Counseling Licensure in Mississippi
The rules for licensure of counselors in Mississippi are unique to the state. There is just one level of licensure, the Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in the state of Mississippi. If you wish to strive towards earning the title of the Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) there are several educational, examination and experience components you must fulfill. You may wish to familiarize yourself with the Mississippi State Board of Examiners for Licensed Professional Counselors website, which you can visit by clicking here:
What follows is a breakdown of the necessary requirements you will need to complete to earn the title of Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in Mississippi:
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- The first step in the process is to graduate with your Master of Counseling degree from a Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) accredited university.
- You will be required to pass a criminal background check.
- Next you will need to accrue the required hours of supervised experience in a clinical setting.
- Apply to the Mississippi State Board of Examiners for Licensed Professional Counselors So you can sit for the National Counselor Examination (NCE) as administered by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC).
- Apply to the Mississippi State Board of Examiners for Licensed Professional Counselors to receive your Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) title.
Mississippi law states that prospective Counselors will need to fulfill the following educational steps as part of the licensure process.
- There are several potential initial paths you can take however completing a Bachelor’s degree in Counseling is probably the easiest and wisest course. Most Graduate programs in Counseling will consider this to be the best option and will increase your chance of being accepted into a graduate program. If you choose to take a different course from earning a Bachelor of Counseling degree, then you will definitely want to earn a Bachelor’s in a closely related Social Science or Behavioral Science field, such as Psychology, Social Work or Human Services.
- The next step is to apply to and get accepted into a Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) accredited Master of Counseling program.
- If you have a field experience, practicum or internship piece during your Graduate studies this will decrease the amount of supervised experience you will need to earn before being granted your LPC title. More information on this subject can be found in the Supervised Experience section below.
Apply for and Take Your NCE
You will need to apply to the board to take your NCE:
- You will now need to apply to the Mississippi State Board of Examiners for Licensed Professional Counselors so you can sit for your National Counselor Examination (NCE) as administered by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC).
- You must then pass the NCE with a score acceptable to the Mississippi Board.
You will now be ready to move on to the Supervised Experience portion of the licensure process. You are required to fulfill the following obligations per the Mississippi Board.
Pass a criminal background check.
- You will need to accumulate 3500 hours of supervised clinical practice with a limit of not more than 40 hours per week.
- If you had some form of supervised clinical experience during your graduate program you can count up to 1750 hours if you were supervised by an LPC or their equivalent in another state.
- You must have a minimum of 1167 hours in direct counseling or other mental health therapy activities. This can include consulting your supervisor on a case or performing a client evaluation.
- Your supervisor must be board certified.
- You are required to have 100 hours of face to face individual supervision by your board certified LPC supervisor.
- Group supervision will be counted at ½ the rate of individual supervision and can only be 50% of your total supervision hours.
- 50 hours of the supervision must occur after you have completed your graduate program.
Apply for Your LPC License
Now that you have completed your supervised work experience portion, you can apply to the board for your LPC title.
- Apply to the Mississippi State Board of Examiners for Licensed Professional Counselors for your LPC title.
- The application form can be found here:
Continuing Education and License Renewal
Mississippi requires that you renew your license every two years on June 30th. You will need to complete continuing education credits during your license term.
- Mississippi requires that you earn 24 hours of continuing education
- Six hours must be in professional ethics or courses devoted to legal requirements of Counselors.
You will want to take the time every few months to browse the Mississippi State Board of Examiners for Licensed Professional Counselors website