Liberty News

Resident counseling M.A. program receives CACREP accreditation

January 22, 2015 : Liberty University News Service

Liberty University has received accreditation for its resident Clinical Mental Health Counseling (M.A.) program from the Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Educational Programs (CACREP).

The program, part of Liberty’s Center for Counseling & Family Studies, is under the leadership of Dr. Ronald Hawkins, founding dean of the university’s new School of Behavioral Sciences. Prior to the formation of the new school, the program was under the School of Health Sciences.

“CACREP has become the gold standard for university graduate counseling programs,” Hawkins said. “Liberty has been at the forefront of counselor education for decades. This accreditation is a tremendously important step for our graduate counseling program.”

Liberty’s residential program was approved for the maximum eight-year period, which Hawkins said reflects how pleased CACREP’s committee was with the university’s program.

“This puts us right up their with many prominent institutions,” he said. “This means that Liberty University has once again demonstrated that it is functioning at the level of other respected universities.”

Hawkins commends Liberty’s faculty, especially those who led the accreditation preparation process, for their hard work and commitment to excellence. He also shared his appreciation for CACREP as an organization.

“Their team came here and were very gracious and attentive to what they needed to assess,” he said. “They provided excellent feedback. We are more than delighted with the experience we have had with CACREP.”

Liberty has now begun to engage the processes related to seeking CACREP accreditation for its online 60-hour Professional Counseling (M.A.) program and is hoping to submit the self-study required to attain that accreditation over the next year.

CACREP is an independent accreditation agency recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. The vision of CACREP is to provide leadership and to promote excellence in professional preparation through the accreditation of counseling and related educational programs. CACREP is committed to the development of standards and procedures that reflect the needs of a dynamic, diverse, and complex society.