MU's Counseling Psychology Program



The MU Counseling Psychology (CP) program has been continuously accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA) since 1953; during this time the program has been consistently ranked as one of the best in the nation because of its exceptional research productivity, exemplary professional leadership, numerous journal editorships, rigorous and innovative pedagogy (including writing major books used around the world), exceptional training and mentoring of graduate students, and our ability to recruit the top doctoral students in the world. Because of our comparative dominance in our specialty, MU along with three other institutions was dubbed in the 1990s as the MOMM Cartel: Missouri, Ohio State, Minnesota and Maryland.

  • Historically the program has been regarded as a top research program in Counseling Psychology through numerous analyses of research productivity as well as graduates. In 1994 MU was ranked #1 in research productivity across five top-tier journals over a 25 year span. In 2003, two articles, using different methods, again ranked MU as #1 in the nation in research productivity from 1993-2002.
  • Reflective of our research productivity, our faculty have: held 14 Editorships in major counseling journals beginning in 1962, received at least 19 national research awards, and received 4 Fulbright Fellowships, and innumerable international invitations as Visiting Scholars and keynote addresses.
  • Our faculty have been extremely active leaders in professional organizations, reflected by12 presidents of national organizations since 1959, and 16 national service awards since 1948. In addition, the faculty have been distinguished by numerous major teaching and mentoring awards including 8 William T. Kemper Fellows, 16 MU campus awards, including awards related to research, diversity, graduate mentoring, the Governor's Excellence in Teaching, and a Curators Professorship.
  • We are able to recruit and train the best doctoral students from around the world. Among the 100+ doctoral applications that we receive each year, we successfully recruit the top 8-9% of candidates who reflect a diverse range of backgrounds. We train highly competent psychologists who are gainfully employed around the world upon their graduation. We are regarded as one of top programs in multicultural counseling training and the top internationally focused program.


The mission of the Counseling Psychology Program is to educate highly skilled, culturally sensitive, professionals who adhere to the scientist-practitioner model and can conduct socially and globally relevant research, as well as teach and practice effectively in diverse domestic and international educational, public, and private settings with individuals of all ages and circumstances.

The Counseling Psychology Program:

A Strategic Advantage to the College and University

In essence, the MU Counseling Psychology Program has a long and highly distinguished history with an exceptional national and international reputation. The Counseling Psychology Program is clearly a well established strategic advantage bringing national and international recognition and acclaim to the College of Education and University of Missouri. In short, we are in an excellent position to build on our foundational strengths to reach higher level goals.


The following four goals build on existing foundational strengths in ways that will enhance our research, training, and service to meet the mission of the MU Counseling Psychology Program. Moreover, all of these goals are designed to generate revenue which will in turn be used to further the mission of the program. These goals also are built on the premise that the foundational strengths will be sustained over time.

·To integrate existing faculty research, teaching, and service activities within comprehensive clusters by forging interdisciplinary collaborations within the Department, and across the College, University, nation, and world, and thereby increase both our effectiveness and competitiveness to obtain necessary resources. The three clusters will focus on the following themes: Multicultural and Cross-National Issues; Children, Families, and Schools; and Career and Personal Development.

·To obtain grants and contracts to enhance our research productivity and training activities. This revenue generation will support the research foci of our students and faculty to conduct research on socially and globally important issues and will support our program¿s ability to provide specialized training on cutting-edge social issues.

·To expand course offerings, specialty areas, and outreach efforts that generate revenue and that educate and prepare students and community members to meet the diverse needs of our increasingly global society.

Strategic Initiatives

The strength of the MU Counseling Psychology Program is in our foundational strengths as well as our vision and ability to adapt to changing societal needs. It is important to note that our initiatives for the new millennium are based on a strong foundation that we have built over the past 50 years (e.g., norms and know-how regarding research productivity, professional service, training and mentoring). The existing strong foundation and faculty are essential to retain and maintain for our initiatives to be effective in reaching our goals. To maintain and enhance our strategic advantage, we have established the following initiatives that support our program goals. These strategic initiatives are designed to sustain and reinforce the overall Program by supporting critical core areas of study (clusters) through the expansion and extension of emerging areas of study that are required to meet societal needs now and in the future.

  1. Expand and extend our multicultural and cross-cultural focus to enhance our research, training, and practice revenue generation to address pressing societal needs in Missouri and around the globe.

A. Training plan:

·Enhance the understanding of the role of culture in affecting human behavior in the next generation of counseling psychologists and teachers.

·Enhance graduates¿ ability to promote and conduct meaningful multicultural and cross-cultural research.

·Enhance graduates¿ ability to promote and conduct effective multicultural and cross-cultural practice and consultation activities.

·Generate revenue by increasing the number of certificate programs, graduate degrees, and credit generation.

·Increase the number of dual degree master¿s program graduates.

·Increase the number of graduate students applying for the Minor in Multicultural Psychology and Education.

·Increase the number of undergraduate students enrolled in the Diversity Awareness course and to expand course offerings of this course.

·Collaborate with the Teacher Development Program to enhance the diversity training for student teachers.

·Examine the utility of developing other joint cross-national degree programs at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

·Develop extended cross-national training programs for doctoral students.

·Infuse international issues across the training curriculum by expanding the: (a) effectiveness of brief cross-national learning opportunities, and (b) enhancing cross-cultural training opportunities at MU.

·Establish multicultural and cross-national predoctoral and postdoctoral training positions.

B. Research plan:

·Assess the effectiveness of our multicultural and international training.

·Enhance our ability to conduct meaningful multicultural and cross-cultural research to create diverse knowledge bases that can address societal needs in the US and across the globe.

·Establish multicultural and cross-cultural research teams, and publish scholarly research in the U.S. and abroad.

·Submit internal, foundational, and government grants in the U.S. and abroad to support multicultural and cross-cultural research and interventions.

C. Leadership plan:

·Increase leadership on multicultural and cross-cultural issues at MU as well as in the state, U.S., and abroad.

·Increase multicultural and cross-cultural involvement in service and professional organizations at MU as well as in the state, U.S., and abroad.

·Increase multicultural and cross-national involvement with international colleagues and professional organizations abroad.

  1. Broaden and enhance our child, adolescent, family, and school focus.

A.Training plan

·Develop new courses with a focus on child, family, and schools such as developmental psychopathology, preventative interventions, prevention science, teacher and family consultation, social-emotional interventions for young children, and risk and resilience

·Develop new practical opportunities for students including adding a practicum component to the Parent Counseling and Consultation class and adding early intervention training to an existing practicum, possibly in collaboration with school psychology practicum courses

·Strengthen preventative interventions in schools through the guidance curriculum and individual student planning components of the Comprehensive Guidance Program

·Strengthen the responsive services component of the Comprehensive Guidance Program

·Strengthen research and training integration with other programs in the College (especially Special Education and School Psychology) by offering more joint courses and encouraging student enrollment in courses across disciplines

·Establish doctoral training focus in Child and Family Counseling and/or establish distinctive child-focused tracks such as Child and Family Counseling, Risk and Resilience, Prevention Science, and School-Based Interventions

·Establish postdoctoral training position(s) with a focus on child, family, and school teaching, research, and practice. The position(s) could be established in collaboration with the Center for Advancement of Mental Health Practices in the Schools as this is a direction they are hoping to take their program (post docs and others delivering school-based services). The position(s) could also be funded with money collected from revenue generation plans below¿specifically, with training grant monies or with savings generated after we submit successful grants that fund a significant portion of faculty salary

B.Research plan

·Submit training grant to US and Missouri Departments of Education to train school counselors and psychologists in empirically-supported interventions

·Seek external funding to support the Missouri Prevention Project and use it as a platform for child, family, and school-based research and training experiences for students and faculty

·Submit internal funding, foundation, and NIMH grants to support development of an intervention for child depression

·Submit internal funding, foundation, and Dept of Education grants to support development of school-based Family Resource Centers devoted to the dissemination of information related to children¿s mental health, facilitation of school-family partnerships, and early identification and interventions for children with mental health problems

C.Leadership plan

·Recruit a faculty member with child, family, or school expertise to fill an open line

·Commit to replace child- and school-focused faculty who resign or retire with new faculty who have similar expertise and interests

·Retain leadership roles in state and national school counseling organizations

·Continue to disseminate the Comprehensive Guidance Model throughout state, nation, and world

·Begin work on establishing a Division 17 Workgroup focused on Children, Families, and schools

·Write position papers for The Counseling Psychologist regarding counseling psychologists¿ involvement with children and families

·Establish a Center for Child and Adolescent Research and Practice

·Forge connections with other Centers in the College and on campus to sharpen our focus and utilize all resources for training students, submitting grants, and building interdisciplinary collaborations

  1. To strengthen and expand the career, health and personal development focus of the program to meet the needs of the changing demographics in society.

A.Training Plan:

·Enhance the understanding of career development and vocational behavior through the strong laboratory experience at the Career Center.

·Continue to hire strong, nationally recognized psychologists who are licensed or licensable to continue to deliver the strong supervision and clinical training in career, health and personal development.

·Generate revenue through the training of career center professionals via a 12-credit hour certificate program (market domestically and to countries like China who are in the process of developing career centers for the first time )

·Enhance settings where career services can be delivered to particular populations such as at the Athletic Department through the new Prentice Gautt Career Center.

·Train counseling psychology masters and doctoral student in the skills of teaching through the highly successful undergraduate course in Career Exploration and concurrent practicum in teaching.

·Enhance the training offered through Assistantships for Master¿s and doctoral students in the Career Center.

·Train future directors of career centers through the on-the-job experiences at the Career Center.

·Enhance master¿s and doctoral students ability to work with cross-cultural issues through the Career Center International Career Services program.

B.Research Plan:

·Partner with colleagues across the College and University to collaborate on training grants for professionals and graduate students

·Assess the efficacy of career planning intervention through a rigorous research program at the Career Center.

·Partner with the Gallup organization and the Career Center to provide Strengths based research.

·Submit internal, foundation or governmental grants to support research and interventions.

C.Leadership Plan:

·Enhance strong leadership at MU, Missouri, and the nation and internationally in Career Planning initiatives and research.

·Enhance editorial partnership with the Journal of Career Development

·Enhance a strong nationally visible presence though continuing to produce major textbooks in the field and provide leadership in professional organizations.