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Counseling Licensure in Florida

The state of Florida has a special set of coursework requirements as part of its overall path to licensure that sets it apart from many other states. You will want to take the time to understand and deeply investigate the Florida Department of Health website which you can find here:

You must follow these steps in order to gain your Licensed Professional Counselor title and licensure:

  1. Meet the educational requirements put forth by the Florida Department of Health.
  2. Complete a practicum during your graduate studies.
  3. Apply for internship.
  4. Fulfill the supervised experience component.
  5. Apply for and take your National Counselor Examination (NCE) as administered by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC).
  6. Compile and send in your completed application along with all the required verification to the Florida Department of Health.

Educational Requirements

In addition to your degree requirements, Florida also has specific coursework that must be completed in order to meet their educational requirements.

  • You must first earn your Bachelor of Science degree in Counseling, Psychology, Social Work, Human Services or Marriage and Family Therapy. Counseling is preferred as this is the degree that most Graduate programs are looking for in applicants.
  • The next step is to apply for and be accepted into a Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) accredited Master of Counseling program.
  • Florida requires that you have a Master’s degree in Counseling to earn licensure.
  • You also need to have coursework in substance abuse and human sexuality. 

Practicum and Additional Education

  • During your graduate program you will need to complete a practicum.
  • Florida requires that you have a practicum component to your graduate program that is 1000 hours in length.
  • You will need to have 280 hours of direct counseling practice of which you must have at least 1 hour per week of direct supervision.

You will need to take additional classwork on Rules and Laws, Psychopathology Abnormal Psychology, Medical Error Prevention, a 3 hour HIV/AIDS class and a 2 hour class on Domestic Violence.

Apply for the Intern Title

After you have your degree and have completed your practicum you will need to be approved to be an intern.

  • Provide all necessary proof of educational background and apply to the Florida Department of Health to become an intern.
  • Pass a criminal background check.
    • You can find the form here:

Supervised Experience

Once you have been approved as an intern you can begin your supervised work experience portion.

  • You must complete 1500 hours of supervised work experience in a clinical mental health setting.
  • Of the 1500 hours, you will need 100 hours in the form of 1 hour of supervision per 15 hours of work.
  • At least half of the supervision must be one-on-one supervision which may alternate with group supervision.
  • You must have one hour of supervision every two weeks.
  • You must complete your supervised work experience within a two year period.

Apply for and Take Your Exam

You will now need to enter the testing phase.

  • You will need to apply with Florida Department of Health to take your National Counselor Examination (NCE) as administered by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC).
  • You must complete the NCE and receive a score that meets Florida state requirements.

Apply for Your License

The final step is to apply for your license.

  • Apply to the Florida Department of Health for your license by including all required materials and fees.
    • You can find the form here:

Continuing Education

Once you have your license you will need to periodically renew it and show proof of continuing education credits.

  • You need to complete 30 hours of Continuing Education every two years.
  • Two hours must be in medical errors.
  • Three hours in ethics and boundary issues.
  • Every six years you must complete a two hour domestic violence class.

You will want to periodically review the state website to ensure that you are up to date on current policies. You can find the website here:

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