Ph.D. in Rehabilitation Counseling and Rehabilitation Counselor Education

Transcending Traditional Limits to Transform Lives

Doctoral Student Cohort

The Doctor of Philosophy in Rehabilitation Counseling and Rehabilitation Counselor Education is designed to prepare culturally competent students to work as counselor educators, researchers, clinicians, and supervisors in academic and non-academic settings.

In addition to establishing a core foundation in rehabilitation counseling and research, major emphasis is provided in the area of Trauma and Trauma Informed Care.


The primary educational objectives of the program are:

  • To increase students’ knowledge of the role and functions of rehabilitation counselor educators, researchers, and counselors
  • To equip students with unique counseling and research skills to provide effective rehabilitation counseling, education, and research within a cultural context
  • To prepare students to obtain content knowledge in cultural diversity, trauma informed care, and additional expertise in specific areas in rehabilitation education
  • To equip students with knowledge, skills, and experiences to increase the body of research addressing diversity, social justice, and disability issues
  • To prepare students to address professional issues and become leaders and researchers in rehabilitation counselor education and disability research through professional associations, publications, and professional development


  • The 79-hour post-master’s program includes approved courses taken at the masters’ level and typically takes three to four years to complete.   The curriculum will consist of Professional Core/Research (55 hrs), Dissertation (12 hrs), and Cognate (12 hrs). 
  • Focus in Trauma Informed Care

Admissions Requirements

  • Master’s in Rehabilitation Counseling (CORE), or Counseling (CACREP), or a related profession
  • Official transcript from all universities attended
  • Acceptable GRE Score
  • Master’s GPA (≥3.5)
  • Professional Statement, including future career plans
  • Three professional letters of recommendation (must be from professor(s) from Master’s program and from supervisor(s) from professional settings)
  • Two years of work experience preferred
  • Successful completion of an interview
  • Licensure and/or certification documentation
  • Submission of a 10-12 page writing sample

Non-Rehabilitation Counseling Interested Applicants

The doctoral program attracts students possessing master’s degrees in rehabilitation counseling, clinical mental health counseling, school counseling, social work, and psychology. 

Requirements of Non-Counseling Students:  In addition to meeting the standard requirements for admission into the program, students entering the program with a master’s degree in a different field must complete all of the prerequisite/entry level courses in counseling.   These courses are currently offered within the current master’s program.  Completing these courses is a requirement of the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP).  CACREP’s (2009) standards state that “Doctoral programs for which accreditation is sought must encompass all the entry-level program standards. Therefore, when programs admit doctoral students who have not graduated from a CACREP entry-level program, the program must demonstrate that the student has completed curricular experiences the equivalent of (a) the CACREP entry-level standards in Sections II and III, and (b) curricular requirements of a specific program area before beginning doctoral-level counselor education coursework.” (p. 52)

Applicants graduating from a counseling program accredited by the Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE) will not be required to complete additional coursework.  Applicants who do not possess a counseling degree will be required to complete all of the courses within the 60-hour Masters in Mental Health Counseling-Rehabilitation Counseling program.