College of Education & Human Services

Counselor Education Program FAQs

Future Student FAQs...

Q. What are the benefits of attending a counseling program accredited by CACREP?

A. The Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) accredits counseling programs. CACREP's purpose is to ensure excellence in counselor preparation. CACREP accreditation provides recognition that the content and quality of the program has been evaluated and meets standards set by the profession. Although not a specific requirement for counselor licensure, graduation from a CACREP accredited program makes state licensing easier.

Q. What materials are required to complete my application to the department?

A. Details can be found on the Admission section under Future Students.

Q. If I am denied admission after a screening interview what are my options?

A. Please refer to our Selection, Review, and Retention Policy on the Admission page under Future Students.

Q. If I apply will I automatically get invited for a Screening Interview?

A. No. Only top applicants will be forwarded to the Selection and Retention Committee. Please refer to the admissions information for the department for details.

Q. When will I be assigned an advisor?

A. Advisors are assigned upon formal invitation into the department. You will receive notification that includes your advisor's name and contact information at New Student Orientation should you be invited into the department.

Q. Can I start taking classes before I am formally admitted into one of your programs? If so, how do I do that?

A. Yes, as a non-degree seeking graduate student. But please note that you are only permitted to transfer in up to 9 semester credit hours of approved coursework taken prior to matriculation into one of our programs. Please refer to the Non-degree Admission Process found on the Admission page under Future Students.

Q. I am putting my application materials together and I am not sure that I have the correct or most updated forms. What should I do?

A. Please use only forms from the Department of Counselor Education website. Our website has the most up-to-date forms and information for applicants. Using "search" on the WIU website can result in finding outdated documents.

Q. If accepted into one of your programs when can I start?

A. Accepted students can start our program during the fall term as a degree-seeking student.

Q. What if I decide to delay my admission once I have been accepted?

A. You will need to notify both the Department of Counselor Education and the School of Graduate Studies (in writing) of your wishes. Please be specific. Additionally, if you have already registered for courses, you must withdraw yourself from your courses. The Department cannot do that for you. You will also need to complete any contingencies for admission in order for you to be formally admitted (i.e., final transcripts, background check, Basic Skills Test, etc.).

Q. Approximately how long will it take to earn my degree?

A. Degree students have up to six (6) years to complete either specialization. Full-time students (taking a maximum of 9 semester credit hours each term) may be able to complete degree requirements in three (3) years, including summer terms. Students are encouraged to work closely with their faculty advisor to ensure they plan their course of study appropriately. Factors, such as course offerings, pre- and co-requisites, exit exam requirements, and licensure must be considered.

Please note: The recommended course load for working students can be found in the Academic Guidelines and Graduate School Policies section of the WIU School of Graduate Studies Graduate Catalog. They are:

Working 40+ hours a week, take 3-4 semester hours

Working 30-40 hours a week, take 3-6 semester hours

Working 13-20 hours a week, take 6-9 semester hours

Q. I need to take a Basic Skills Test and want to use the ACT+Writing or the SAT+Writing in leui of the TAP. What do I need to do?

A. Detailed information can be found on the Admission section under Future Students. See also Setting Up Your ELIS Account.

Alumni FAQs...

Q. I need to apply for School Counseling Licensure. What do I do?

A. Please refer to the Illinois State Board of Education or the Iowa Board of Educational Examiners for requirements and instructions. Any documentation that needs a verifying signature needs to go through the Certification Office in Macomb. Please contact the CNED Department Chair, Dr. Holly Nikels (>, if you have any questions regarding school counseling licensure.

Q. I need to apply for Professional Counseling Licensure. What do I do?

A. Please refer to the Illinois Department of Financial & Professional Regulation or the Iowa Department of Public Health for requirements and instructions.

Q. I am applying for licensure/certification and they want my syllabus. What do I do?

A. All CNED students are informed that they should keep their syllabi forever. Please check your files for copies of your syllabi.

Q. I am applying for licensure/certification and they want my course description. What do I do?

A. Course descriptions are found on your syllabi. Please check your files for copies of your syllabi. Course descriptions can also be found in the Previous Catalogs from the School of Graduate Studies.

Q. I need verification that I graduated from your department and/or a copy of my transcripts. Do I get that from you?

A. No. You will need to contact the Office of the Registrar for degree verification and transcripts.

Q. I need a copy of my practicum/internship logs. Can you send them to me?

A. All alumni files are archived upon graduation. In order for us to grant your request submit the CNED/CSP Request for Completion of Forms and on the form  you must include your current and former names, WIU ID number, term(s) for which you are requesting information, complete mailing address (or email address) of whom it needs to be sent, and a statement of authorization permitting us to release your information. Please allow 2-4 weeks for processing.

Q. I would like copies of materials in my files. How do I get them?

A. In addition to the information provided for the question above, please note that Western Illinois University follows the State of Illinois requirements for disposal of state records. Therefore, some information may no longer be available. Please make sure to specifically indicate what materials you are requesting (i.e., copy of application, copy of application essay, etc.).

Q. I need verification of my practicum/internship hours for professional counseling licensure. How do I get that?

A. In addition to the information provided for the two questions above please complete the CNED/CSP Request for Completion of Forms and upload the verification form which can be found at this link school counseling licensure please see first Q & A.

Q. I would like to stay in touch with the Department. How can I do that?

A. The Department of Counselor Education has its own Facebook page.

Q. Why have I been removed from the CNED Listserv?

A. The CNED Listserv is for current students only. Alumni may keep in touch with us through our Facebook page.

Q. I need the Department to complete a recommendation/verification/etc. How do I make such a request?

A. These are considered professional requests. As such, it would be expected that you first call whomever you are making the request of to discuss your needs and ask if it would be acceptable/appropriate to formally submit your request. Make sure that your request does not fall into one of the above areas. Please allow 2-4 weeks for processing.