Counseling and Counselor Education, Ph.D.


The mission of the Counseling and Educational Development (CED) Ph.D. program is to educate doctoral students to be scholars and stewards of the counseling profession. In this full-time, cohort-based, three-year program, doctoral students develop the advanced knowledge (theories), skills, cultural perspectives, and critical thinking capabilities necessary for effective work in all roles of a counselor educator (i.e., teacher, clinical supervisor, researcher, advanced practitioner, consultant, and leader/advocate), as well as an emerging specialized area of expertise.

All of CED’s programs are CACREP accredited and are in person on the UNCG main campus. All programs are full-time with courses offered predominantly during the day between 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Program Distinctions

  • The CED department has consistently been recognized as a top graduate education program by the U.S. News & World Report, ranking third in the nation. The program has rated in the Top 10 list for more than two decades.
  • Within North Carolina, CED is the Top Graduate Program for Counselor Education
  • Within CED is the Nicholas Vacc Counseling and Consulting Clinic, an in-house training clinic where all students engage in practica experiences with clients.
  • CED doctoral students receive hands-on experience leading their own classroom and providing clinical supervision to master’s students in clinical practica and internship that prepares them for a career as a counselor educator or other leadership positions.

The Student Experience

The program is intentionally developmental in the sequence of the courses and experiences provided to students. Through intentional progression of coursework and hands-on experience in research, teaching, and clinical supervision, students become increasingly independent in the various roles of a doctoral-level counseling professional. CED doctoral students have multiple opportunities to explore areas of interest and deepen their research focus, graduating ready to make significant and substantial contributions to research in the field. CED doctoral students are also integral members of our department, developing their professional skills in teaching and supervision as they contribute to the training of our master’s students, always with supervision and support from CED faculty.

Each year, approximately 5-8 doctoral students are recommended for admission into the full-time/day-time counseling program by an Admissions Committee made up of program faculty.  

After Graduation

Careers include: Counselor Educator; Administrator or Director of a counseling clinic; Counselor in private practice, college/university counseling center, and outpatient facilities; Director of School Counseling program; Clinical Supervisor; or Clinical Researcher.


The deadline to apply for the doctoral program is November 15. Admission is for the fall semester only. Applications that are not completed by the respective deadlines are not reviewed. Please contact the Graduate School to confirm all required information has been received there.

Application criteria for application for the doctoral program includes: 

  1. Complete online graduate school application.
  2. Three professional letters of recommendation for doctoral students (most of which should be academic references).  
  3. Resume or curriculum vitae detailing work experience, volunteer experience, and research background. 
  4. One written personal statement is required for doctoral applicants. This personal statement should describe your interest in pursuing a doctoral degree in counseling, your aspirations post-graduation, and any other information that would be important for the Admissions Committee to be aware of and that helps to describe you.
  5. Undergraduate and graduate transcripts.
  6. Graduate Record Exam scores from within the past 5 years.

Applicants may either upload official transcripts that have been issued by their institution’s Registrar’s Office onto their online application or order official transcripts that should be mailed to the Graduate School at the following address:  

The Graduate School
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro
241 Mossman Building
1202 Spring Garden Street
Greensboro, NC 27412  

Online Application
We use a completely electronic application process.

All applicants should include the following supplemental documents as attachments to their online application: 

  • Personal Statement 
  • Resume or Curriculum Vitae

Timeline and Interviews
The admissions committee will begin reviewing applications after the application deadline. Selected applicants will be invited for an interview early in the spring semester. Participation in the interview process is mandatory for selected students. Applicants are notified of their admission status usually within two to four weeks after all interviews are completed; typically, students receive notification no later than April 15.

Want more information? Let’s get started!


Program Details

Degree Type: Doctoral

College/School: School of Education

Program Type: Majors & Concentrations

Class Type: In Person

Contact Us

CED Admissions Staff

Kelly Wester
Department Chair and Professor

L. DiAnne Borders
CED Graduate Program Director