Licensure and college/university accreditation are a critical element of our professional identity. Licensure in the State of Maryland is regulated by the Maryland Department of Health and Hygiene under Title 17, Health Occupation Article, Annotated Code of Maryland.
College or university accreditation is the process whereby an academic program, and in some professions a department or entire institution of higher education, is evaluated on an established set of standards. These standards have been developed by an accreditation body to determine that the academic experience provided to students is of uniform and sound quality. An award of accreditation is meant to ensure that a program/institution has met, and currently maintains, adherence to a set standard of quality. Examples of accreditation bodies for the counseling profession include the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) or its corporate affiliate, the Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE) and the Masters in Psychology and Counseling Accreditation Council (MPCAC). These bodies are different from certification entities, such as National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) and the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC), and are not tied to a specific institution. Rather, a certification attests that an individual has met national standards for expertise in a specific area.
For general information about licensure, accreditation, and certification requirements for the counseling profession, please visit the American Counseling Association’s Licensure & Certification webpage.
As mental health professionals, we have varying ideas about what is best for education, accreditation, and licensure. All of these issues strongly influence the counseling profession and the services we provide to clients. MCA feels it is important to provide members with information regarding these issues and current events which are taking place which directly impact our profession. The purpose of this page is not to take a stand; but rather to provide members with information from several sources regarding licensure, accreditation, and certification.
We hope you find all of this information helpful and informative in knowing more about accreditation and licensure and how these issues impact the work we do.