District of Columbia Counselor License Exam
To get licensed in Washington, D.C., Professional Counselors are required to take an exam covering such subjects as human growth and development, psychopathology, group therapy and professional ethics. The resources below will help you get started on the path to receive your Professional Counselor’s license.
Need of a License: A license is needed to work as a counselor in the District of Columbia. Licenses are granted by the Department of Health, Board of Professional Counseling.
To qualify to become a licensed professional counselor in the District of Columbia, the following must be met:
- Obtain a graduate degree in counseling from an accredited school meeting credit limits.
- Meet supervised clinical experience requirements of 3,500 hours of post-graduate professional counseling, to be completed in not less than two years, but not more than five years. 200 hours of supervision are required, at the rate of at least 1hour of supervision for every 35 hours of practice.
- An applicant must earn a passing score on the NCE (National Counselor Exam)
How to Apply for Licensure
An application for licensure and other documentation can be obtained online. All documents must be submitted on–line, or sent to:
Test Content of the NCE
The NCE consists of 200 multiple-choice questions and is administered over a four-hour period. The NCE covers the following six knowledge, skill and task domains:
- Professional Practice and Ethics
- Intake, Assessment and Diagnosis
- Areas of Clinical Focus
- Treatment Planning
- Counseling Skills and Interventions
- Core Counseling Attributes
The questions are aligned to the following CACREP Common Core Areas:
- Human Growth and Development
- Social and Cultural Diversity
- Counseling and Helping Relationships
- Group Counseling and Group Work
- Career Development
- Assessment and Testing
- Research and Program Evaluation
- Professional Orientation and Ethical Practice
For more information, see the NCE Candidate Handbook.
How to Apply to Take the Exam
Apply online to take the NCE, or write:
The National Board of Certified Counselors
3 Terrace Way
Greensboro, North Carolina 27403-3660
The exam is administered by Pearson VUE.
License Renewal and Continuing Education Requirements
To renew a license, regulations require 40 clock hours of continuing education in acceptable courses and programs offered by approved Continuing Education providers. This includes six hours in ethics, and four hours in trauma counseling.