Degree Completion

Graduation Contract:

Students must file a graduation contract with their advisor by the beginning of the semester before graduation. The deadline for filing graduation contracts is printed in each semester’s schedule of classes, and students are responsible for knowing the date and filing on time.

Comprehensive Exam:

The successful completion of HDC 585/6 Comprehensive Exam (HDC 585/6) is a requirement for the master’s degree. Students are required to pass a written and oral exam .

HDC Graduation Policy:

All Human Development Counseling (HDC) graduation candidates must successfully pass both the written and oral portions of the comprehensive exam. No exceptions to this policy will be made. Please contact your HDC faculty advisor.

UIS Time Limitation:

All graduate credits earned at UIS to be applied toward degree completion must be taken within six consecutive years from the student’s completion of HDC 501 Fundamental Issues and Ethics in Counseling. Excluding transfer credit earned before the first term of graduate attendance and credit granted for prior learning, a student must fulfill all the requirements for the degree within a six consecutive year time period unless the Department grants a leave of absence requested by the student. This time limit includes all UIS graduate course work taken in pursuit of that degree as well as closure requirements. Exceptions to the provisions of this policy may be granted by degree-granting programs on a case-by-case basis. (UIS catalog)

  • All students must meet current catalog (new) curriculum requirements.
  • Practicum and internship must be completed in residence
  • Only nine graduate hours may be transferred from other schools: these hours must meet university policy guidelines, and be approved by the adviser and Department Committee.
  • All cases will be treated on an individual basis by the Department Chair or designee and another faculty member (student’s adviser, if available)
  • Standard HDC appeal procedures apply.

Leave of Absence:

HDC students may request a leave-of-absence from pursuing degrees for one calendar year during which they do not enroll in classes. An approved leave of absence extends the university time limit to fulfill all the requirements for the degree from six to seven years. In unusual circumstances, students may request a second year leave of absence. Students who do not receive an approved leave of absence must complete all degree requirements within a six year period. Standard HDC appeal procedures apply.

Students must request a leave-of-absence on the appropriate form. Approval is granted by the HDC Department Committee. It is filed in the student’s folder and submitted with the graduation contract. In unusual circumstances, a second year leave of absence may be approved through the same process.

The faculty counselor educator has a responsibility to the community and the helping profession to ensure that unprepared counselor-trainees not be allowed to advance in the counseling Department. The Department of Human Development Counseling faculty reserves the right to review a student’s fitness for continuing in the Department on the basis of personal characteristics or dispositions. The student whose characteristics or dispositions the Department Committee deems dysfunctional on the basis of recommendations made by two or more faculty members may be allowed to continue in the Department with/without conditions, or asked to withdraw. (See Evaluation/Retention section).

Endorsement Policy: Students who successfully complete all requirements for the Master of Arts degree in Human Development Counseling will receive faculty endorsement in their area of specialization. Endorsement includes recommendation for state certification for students who have completed the School Counseling area of study and recommendation for employment as:

  • a community counselor for those who have completed the community counseling area of study, and
  • a marriage, couple and family counselor for those completing marriage, couple and family counseling studies. Graduates of one area of study will not receive faculty endorsement for employment in another area of study.

The National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC) is the agency responsible for designing the test to become a National Certified Counselor. The Department of Human Development Counseling acts as liaison for the NBCC. The Department’s primary functions are to distribute, collect, and return the student application materials required for processing. The NBCC exam is usually held twice a year, once in April and again in October. The cost of the exam is currently $295.00 per student. A student should consider taking the exam the semester before they will graduate.

Any student who has satisfied CACREP requirements may take the exam within a year after completion of all requirements.