MFT and LPC Licensure
Pursuing the MFT and LPCC license
The MS Clinical Mental Health Counseling program at SJSU offers students the opportunity to pursue the MFT license, the LPCC license, or both.
To become a licensed therapist in California, you will need to complete the courses and formal education requirements set by the Board of Behavioral Sciences licensing board, complete 3,000 hours of acceptable supervised experience, and pass the examinations administered by BBS. The entire process from entry into graduate school to licensure takes a minimum of three and one-half years if one proceeds with graduate training and internship on a full-time basis.
SJSU's MS Clinical Mental Health Counseling program consistently has among the highest pass rates for both the MFT and LPCC licensing exams.
We offer all of the coursework for both pre-degree licensing requirements with one exception, Career Counseling. This course can be taken before or after graduation, and will complete all course requirements for the LPCC. SJSU currently offers this course through the graduate Educational Counseling (EDCO) program, and students pursing the LPCC take this course in their second year.
It is important to note that the BBS has different pre-degree face-to-face therapy hour requirements for internship hours for the MFT and LPCC tracks. (There are many other pre-degree hour requirements, also.)
MFT students are required to obtain 150 face-to-face therapy hours and 75 client centered advocacy hours (these can be face-to-face therapy hours as well). These count toward the 3000 hours required for licensing.
LPCC students are required to obtain 280 face-to-face hours. These hours do not count toward the 3000 hours required for licensing.
At SJSU, we typically most often can meet the MFT pre-degree clinical hours requirements. 150 face-to-face therapy hours in two semesters is very achievable as agencies have infrastructures built to accomplish this.
The pre-degree therapy requirement for LPCC students at 280 face-to-face hours is very difficult to meet for most agencies in two semesters. In part, this is 130 more therapy hours than they are built to accommodate for students, and it is hard to see that many more clients when one is first learning to do therapy.
Not all, but some SJSU MS Clinical Mental Health Counseling program students need to postpone their graduation to achieve the pre-degree LPCC therapy requirements. This means that instead of being granted a degree in May, students are granted their degree in August when they complete these hours. There are NO additional financial costs for this, but it is important to anticipate.
You are encouraged to research the BBS website for details on MFT and LPCC requirements.