Substance abuse counselors (also called behavioral disorder counselors) help people who have problems with gambling, alcohol, drugs, substance abuse and eating disorders. They help individuals to identify behaviors and problems related to their addiction. This can be done on an individual basis, but it is frequently done in a group setting. Counselors also conduct programs aimed at preventing addictions. They often work evenings to counsel clients who work during the day.
Substance abuse courses help counselors to understand more about the issues and to assist people with their problems. Most people study substance abuse at the bachelor or master levels, so you might also want to check the substance abuse masters programs. Many prefer to study online because it gives them flexibility and control over their study program. This page will help you to find out more about the field and to locate suitable online programs.
What do you study in substance abuse online programs?
At bachelor’s level the courses typically include the study of the psychopathological behaviors impact on the individual, family, and society; screening and assessment methods at the beginning of treatment; and case management during the treatment phases. Counseling skills courses and a fieldwork/practicum course are also included.
Courses at master’s level would include counseling theories, group counseling, social and cultural issues, psychopharmacology, family issues. In addition, there will often be a supervised internship for students to develop their counseling skills.
What are the career prospect for graduates?
Substance abuse and behavior disorder counselors are generally governed by a different State agency or board than other counselors. The criteria for their licensure vary greatly and in some cases, these counselors may only need an associate’s degree, but national certification as a Master Addictions Counselor (MAC) requires a master’s degree in counseling, National Counselor Certification, and three years of clinical experience. Those interested in entering the field should research State requirements to determine what qualifications they must have.
The American Psychological Association says that psychology is the third fastest-growing field in America requiring a college degree. In the US, after 5 years of experience a substance abuse counselor earns on average over $34,000 (PayScales.com).
List of schools and programs
- Alcohol & Drug Counseling Studies
- Bachelor of Science in Psychology : Addictions
- Master of Science in Psychology : Addictions
- Master of Science in Psychology : Applied Behavior Analysis
- And more...
Kaplan University is focused on recognizing the achievements of military and veteran students and offers the flexibility of an online education. Eligible students can receive college credit for prior military experience and coursework—up to 75 percent of the credit needed for a Kaplan University undergraduate degree.*
- BS in Psychology - Substance Addictions
- MS in Psychology - Addictions
- MS in Psychology - General Psychology
- And more...
Capella combines outstanding academics with a supportive faculty and staff in a program designed for working adults.
An education that blends theory and practice to fuel your career
- MS - Addiction Studies
- MS - Counseling Psychology
- PhD - Counselor Education and Supervision
- And more...
Walden degree and certificate programs are designed for working professionals. Submit the form to learn how you can make a change and advance your career.
- Ph.D. in Social Work - Addictions and Social Work
- M.S. in School Counseling - Crisis and Trauma
- Doctor of Social Work - Addictions and Social Work
- And more...
- Drug & Alcohol Treatment Specialist
Walden degree and certificate programs are designed for working professionals. Submit the form on the right to learn how you can make a change and advance your career.
- Ph.D. in Social Work-Addictions and Social Work
- M.S. in Marriage, Couple, and Family Counseling - Forensic Counseling
- M.S. in Marriage, Couple, and Family Counseling - Trauma and Crisis
- And more...
Pioneering distance education since 1985, Liberty University is now the nation’s seventh largest university. With more than 300 online and residential areas of study, Liberty offers programs from the certificate to doctoral level.
- MA in Professional Counseling - 60 Hour
- BS in Psychology
- AA in Psychology
Welcome to Argosy University
Argosy University offers doctoral, master's, and bachelor's degree programs to students through its eight colleges: College of Behavioral Sciences, Graduate School of Business and Management, College of Education, College of Health Sciences, College of Arts and Sciences, College of Creative Arts and Design, College of Clinical Psychology and Western State College of Law at Argosy University as well as certificate programs in many areas.
- Counseling Psychology(EdD) (Online)
- Psychology (BA) (Online)
As the largest private university in North America, University of Phoenix has locations nationwide, and is available online in most countries around the world. Whether you're seeking a college degree at an associate's, bachelor's, master's, or doctoral level, we can help you reach your academic goal and sooner than you might think.
- M.S. in Psychology/Industrial- Organizational Psychology
- A.A. in Psychology
- Bachelor of Science in Psychology