Personalized attention. Professional growth. Community impact.
Be an advocate and make a difference in the lives of K-12 students by becoming a licensed professional school counselor. Graduates of this program are in high demand in the tri-state area.
Learn about the foundational aspects of professional counseling, including ethical principles, multicultural competence, and professional standards.
Study human development to acquire competency in the analysis of clients, including diagnosis, case conceptualization, and developmental considerations across the lifespan. Gain the skills necessary to provide therapeutic interventions for individuals and groups experiencing mental health challenges or emotional difficulties.
Evening classes are offered in a flexible and convenient format, ideal for both working adults and recent college graduates. Each class is held one night per week for approximately two and a half hours, starting at 4 p.m. or later, allowing you to continue working while attending school.
You’ll learn from doctoral-level faculty, who are practicing professionals and bring real-world experience to their teaching. Their professional network leverages extensive field placements where students can meet both program and state standards for practicum and internships.
Our program curriculum meets the licensure requirements for Iowa, Wisconsin, Illinois, and Minnesota, making obtaining a license in these states easy. If you desire to work in additional states, the program director meets with you individually to ensure licensure eligibility in those locations.
- On-campus, evening classes
- 39 credits, two-year completion
- Spring, summer, and fall semester start
- Only school counselor master’s degree in tri-state area
- Employers recruit directly with Program Director Dr. Tuescher, inquiring about students to hire
Admission Criteria & Eligibility
A holistic admission decision will be based on multiple factors, including your motivation for pursuing this degree, work history, volunteer activities, and other involvement.
- A minimum cumulative GPA of at least 2.75 (or 2.9 in the last 60 credits) is required for admission.
- Completion of at least 12 credits in the behavioral sciences is required for admission.
Requirements, Outcomes & Schedule
Courses are designed so all required educational standards are covered in just 39 credits and completed in two years—compared to most other programs, this saves one year of time and tuition.
Practicum / Internships
Typically, you will complete your practicum and internship experiences during your last year in the program after completing all core coursework.
The practicum occurs during the second to last semester and allows you to become familiar with the school counselor role through one hundred hours of observation, with forty of those hours identified as direct service.
You will complete two concurrent internship experiences (K-8 and 5-12) during your final semester, totaling 600 hours. The coordinator makes all placements for each endorsement level. You may request a preferred site placement. Practicum and internship experiences are not paid opportunities.
While in the practicum and internship experiences, you will be at your site during the work day. While some students continue employment, all will reduce their work hours to part-time to complete these experiences. You may choose to spread out your internship hours over the course of two to four semesters. No current or past related work experience may count toward the required hours.
Advanced degrees are worth the investment. We have options to help you make your educational goal a reality, and financial aid helps open doors for your future.
Tuition & Fees
Understand the costs before applying. Review tuition, fees, and living expenses to create a realistic budget. Financial planning is key for advanced degree success.
School Counseling FAQ
Is an undergraduate degree in education required? Are their preferred majors?
Is an undergraduate degree in education, nor is any specific undergraduate degree identified. However, having an undergraduate degree in either education or psychology can clarify the foundation knowledge for the degree.
How long will it take to receive a decision regarding my application? How will I be notified?
Immediately following receipt of all application materials, your file will be reviewed by the program director to determine whether to move forward with an interview. You will then be contacted with information about your next steps. After completion of your interview (or after review of your file), you will be notified of an admission decision via email within one week.
What is the format of the classes?
The format of the classes is primarily face-to-face course instruction, but some core classes are offered in an online format. Practica and internships are primarily field experiences with regular meetings on campus.
Is there a preferred entry point into the program?
There is no preferred entry point into the school counseling program; but entering in the fall semester is most feasible with regard to course offerings.
Does this program accept transfer credits?
Students can transfer a maximum of 9 graduate credits into the program from a previous institution. The courses must be similar in content to coursework offered at Loras and approved by the program director.
How long does it take to complete the program?
Our program offers working professionals a cohort model of study. Most students complete the program within two years (or four semesters).
What is the maximum course load per semester?
Typically 9 credits, however students are allowed to take up to 12 credits depending on your program plan of study set up with your advisor.
What is the time commitment outside of class?
As a general rule, students will spend four to six hours per week outside of classroom instruction on class-related work for each class.
Will there be an orientation prior to the first class?
Yes, students are required to attend the Graduate Student Orientation prior to beginning coursework so they can become familiar with the faculty, campus services, and their peers.
Graduate Programs FAQ
What if I’m still finishing up my bachelor’s degree?
Applicants who are undergraduate students in the process of completing a bachelor’s degree may be awarded a provisional acceptance to Loras’ graduate programs based on receipt of your in-progress, unofficial transcript and all other application materials.
Full acceptance is contingent upon receipt of the final, official transcript(s) and the conferred undergraduate degree.
If a program has a minimum GPA requirement, you must meet the minimum GPA at the time the undergraduate degree is conferred for full acceptance.
Is there on-campus housing for graduate students?
Loras-owned housing is available for graduate and postbaccalaureate students in Smyth Hall. Smyth is an alternative residence hall located in the center of campus. Smyth is comprised of single and triple rooms, and is also home to the religious studies and theology faculty. Amenities include:
- Free laundry facilities (washers and dryers)
- Free wifi
- Kitchen (stocked with pots, pans, baking sheets, etc.) on B level
- Rooms contain a bed/dresser/desk unit, desk chair, and wastebasket
- Beds are XL Twin sized, so students are encouraged to bring extra-long sheets
- Students may bring a mini-fridge under five cubic feet
- Heat is included, but A/C is not, so students are welcome to bring their own window air conditioning unit (must be 5000 BTU or less) or else a portable A/C unit.
- Basic cable is not provided, but students are welcome to bring a streaming device of their choice to use in Smyth.
Can I take some courses as a non-degree student?
Individuals who would like to take some graduate courses for professional development, continuing education credits, or just personal enrichment may take up to 9 graduate credits as a non-degree “Special” student.
Special students may not enroll in practicum, clinical, or internship courses without approval from the program director.
In order to enroll in the course(s):
- Complete the free Loras College Special Course Application. Select “Graduate Course” as the Course Registration Type. You will need to upload copies of your unofficial transcript(s) from each college/university attended before submitting the application.
- The transcripts will be evaluated by the Program Director to ensure that any necessary pre-requisite course requirements have been met.
- After review of the transcript(s), the Registrar’s Office will be in touch with information about your next steps.
• Please note that enrolled degree-seeking students have registration preference if a course is full.
• After the completion of 9 non-degree credits, a student must then apply for formal admission into the graduate program in order to move forward and take additional courses.
• Graduate courses completed by a Special student with a grade of B or better may be applied to a future graduate degree at Loras College with the approval of both the program director and the academic dean.
• Financial aid is not available to non-degree Special students.
• Students interested in any of Loras’ Professional Development programs should refer to the individual program webpage for application and enrollment instructions.
Is there an option for conditional admission?
A program director may require specific conditions be completed to meet the program requirements prior to full admission into a graduate program.
You may be awarded a conditional admission if the program director recommends the you complete additional undergraduate coursework to achieve a minimum GPA requirement of the program.
If you have not met all program requirements at the time of application, a student may be awarded a conditional admission per the discretion of the program director. Refer to the individual program policies and program directors for specific conditional admission policies.
Not all graduate programs have a conditional admission policy.
What is a maximum course load per semester?
You are considered a full-time graduate student when enrolled in 6 credits per term. Please note, you only need to take at least 3 credits per term to be eligible for federal financial aid.
May I play a sport while in graduate school?
Graduate students must be enrolled in a degree-seeking master’s program to be eligible to participate in NCAA athletics at Loras.
Student athletes enrolled in one of our degree-seeking master’s programs need to have full-time status (taking at least 6 credits per term) during the semester(s) you’re practicing or competing in the sport. You also need to be making satisfactory progress towards your degree.
If you wants to participate in athletics while being enrolled less than full-time, you will need to work with your coaches to determine if you are eligible for a waiver.
Please note that while 6 credits per term is considered full-time for graduate students at Loras, you only need to take at least 3 credits per term in order to be eligible for federal financial aid.
Meet Your Professors
Kimberly Tuescher PhD
Professor of School Counseling
Director, School Counseling Program