Warning! Your browser is extremely outdated and not web standards compliant.
Your browsing experience would greatly improve by upgrading to a modern browser.
Visit Apply Contact

Certificate in Clinical Mental Health Counseling

Completely Online! Grand View now offers a 24-credit graduate certificate program in clinical mental health counseling. This program allows students who have completed other graduate programs in counseling-related areas, such as school counseling or marriage and family counseling to complete the Iowa educational requirements for Licensed Mental Health Counselor.

Application Requirements

1. A master’s degree from a CACREP-accredited counseling program (any concentration) (e.g., school counseling)

2. A transcript from the college or university where you earned your graduate degree in a CACREP accredited counseling program.

3. Cumulative graduate GPA of 3.00 or greater (based on all hours attempted)

4. Professional Resume

5. Two letters of recommendation

6. Graduate Statement of Purpose (500 words). This document should address the following:

• Your interest in the program, including the identification of short-term and long-term career goals

• Your skills and experiences that will contribute to the program

• Your Expectations of the program


After completing the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Certificate, you will:

  • Have knowledge, awareness and skills related to counseling work and diverse groups
  • Understand how human growth and developmental stages interact with counseling process
  • Demonstrate knowledge and skills related to building, maintaining and utilizing counseling relationships to address mental health issues and meet client goals
  • Demonstrate the ability to manage, de-escalate and appropriately intervene in crisis setting involving clients experiencing trauma, significant instability and risk of suicide

Course Requirements

CMGR525 Crisis Intervention (3 credits)

This course is an overview of crisis intervention theories and techniques. Major theoretical models of situational crises are examined. Students will develop the conceptual competency necessary for professionals engaged in crisis interventions. Particular emphasis is given to contemporary research in suicide, disaster psychology, and crisis management. Discussion topics include emergencies such as natural disasters, terrorism, school violence, domestic violence, abuse, and crisis interventions with diverse populations. Students will become aware of the differences between crisis counseling and typical counseling. They will differentiate between diagnosis and developmentally appropriate reactions to crisis, trauma, and disasters. Students will understand and develop skills and abilities to work within and enhance crisis teams/emergency management systems in schools, clinical mental health agencies, and local agencies.

Prerequisite: CMGR 500.

CMGR540 Theory and Treatment of Substance Abuse (3 credits)

The course will provide a basic understanding of substance use, addiction and behavioral health, screening and assessment tools, intervention, and evidence-based addiction treatment. Students will review current literature that outlines theories, approaches, strategies, and techniques shown to be effective when working with specific populations of clients with substance use issues. Students will learn treatment models, recovery, relapse prevention, and continuing care for addictive disorders and related problems. The importance of family, social networks, spirituality, diversity, and community systems in the treatment and recovery process

will also be examined. Other discussion topics will include helping strategies for reducing the adverse effects of substance use, abuse, dependence, and addictive disorders. The principles and philosophies of addiction-related self-help programs will also be discussed, and models and approaches to clinical evaluation for addictive disorders and their appropriate uses.

Prerequisite: CMGR 500.


CMGR550 Diagnosis and Treatment Planning (3 credits)

This course provides an overview of the DSM 5 and is designed to acquaint students with the origins and environmental factors that influence the development, prevention, and treatment of mental and emotional disorders. In this era of managed health care and continued emphasis on documentation and justification of mental health care, individuals entering the counseling field must have a solid understanding of diagnosis and treatment planning. The course will address differential diagnosis and associated disorders of the primary diagnoses and understand individual and group approaches to assessment and evaluation.

Prerequisites: CMGR 500, 505, 520, and 537.

CMGR565 Psychopathology (3 credits)

This course provides an overview of the fundamental theories, concepts, and structures that form an understanding of psychopathology across the lifespan. Studies included providing an understanding of the description, classification, and diagnosis of behavior disorders and dysfunction. It will include consideration of the characteristics of disorders and common categorizations of disorders utilized by the U.S. healthcare system. The course will emphasize the role of adaptation and stress mechanisms in the development of disorders. The course materials will review genetic, physiological, cognitive, and environmental influences that impact the development, severity, course, and persistence of varying disorders. Students will consider both the theoretical underpinnings/perspectives and the research methods and how they all contribute to understanding the various aspects of disorders. A review of prevention and intervention methods to minimize and modify the severity of disorders will also be included.

Prerequisites: CMGR 500, 550.

CMGR570 Psychopharmacology (3 credits)

This course provides students with an introduction to psychopharmacology summarizing the basic functions of the organs and systems of the human body and brain. Students will identify, research, and assess the actions, effects, uses and abuses of legal and illegal drug interactions. Students will identify the mechanisms and uses of psychotropic medications. In addition: students will have a foundation for differential diagnoses and standards of treatment and symptom monitoring with focus on drug interactions, co-morbid medical conditions and client empowerment. Describe the complexity of working with individuals with both substance use disorders and mental health conditions. Explain methods to educate clients on medication adherence, efficacy and side effects to maximize treatment outcomes; and describe how to empower clients to take an active part in their own treatment.

Prerequisites: CMGR 545 and 550.

CMGR595 Counseling Practicum (3 credits)

The Counseling Practicum is a graduate-level, clinical, experiential course designed to strengthen students' skills and understanding of the practice of clinical mental health counseling through supervised practices. Students have the opportunity to become familiar with a variety of professional activities and resources, including technological resources. Students complete supervised counseling practicum experiences that total a minimum of one hundred clock hours, including at least forty clock hours of direct service with clients, including individual and group work. Faculty supervision of students includes program-appropriate audio/video recordings or live supervision of students' interactions with clients. Prerequisites: CMGR 500, 505, 515, 520, 537, and 550. 
CMGR598 Internship I (3 credits)

A graduate-level clinical supervised counseling internship of 300 clock hours. Students need to take, at a minimum, two 3-credit internships as a part of their degree program. This experience provides an opportunity to perform, under supervision, counseling activities similar to what is expected of professional counselors are expected to perform. The internship includes: 1. A minimum of 240 clock hours of direct service to clients. 2. A minimum of one hour per week of individual supervision or triadic supervision, usually performed by the on-site supervisor. 3. A minimum of one and one-half hours (1 ½) per week of group supervision, throughout the internship usually performed by a program faculty member supervisor. Group supervision must be provided by a program faculty member or a student supervisor who is under the supervision of a program faculty member. 4. Exposure to collateral professional activities (e.g. record keeping, information and referral and staff meetings). 5. An opportunity for students to develop program-appropriate audio and/or videotapes of client interactions. 6. An opportunity for students to gain supervised experience in the use of professional resources (e.g. assessment instruments, professional literature and research etc.) 7. Formal evaluation of the student's performance by a program faculty member in consultation with the site supervisor.

Prerequisites: CMGR 500, 505, 515, 520, 537, 550, and 595.

CMGR599 Internship II (3 credits)

A graduate-level clinical supervised counseling internship of 300 clock hours, including 240 clock hours of direct service to clients. This experience provides an opportunity to perform, under supervision, counseling activities similar to what is expected of professional counselors, including exposure to collateral professional activities (e.g., record keeping, information, and referral) and use of professional resources (e.g., assessment instruments, professional literature, and research).

Prerequisites: CMGR 500, 505, 515, 520, 537, 550, 595, 598.


Program Cost

The program cost is $508 per credit hour. There is an online course fee of $30 per credit hour.

For more information about enrolling in the certificate program, contact ghermon@grandview.edu or 515-263-6183.


Career Opportunities

Explore these possible career options.

This program will...

  • Deliver a high-quality education that meets the Iowa Board of Behavioral Science Examiners licensing requirements by enhancing knowledge of counseling and counseling concepts.
  • Provide practicum and internship experiences that prepare students to become professional counselors to meet the demands of their clients and apply their knowledge and skills in an unpredictable society.
  • Provide education to train counselors to uphold ethical standards in their practice and community
  • Develop mental health practitioners who will become lifelong learners by providing a curriculum that educates about the research process, proper use of assessment, and the importance of continuous objective re-evaluation.

Did You Know? 

  • Approximately 1 in 5 adults in the U.S. experience mental illness in a given year, according to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIH, 2022).
  • According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (2021), the career outlook for mental health counselors is 22% job growth from 2020 to 2030.
  • With the increasing demand for treatment, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (2016) reports a shortage of more than 26,000 mental health counselors by 2025.
Request More Info Explore More Programs Apply Now View financial aid information


Rasmussen Center

Launch Rasmussen Center