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Admission to the Counseling Program and the three sequences is competitive. There is no guarantee of admission even if an applicant meets or exceeds the minimum criteria. The minimum criteria for admission are described below. Deadlines for the program are: February 15 for Fall admission and August 15 for Spring admission.

  1. In addition to the GSU graduate application for admission, applicants must have at least a:
    • cumulative GPA of 2.75 or higher for all undergraduate course work attempted; or
    • GPA of 3.0 for the last 60 hours of undergraduate coursework.
    • If a student meets neither of the above minimum requirements, but the cumulative GPA for all undergraduate coursework attempted is between 2.5 and 2.74, a student must:
      • attain a score of at least 302 on the verbal and quantitative portions of the Graduate Record Exam—General Test (score of 1050 if the test was taken prior to August 2011);OR
      • take COUN 6600, COUN 6630, and ENGL 1010 (writing course) and complete with B's or better. (NOTE: Completion of these courses or the GRE does not guarantee admission.)
    • Any cumulative GPA below a 2.5 will not be considered.


  1. Recommendation of the faculty based on the submission of supplementary application packet, which includes:
    • One copy of official transcripts of all previous college work (see Step 5 below for details)
    • Counseling Application (no fee required)
    • Statement of Character Form (included in the application)
    • Three Personal Reference forms
    • The GRE, if applicable
    • SCHOOL COUNSELING APPLICANTS: Will need to provide passing TAP (Test of Academic Proficiency) results OR ACT scores of 22 or higher, including the writing portion, OR SAT scores (1030 or higher). If not provided at admissions, students must complete prior to candidacy.


  1. Complete specified prerequisite coursework with a GPA of 3.0 or higher. If these are not completed at the time of admission, they must be completed prior to attaining candidacy. Prerequisite courses for the Clinical Mental Health Counseling and Marriage Couple and Family Counseling sequences include a course in statistics, a course in research methodology, a course in abnormal psychology (PSYC3430) and course work in Addictions Studies at the 5000 level (Marriage Couple and Family sequence must complete ADDS6300) or above totaling three semester hours. Applicants for the School Counseling sequence must have completed a course in statistics, a course in research methodology and course work in Addictions Studies at the 5000 level or above totaling three semester hours.

Admission to the program is determined by the program faculty. Program faculty reserves the right to request personal interviews with applicants to the program. Admission decisions are final and cannot be appealed. Students must follow sequence, program, college, and university requirements and policies.

Note: Admissions are made into a specific counseling sequence (school, marriage couple and family, or clinical mental health). Changing sequences may require a new application review. As a result, it may not be possible to change sequences based on accreditation limitations or the amount and quality of applicants.




IMPORTANT! Submitting your application early increases your chances of progressing through the application process successfully. Waiting until the day of the deadline decreases your ability to ensure submission of missing documents and therefore, might cause your application to be denied. Submitting your application early does not increase your admission chances; it ensures a complete and accurate packet. On the day of deadline, a complete packet includes all required materials including our receipt of all required official transcripts.

STEP 1 Print the Application ProceduresREAD THIS CAREFULLY. This document will help you prepare a complete and accurate application.

STEP 2 Print the Checklistso that you can verify that you are compiling everything necessary. Submit this checklist with your packet.

STEP 3 Fill out the GSU Graduate Application. This application is the GSU admission application--there is a $50 fee.

STEP 4 Fill out the Counseling Application. This application is the required Counseling application and must be filled out and submitted. If you experience any problems filling this out in Word, please contact Jeanetta G. Edwards at Please note: you must download the application and save it to your computer in order for you to type in your information.

STEP 5 Request official undergraduate transcripts (whether you went to one school or multiple—we need transcripts of all your undergraduate courses, not just where you received your bachelor's degree).

PLEASE NOTE: You must arrange for the submission of an official transcript for each and every undergraduate school you attended. This includes official transcripts from the originating school for credits that may appear on another transcript as transfer credits. Our Admissions office is unable to complete your GPA calculation if you do not turn in every transcript. An incomplete set of transcripts will result in your application being denied.

STEP 6 Complete the supplemental materials required by the Counseling Program. These materials consist of:

  • Three Personal Reference Forms (please use the forms provided)
  • Checklist (must be attached to your counseling application package)
  • Test of Academic Proficiency [formerly the Illinois Basic Skills Test] OR the ACT (with a composite score of 22 and a minimum 19 in Combined English/Writing prior to September 2015. Starting September 2015, a composite score of 22 and a 6 on the Writing) OR the SAT (composite score of 1030 (critical reading and mathematics) and a minimum 450 in writing). These results can be provided at time of admission, but no later than at candidacy. (School Counseling only)
  • Copy of teaching certificate (if applicable – School Counseling only)
  • Copy of TOEFL (Test Of English as a Foreign Language) results (if applicable)
  • Copy of GRE scores (score of at least 302) if applicable (Score of 1050 if test taken prior to August 2011)

STEP 7 Send (or drop off) the materials (preferably as one packet) to*:

Jeanetta G. Edwards, NCC, LPC
Academic Advisor (G384)
Division of Psychology & Counseling
Governors State University 
One University Parkway
University Park, IL  60484

*INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS - Please submit your application packet to:

Katherine Haan, Coordinator
International Services, Room C3370
Governors State University
One University Parkway
University Park, IL 60484


  1. In addition to the above, please submit a Change of Major/Status Form with your packet.
  2. You do not need to pay the $50 application fee.


(Limited free practice questions for GRE and ACT exams at

  • GRE (Graduate Record Exam) This exam is required if the cumulative undergrad GPA (whether at one school or the combination of several) is between 2.5 and 2.74 and if the last 60 hours as an undergrad does not equal a 3.0 GPA. Students will take the General Test, and will need to have a total score of 302 (1050 if taken prior to August 2011). Registration information for the test, study guides and practice questions can be found at Scores should be included in the application packet.

EXAMS REQUIRED FOR ADMISSION or no later than CANDIDACY (candidacy occurs after a student has already been admitted to the program). All test results need to be within 10 years.

  • Test of Academic Proficiency [formerly the Illinois Basic Skills test] (for School Counseling and Post Master's students only) Passing test results for the TAP should accompany the application packet. This is a requirement in order to be admitted into the School Counseling and Post Master's School Counselor Certification programs. Registration information for the test, study guides and practice questions can be found at
  • ACT (for School Counseling and Post Master's students only) Students need a composite score of 22 and a minimum 19 in Combined English/Writing prior to September 2015. As of September 2015, students need a composite score of 22 and a 6 on the Writing portion.
  • SAT (for School Counseling and Post Master's students only) Students need a composite score of 1030 (critical reading and mathematics) and a minimum 450 in writing.



  • Nicolette-Karl

    Nicolette Karl, MA School Counseling Alumnus

    At Governors State, you have the ability to connect and build relationships with professors who care about your development. Not only do they enrich their classes with experiential activities, but they are pillars of strength and fortitude you can lean on for support during your most difficult times. Each class provided me with the confounding realization that the field of counseling is expansive and rich with content. In working through each class, I was encouraged to self-reflect and become a better counselor. As a byproduct, I also became a better person. I am leaving the program with a tool-kit filled with fundamental skills and knowledge and a desire to keep developing and growing as a counseling professional.

  • s-patrick96x112

    Dr. Shawn Patrick, MA Counseling Program Coordinator

    Welcome to the GSU Masters in Counseling Program! I am an Associate Professor teaching courses for the Counseling core, as well as the Marriage, Couples, and Family counseling track. Our program focuses on student development and promoting the growth of ethical, competent, and social justice-minded professional counselors. Our faculty come from a variety of backgrounds; and as practicing counselors, they bring multiple layers of expertise to the classroom. We offer many opportunities for students to be involved beyond the classroom, such as by collaborating with faculty research or joining the Honor Society–Chi Sigma Iota. Stop by anytime to check us out; my door is always open!

  • Shannon96x112

    Ruth Shannon, MA School Counseling student

    The GSU counseling program taught me the why and how of who I am, while simultaneously teaching me skills to eliminate self-doubt and fear to develop the courage to conquer my dreams. As a wife and mother of 10, the professors' holistic approach to the development of future counselors is unmatched. I am graduating with the effective skills and confidence to be a change agent for ALL students. I am forever grateful!

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