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Master of Science in Addiction Counseling | Graduate Degree Program

Master of Science in Addiction Counseling

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About OU's Master of Science in Addiction Counseling

Ottawa University’s online Master of Science in Addiction Counseling (MSAC) degree program prepares learners to pursue careers as addiction counseling professionals, treating individuals with substance abuse and dependency disorders. Graduates may work in a variety of settings, including private practice, substance abuse clinics, group practices, and hospital settings.

Curriculum for the MSAC integrates evidence-based counseling theory, research, and practice and provides students with a foundation for doctoral studies and/or professional practice in addiction counseling. OU’s Addiction Counseling graduate program will also prepare students for future study and work in mental health counseling, clinical psychology, social work, counselor education, law enforcement, law and human services.

As most states require that individuals seeking the highest level of licensing and/or certification have a master's degree, the MSAC puts you on track for career advancement in the field. This program meets the educational requirements, in most states, for licensure or certification. It also meets the requirements for licensure in Arizona for the Licensed Associate Substance Abuse Counselor (LASAC). Licensure or certification requirements vary from state-to-state. Therefore, it is the responsibility of the student to contact their state licensure or certification authority to assure that the degree requirements meet their state’s requirements.

Career Outlook for the MSAC 

The employment outlook for substance abuse/addiction counselors is on the rise, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics. The need for substance abuse/addiction counselors is expected to grow by 22% from through 2028, much faster than the average for all occupations. The median annual wage for substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselors was $46,240 in May 2019. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount, and half earned less. The lowest 10% earned less than $29,520, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $76,080.

Addiction counselors must have a strong desire to help people who have a substance use disorder, and should be able to inspire respect, trust and confidence in those individuals. They provide a variety of counseling, rehabilitation and support services work in diverse community settings, including schools, clinics, community, mental health and family counseling centers, law enforcement agencies, churches, hospitals, and private practice.

The MSAC in Perspective

“I truly believe that Ottawa University's Addiction Counseling degree programs are among the top in the nation. OU offers outstanding masters, bachelors and certificates online. Our faculty are all highly qualified addiction professionals with many years of experience. I’m also proud to note that in 2017 Ottawa’s Addiction Counseling program was honored as the ‘Outstanding Addiction/Offender Program of the Year’ by the International Association of Addiction and Offender Counselors, which is a division of the American Counseling Association." – Dr. Kirk Bowden, Professor in Charge of OU’s Addiction Counseling Program    
 
he National Addiction Studies Accreditation Commission (NASAC) has awarded Ottawa University, accreditation of its Addiction Counseling programs.

For curriculum and course descriptions, please download a program overview.

Advance your career and make a difference in people's lives by earning a Masters of Science in Addiction Counseling.

To learn more about earning your online MSAC from Ottawa University, contact us today

Master of Science in Addiction Counseling (36 credit hours)

Required Courses

Graduate Seminar: Clinical and Addictions Foundations
ACG 7000 (3 credits)
Provides an overview of necessary foundations in the content areas of abnormal psychology, developmental psychology, and theories of personality. Introduces the core functions of addictions counseling from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration’s Technical Assistance Publication (TAP) 21 series. Other topics include APA style and format. 

Introduction to Addictions | ACG 7100 (3 credits)
Introduction to patterns, causes, assessment and treatment of addictions.  Introduces the core functions of addictions counseling from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration’s Technical Assistance Publication (TAP) 21 series. 

Multicultural Concerns in Addictions Counseling ​| ACG 7200 (3 credits)
Study of social, cultural, and gender differences and issues related to counseling clients with various backgrounds, beliefs, and concerns. Includes a focus on addictions counseling theories and techniques and how they are applied to addictions counseling clients.

Law and Ethics in Addictions Counseling​ | ACG 7300 (3 credits)
Study of the ethical, legal, and professional concerns in the practice of addictions counseling.

Theories and Practices of Groups in Addictions Counseling​ | ACG 7400 (3 credits)
Examines group theories and techniques of observation, assessment and facilitation in therapeutic groups.

Methods and Models of Research in Addictions Counseling ​| ACG 7500 (3 credits)
Examination of the research and application of scientific methods to investigate, analyze, and develop solutions relative to addictions counseling.

Appraisal, Assessment and Treatment Planning in Addictions Counseling | ACG 8100 (3 credits)
Preparation for clinical practicum. Students expand their knowledge of the current edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), diagnostic categories, differential diagnosis, and treatment planning. Emphasis will also be placed on the clinical interview and other initial assessment techniques, as well as skills critical to selecting and evaluating treatment options.

Psychopharmacology and Addictions Counseling | ACG 8200 (3 credits)
Study of the pharmacology of drug abuse/addiction concerns with additional examination of the use of medication in treatment interventions. 

Co-Occurring Disorders | ACG 8300 (3 credit hours)
Examins the current research on psychopathology and co-occurring disorders to include relapse and recovery, and how they impact addictions counseling. 

Fundamentals of Treatment of Trauma, Abuse, and Deprivation | ACG 8400
Introductory course presenting an integrated view of effects on personality development of childhood trauma, abuse and deprivation. Therapeutic interventions examined. 

Addictions Counseling in Family Systems | ACG 8500 (3 credit hours)
Examines addiction in the context of the family  system, including relapse and recovery. Emphasis on family system theories and techniques of addictions counseling.

Practicum in Addictions Counseling | ACG 8600 (3 credit hours)
Students participate in a seminar led by a faculty member. Provides the opportunity for the student to perform the activities of a regularly scheduled employee in an addictions counseling setting and complete 150 contact hours, of which half will be direct contact. 

Practicum in Addictions Counseling Continued | ACG 8610 (No credit)
Continuation of ACG 8600. Students participate in a seminar led by a faculty member. Provides the opportunity for the student to perform the activities of a regularly scheduled employee in an addictions counseling setting and complete 150 contact hours, of which half will be direct contact. 

Full Degree Catalog
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