Education Specialist Degree in School Counseling

Professionals interested in school counseling have an enhanced degree option beginning Fall 2023 with our newly established Ed.S. program. It will be 100 percent online and will provide the necessary courses for students seeking licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor, or LPC, in Kansas. The Ed.S. is replacing the existing master’s degree in school counseling. After Spring 2023, students will only be admitted into the Ed.S. program. Applications available April 1st, 2023.

Couseling Zoom Sessions

Kansas State University has offered CACREP-accredited counseling programs since 1999. As our programs transition from in-person modalities to 100% digitally delivered, our programs will undergo review for CACREP standards compliance. The content of the Ed.S. in School Counseling program is fully compliant with CACREP standards, and the online modality will be reviewed for accreditation consideration in 2024.

The Department of Special Education, Counseling, and Student Affairs offers a 60-credit hour Education Specialist (Ed.S.) degree. Unique to the education field and to Kansas State University (K-State), the Ed.S. is a postgraduate degree which is more advanced than a master’s degree. The Ed.S. serves as the entry-level school counseling degree at K-State. The degree provides extensive specialized coursework and training that prepares school counselors with the skills needed to provide comprehensive P-12 programming in the academic, career, and social-emotional domains. Given the specialist distinction, the Ed.S. provides an avenue for recognition and compensation beyond that of a master’s degree.

Additionally, the Ed.S. degree provides coursework that allows graduates to be eligible for dual licensure in the state of Kansas, which is value added beyond a traditional 48-hour master’s program. First, upon successful completion of the program, graduates will have taken coursework that will make them eligible for a school counseling license with the Kansas Department of Education (KSDE). The Kansas School Counseling Licensure Exam (Praxis) will need to be taken in that process. The coursework in the Ed.S. program will also lead to eligibility for licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in Kansas. In addition to completing the necessary coursework for the LPC, students will be eligilble to take the National Counselor Exam (NCE) before applying for licensure through the Kansas Behavioral Sciences Regulatory Board.

60 credit hours post baccalaureate
100% Online


* Course is synchronous

Core Requirements (51 credit hours)

  • EDCEP 810 Mental Health in Schools
  • EDCEP 815 Using Tests in Counseling
  • EDCEP 816 Research Methods
  • EDCEP 822 Counseling Adolescents
  • EDCEP 823 Counseling Theory*
  • EDCEP 824 Development Across the Lifespan for School Counselors
  • EDCEP 832 Counseling Techniques*
  • EDCEP 852 Career Development for School Counselors
  • EDCEP 855 Professional Counseling Orientation and Ethical Practice*
  • EDCEP 856 Counseling Children
  • EDCEP 857 Counseling Program Management
  • EDCEP 858 Group Processes*
  • EDCEP 860 Trauma and Crisis Counseling*
  • EDCEP 867 Counseling Mental Health Disorders
  • EDCEP 871 Leadership, Advocacy, and Consultation for Counselors
  • EDCEP 886 Critical Issues in Counseling
  • EDCEP 951 Multicultural Counseling

Clinical Requirements (9 credit hours)

  • EDCEP 877 Counseling Practicum*
  • EDCEP 887 Counseling Internship*
  • EDCEP 887 Counseling Internship*

Counseling Practicum and Counseling Internship will have assigned placements.

The practicum will consist 100 clock hours in approved school settings arranged by the program coordinator and internship faculty member.

The internship will consist of 600 clock hours over two semesters in approved school settings (elementary and secondary) arranged by the program coordinator and internship faculty member. A minimum of 240 hours over the two semesters is required for direct service counseling with clients with weekly supervision held by a licensed school counselor and faculty professor. Students attend class for group supervision weekly with an additional one hour for individual supervision. Internship placements are approved only following successful completion of Counseling Practicum and submission and approval of the Internship application.



Do I have to have a teaching background to be eligible for this program?

A teaching license is not required to becoming a professional school counselor in Kansas. One option for licensure is for those who have a teaching license; the second option, parallel pathway, is for individuals who do not have a professional teaching license. Parallel pathway criteria are integrated into existing coursework and do NOT require extra credit hours or tuition.

Do I need a masters degree to be admitted into the Ed.S program?
No, admission to this program requires only a baccalaureate degree.

How long will it take to complete the 60-hour program?

The course schedules accommodate both part-time and full-time students. The program is designed to be 2 ½ to 3 ½ years, or 8-10 semesters for completion, depending on full or part-time status. Some summer courses will be required.

Can I still work while attending the program? Will classes be held during the day?

Classes are designed for those working during the day. The Ed.S. school counseling program will offer both synchronous and asynchronous courses, with 60% of the program being asynchronous. Synchronous courses and class sessions will be offered at or after 4:30 p.m. Central Time on Wednesday for Ed.S. students.

Can I be hired as a school counselor before I complete the Ed.S. program?

In Kansas, many students are employed as professional school counselors PRIOR to program completion. Currently, most school counseling graduate students in internship courses are already hired under a provisional school counseling license.

See the Cashiers and Student Accounts website for tuition and fee schedules.