MS in Mental Health Counseling | Admission Requirements | PCOM
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Master of Science in Mental Health Counseling 
Application Requirements

Grounded in the cognitive behavioral tradition, our MS in Mental Health Counseling program trains highly skilled, compassionate counselors to provide empirically-based, active-focused and collaborative treatment.

This program is offered at the Philadelphia campus only. Courses are offered in the evenings and on weekends, and the program takes two years to complete. The program may also be completed on a part-time basis.


Quick Facts: Mental Health Counseling Program

  • Duration: 2 years, full-time (part-time available)
  • Credits: 60
  • Location: PCOM (In-person)
  • Start Term: Fall (August)
Mental health counseling students sit together at an outdoor table
MS in Mental Health Counseling admission requirements

Applicants to the MS in Mental Health Counseling program must have completed a bachelor's degree in psychology, counseling, education, social work or nursing from a regionally accredited institution.

Bachelor's degrees in other specialty areas will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Neither MAT nor GRE scores are required for admission.

GPA requirement

Mental Health Counseling applicants must have a 3.0 GPA (B average) or better.

Coursework requirements

In order to ensure that program courses are taught at the highest possible level, applicants without a major or minor in psychology must have completed, prior to admission, at a bachelor's level or above, the following courses:

  • Introduction to Psychology
  • Research/Statistics
  • Abnormal Psychology/Psychopathology
When is the deadline to apply?

This academic program operates on a rolling admissions basis. The application closes on Friday, August 2, 2024, but an early application is highly recommended.

How to apply

Prospective students may submit their application through PCOM's online application management system. Additional details, including application availability and instructions, are available at

Next steps

Once your application has been submitted, you will be contacted via email with a confirmation of its receipt including reminders of the appropriate steps to complete the application process.

Note that there is no institutional application fee to PCOM.

Where do I send my college transcripts?

Official college transcripts from all colleges/universities/schools attended must be sent directly to:

Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine
Office of Admissions
4170 City Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19131

We will accept electronic transcripts via mail, eScript and/or Parchment Services and National Student Clearinghouse.

Where do I send my letters of recommendation?

Letters of Recommendation can be submitted through PCOM's application portal or sent directly to PCOM Admissions in .pdf format to

Additional application requirements

Your application will be processed and assessed by the Faculty Committee on Admissions only after the receipt of:

  • Three letters of recommendation (one faculty letter of recommendation is strongly recommended).
  • A resume.
  • A general autobiographical statement explaining your interest in this academic program as it relates to your desire to become a professional counselor (in 500 words or less) should be uploaded to your PCOM application portal.
  • Writing sample that is 5-25 pages (Preferences: APA format, graded, subject matter related to the counseling field).
What happens after I apply to the Master of Science in Mental Health Counseling program?

This program utilizes a rolling admissions policy, so applications will be considered throughout the year as they are received. Students will be accepted into the program until a class size of approximately 35 students is reached. Classes begin in the fall term (early August).

The Admissions Committee screens applications, invites some applicants for an interview and writing sample, evaluates the applicants and selects new students. Following the completion of the admission process, each applicant will be notified of the Admission's Committee decision in writing, including any conditions that must be satisfied prior to or following enrollment.

Interviews for this program will be offered both virtually and in-person for the 2023-2024 application cycle.

As an applicant to PCOM's Master of Science program in Mental Health Counseling, you are responsible for ensuring that all admissions materials are completed accurately and submitted in a timely manner.

Criminal background check requirement

The College requires a criminal background check for all program applicants and enrolled students. The PCOM Office of Admissions will facilitate a criminal background check prior to matriculation processed by a PCOM vendor of choice. Subsequent criminal background checks can occur during enrollment, including but not limited to, when the student is conducting internships, clerkships, clinical coursework, or other types of coursework that occur off campus. Any student charged, convicted of, or who pleads guilty or no contest to a misdemeanor or felony crime after the date of the original application submission is required to notify the dean of the program in writing within 10 business days of the occurrence. This communication should be sent by certified mail to the dean at the address on the acceptance letter.

Technical standards

Prior to enrollment, all candidates are required to complete the College's Technical Standards for Admission and Matriculation (PDF).

Should you have any questions, please contact us via email at

“My degree at PCOM helped prepare me to provide trauma-informed behavioral health services in a sensitive, effective manner. PCOM also allowed me to learn how to effectively work as an interdisciplinary healthcare team, which is a vital component for preventing and responding to medical trauma in healthcare settings.”

Nic Schmoyer, PhD (MS '21, current faculty)

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