Counselor Education


The philosophical bases from which the instruction, mentorship, and applied learning within the Program in Counselor Education are derived reflect a combination of pragmatism, social constructivism, and phenomenology. The philosophical framework of the program embraces preventive, developmental, and remedial efforts as meaningful responses by counselors to the human conditions of their clients. A variety of applied approaches to the process of change is examined and encouraged within a framework of practical and realistic expectations for the process of change. However, the basic commitment to facilitating optimum development of individuals, families, and communities throughout their life-spans permeates the efforts of students and faculty alike.

Consistent with the American Counseling Association mission statement, the Counselor Education Program aims at enhancing “the quality of life in society by promoting the development of professional counselors, advancing the counseling profession, and using the profession and practice of counseling to promote respect for human dignity and diversity.”  –ACA Mission Statement

Program Coordinator:  Dr. Joy Burnham



All the programs in the Program in Counselor Education are accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). Accreditation means that the accredited programs are recognized nationally as having met standards of the counseling profession. All graduate degrees affiliated with training in School Counseling are certified by the State Department of Education (SDE) for the State of Alabama. The School Counseling program is also accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Education Preparation (CAEP).  In addition, our counselor education program is a recognized member of International Registry of Counselor Education Programs through promoting the ongoing development and recognition of the counseling profession worldwide.

The University of Alabama Counselor Education (CACREP) Objectives 

  • The counseling candidate will demonstrate knowledge of professional counseling orientation including multiple roles of professional practice, the role of advocacy and ethical practice.
  • The counseling candidate will demonstrate competency in social and cultural diversity in counseling and identify strategies to keep themselves current in understanding the cultural background of clients.
  • The counseling candidate will have knowledge of human growth and development and will demonstrate this knowledge in dealing with persons of all developmental levels and multicultural levels.
  • The counseling candidate will demonstrate an understanding of career development and related life factors including use of assessments and strategies to balance work and other life roles.
  • The counseling candidate will demonstrate knowledge of counseling theories and the importance of the counseling relationship including the use of counseling skills to create a counseling relationship and the ability to use crisis strategies when needed.
  • The counseling candidate will demonstrate both theoretical and experiential understanding of group work including theories of group counseling and participation in group.
  • The counseling candidate will demonstrate an understanding of assessment and testing used for planning and identification of factors affecting clients in a multicultural society.
  • The counseling candidate will demonstrate the skills and knowledge to conduct needs assessment and basic quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods research in the counseling profession.


Counseling Lab
The Program in Counselor Education includes usage of the Counselor Education Developmental Counseling Laboratory, a suite of counseling rooms on the third floor of Graves Hall, accessible through Room 318. The Counseling Laboratory is a state-of-the-art facility that features digital recordings of pivotal counseling work samples from program entry through practicum work

Grants and Scholarships

Prospective and current students are eligible to apply for financial assistance including assistantships and scholarships. Some of these include

Quick Links

Faculty and Staff

Dr. Eric Baltrinic

Assistant Professor, Counselor Education

Dr. Joy Burnham

Program Coordinator and Professor, Counselor Education
304B Graves Hall

Dr. Ryan Cook

Assistant Professor, Clinical Mental Health Counseling
310A Graves Hall

Dr. Millie Dawson-Hardy

Clinical Assistant Professor, Counselor Education
315H Graves Hall

Dr. Heather Fye

Assistant Professor, Counselor Education

Dr. Junfei Lu

Assistant Professor, Rehabilitation Counseling
215B Graves Hall

Dr. George Mugoya

Assistant Professor, Rehabilitation Counseling
215A Graves Hall

Dr. Doris Vaughans

Clinical Assistant Professor, Counselor Education
303 Graves Hall


Suzanne Gibson

Faculty Support
306D Carmichael

Michelle Harris

Student Support
306 Carmichael