Online Master of Arts in Counseling

It’s your turn. Now is the time to earn your online graduate degree in counseling at the Townsend Institute at Concordia University Irvine. You will gain marketable skills that can offer a professional advantage in your vocation. Students will acquire the skills to engage with a person struggling with issues like depression, anxiety, relational problems, or addictions on a deeply attuned level. You will also be trained to connect with the internal workings of a person’s brain and heart - where the root issues lie - such as isolation, lack of boundaries, shame, and feeling as if they have no voice. Learn how to help people move beyond coping to restoration. Gain competency in over 20 skills that use the transformative power of relationship, emotions, and cognitions to create profound and lasting change.

Students enrolled in the Townsend Institute now have the option to earn either a Master's Degree or a Graduate Certificate. Graduate certificate programs are offered in Counseling, Executive Coaching, and Organizational Leadership.

How you’ll cultivate life-changing transformation:

The Master's in Counseling experience invites you to study directly with Dr. John Townsend and master clinicians who have decades of experience, and know how to bring healing, hope, and restoration - a life that flourishes! The Townsend Institute has earned a reputation for its relational approach to begin with character growth as a building block for positive change. Through the Townsend Institute’s online Master’s in Counseling program you will:

  • Understand how treatment goes beyond symptom removal to reshaping the individual, couple, or family, in profound and lasting ways that are transformative.
  • Access the transforming power of relationship, emotions, and cognitions by creating experiences that build new character structure.
  • Discover the therapeutic skills that “crack the code” for growth and healing in clients.
  • Gain diagnostic skills to determine which therapeutic approach will be most effective based on a person’s internal character structure.
  • Apply the latest neurological research on the healing process through a biblical lens.
  • Master treatment modalities such as depth psychology, family systems, cognitive behavioral therapy, attachment therapy, psychopharmacology, and positive psychology.
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Personally learn from Dr. John Townsend

  • Begin with a 4-day Kick-off Conference with your community of fellow students where Dr. Townsend will conduct a series of trainings to jump-start your Master’s program.
  • Connect with your cohort in a guided-process group experience to earn your first three credits, where you will learn to unpack key moments in your life story and grow your character.
  • Join a live webinar once a month where Dr. Townsend and Fellows of the Institute conduct a training, with time allotted for personal interaction with the class and time for Q&A.
  • Engage with Dr. Townsend’s exclusive training videos and podcasts created for each course.
  • Gain access to white papers written by Dr. Townsend for topic areas that draw on his decades of experience in counseling and relationship advice.
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Start on your terms

Students can choose to begin in the Fall or Spring semester. The entire program will take two to three years. Students will take one or two 7-week online courses at a time for a total of 60 credits. Learning activities will involve approximately 13 to 16 hours of the student's time investment each week. Students working full time are suggested to take only one course at a time.

This program can lead to licensure in most states. It is the sole responsibility of the student, not the program, to obtain information regarding prerequisites for licensure as outlined by their particular state board of counseling. To obtain your state’s web address, view State Licensure Boards. The following states do not accept online programs: IL, KS, MO, NH.

Term Start Date
Spring February 26, 2018

Info Nights

Join Dr. John Townsend on our beautiful Irvine campus and learn about the counseling and leadership programs while you experience the Concordia difference! You will be able to hear first hand the uniqueness of John's approach to leadership and counseling and the learning process. You will also see first-hand what class sessions, classrooms, instructors and Institute Fellows are all about; as well as meet fellow students. Learn more about the Admissions process and Financial Aid. Parking is free and there is no cost to attend this exciting event. RSVP today!

This informational meeting will also be streamed live. We are set up to answer any questions you might have that evening. Join us by clicking the "View Live Stream" button.

View Live Stream

Please register so we can adequately prepare for your participation.

For problems or help registering for this event, please contact Sarah Martini at gradadmissionsevents@cui.edu or call 714-795-0124.

April

10

Info Night

Tuesday 6:00pm - 7:30pm (PST)

Grimm Hall North, Conference Center
1530 Concordia West, Irvine, CA 92612

The April 10th Information Session will be Live Streamed only. We will not host an In-Person session for the April event.

Register Now for Live Stream
 

Transformation through relational education.

To earn your Master’s in Counseling degree, you’ll be taking 60 units of classes and selecting which 6 units of electives are the best fit for you. You will be supported through virtual classroom sessions with your professors and classmates, and through experientially-focused assignments that connect you with fellow students.

  • Core Courses
  • 45 Units
  • COUN 600: Personal Development Skills Process Group
  • 3
Students will participate in a process group training experience led by a trained faculty facilitator. Students will grow in the critical relational skills that are necessary to counsel effectively, have vulnerable interaction and receive targeted feedback from members. Students will have a safe, confidential place for personal character development. This accelerated 2-week course includes 4 days on the Concordia University campus.
  • COUN 601: Human Growth and Development
  • 3
The study of individual and family development across the life span including normal and abnormal behavior with an emphasis on childhood and adolescence. An examination of neurobiological, affective, cognitive, personality, moral, psychosocial and faith development, as well as strategies for facilitating optimal development. Course also includes an understanding of developmental crises, disability, psychopathology, and situational and environmental factors that effect development. Various theories of development are addressed with a focus on psychodynamic, attachment, self and interpersonal neurobiological theorists. Prerequisite: COUN 600 or (COUN 600A and COUN 600B).
  • COUN 602: Theory and Techniques of Counseling
  • 3
An investigation of counseling, psychotherapeutic theories and techniques and their application to the helping relationship and process. The course provides an orientation to wellness, prevention, and counseling theories to assist in selection of appropriate counseling interventions. The study of models of counseling consistent with current professional research and practice, development of a personal model of counseling, and multidisciplinary responses to crises, emergencies, and disasters. Prerequisites: COUN 600 or (COUN 600A and COUN 600B), COUN 601, COUN 603.
  • COUN 603: Clinical Psychopathology and Diagnosis
  • 3
The study of the principles of the diagnostic process, including differential diagnosis, and the use of current diagnostic tools, such as the current edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual and the International Classification of Diseases. This course covers the impact of co-occurring substance use disorders or medical psychological disorders, established diagnostic criteria for mental or emotional disorders, treatment modalities and techniques, and placement criteria within the continuum of care. Emphasis is placed on the neurobiological and interpersonal conditions that create developmental deficits which underlie the mental disorders and their symptoms. Prerequisites: COUN 600 or (COUN 600A and COUN 600B), COUN 601
  • COUN 604: Theory and Practice of Groups
  • 3
The study of group counseling theory, techniques, dynamics, process and stages. An examination of therapeutic factors of group work, approaches, pertinent research and literature, group counseling methods, and evaluation of effectiveness. Leadership styles as well as basic and advanced group interventions will also be explored.
  • COUN 605: Legal, Ethical and Professional Issues
  • 3
The study of history, professional roles and responsibilities of the counseling profession, including ethical, legal and Christian standards/ principles for conduct. An examination of professional organizations, preparation, credentialing and the creation of a plan for lifelong professional and personal development. Students will also investigate specific ethical and licensure standards within California and their home state.
  • COUN 606: Foundations and Contextual Dimensions of Mental Health Counseling
  • 3
An investigation of the history, philosophy and cultural dimensions of mental health counseling, including the roles of identity of mental health counselors, ethical considerations and the training and credentialing of mental health counselors. Includes professional issues and practice guidelines for the mental health counselor, including conducting community needs assessments and creating and overseeing community interventions to address those needs.
  • COUN 607: Social and Cultural Foundations
  • 3
Theories and techniques for helping in a multicultural world, including development of cultural self awareness, identity development, promoting cultural social justice, individual and systemic strategies for working with and advocating for diverse populations, and counselors' roles in eliminating biases and prejudices, as well as an understanding of processes of intentional and unintentional oppression and discrimination.
  • COUN 608: Models and Application of Integration
  • 3
The study of integration models and the application of these models to the practice of Christian counseling. Included is the basic assumptions of Christianity and psychology, the nature of the Christian experience and the direct application of the major teachings of the Bible to help relationships.
  • COUN 609: Theory and Practice of Assessment
  • 3
The study of assessment, appraisal, and testing of individuals, including basic concepts of standardized and nonstandardized testing and other assessment techniques, norm-referenced and criterion-referenced assessment, statistical concepts such as reliability and validity, social and cultural factors related to assessment and evaluation of individuals, families and groups, and ethical strategies for selecting, administering, and interpreting assessment instruments and techniques in counseling.
  • COUN 610: Advanced Skills of Mental Health Counseling
  • 3
This course includes advanced counseling and psychotherapeutic theories and techniques, application of counseling constructs, assessment and treatment planning, clinical interventions, therapeutic relationships, psychopathology, or other clinical topics. Application of modalities such as crisis intervention, brief, intermediate and long-term approaches. Prerequisites: COUN 600 or (COUN 600A and COUN 600B), COUN 601, COUN 602, COUN 603.
  • COUN 611: Foundations of Crisis and Trauma Counseling
  • 3
This course is designed to provide students with the foundations of crisis counseling, including crisis theory; multidisciplinary responses to crises, emergencies, or disasters; cognitive, affective, behavioral, and neurological effects associated with trauma; brief, intermediate, and long- term approaches; and assessment strategies for clients in crisis and principles of intervention for individuals with mental or emotional disorders during times of crisis, emergency, or disaster. Specialized skills, methods and interventions for working with those suffering with traumatic stress and exploration of the impact of trauma on the individual, family and community.
  • COUN 612: Career and Lifestyle Development
  • 3
An investigation of Career development theories and techniques, including career development decision-making models and interrelationships among and between work, family, and other life roles and factors, including the role of multicultural issues in career development. Additional emphasis on career assessment instruments that facilitate lifelong career development.
  • COUN 613: Foundations of Addiction Counseling
  • 3
The study of Addictions counseling, including substance abuse, cooccurring disorders, and addiction, major approaches to identification, evaluation, treatment, and prevention of substance abuse and addiction, legal and medical aspects of substance abuse, populations at risk, the role of support persons, support systems, and community resources. The issues that contribute to various addictive behaviors, as well as various models of recovery.
  • COUN 614: Methods and Practice of Research and Evaluation
  • 3
An examination of basic research methods and practice, statistical methods, research reporting and evaluation, ethical considerations and use of research to inform evidence-based practice, and the value of research in advancing the profession of counseling. Additional emphasis will also be placed on needs assessment and program evaluation.
  • Clinical Courses
  • 9 Units
  • COUN 640A: Supervised Practicum A
  • 0
A supervised counseling experience providing the opportunity to practice individual, family and group counseling skills in a clinic setting. The 100- hour practicum requires a minimum of 50 direct client contact hours and includes weekly individual and group supervision from a University professor. This course is offered in the following grade mode: Pass/ No Pass. Prerequisites: COUN 600 or (COUN 600A and COUN 600B), COUN 601, COUN 602, COUN 603, COUN 610.
  • COUN 640B: Supervised Practicum B
  • 3
A supervised counseling experience providing the opportunity to practice individual, family and group counseling skills in a clinic setting. The 100- hour practicum requires a minimum of 50 direct client contact hours and includes weekly individual and group supervision from a University professor. This course is offered in the following grade mode: Pass/ No Pass. Prerequisites: COUN 600 or (COUN 600A and COUN 600B), COUN 601, COUN 602, COUN 603, COUN 610.
  • COUN 641A: Supervised Internship IA
  • 0
The opportunity to practice and provide a variety of counseling related activities that would normally be expected of a regularly employed counselor. The 300-hour internship requires a minimum of 150 direct client contact hours and includes weekly individual and group supervision from a site and University supervisor. This course is offered in the following grade mode: Pass/No Pass. Prerequisite: COUN 640B.
  • COUN 641B: Supervised Internship IB
  • 3
The opportunity to practice and provide a variety of counseling related activities that would normally be expected of a regularly employed counselor. The 300-hour internship requires a minimum of 150 direct client contact hours and includes weekly individual and group supervision from a site and University supervisor. This course is offered in the following grade mode: Pass/No Pass. Prerequisite: COUN 640B.
  • COUN 642A: Supervised Internship IIA
  • 0
The opportunity to practice and provide a variety of counseling related activities that would normally be expected of a regularly employed counselor. The 300-hour internship requires a minimum of 150 direct client contact hours and includes weekly individual and group supervision from a site and University supervisor. This course is offered in the following grade mode: Pass/No Pass. Prerequisite: COUN 641B.
  • COUN 642B: Supervised Internship IIB
  • 3
The opportunity to practice and provide a variety of counseling related activities that would normally be expected of a regularly employed counselor. The 300-hour internship requires a minimum of 150 direct client contact hours and includes weekly individual and group supervision from a site and University supervisor. This course is offered in the following grade mode: Pass/No Pass. Graduation Application Fee: $184. Prerequisite: COUN 641B.
  • Select two Elective Courses from the options below
  • 6 Units
  • COUN 621: Psychopharmacology
  • 3
Psychopharmacology, including the biological bases of behavior, basic classifications, referral, indications, and contraindications of commonly prescribed psychopharmacological medications. The study of appropriate uses of these medications as well as identification of their effects and side effects.
  • COUN 622: Foundations of Spiritual Formation and Direction
  • 3
An investigation of the history, traditions and application of spiritual formation/direction. Emphasis on the knowledge and application of the spiritual disciplines such as prayer, meditation, study, solitude, fasting, etc.; as well as the practice of directing the spiritual growth of others.
  • COUN 623: Foundations of Marriage and Family Therapy
  • 3
The history and philosophy of the marriage and family therapy movement, including roles and identity of marriage and family therapists, marriage and family systems and practice, ethical considerations and the training and credentialing of marriage and family therapists.
  • COUN 624: Level 1 Clinical Training: Gottman Method Couples Therapy
  • 3
A thorough examination of the data generated by Dr. John Gottman's research that offers a scientifically-based glimpse into the anatomy of couple relationships. Explore the Gottman Sound Relationship House theory and how to achieve the three main goals of the Gottman Method: modify conflict, enhance friendship and create shared meaning. The acquisition of beginning therapeutic skills and tools to help couples build stronger, happier relationships. An investigation of how the Gottman Method integrates with the Christian world view.
  • COUN 625: Level 2 Clinical Training: Gottman Method Couples Therapy
  • 3
The study of advanced therapeutic interventions using the Gottman Method. Investigate the different inventories used to assess a couple's friendship, conflict and shared meaning profile. A thorough examination of strategies to help couples who might have one of the five different comorbidities that are associated with distressed couples. An investigation of how these advanced principles integrate with the Christian world view. Prerequisite: COUN 624.
  • COUN 626: Foundations of Play Therapy
  • 3
An introduction to the field of play therapy for both graduate students and cllinical practitioners working with children, adolescents and adults. Emphasis on the history of play therapy, its primary theoretical models and general applications. This class provides credits that can be applied to instruction necessary to become a Registered Play Therapist (RPT).
  • COUN 627: Intimacy, Sexuality and Gender
  • 3
The theological and psychological study of human interaction in relationships with emphasis on intimacy and sexuality. Additional areas of study include gender issues, sexual identity formation and the prevention and treatment of sexual abuse for both perpetrators and survivors.
  • COUN 629: Internship Completion
  • 3
This course is for students not successfully completing COUN 641B or COUN 642B. This course is offered in the following grade mode: Pass/No Pass.
  • COUN 630 Independent Study in Counseling
  • 1-3
An individualized study agreed upon by the student and faculty member that allow the student to focus on a specific area of knowledge or service to a particular population. Integrates research, theory and practice with the Christian faith.

 

A deep bench of experience

When you make a choice to invest in your future by continuing your education, you want to be sure your time is well spent. That’s where the Townsend Institute at Concordia University, Irvine offers a distinct advantage. Here, you will learn from a group of extraordinarily talented author-teachers with extensive knowledge on who were are as human beings created in the image of God. We choose faculty with real-world experience and Fellows who bring deep understanding through the subjects they write on, and their ongoing research. They not only offer their expertise, but their availability to answer your questions as you work through the course material. Along with your cohort, you will journey together through a transformational experience in the MAC program.

Tuition and Fees

2017-2018 Tuition and fees are listed here for your convenience, but are subject to change without notice.

Tuition/Fee Cost
Application Fee $50
Graduation Fee $184
Tuition $520/unit

Apply now.

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis, but we encourage you to have all documentation in two weeks prior to the start of each term. If you have any questions about the admissions process or need any assistance, please don't hesitate to connect with us.

Application Requirements

  • An application with nonrefundable application fee of $50
  • One official transcript from a regionally accredited college or university that shows your confirmed bachelor’s degree. Official college transcripts must be sent in a sealed envelope.
  • Must have earned a cumulative GPA of 3.00 on a 4.00 scale.
  • Written essay (2 pages, 500 words) addressing the following items:
    • Personal, professional, and educational goals
    • In your experience, what is the best way that a person grows or changes? You can add an example of a characteristic about yourself that you wanted to change and how you went about changing it.
    • What interested you in applying to the Townsend Institute as opposed to other programs?
  • Minimum of 1 professional reference required. Personal reference optional.
  • A current professional resume

Get Started Today.

Have questions about the Townsend Institute’s online master's degree in Counseling? Not sure how to get started? Fill out the form below, and one of our admissions counselors will get in touch with you.