Getting an Online Degree to Become a High School Guidance Counselor

I don’t know if you remember your high school guidance counselor, I’m guessing there’s a good possibility that you’ve never worked with him or her. Now more than ever we need these gatekeepers of education and employment during student’s high school education. With education cost rising so dramatically, and unemployment looming, students don’t have the luxury anymore of making mistakes without having direct fiscal ramifications. Whether a student is trying to get into an Ivy League university, or is seriously considering a vocational profession, your job will be to be fluent in all the educational options appropriate. It cannot be stressed enough, high school guidance counselors will become an invaluable person helping students not only navigate their years in high school, but even more important, helping them have an action plan for when they graduate. Since high school guidance counselors are first introduced to students as incoming freshmen, they right away get a feel for the student’s strengths and weaknesses and begin the journey of helping guide that student both academically and socially.

 Credentials Needed to Become a High School Guidance Counselor

 Undergraduate (Bachelors)

In order to become a high school guidance counselor you’ll need to have bachelors and a master’s degree so getting your degrees online will allow you study on your own time. No matter what your employment situation, you can still work while studying in the quiet of your own home. Some of the most useful bachelor’s degree for becoming a guidance counselor is psychology, counseling and education. Education majors have the added benefit of taking courses in curriculum development, while psychology majors can study psychological testing and statistical methods.

Graduate (Masters)

If you want to become a high school guidance counselor, most schools want candidates to have a master’s degree. Getting your degree online will give you the flexibility you’ll want while pursing this advanced degree. Not only will it be more convenient from a time standpoint, but also like getting your undergraduate degree online, you’ll be able to work at the same time. The rising price of education make it difficult to go to school full time at a campus based program. You can begin an online master’s degree program in secondary school counseling or in education.

School Counseling Credentials

Licensure Requirements for High School Guidance Councilors

Licensure requirements for high school councilors vary by state. In addition to meeting the minimum education requirements, counseling candidates must usually meet internship requirements and must past one or more state and/or national exams.


A certificate or licenses and endorsements are usually required to complete all of the training which usually includes a master’s degree and your states requirements for certification. Candidates may also select to take a voluntary national certification which includes either the National Certified School Counsel Examination or the National Board for Professional Board for Professional Teaching Standards.


According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics salaries for school guidance counselors can earn around $86,250 and the average of the higher salaries and a very average salary around $60,000. Since counselors are employed by schools, they enjoy all of the holidays, easy working hours, summers off and pensions that the other teachers have.

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