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Center on Community Living: CSA & CHIIP

Rehabilitation Counselor Program

Circle for American Indian Rehabilitation (CAIR)

Center for Pacific Studies

National Rehabilitation Leadership Institute (NRLI)

Center for Emerging Leadership

Center for Educational Leadership, Innovation, and Policy

Exceptional Family Resource Center (EFRC)

Collaborative for Distance Learning

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The Program

The SDSU program offers 60 units of coursework necessary to build competencies in rehabilitation counseling, program development, and administration. In 2000, SDSU's program was ranked 10th nationally by U.S. News and World Report. Students often identify a specific population or work setting of particular interest and, with their graduate advisor, design their educational experiences. The practicum, clinical, and internship requirements comprise a large portion of the overall program. Students are given the option of taking a comprehensive examination, completing a master's degree thesis, or presenting a portfolio to the faculty.

The Faculty

Four full-time faculty and numerous part-time faculty are actively involved in education, research and service to the community. The program utilizes part-time faculty who are current practitioners and administrators of rehabilitation programs and services.

"The quality of training and experience gained here had been instrumental in my preparation for a career serving the needs of individuals with disabilities."

Tom Turner
Master of Science in Rehabilitation Counseling graduate

Degree offered Master of Science in Rehabilitation Counseling

Accreditation by the Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE) enables students to receive national certification as a Rehabilitation Counselor, which has reciprocity in all states.

Internships and field study experiences are offered in a variety of local agencies including public and private rehab agencies, community-based non-profit agencies, public schools and institutions of higher education, rehabilitation centers and hospitals. Students have an opportunity to specialize in one or more areas of disability. Final semester internships may be arranged in other states or countries.

Department office:

Department of Administration, Rehabilitation and Postsecondary Education
Contact: Rehabilitation Counseling Program
3590 Camino Del Rio North
San Diego, CA 92108-1716
(619) 594-6406
Fax: (619) 594-0991
Website: www.interwork.sdsu.edu

Application Instructions: Deadline for Fall 2006 is Aug. 1st, 2006

Fall 2006 and Spring 2007

A student must complete an application for admission to both the university and the Rehabilitation Counseling Master’s degree program. Early application to the program is encouraged. Submit the university application on line at: www.csumentor.edu

The following materials should be submitted
directly to SDSU:

Official transcripts (in sealed envelopes)
GRE test scores

Mail directly to:
Graduate Admissions
Enrollment Services
San Diego State University
5500 Campanile Drive
San Diego, CA 92182-7416

The following materials should be submitted directly to the ARPE department:

Mail directly to:
Department of Administration, Rehabilitation & Postsecondary Education / Interwork Institute.
Attention: Graduate Advisor
San Diego State University
3590 Camino del Rio North
San Diego, CA 92108

For specific questions call the Program office at: 619-594-6406

Programs offered in the College of Education

  • Counseling and School Psychology
  • Ed.D. in Education
  • Educational Leadership
  • Educational Technology
  • Elementary Education
  • Ph.D. in Education
  • Reading/Language Arts
  • Rehabilitation Counseling
  • Secondary Education
  • Special Education

Special Advantages of the SDSU Program

Federally funded stipends are available, as well as tuition and fee waivers based on financial need and academic potential. Many students acquire remuneration through graduate assistantships and paid employment.

All courses use distance education technologies to enrich the student's learning. The latest in software packages for testing the abilities, interests, and career training needs of consumers are available to students.

Part-time or full-time programs are offered. Courses are scheduled to allow students to enter the program on a part-time or a full-time basis.

Student Associations

SARC (Student Association of Rehabilitation Counselors) is the student rehabilitation organization. In addition, student memberships are available in several national professional organizations. Disabled Student

Services provide excellent support to students with disabilities.

Career Opportunities

An M.S. degree in Rehabilitation Counseling is generic in nature. Upon graduation, a rehabilitation counselor is qualified to work in a wide variety of exciting rehabilitation settings. Rehabilitation counselors are employed in both the public and private sectors. A rehabilitation counselor can find employment within State Departments of Rehabilitation, in community rehabilitation programs as vocational evaluators, or as placement specialists. Many rehabilitation counselors work as program directors in agencies locally, statewide, and out of state that provide services to persons with disabilities. The field of rehabilitation is expanding into areas such as disability management, worker's compensation/rehabilitation, assistive technology, community college and university support services, correctional rehabilitation, and administrative positions.
Another growing market for Rehabilitation Counselors is in school settings, where they work in concert with teachers to assist students in making the transition from school to adult life. Finally, many graduates in Rehabilitation Counseling have been creative in developing their own careers through grants and contracts available from a number of funding sources which support special projects providing services to consumers with disabilities.

Over 80 percent of our graduates are employed in a field commensurate with their degree.

Undergraduate Preparation

The basic requirement is an undergraduate degree. Most applicants to the rehabilitation program have a degree in psychology, sociology, or some related field, but this is not a requirement.

It is recommended prospective students have some work experience in a human service field or undergraduate preparation in the behavioral sciences.

Students interested in specialization areas may focus on one of three areas: (1) consumers who are deaf or hard of hearing. (2) consumers in mental health programs or (3) rehabilitation technology. Students interested in the specialization with consumers who are deaf or hard of hearing are expected to have knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of the auditory mechanism and conversational American Sign Language proficiency. If these conditions are not met at the time of application, they will be regarded as academic deficiencies to be removed before the M.S. degree is granted. The emphasis on mental health includes specialized courses in theory and practice of mental health rehabilitation. The emphasis on rehabilitation technology includes 15 unit graduate certificate, which is an interdisciplinary program with the College of Engineering. Specialization requires students to meet specific conditions in their focus areas at the time of application. Students may also take additional coursework to earn the Certificate in Rehabilitation Administration, the Workforce Education and Lifelong Learning, and the Pupil Personnel Services Credential for K-12 programs.

Advising and Admissions

Application must be made both to the department and to the University through the Office of Admissions and Records. Students may contact the department for information about the program, the admissions process, and the department application for admission. It is recommended that students make an appointment for an interview with a faculty advisor after filing the applications.


All students are responsible for reading and knowing the information pertinent to their areas of study available in the Graduate Bulletin, a catalog for graduate students containing requirements for all academic major, course descriptions, policies, and regulations governing progress at the University.

To order a Bulletin, call (619) 594-2466.


Program offerings are described in the San Diego State University Graduate Bulletin.


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The Interwork Institute is administered through the
College of Education, San Diego State University and the SDSU Research Foundation.
3590 Camino del Rio North, San Diego 92108. Phone: 619-594-2462
Send any questions or problems regarding this website to: cdl@interwork.sdsu.edu

Copyright 2008