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Background Check: Yes, for employment and have integrity and ethical behavior, professional conduct as stated in Pennsylvania’s Code of Professional Practice and Conduct for Educators.


Educational Requirements:  To ensure exposure, understanding, and candidate competence regarding the practice and delivery of academic, career, and personal/social interventions, candidates must obtain experience at the elementary (Pre K-8) and secondary (7-12) levels during their field experiences, which include pre-practicum, practicum, and internship.

  • Required Coursework: Supervised counseling practicum experiences, prior to and separate from the field experience, providing direct service with individuals and groups (60 clock hours)

    • Pre-Practicum In concurrence with certification programs for other Pennsylvania Department of Education preparation programs, professional school counselor training programs must also incorporate the components of pre-practicum field experiences into their program design. The planned sequential field experiences may begin as early as the initial semester of the applicant’s enrollment. These field experiences are intended to be completed prior to the required practicum. These experiences are to benefit the candidates’ preparation by providing opportunities to observe and apply principles and theories from the training program to actual practice in Pre K-12 schools with diverse populations, ages, and school settings. There are no defined hours for the pre-practicum experience.

    • Practicum Candidates will be required to participate in counseling practice experiences that provide for the application of theory and the development of counseling skills under supervision. The practicum experience should provide the candidate the opportunity to demonstrate their abilities to provide counseling services for a diverse population of students. The Practicum must include counseling practice, individual and group clinical supervision (which involves frequent review of the candidate’s competency at the practicum level to ensure that they are meeting acceptable “standards of the profession”), and periodic, regularly scheduled evaluations of the candidate’s performance. There are no defined hours for the practicum experience.  

  • Experience Requirements: A minimum of an additional 300 clock hours of internship/supervised field experiences to include instructional experience and a minimum of 70 hours (elementary) OR 75 hours (secondary) of direct service with individual and group clients. 420

  • Examination: Professional School Counseling Praxis Praxis II -5422


Internship: Candidates will be required to complete a minimum of 12 weeks of supervised, post-practicum internship experiences that provide opportunities for them to demonstrate their ability to design and implement school counseling programs at various grade levels. This 12-week experience represents a minimum of 420 clock hours. Candidates will provide individual counseling, small group counseling, classroom guidance, and systemic advocacy interventions. Candidates should use school data to drive and evaluate at least a portion of their work. Internship should include individual and group supervision, and periodic, regularly scheduled evaluations of the candidate’s performance.


Certification: (1) Elementary - grades K-6; or (2) Secondary - grades 7-12 PK-12


Reciprocity: No, but Pennsylvania has signed an Interstate Agreement with 45 other states/jurisdictions based upon the mutually agreed-upon conditions of that contract. They are AL, AK, AZ,AR, CA, CO, DE, DC, FL,GA,HI,ID, IL, IN, KA, KY, LA, ME, MD, MA, MI, MS, MN, NE, NV, NH, NJ, NM, NY, NC, ND, OH, OK, OR, RI, SC ,TN, TX , UT, VE, VA, WA, WV, WY. It should be noted, however, that in all cases, candidates for Pennsylvania certification must complete the Praxis test required by Pennsylvania.

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