The mission of the Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling Program is to prepare master’s degree students to perform a vital role as counselors who have specialized knowledge and skills for both mental health and rehabilitation service delivery. This includes the ability to serve persons with a diverse array of mental health or disability-related problems impacting the individual and the family, in a variety of clinical settings and with respect for the influences of multicultural factors such as culture, ethnicity, race, religion, gender, and sexual orientation. Students also receive specialized training in the vocational, educational, and personal adjustment of persons with physical, mental, and emotional disabilities.
A core of required graduate courses provides the basic knowledge and skills necessary to the field of rehabilitation and mental health counseling. Principles and practices are taught with an emphasis on:
- Psychiatric rehabilitation
- Counseling theory
- Individual and group counseling skills
- Assessment in rehabilitation and mental health counseling
- Diagnosis of mental disorders
- Evidence-based treatment of mental disorders
- Job placement
- Medical and psychosocial aspects of disability
- Human growth and career development
- Research methods
Practica and Internships
Concurrently, field work of progressively increasing complexity takes place at a variety of community-based mental health and rehabilitation facilities in the Chicago area including:
- Mental health and counseling centers
- Community rehabilitation facilities
- The state department of vocational rehabilitation
- Rehabilitation centers
- Medical hospitals
- Facilities for persons with mental and physical disabilities
You will begin working with clients in community facilities in the second semester and continue hands-on supervised experience throughout your second year. Recent placements include:
- The Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago
- Ada S. McKinley Community Services
- Anixter Center
- Thresholds Psychiatric Rehabilitation Programs
- Chicago Lighthouse
This will prepare you for work as a practitioner, provide you with valuable contacts in the field and allow you to learn skills that cannot be taught in a classroom.
In addition to preparing you for practice in clinical mental health counseling, you will receive specialized training for a career in the rapidly-growing field of rehabilitation counseling. This program prepares rehabilitation and mental health counselors for employment in:
- Community mental health facilities
- State, federal, and private rehabilitation agencies
- Correctional institutions
- Public schools
- Rehabilitation centers
- Organizations serving persons with physical, psychiatric, mental, social or emotional disabilities
As an IIT Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling graduate, you will be eligible to become a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC), a distinguished certificate recognized nationwide. You will also be eligible for counseling licensure as a Professional Counselor and a Clinical Professional Counselor within the state of Illinois. Illinois accepts the CRC examination as a qualifying professional counselor licensure exam (Please see your state licensing board for information on counseling licensure requirements in states other than Illinois).
Applications are accepted for the fall term only, although they are considered on a rolling basis. However, applications and supporting documents must be received by March 15. Minimum requirements for admission include:
- Bachelor's degree with a minimum of 18 credit hours in psychology or a closely related field
- Minimum GPA 3.0
- 3 Letters of recommendation (2 academic, 1 employer)
- Professional statement
- Transcripts from all post/secondary institutions
All applications are evaluated on the basis of such factors as GPA, recommendations, and the professional statement. (GRE scores are not required.) Finalists will be contacted for a personal interview.
If you already have up to 15 credit hours in psychology, you may qualify to complete the M.S. in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling degree with Advanced Standing. Find more information below.
If you are currently working in the rehabilitation field and are interested in pursuing a M.S. in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling, there is a part-time option available which is designed to meet the needs of the working professional.
For more information, contact Program Director Frank Lane, Ph.D.
3105 South Dearborn Street, Room 292
Chicago, Illinois 60616-3793