliability and proven efficiency of your programs.

Florida currently provides over 6 online CACREP-accredited Master’s in Counseling programs at Florida universities for those interested in pursuing a career in this field. There are a number of on campus programs as well – 28 campus-based CACREP accredited programs within the state of Florida.

As you make plans to enter into a counseling degree program, there are definitely a few things to consider aside from which school you will choose. Reliability of your program is increasingly important, since it may be required for you to become licensed after graduation.

In Florida, students should look to the Florida Board of Clinical Social Work, Marriage and Family Therapy and Mental Health Counseling for information pertaining to licensure in counseling. Through this agency, students can stay up to date with what types of degrees are accepted, the amount of experience needed and any necessary exams required before a license is issued. Here are a few schools in Florida with CACREP-accredited counseling programs:

  • Barry University: M.S. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling M.S. in Marriage, Couple and Family Counseling M.S. in School Counseling Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision
  • Florida Atlantic University: M.Ed. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling M.Ed. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling M.Ed. in School Counseling Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision
  • Florida Gulf Coast University: M.A. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling

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