BREAKING NEWS? Professional Counseling Licensing Rule Changes on PA Governor’s Desk

Yesterday, The Governor of Pennsylvania, Tom Corbett, received HB816 after having been passed by both house and senate bodies. HB816 amends the rules for licensing social workers, professional counselors, and marriage and family therapists. These changes may enable a large number of MA counseling graduates, those who received degrees that currently do not meet licensing standards, finally get their licenses. Further, it reduces the amount of postgraduate supervised hours needed before being eligible for licensure.

Read the bill as it stands waiting to be signed by the governor here. Here are the key changes

  1. Reduces postgraduate supervised practice from 3600 to 3000 hours
  2. Eliminates the requirement to have graduated from a minimum 48 hour MA degree if received prior to June 30, 2009. Licensees still have to complete a total of 60 credit hours but having a 36 hour degree is no longer going to eliminate them from eligibility.

The rest of the requirements (passing a national exam, good character, etc.) all remain.These changes are also for social workers and marriage and family therapists.

For alums of Biblical Seminary’s 36 hour MA counseling degree, this should mean that they can now proceed to getting the required missing coursework and the required total of 60 credits rather than going back to get a new degree.

Pray that the governor signs!

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