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Addiction And Substance Abuse Certification

The Substance Abuse Counselor Job Outlook Is Positive

Understanding Addiction Counselor Certification

Substance abuse counseling is one of the fastest-growing occupations in the United States. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a 23% increase from 2016-2026 due to a rise in people seeking addiction and mental health counseling services, as well as states seeking treatment and counseling services instead of jail time for drug offenders.

Dr. Donald Posson, who teaches several of the courses within National Universitys undergraduate certificate in alcohol and drug abuse counseling program, has been in the addictions and mental health field for over twenty years those job projection numbers dont surprise him. Thats not even taking into account the need thats coming with the opioid crisis, he says. We havent even begun to deal with the counseling aspect of that or identified how were going to deal with it or resource it. Over the next five to ten years its going to require many more therapists than we currently have in the pipeline.

Dr. Posson notes that across the professional spectrum in California, only about 10 percent of therapists currently have experience in substance abuse counseling. Individuals seeking counseling and therapy are finding it difficult to find the trained professionals they need to help them conquer negative habits.

What Will I Learn

Your curriculum for an online bachelor degree in addiction counseling will teach you how to guide patients to maintain their sobriety and lead you to a successful career in substance abuse counseling.

  • An overview of the field of substance abuse counseling and its graduate level academic trajectories .
  • Pharmacology explored through the lens of substance use disorders.
  • Individual, family, and societal factors that are associated with individual substance use.
  • Clinical assessment and diagnostic processes in substance abuse counseling.
  • How to develop advanced cultural competencies that are essential in substance abuse counseling practices.
  • Fundamental skills necessary for individual counseling of clients with a substance use disorder.
  • About the group process, leadership, and practice for substance abuse counseling.
  • How to help individuals with substance abuse with strategies to prevent relapses and promote recovery.

See all courses to learn more.

Upon completion of our addictions counselor program, you may meet academic requirements for licensure in many states. Due to specific state-by-state requirements, students will need to research their individual state chemical dependency licensure boards for state-specific information on levels of licensure, certificates available, and reciprocity across states.

You can learn more about the counselor pathway in our Complete Guide to Becoming a Substance Abuse Counselor.

Why Is Certification Important

Addiction counselors must become certified to practice their profession. Since this specialty is relatively new, there is little in the way of consistency between each state. Some require lengthy periods in which burgeoning counselors must work under close supervision. Other states have little more than an educational requirement.

Some systems allow counselors to enter the field with little more than a one-year certificate rather than a degree. Their duties and pay scale are appropriately curtailed, however. Nonetheless, a person can attain licensure and then decide to return for more education and a higher level of state certification.

Furthermore, when a person has state licensure in one state, they can either find a state that offers full reciprocity or one that will allow temporary licensure. Most states allow a grace period for those with temporary credentials. Counselors must complete their new state’s requirements before the period ends, however, if they wish to remain in the profession.

Finally, state licensure shows that a counselor has satisfied certain requirements and is thus able to practice within the scope of that license. This is very helpful when seeking a job. While experience is always a huge benefit when seeking employment, a license is iron-clad proof of skills and knowledge.

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Certified Chemical Dependency Professional

This credential can sometimes be attained by completing a graduate certificate program. Admissions education requirements for those programs often entail an undergraduate degree in social work, psychology, or mental health counseling. Other states will require licensees with a credential such as Substance Use Disorder Professional with only an associate degree in human services or a related field. For those with an associate degree, their state may require 2,500 supervised hours in the field, but that number may be higher depending on the state. It may be possible to qualify for state licensure if the board recognizes a national certification. For instance, the Master Addiction Counselor credential from the National Association of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors will suffice in Washington State, among other national credentials.

Licensed Alcohol And Drug Counselor Ii Requirements

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A person licensed by the Department to practice alcohol and drug counseling under clinical supervision.

  • Minimum of 270 hours of training that address the full range of education related to substance addiction counseling
  • 300 hours of supervised practical training
  • 6,000 hours of supervised alcohol and drug counseling work experience
  • Submit passing score on required examination
  • Show proof of high school diploma or equivalent
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Payment of required licensing fee

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Getting The Undergraduate Certificate For Alcohol And Drug Abuse Counseling

The majority of coursework in National Universitys undergraduate certificate is online through live-streaming classrooms. During the last class in the program, the practicum, students are assigned to work with clients on-site in the community, and they participate in a seminar where they go over their fieldwork.

Preparation for on-site work begins almost as soon as students begin the certificate program. In our program, we start helping students develop relationships with their local addiction community very early in the program through assignments integrated into the program, says Dr. Posson. By the last class, they have relationships and an idea of where they would like to do their practicum. Then we help them get a signed agreement with that agency for six months of practicum totaling 255 hours, a minimum in all states.

The undergraduate certificate at National University combines training in psychology, physiology, law and ethics, case management, and counseling. Students learn to correctly diagnose dependence issues and develop unique treatment plans based on individual client needs. Developing relationships with other counselors and professionals is an important part of the program students go out in the field to learn first-hand from experts already working in the profession.

Addictions And Substance Abuse Certificate

The Addictions and Substance Abuse Certificate is designed for students interested in pursuing a career working in the addiction and substance abuse field. Completion of the certificate program meets partial requirement for state certification as an addiction professional . According to the Florida Certification Board, the CAP designation is a professional substance abuse credential for people who assess, develop and provide substance abuse treatment services and plans. individuals holding the CAP are recognized/hold the practice rights of “qualified professionals” per Chapter 397, F.S. and is recognized by Florida’s State Medicaid Plan. Therefore, this credential will allow students to practice in substance abuse field. This certificate program is beneficial to persons in sociology, social work, psychology, criminology, pre-med, nursing, and any closely related human service field.


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Is Substance Abuse Counseling Right For Me

Are you concerned about the current substance abuse epidemic and want to help individuals affected by it? Are you a good listener with a strong motivation to help others? Do you possess excellent communication skills and are also calm under pressure/in a crisis? Then substance abuse counseling may be a good career fit for you.

This program is also a great next step if you already have experience in social work, counseling, nursing, or psychiatry.

UC Online’s BS in Substance Abuse Counseling was the only bachelors program I found that focused strictly on substance abuse counseling. Studying online is the perfect fit for me.I find interacting with everyone to be quite easy. Even though we dont see each other in person, I developed a camaraderie with some of my UCO peers, especially those in my last three semester classes. I find it to be much easier than I expected. Once you get into the flow of the courses, it is surprisingly easy to stay on track. Everything I learn at UCO informs my current role. My focus on prioritizing education and certification rewards me every day.

National Clinical Supervision Endorsement

Models and Theories of Addiction | Addiction Counselor Certification Training at AllCEUs

Counseling professionals who wish to codify their supervisory experience and abilities should seek out NCSE credentials. To apply, applicants need to show a minimum formal education at the bachelors level. Official transcripts should reflect a regionally accredited institution of higher learning, and all applicants should be licensed counselors in good standing. Accepted academic work includes degrees in social work, mental health counseling, and psychology. The credential education requirements also include 10,000 total hours, or five years of full-time experience working as a substance use disorder/addiction counselor. That time must include two years or 4,000 hours working in direct clinical supervision. Of those hours, 200 must be under the supervision of a licensed professional. A total of 30 contact hours of education and training in the substance use disorder/addiction field should include a total of 12 hours split evenly between training/education for ethics and HIV/other pathogens. Completed applications should be accompanied by a payment of $235, non-refundable, and should include passing scores on the NCC APs NCPRSS exam.

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What Is A Substance Abuse Counselor

A substance abuse counselor is vital when it comes to recovering from addiction. They support recovery in a variety of ways.

Counselors can work in lots of places, including hospitals, clinics, prisons, and rehabilitation centers. Some also choose to work privately.

Counseling is an essential part of recovery from addiction. There are many different ways to approach it, and all counselors have the same goal: to help you on your path to recovery.

One of the key areas they focus on is changing patterns in the addicts behavior. This is vital for anyone trying to break the cycle of addiction.

They teach patients essential coping strategies and life skills to use when recovering. In this way, they offer their patients practical support and give them someone to talk to.

This is a highly challenging role, as breaking free from addiction is often a stressful and emotional journey. This impacts both the patient and their counselor throughout the process. So anyone working as a substance abuse counselor has to process these emotions healthy and proactively.

Professional Licensure And Certification

All states require either certification or licensure to practice as a substance abuse counselor. Most states have multiple levels of licensure, typically a bachelorâs-level license that requires ongoing supervision and a masterâs-level license that allows independent practice. This program meets the core educational content requirements for licensure in the State of Arizona. This certificate also meets the educational content requirements for most states in the U.S.

In addition, we are a NAADAC Approved Education Provider. Please visit our professional licensure page for the most up-to-date information on requirements for licensure in your state.

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What Does An Addiction Counselor Do

An addiction counselor is a substance abuse professional who works with addicts and alcoholics to help them overcome their substance abuse problems. Substance abuse counselors are responsible for guiding patients through a difficult process that begins with detoxification and then moves through psychologically strenuous steps towards sobriety. Along the way, substance abuse counselors must remain objective, patient, and always focused on providing the very best care. After all, addiction is notoriously difficult to treat, and few find long-term recovery.

Substance abuse counselors utilize a variety of tools to help in this process. Some substance abuse counselors perform individual or group therapy in which they simply speak to their clients, others have a more experiential role and work in modalities as disparate as equine therapy, art therapy, meditation, and music therapy. Substance abuse counselors can also have a more educational function in which they help addicts understand the biology and even sociology behind their behaviors.

Licensed Alcohol And Drug Counselor I Requirements

Interpreter Training

A person licensed by the Department to conduct an independent practice of alcohol and drug counseling, and to provide supervision to other alcohol and drug counselors.

  • Master’s or doctoral degree in behavioral sciences
  • Minimum of 270 hours of training that address the full range of education related to substance addiction counseling
  • 300 hours of supervised practical training
  • 6,000 hours of supervised alcohol and drug counseling work experience
  • Submit passing score on required examination
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Payment of required licensing fee

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Addiction Counselor Career Outlook

The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects substance abuse counselor jobs will grow by 25% through the year 2029 a much faster rate than the average for all occupations.

States are creating networks to improve services for children with serious emotional disturbances and their families. These networks need staffing.

The criminal justice system will create additional demand for licensed professional counselors to treat drug offenders as an alternative to jail time.

Substance abuse professionals who have earned a masters degree, have professional and field experience, and have earned specialized accreditation or certification have the best job prospects in this field.

Outpatient mental health and substance abuse centers, as well as nursing and residential care facilities employed 44% of substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors. Individual and family services, as well as non-education and hospital state and local government facilities make up around 13% of the rest of the prospective jobs.

Addiction And Substance Abuse Adv Cert


Hofstra University is an EO/AA/ADA educator and employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin, or religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, physical or mental disability, marital or veteran status in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs. Hofstra University admits students of any race, color, national, and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to its students.

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Licensed Alcohol And Drug Counselor Assistant Requirements

A person licensed by the Department to provide recovery based services under direct clinical and administrative supervision.

  • Show proof of high school diploma or equivalent
  • 2,000 hours of work experience in the alcohol or drug addiction field
  • Minimum of 50 hours of training that address the full range of education related to substance addiction counseling
  • Submit passing score on required examination
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Payment of required licensing fee

For further details on requirements please refer to Section 168.006 – Eligibility Requirements found in the Licensure of Alcohol and Drug Counselors Regulations which are included in your application packet.

Addictions And Substance Use Disorders

TIP41 Group Therapy for Counseling Training and CEUs for LPC and Addiction Counselors

Truly unsung heroes are the ones who aid and assist in the healing of those struggling with substance abuse. Addiction and substance abuse counselors help not only those with addiction issues, but also those affected by substance abuse in their families, relationships, and communities. If this sounds like a world in which youd like to lend you skills, consider a career in addiction counseling.

Our courses focus on various medical, emergent, and intervention models, as well as self-help groups, recovery processes, relapse factors, and family dynamics. Our Addictions and Substance Use Disorders program also helps students like you advance toward earning a state or national addiction certification.

Make it happen. Start your future in helping others learn to heal today.

Students at any Maricopa Community College may need to complete courses at more than one of our colleges.

Workforce Development: Foundations in Addictions and Substance Use Disorders

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Substance Abuse Professional :

To register as a Substance Abuse Professional under Dept. of Transportation rules, go to If you qualify as a SAP, please notify ADAD at . Effective July 1, 2017, the computer-based testing fee is $125.00 for all certifications.

If you have any questions regarding certification contact ADAD at

Hawaii Department of Health

National Certified Peer Recovery Support Specialist

Many who have recovered from their addictions wish to turn around to help others in a professional capacity. The NCPRSS is the perfect credential to help gain a foothold in the field. To qualify, applicants need only to have a GED or a high school diploma. The experience requirement is also lower than what is required of other certificate holders as applicants need only 200 hours of direct practice in a peer recovery environment. A supervisor must verify that experience and then an additional 60 contact hours in academic training is required. Of that, 48 hours must be in the fields of case management, community/family education, screening/intake, or basic pharmacology, among other topics. The remaining twelve hours should be split between ethics training and HIV/other pathogens education. Note that any college credit can be applied towards education/training for this credential. Applications must include official academic transcripts, two references including one from the profession, passing scores on the NCC APs NCPRSS exam. Completed applications should be accompanied by a payment of $235, non-refundable.

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A Day In The Life Of A Substance Abuse Counselor

A substance abuse bachelors degree prepares graduates for rewarding careers helping those who are struggling with drug and alcohol addictions. Your job might be to work with individuals in a crisis situation at a hospital or a private clinic, or you may choose to meet regularly one-on-one or in a group setting throughout the recovery process.

Armed with a passion to help others and a non-judgemental approach, Substance Abuse Counselors assess and counsel individuals with substance use disorders , provide counseling to family members who are affected by SUDs, provide life skills training including stress management, relapse prevention, and relationship skills and prepare and lead outreach and other community interventions to prevent and remediate SUDs and their effects.

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