Ohio Counselor Licensure Requirements

The State of Ohio passed its counselor licensure law in 1984. This law provides for the protection of the title and practice of professional counselors. Graduate students are able to register with the state as a Counselor Trainee while they complete their practicum and internship. The nature of their supervision is designated by the law. A 60 hour nationally accredited academic program is preferred but not required for licensure. Once graduate students complete their required coursework and the National Counselor Examination, they may become a Licensed Professional Counselor. For more information, visit the State of Ohio Counselor, Social Worker and Marriage & Family Therapist Board at: www.cswmft.ohio.gov.

After obtaining the LPC, the counselor may upgrade to the Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC) license. This requires completion of 3,000 hours of clinical counseling experience under the supervision of an LPCC who holds the supervision credential. The title used by a professional counselor (LPC) while gaining these 3,000 hours of clinical experience is Professional Counselor/Clinical Resident. For two years while gaining these 3,000 hours of counseling experience, the individual must work under supervision. Following completion of the clinical hours, the Clinical Resident must successfully complete the National Clinical Mental Health Counselor Examination (NCMHCE) to become a LPCC.

A number of universities in Ohio (as does the licensure board) allow the completion of the NCE by graduate students. Successful completion of the exam makes the student eligible for the National Counselor Certification credential (from NBCC) upon graduation if the academic program is nationally accredited by Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). Such graduates can use those NCE results later to become Licensed Professional Counselors. Some universities also use the Counselor Preparation Comprehensive Examination (CPCE) as an exit requirement. This exam is structured around the same eight content areas as the NCE. Thus, preparing for one exam will also help prepare the student for the other.