Limited-Residency Master of Science in Counseling

Applying is the first step toward earning your Master's in Counseling. You'll find everything you need to know the application process on this page. Look over the admission criteria, application requirements, and deadlines below. You can also learn about special requirements for transfer and international students. Please feel free to call us at 877-350-2100 with any questions or e-mail The time to get started on your master's degree is now!

How to Apply

Applicants who submit their completed application by the Priority Due Date will be considered for Graduate Fellowships.

Applicants to the Master of Science Program in Counseling do not need to have an extensive background in psychology, although there are some requirements for this in the Expressive Art concentration. The Admissions Committee is concerned with personal qualities and academic achievement. Applicants are encouraged to feature these qualities during personal interviews and in essays.

We believe that the mission of Mental Health Counseling is a sacred work of healing. The personal qualities of the prospective student are of the highest importance. These include humility, empathic compassion, curiosity, the ability to listen without narcissistic interference, and other attributes. We talk with prospective students as much as we do to try to ensure that they are on this personal path. With students who are academically weak, we can—if they have the right attitudes—help them ameliorate their weaknesses. But students who do not grasp the mission of Mental Health Counseling as we understand it, even if they are academically accomplished, would be better seeking a different training elsewhere.

Required Application Items

The Admissions Committee carefully considers all applications to the College, looking beyond the paperwork to see the individual who wants to be a member of our community. In addition to the admission criteria listed below we also consider a student's potential for growth and success at Prescott College.

Prescott College offers Post-Masters Certificates in the following areas:

  • Adventure-based Psychotherapy
  • Ecospychology
  • Equine-Assisted Mental Health
  • Expressive Art Therapy

Applicants to either the Master of Science in Counseling (all specialization included) or Post-Master's Certificate programs must complete and submit the following items before the published due dates:

  • Application: Limited-Residency Master of Science in Counseling
  • Resume
  • Essay #1
  • Essay #2
  • Two Letters of Recommendation
  • Official Transcripts from all colleges and/or universities previously attended. Post- Master's Certificate applicants only submit official transcripts confirming the Master's degree.
  • $40 Non-refundable Application Fee
  • The Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) is NOT required. An undergraduate degree in Psychology or Human Services is not a prerequisite for applying to this program.
  • Transcripts

The Prescott College Limited-Residency Master of Science Program requires applicants to submit the official undergraduate and graduate transcripts of each regionally accredited institution attended since high school. Applicants to the Post-Master's Certificate Programs only need to submit official transcripts confirming their master's degree from a regionally accredited university.

Have your official transcripts sent directly to Admissions. Official transcripts can be submitted electronically by the issuing institution via

Note: If you have questions about the specializations (Clinical Mental Health Counseling, Addiction Counseling, Couple and Family Therapy, or School Counseling), please contact an admissions counselor prior to completing your application at 877-350-2100, option 1.

Expressive Art Therapy Applicants

Applicants to the Expressive Art Therapy concentration must also submit at minimum a portfolio or demonstration of work. Along with artwork, please submit a brief descriptive statement which includes the date completed, title, medium, and size of each piece. A minimum 12 slides or prints must be submitted. Applicants may choose to submit their work in a slide sheet, CD, DVD, or a link to a website that clearly identifies you as the artist. Include a self-addressed stamped envelope if you would like your samples returned once the admissions process is complete.

Expressive Art Therapy Program Prerequisites

Students must complete the following coursework with a letter grade of B or higher prior to or by the end of their first year in the Master of Arts Program. Coursework must be completed at an accredited 2-year or 4-year institution.

Requirements of the American Art Therapy Association:

18 semester credits in studio art (or 27 quarter credits) in studio based art courses. These must be completed before or during the first year of graduate art therapy training. Studio art coursework can be at the graduate or undergraduate level.

At least 12 credit hours must be completed prior to beginning the art therapy coursework. The remaining 6 may be completed after beginning the first art therapy course that will count toward the ATR credential, but must be completed within a year of beginning graduate coursework in art therapy.

Students must have a minimum of 3 semester hours (4 quarter hours) of credit in each of the following areas:

  • Drawing
  • Painting
  • Clay

The remaining 9 semester hours (12 quarter hours) can be in studio processes of the applicant’s choosing.

In lieu of academic based studio coursework, 6 credits of the Studio Art requirement may be demonstrated via a portfolio demonstrating advanced competency in drawing, painting, and/or clay work.

Post-Master's Certificate applicants

Applicants to the Post-Master's Certificate Programs need to have a Master's degree in a related field. In order to establish whether or not you are eligible to apply, please contact the Admissions Office at 877-350-2100, option 1.

Please explain in one to two pages what inspires you to make the decision to apply for post graduate training in this concentration. Describe your approach to mental health counseling and how you see yourself integrating this new area of study into your future practice. What resources and supports do you have in place that will assist you in succeeding in a distance learning program?

Additional Required Application Items

In addition to required application items, applicants must complete a personal interview. The interview will be scheduled by a member of the Counseling department.

Please contact or 877-350-2100 for details.

Submit application materials to—

Prescott College Admissions
220 Grove Avenue
Prescott, AZ 86301

*In certain cases one or more requirements may be waived.

Admissions Essays

Applicants to either the Limited-Residency Master of Science Program in Counseling or Post-Master's Certificate programs are required to submit two admissions essays.

Admissions Essay #1

Write, in no more than 500 words an account what you anticipate would be, for you personally, the most challenging aspect of a career as a mental health counselor and indicate why you anticipate this would be so.

Admissions Essay #2

  • In an essay of 500 words or less write about your readiness to thrive in a graduate program in which you would work mostly independently and which requires high levels of self-direction and motivation.
  • Describe your experiences completing independent projects
  • Describe what you consider to be your resources and existing supports that will assist you in succeeding in self-directed study
  • Write about how your strengths will contribute to your success with independent, graduate level studies
  • Include any challenges that you may face during your self- directed graduate program at Prescott College
  • If relevant describe what kind of assistance you will need to address any areas of concern.

Letters of Recommendation

The Prescott College Limited-Residency Master of Science Counseling Program developed guidelines to help applicants identify potential recommenders and to ensure the Admissions Committee has the right feedback to build a holistic picture of the applicant. Letters must contain the writer’s contact information and must explain the relationship to you. Letters may be emailed to directly by the recommender and from the recommender’s email address.

Recommender Guidelines

  • One letter should be from a person who has known the applicant well during the past six months.
  • The other letter should be from a person who has known the applicant well for over five years.
  • At least one letter, if possible, should be from a mental health practitioner who is not providing treatment to the applicant.

Both letters must address these applicant qualities:

  • Intellectual and academic readiness for graduate work
  • Capacity for self-reflection and readiness to receive critical feedback
  • Ability to thrive in a self-organized and self-directed context
  • Emotional maturity, quality of personal relationships, and understanding of professionalism
  • Interest in the special features of Prescott College's program

Computer Literacy

Students are expected to enter the Limited-Residency Master of Science Program with a level of technology competency sufficient to function effectively in the program. Proficiency is defined as knowledge of computer concepts, email, spreadsheet, word processing, graphics, and database applications. Graduate students must be able use message boards or computer conferencing to communicate with others, download and upload files, and attach files to email. Students are required to have full-time access to a computer that has a reliable Internet connection.

Transfer Credits

The Counseling and Education (Teacher Preparation track) programs accept up to 15 credits in graduate transfer course work from regionally-accredited post-secondary institutions as long as College faculty members confirm that the courses and credits to be transferred meet College-established curricular standards and expectations. Regardless of transfer credits, students must complete a set minimum required credits for each degree program.

Course-Only Students

An individual who has been awarded a master's degree from a regionally accredited college or university may apply to the Master of Science Degree as a non-degree seeking student to complete the courses needed. Accepted course-only students must enroll for a minimum of six semester hours during any given semester. Interested individuals are to complete the following application requirements and adhere to the same application deadlines as degree-seeking students.

Note—Course-only students are not eligible to receive federal financial aid.

Application Requirements for Course-Only Students

  • Completed Master of Science Program Application
  • $15 application fee
  • Official transcript from the Master's degree granting college or university
  • Submit a 1-2 paragraph description of the proposed courses and a short statement why you want to complete coursework as a non-degree student.

International Students

Unfortunately, Prescott College can not currently offer the Master of Science in Counseling to International students.

Post-Masters Certificate Programs for International Students

Prescott College is unable to offer the Post-Masters Certificates in Counseling to international students, as the way they are structured does not meet F1 visa requirements.

Deferred Matriculation

Students wishing to defer matriculation may do so by sending a written request to the Director of Admission and paying a $100 non-refundable deposit. Matriculation will be postponed for up to a full academic year, subject to successful completion of any academic work undertaken during that time.

Limited Residency Master of Science Application