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Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling Specialization

The clinical rehabilitation counseling specialization will prepare you to work in state organizations, hospitals, rehabilitation agencies, and private practices, as well as in insurance rehabilitation, for advocacy groups, or as a consultant.

Drake University's clinical rehabilitation counseling program is accredited by CACREP, so you will be eligible to take the Certified Rehabilitation Counselor exam—which leads to certification in every state—during your last semester of coursework.

The 60-credit hour rehabilitation program emphasizes field-based experiences, with six courses devoted to hands-on learning. The program can be completed in two and a half years.

Community Ties

The rehabilitation program has strong ties to the community. Professionals from the community are often invited to teach classes or be guest speakers.

Drake is also committed to advancing the field. The National Rehabilitation Institute was established at Drake in 1976. The Institute conducts research, manages federal research and training grants, and provides pre-service and in-service training in the areas of rehabilitation counseling, placement, and leadership.  Drake is also a member of National Council on Rehabilitation Education.  Faculty are members of the Iowa Rehabilitation Association, National Rehabilitation Association, the American Counseling Association, and Nation Council on Rehabilitation Education.

Job Outlook

The American Counseling Association (ACA) recently conducted a comprehensive survey looking at counselor compensation and benefits across the profession.  Survey results indicated that, Rehabilitation Counselors were named the highest paid specialty in the counseling profession and additionally earned better overall benefits. 

According to the ACA study:

  • Rehabilitation Counselors are the most highly paid counseling specialty on average
  • Rehabilitation Counselors earn over $13,000 more than Clinical Mental Health Counselors, Mental Health Counselors, or Community Counselors on average
  • Rehabilitation Counselors receive better overall benefits - employee retirement plan, medical coverage, dental, vision, short-term and long-term disability - than other professional counselors

Mission and Objectives

The Mission of the Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling Specialization

The mission of the Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling specialization is to support activities that improve the lives of people with disabilities. To this end we will offer degree programs, provide university and community services, and conduct research on issues related to rehabilitation. Close collaboration will occur between the program, students, local rehabilitation provider, and consumers to ensure a well-rounded and practical learning experience. Students will graduate from the Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling program having met all of the competencies established by Drake University, the Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE), and the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC).

The Objectives of the Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling Specialization

  1. The Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling specialization shall prepare students to enter the rehabilitation profession as clinical rehabilitation counseling professionals as defined by CORE and expose them to professional issues relevant to participation in professional associations and work settings. 
  2. The Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling specialization shall actively involve people from the community on its boards, as guest lecturers, and instructors. These shall include people with disabilities; people from diverse backgrounds; people working in public rehabilitation, not for-profit rehabilitation, for-profit rehabilitation; and employers.
  3. The Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling specialization shall periodically conduct follow-up with graduates and area needs assessments. It will incorporate those results into its curriculum planning to ensure it meets the needs of local consumers and employers.
  4. Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling faculty will work closely with rehabilitation agencies through in-service training, consulting, and research.

Outcome Measures for the Rehabilitation Counseling Specialization.


 To receive more information about the program, contact  

Program Contact

Dr. Matt Bruinekool
Assistant Professor

Learn more

Click here for rehabilitation counseling coursework information. For more information on certification, visit the website for the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification.

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