The Department of Human Development Counseling strives to educate traditional and non-traditional students with a primary goal to prepare highly competent Professional Counselors who are able to work with diverse populations, in various settings in Central and Southern Illinois. More specifically, we strive to prepare School Counselors to function within K-12 settings; Mental Health and Marital, Couple and Family Counselors to operate within community agencies, hospitals, drug treatment facilities, and institutions providing professional counseling and consulting services.
As the educators of future Professional Counselors, we strive to create an atmosphere that will encourage and promote:
- the inherent worth and dignity of all persons;
- development of self-awareness and continuing growth throughout the lifespan;
- positive interpersonal relationship skills, self-expression, and self-management;
- core attitudes of authenticity, congruence, and non-judgment.
Our goals are consistent with those of the University of Illinois at Springfield, a university committed to actualizing the individual student through increasing diversity among faculty and students. The University supports professional development as a blend of traditional liberal arts and practical experience. It strives to maintain and strengthen the University’s unique approach to excellence.
The purpose of the Department of Human Development Counseling is to prepare graduates who will be able to provide professional counseling and consulting services in community agencies, institutions, and in schools. Students learn a variety of theoretical approaches as well as how to use “self as instrument” to facilitate changes sought by people in systems facing the decisions and concerns of everyday living.
The Department of Human Development Counseling offers three Master’s degrees accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP): Clinical Mental Health Counseling, School Counseling, and Marital, Couple, and Family Counseling. The Department maintains an enrollment of approximately 100 students with an average class size of 15. In academic year 2018-2019, 28 students graduated from the Department of Human Development Counseling.