Counseling and Psychology Programs at Arcadia University
Arcadia University appears in our ranking of the Top 25 Small Colleges for a Counseling Degree.
Individuals looking to work as a licensed counselor or mental health practitioner have a variety of specialties to choose from in Arcadia University's Master's of Arts in Counseling program. All students begin by taking the same 45 credit hours of core courses including Human Development, Professional Issues in Counseling, Clinical Psychopharmacology, and Advanced Counseling Techniques. Following this, students take five classes in their concentration and complete a 100-hour practicum providing supervised direct therapy to clients. Three of the eight specialty counseling options involve behavioral modification theories and techniques and consist of the Autism Concentration as well as Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) and Foundations of BCBA Concentrations. Other specialties prepare students for traditional mental health therapeutic roles including Mental Health Counseling, Child/Family Therapy, and Trauma. The last two specialties, Community Public Health and Mediation and Conflict Transformation are more related to community counseling practices and policies. Arcadia also offers dual degrees combining a master's degree in counseling along with a master's in a related field like Public Health, International Peace and Conflict Resolution, and Health Education. The final counseling-related graduate certificate, Infant-Toddler Mental Health, is offered through the Department of Education.
The Department of Psychology offers two different undergraduate degrees in the field. In the Bachelor's of Arts in Psychology, students have the opportunity to receive a broad foundation in all areas of psychology, and it readies graduates for a variety of career paths. For this degree, there are three tracks, one involving a liberal arts foundation, one preparing students for professional programs including those listed above, and the final option for students interesting in pursuing a Ph.D. and academic research in the field. Additionally, the bachelor's in sport psychology provides the necessary fundamentals along with more specialized study and includes a study abroad experience at Scotland's University of Stirling as well as an in-depth senior-year internship.
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About Arcadia University
Arcadia University is located in Glenside, Pennsylvania, along the northern border of Philadelphia. The school has undergone many changes since its beginnings in 1853 in the town of Beaver when it was known as Beaver Female Seminary. Just about 20 years later, this was changed to Beaver College which remained its name until the 2001 change to Arcadia University after it became clear that many individuals were having a difficult time finding its website due to new search engine filters. Additionally, throughout its history, the school changed its policies multiple times regarding admitting male students. Since 1973, though, the school has remained a co-ed campus. Another major change was when the institution switched religious affiliation from the Methodist Episcopal Church to the Presbyterian Church in the early 1900s. Today, Arcadia University continues to add to its curriculum and currently offers more than 80 fields of study for undergraduates and about 20 graduate departments. The school enrolls about 4000 students and emphasizes the importance of personalized education, as evidenced by its low student to teacher ratio of 10 to 1.
One of the main characteristics that sets Arcadia University apart is its mission to produce graduates who look at the world on a global scale and its commitment to study abroad programs. These opportunities include things like the First-Year Study Abroad Experience providing freshmen the chance to spend a semester in England or Scotland as well as more targeted degree-specific experiences or service-learning trips. In fact, the government-funded Open Doors organization has ranked Arcadia #1 for participation in study abroad programs out of all master's-granting colleges and universities.
Arcadia University Accreditation Details
Pennsylvania, home of Arcadia University, is one of the five states in the jurisdiction of the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE). The MSCHE provides accreditation to colleges and universities after ensuring that they meet certain standards. Arcadia University has been accredited since 1946 with its last reaffirmation in 2014. The committee evaluates schools in seven key categories including Ethics and Integrity, Design and Delivery of the Student Learning Experience, and Planning, Resources, and Institutional Improvement. Additionally, the master's level counseling programs at Arcadia University are accredited by the MPCAC, Masters in Psychology and Counseling Accreditation Council. This organization strictly looks at individual programs in their field to ensure that the curriculum is current and thorough. This evaluation also ensures that programs include enough practical experience to adequately prepare students for professional life.
Arcadia University Application Requirements
Admission to Arcadia University is a bit competitive with an acceptance rate of 60%. Freshmen undergraduate students can apply either via the Common Application or Arcadia's individual application. In addition, official transcripts, ACT or SAT test scores, and a letter of recommendation from a teacher or school counselor also need to be submitted. Applicants have the option of sending extra letters from coaches, employers, or other individuals, but this is not required. Other optional supplemental information can include a list of extracurricular activities, personal statement, or a resume. Completed undergraduate applications are reviewed and admission decisions made as they are received, so students are advised to apply early. Admission to graduate counseling and psychology programs require a completed bachelor's degree in any field with at least a 3.0 GPA preferred. Applicants also must have earned a 'B' in at least three psychology courses during their undergraduate years. To apply, prospective students need to submit the graduate application, official transcripts, three professional letters of reference, and GRE scores unless undergrad GPA is above a 3.0. All materials must be received by November 1st for spring admission or early-decision fall enrollment and by January 15th for regular-decision fall enrollment. All qualified candidates will be invited for an on-campus interview before admissions decisions are finalized.
Tuition and Financial Aid
Undergraduate tuition at Arcadia University runs about $42,880 per year, and graduate tuition cost for counseling and psychology programs is $760 per credit hour. Nearly all students receive some type of financial aid in the form of grants and scholarships, and applicants automatically apply for a variety of merit-based scholarships with their application for admission. Graduate students have the opportunity to participate in assistantships as long as they are enrolled in at least 9 hours per semester. These programs provide tuition reduction in exchange for students working a designated number of hours per week on the Arcadia University campus.