Rehabilitation Counseling, AC

Our rehabilitation counseling advanced certificate program is for you if you hold a master’s or doctoral degree in counseling or a related field of study and you want to help veterans or people with disabilities return to work or live independently. You will learn the background education and information needed to effectively work with clients to overcome or manage the personal, social and professional effects of disabilities on achieving their goals. Our program provides you with the educational requirements to be eligible for the Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC) exam under the new Category 3 guidelines (formerly Category D and R). Additional guidelines are set and approved by the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC) requirements.

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Why Rehabilitation Counseling at UB?

Rehabilitation counseling is an exciting, rapidly growing profession, and UB's master’s degree program is one of the oldest and best of its kind in the United States. Students earning this advanced graduate certificate will learn alongside students enrolled in the master’s degree program. Certified Rehabilitation Counselors hold leadership positions around the country and work with the psychological, social, vocational, and educational problems of people disabled by physical, mental, emotional, or social conditions. This program is offered on campus or in a fully online format.

The features of our program include:

  • training in a field that is high in demand due to an increasing elderly population and the continued rehabilitation needs of other groups, such as veterans and people with disabilities
  • training in a field with a projected employment growth of 20 percent through 2022 (U.S. Department of Labor)
  • training in a field that is the highest paid counseling profession, including better overall benefits (American Counseling Association)
  • program courses that are approved by the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification and the Council for Accreditation of Counseling Related Educational Programs (CACREP)

Program Overview

Academic credential granted Advanced Certificate
Credits required for completion 15 to 28
Time to completion 3 to 6 part-time semesters
Full/Part Time
Part Time
Course delivery On campus or online

Rehabilitation counseling settings include:

  • alcohol, drug and other addiction recovery programs
  • medical and psychiatric centers
  • military and veteran programs
  • multi-purposed community centers
  • nursing homes
  • penal and correctional institutions
  • private practice
  • state divisions of vocational rehabilitation
  • vocational counseling centers
  • vocational evaluation programs
  • youth and family service agencies
Application deadline Priority Deadlines
Fall: May 1, then rolling
Summer: May 1, then rolling
Spring: Nov. 1, then rolling

Program Coursework

Every student develops an individualized coursework plan with a faculty advisor to meet specific academic eligibility requirements for the CRC exam within Category 3 as set by the CRCC. (Category 3 eligible academic fields include, but are not limited to: behavioral health/science, disability services, human relations/services, marriage and family therapy, occupational therapy, psychology, psychometrics, rehabilitation, social work, special education and vocational assessment/evaluation.)

You may also complete the certificate program for general study of the rehabilitation counseling field without the goal of CRC exam eligibility.

If you previously completed a course in one or more of the required eligibility areas, you may be eligible to streamline the program and only take the courses you need to fill the gaps, according to the CRCC guidelines.

Sample coursework includes:

  • Professional Orientation
  • Ethics in Rehabilitation Counseling
  • Medical and Psychosocial Aspects of Disability
  • Assessment
  • Research, Methodology and Performance Management
  • Career Development Theories
  • Job Development and Placement Techniques
  • Case Management and Community Partnerships
  • Theories and Techniques of Counseling

See additional requirements in the CRC Certification Guide at

The criteria required for CRC exam eligibility include:

  • completion of the education requirements based on your CRCC eligibility category or general interest
  • acceptable work experience or supervised internship as determined by the CRCC, based on your eligibility category

NOTE: The national designation of the CRC credential does not qualify as a license to provide mental health counseling services in New York, whereas some other states may use the CRC credential as such. If you are interested in mental health counseling and live in New York, please visit our mental health counseling program information.  If you live outside New York State, check with your state licensing board.

Program Handbook

Application Requirements

Submit your completed online application, which includes:

  • Application fee: A $50 non-refundable application fee, submitted electronically through UB's ePayment system.
  • Academic transcripts: Upload scanned copies of all undergraduate and graduate transcripts, including the English translation, if applicable. (A minimum of a master’s degree in a CRCC-approved related field is required.)
  • CRCC Category 3 eligibility: If you are seeking CRC Category 3 eligibility, include evidence of earning an advanced degree in a related field of study (such as, but not limited to: Behavioral Health, Behavioral Science, Disability Studies, Human Relations, Human Services, Marriage and Family Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Psychology, Psychometrics, Rehabilitation, Social Work, Special Education and Vocational Assessment/Evaluation). 
  • A personal statement outlining your personal and/or professional goals for wanting to become a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor, or other reasons for wanting to earn the advanced certificate. Please include information regarding any previous coursework you have taken or taught that may fall under any of the academic eligibility areas if you plan to earn the CRC credential.

Former/Maiden Name: Please provide us with your former/maiden name if you have one. When requesting transcripts, please ask the sending institution to indicate your current name and former/maiden name.

Admissions Decision: The admissions decision will be communicated to you as soon as review is complete. The decision is based on a number of factors and is the result of a thorough and deliberate process. All decisions are final and cannot be appealed.

International Applicant Additional Requirements
  • Official original proof of your degree
  • A copy of your passport biographical page
  • Official test scores for either the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language), the IELTS (International English Language Testing System) or PTE (Pearson Test of English) Academic. Test scores must be dated within two years of submitting your application.
    • TOEFL minimum score is a 250 for a computer based test, 600 for a paper based test and 79 for the Internet based test
    • IELTS minimum score is 6.5 overall
    • PTE minimum score is 55 overall
  • Financial documentation — International graduate applicants must document their ability to pay for all costs incurred while studying in the U.S.
  • An official bank statement

All financial forms and supporting documentation with required signatures must be uploaded with your application, and must be dated within one year of your intended enrollment date.

Are you an international student and unable to take the IELTS, PTE or TOEFL?

If you are currently unable to take the IELTS, PTE or TOEFL tests because they are canceled due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19), the University at Buffalo will accept the Duolingo English Test (DET) for proof of English proficiency. This test can be taken online, in your own home. More information can be found on the Graduate School’s website.

The TOEFL iBT® Special Home Edition is a safe and convenient option for students who are unable to take the TOEFL iBT test at a test center due to public health concerns.

Learn More

University Computing Standards

You are required to have daily access to a reliable broadband connection and a computer that meets university computing standards. You are also expected to have basic computer competency before beginning your coursework.