Master of Education in School Counseling online

Master of Education in School Counseling online

Master of Education in School Counseling online

The USC Rossier School of Education offers a Master of Education in School Counseling online (SC online) designed for those who aspire to become school counselors in K–12 settings. The program explores relevant challenges affecting today’s schools, focusing on the well-being of the whole child through support of their social, emotional and academic needs.

This program prepares you to pursue your credential as a school counselor.

SC online Overview

49 Units
Designed around three key focus areas.

2 Paths
Full- or part-time paths available to fit your schedule.

2-3 Years
Earn your master’s in school counseling in as few as five terms.

The SC online program at USC will prepare you to:

  • Provide academic and guidance counseling to students in K–12 settings.
  • Support the whole child: socially, emotionally and academically.
  • Coordinate school counseling goals to meet the needs of the students and organization.
  • Employ decision-making and problem-solving for implementation and evaluation.
  • Develop approaches to foster college access.


The USC Rossier SC online program is officially recognized as a credentialing program that prepares students to be recommended for the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing’s Pupil Personnel Services: School Counseling (PPS-SC) Credential. The PPS-SC Credential is required when applying to be a school counselor in California. All SC online applicants must pass the Basic Skills Requirement by the enrollment deadline, regardless of where they intend to practice.

Applicants Outside of California

The USC Rossier Master of Education in School Counseling online program is a national program that is able to enroll residents in the United States. As USC Rossier is based in California, students who complete our program will be recommended for a California Pupil Personnel Services: School Counseling (PPS-SC) Credential. Each state establishes its own rules, standards, and procedures for the credentialing of school counselors, which may be different from the requirements to qualify to practice in California. Students should review the licensure requirements in the state in which they intend to practice.

Your School Counseling Career Starts Here

The final deadline for the May 2024 cohort is February 26, 2024.

Master of Education in School Counseling Curriculum

The master’s in school counseling program curriculum is informed by professional competencies and standards put forth by the American School Counselor Association’s National Model for School Counseling and by critical research in the fields of counselor education, sociology, philosophy, education, and counseling and community psychology.

Areas of Focus

As a student in the SC online program, you will gain theoretical and hands-on knowledge needed to become a school counselor through the lens of modern school counseling techniques, structured around three key focus areas:

College and Career Readiness

Prepare to support all students and their futures, taking into account cultural, socioeconomic and emotional factors that influence success.

Restorative Justice

Help students overcome obstacles of institutional oppression, like poverty and racism, or individual circumstances related to mental illness, domestic violence or community barriers.

Trauma-Informed Practice

Learn to support teaching, learning and interacting in ways that address the long-term toll physical and emotional trauma takes on the lives of children and adults.

Sample Courses

Students in the SC online program take courses such as:

  • Legal and Ethical Issues in Counseling
  • Learning and Individual Differences
  • Human Development Theory in School Counseling
  • School Connectedness, Climate and Classroom Management
  • Research Methods and Data Analysis for Counselors
  • Counseling for College and Career Readiness

View a full list of courses and course descriptions.

Empower Students to Succeed

Explore our SC online curriculum.

As a student, you will complete a School Counseling Portfolio, a practicum and fieldwork in which you can gain hands-on experience and build confidence as an aspiring practitioner.


In addition to your courses, you’ll complete fieldwork in K–12 schools in or near your own community where you can apply what you learn to real situations affecting children, families and school administration.

You will be required to complete a 100-hour practicum and a 700-hour internship over the course of the program. Our team of placement specialists will work with you to identify sites that fit your needs.

Begin Your Career as a School Counselor

The need for professional school counselors is evident: While the American School Counselor Association (ASCA) recommends a 250-to-1 ratio of students to counselors, the national average is only 464-to-1.1

Our SC online program will prepare you to tackle today’s toughest challenges and promote the well-being of K–12 students. And you’ll be in demand — the projected change in employment for school and career counselors is expected to increase by 11 percent from 2020 to 2030, faster than the average for all occupations.2

Student Experience

Our SC online program is rigorous, hands-on and collaborative. You’ll form meaningful relationships with your peers and professors — and you’ll be welcomed into the global #TrojanFamily for life. Learn more about what it’s like to learn online.

Take Your First Step Toward Becoming a
School Counselor

Complete the form below to learn more about the USC Rossier master’s in school
counseling online program and speak with our admissions team.

1The American School Counselor Association (2016–2017). The American School Counselor Association. School Counselor Roles & Ratios Retrieved January 7, 2022.arrow_upwardReturn to footnote reference

2U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.Occupational Outlook Handbook: School and Career Counselors. Retrieved July 23, 2019arrow_upwardReturn to footnote reference