M.A. Counseling
how to apply

credits 60-63 | cost/credit $590 | Format online | next start May 13, 2024

Applicants for Northwestern College's M.A. in School Counseling or Clinical Mental Health Counseling programs must complete the following steps to be eligible for admission.

Summer 2024 cohort

Classes start: May 13, 2024
Application materials deadline: May 8, 2024

All materials must be received by the application deadline. Application materials will be evaluated as they are received. Applicants are encouraged to complete the admission process as early as possible in order to prepare for the first term and finalize financial aid. Your enrollment counselor can help throughout the admission process.  

Application requirements

All applicants must submit:

  • Completed online application with short essay biographical responses included.
    In 200 - 250 words, you will answer the following questions in the application:
    • Please discuss your interest in becoming a Counselor.

    • Why are you applying to Northwestern College’s Counseling program?

    • What role does your faith play in your decision to pursue an M.A. in Counseling degree at this time?

    • Discuss your ability to excel in a fully online graduate degree program.

  • Official transcripts showing a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution with a minimum undergraduate cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale (applicants with a GPA under 3.0 may be eligible for conditional admission on a case by case basis)

    Send official transcripts from your bachelor's degree institution (no undergraduate transcripts are required of NWC alumni) and official transcripts from any institution showing graduate credit to be considered as transfer credit.
    Official transcripts can be as e-transcript to admissions@nwciowa.edu or may mail to:

    Northwestern College
    Office of Admissions
    101 7th Street SW
    Orange City, IA 51041

  • Applicant writing sample 
    In 750 to 1250 words, utilizing Times New Roman 12-point font, please answer the following essay prompt:

    Essay prompt:  How have your personal, academic, and/or professional experiences and achievements influenced and prepared you to be successful as a professional counselor? What counseling theorists or authors provide you inspiration as you move toward a graduate program in counseling?
    Download full question prompt

  • Updated résumé

  • Two (2) letters of recommendation 
    References can be individuals such as professors or employers who can provide a professional recommendation for the applicant entering the counseling profession. One of the references may also speak to the applicant's spiritual formation.
    (Northwestern College graduates do not need to complete this requirement.)

  • Background check through CastleBranch

  • A copy of a teaching license for the M.A. in School Counseling program 
    Applicants are not required to hold a teaching license to be admitted. Providing a teaching license will fulfill course requirement SCO 510.

All application-related materials can be submitted and attached through the online application or emailed to online@nwciowa.edu after completing the online application. 

Following a review of all completed application materials, applicants will be invited to a Zoom interview with faculty members.
No GRE is required. No Application fee.



Preferred application process for Northwestern College graduates

Graduates of Northwestern College receive the benefit of a more streamlined application process and do not need to complete the two (2) letters of recommendation or submit their NWC undergraduate transcripts. All other application requirements are required.