M.ED. in School Counseling

Admission to Program

school counseling students working through a group activity

Successful candidates for admission to the School Counseling program must demonstrate a readiness to succeed in graduate level training to become a helping professional, an openness to feedback, emotional maturity, and the ability to relate to diverse groups of students, teachers, and parents. The initial screening is based on a comprehensive and integrated review of all the material that the applicants have submitted.

Application review for the School Counseling program is December 1. January 2 is the deadline to be guaranteed consideration. The specific criteria for admission include the following:

  • Completion of a baccalaureate degree: Transcripts for all coursework must be submitted with the application and should demonstrate readiness to succeed in graduate level coursework. Documentation of 18 credit hours of undergraduate courses related to psychology, education, or a helping profession preferred.
  • General area Graduate Record Examination scores
  • Resume: Candidates should submit a resume detailing their counseling-related training, work experiences, and scholarship.
  • Three letters of recommendation: Three individuals must complete and submit reference forms.  These individuals should be able to discuss your potential for succeeding in
  • Completed application form
  • Personal statement: The personal statement should be at least 1,000 words describing yourself.  Go beyond the grades, honors, and work record that you have already provided on the application form. Instead, share with us the personal qualities and life experiences that form your character.  Tell us about the challenges you have faced, the dreams that you are pursuing, and the discoveries you have made.  What would you contribute to our learning community?  In what way have you felt called to become a counselor? 
  • Interview with faculty and students
  • International candidates for whom English is not their primary language must submit official test scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) of at least 550 on the written tests and 220 on the computer-based test. Applicants must have taken these tests within the past two years.

The application must be complete in order for you to be considered for the program. We complete a half-day interview with the top applicants sometime near the middle of February. Please be prepared to reserve these dates in your schedule so that you can attend if invited. Students must have a completed background check on file prior to enrolling in classes. Information regarding how to complete this requirement is provided directly to students after admissions processes are completed. Please note that some internships sites may require a more rigorous background check as part of their placement process.

Application Website:

Application Timeline: The application will open on October 15 and the target date is December 1. All application materials should be received by December 1 in order to ensure consideration by the program.

Program Begins: Summer
Required Electronically by The Graduate School

  • Application
  • Application fee
  • Official GRE scores

Send official transcripts to The Graduate School. The preferred method is an electronic copy sent via eSCRIP‐SAFE. For more information, please check the Graduate School Website: http://www.jmu.edu/grad/prospective/index.shtml

If an electronic copy is not an option, unopened paper copies can be sent to: 
The Graduate School 
James Madison University 
17 West Grace Street MSC 6702 
Harrisonburg, VA 22807