Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC)

What is a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor? The California Business and Professions Code section 4999.20 defines this as:

“Professional clinical counseling” means the application of counseling interventions and psychotherapeutic techniques to identify and remediate cognitive, mental and emotional issues, including personal growth, adjustment to disability, crisis intervention, and psychosocial and environmental problems.

“Counseling interventions and psychotherapeutic techniques” means the application of cognitive, affective, verbal or nonverbal, systemic or holistic counseling strategies that include principles of development, wellness, and maladjustment.

The requirements for licensure as a Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC) are comparable to those of Marriage and Family Therapists (MFTs) and Licensed Clinical Social Workers (LCSWs) in California and to those of Licensed Professional Counselors (LPCs) in 49 states.

Requirements for LPCCs include:

  • Possession of a 60-unit master’s or doctorate degree in counseling or psychotherapy from an accredited or “approved” institution of higher education, that includes 13 required core areas of study
  • Completion of a minimum of 3,000 hours of post-degree supervised clinical experience, performed over two years prior to licensure, and continuing education hours for license renewal
  • Passage of the National Clinical Mental Health Counselor Examination (NCMHCE) and the LPCC California Law & Ethics Examination
  • Adherence to the American Counseling Association’s Code of Ethics and recognized standards of practice, as regulated by California’s Board of Behavioral Sciences

For additional information on becoming a LPCC or the profession, please see the California Association of Licensed Professional Clinical Counselors.

Graduate Schools offering LPCC programs:

  • Azusa Pacific University
  •  California State University San Bernardino
  • Loyola Marymount University
  • University of La Verne
  • University of Redlands
  • University of San Diego