Top 10 Best Online Bachelors in Counseling Degree Programs

Bachelors in CounselingOnline bachelors in counseling degree programs are a rare entity. Students, who are interested in counseling as a career, typically earn their undergraduate degree in psychology, social work, human services or a related field. Earning an undergraduate degree in these fields can prepare students for entry-level employment in community organizations or behavioral centers. However, a masters degree in counseling, and licensure, are required to counsel individuals. There are many accredited institutions that are acknowledged by notable ranking systems, which can adequately prepare students for graduate study to pursue their career ambitions. Online degree programs are designed to offer maximum flexibility, while getting the same quality education as traditional brick-and-mortar colleges. Students are expected to be more independent in their studies and comfortable without traditional course structure.

10 Best Bachelor’s in Counseling Degree Programs Online

The following schools offer online or hybrid undergraduate programs that are applicable to students who want to pursue a career in counseling. Tuition information is listed for the 2012-2013 academic year unless otherwise indicated.

Liberty University

Executive Summary: LU offers a B.S. in Psychology geared toward students who have varying interests in pursuing counseling careers in a religious environment. The degree program offers various specializations and prepares students for graduate-level education in their chosen field. Students who are interested in careers as faith-based counselors will find this program especially preparatory.
Tuition: $325 per credit hour.
Concentrations: Substance Abuse; Christian Counseling; Crisis Counseling; Life Coaching; Military Resilience.

Grand Canyon University

Executive Summary: GCU is identified as a Christian-based school and is military-friendly. Students who are interested in a future counseling career will find various programs at GCU which offer the appropriate foundation. Individuals can pursue an online B.S. in either psychology or counseling that will prepare them for graduate study. Depending on the student’s location, they can choose to combine traditional on-campus courses with online courses, or pursue their degree completely online.
Tuition: $687.50 per credit hour, or $8,250 per semester for full-time enrollment (12-18 credit hours).
Concentrations: Addiction, Chemical Dependency and Substance Abuse (counseling degree only).

San Diego Christian College

Executive Summary: Students who are interested in pursuing a career involving faith-based counseling may consider undergraduate studies at SDCC. This school offers three B.A. degrees that can prepare students for graduate study and career fields in this specialized area of counseling.
Tuition: $993 per credit hour, or $12,270 per semester full-time (12-18 credit hours).
Concentrations: Psychology (General or Counseling); Christian Ministries; Human Development.

Mid-Continent University

Executive Summary: MCU offers students the opportunity to earn an undergraduate degree in psychology and counseling. This dual major format increases future educational and career opportunities for students. After completion of the program, students can apply to a wide range of psychology and counseling graduate programs.
Tuition: $325 per credit hour.
Concentrations: General Psychology and Counseling.

Post University

Executive Summary: Ranked by U.S. News and World Report has having top-rated online undergraduate programs, PU offers an undergraduate major in psychology that can prepare students for a counseling career or graduate school. Students pursuing an online psychology degree can choose a minor in forensic psychology.
Tuition: $63,000 program total.
Concentrations: Human Development, Education and Health; Organizational Studies.

University of the Southwest

Executive Summary: USW offers a B.S. in Psychology to prepare students for graduate study and counseling-related careers. Students have the option of pursuing various concentration areas within the degree program that are best suited for their counseling goals.
Tuition: $395 per credit hour.
Concentrations: Applied Psychology; Forensic Psychology; General Psychology; Religion.

Azusa Pacific Online University

Executive Summary: APU offers a faith-based education and students can pursue an undergraduate degree in applied psychology. Coursework emphasizes research methodology in addition to fundamental coursework and clinical psychology. Students gain a solid foundation to enter graduate-level counseling programs. The combination of traditional psychology courses and an emphasis on religion is especially appealing for students who desire careers in schools or organizations that are faith-based.
Tuition: $400 per unit for lower-level courses; $425 per unit for upper-level courses.
Concentrations: Criminal Behavior; Cultural Psychology; Educational Psychology; Applied Pastoral Counseling; Business Psychology; Human Services; Child and Adolescent Psychology; Clinical Psychology; General Psychology.

Walden University

Executive Summary: WU has received numerous accolades from U.S. News and World Report for their quality and dedication to the online learning environment. The online B.S. in Psychology program has multiple emphasis areas that can prepare students to pursue graduate education in general counseling or specialized areas of counseling. Students also have the option to pursue an undergraduate minor that can complement their career goals.
Tuition: $300 per credit hour (2013-2014).
Concentrations: Addictions; Applied Psychology; Child and Adolescent Development; Criminal Justice; General Psychology; Human Services; Infant and Toddler Development; Preschool Child Development; Workplace Psychology; Graduate School Preparation.

Florida Tech University Online

Executive Summary: FTU is ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the best schools for online undergraduate programs. Students, who are interested in counseling careers, can enroll in the B.A. in Applied Psychology program to prepare them for graduate study and related opportunities. FTU is part of the University Alliance, which is a collaboration of the top universities with online programs. Through this program, FTU and other members help students achieve their academic and career goals by offering the best online education experience.
Tuition: $495 per credit hour.
Concentrations: General Applied Psychology; Child Advocacy; Clinical Psychology; Forensic Psychology; Organizational Psychology.