Earn Your Post-MS Addiction Counselor Certificate and Begin Impacting the Lives of Others
In 2020, 91,799 people in the U.S. died from drug-involved overdose, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), with nearly 75% of these deaths involving an opioid.2
If you feel called to work toward saving lives and strengthening communities, consider earning your addiction counseling certificate at Grand Canyon University (GCU). The Post-Master of Science in Counseling: Addiction Counseling Certificate program is designed for working professionals who hold a master’s or doctoral degree in counseling, behavioral health, social work, nursing or a related field.
Offered by the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, this addiction counseling certificate examines the assessment, treatment and aftercare of substance abuse and addictive disorders. It explores co-occurring disorders and best practices in working with chemically dependent adolescents. There is a focus on Christian principles and biblical truths. Aspiring counselors at GCU are encouraged to explore addictions in light of the Christian worldview, and to look for appropriate ways of integrating faith into their practice.
What You Will Study in GCU’s Alcohol and Drug Counseling Certificate Program
In this addiction counselor certificate program, you will explore opportunities to specialize in counseling, best practices in academic research, writing and the use of community resources. In courses such as Family Issues and Addictive Disorders, Co-Occurring Disorders and Counseling Chemically Dependent Adolescents, you will study the following topic areas:
- Critical issues and special treatment needs in families with addictive disorders, including a look at intergenerational patterns and solution-focused techniques
- Signs, symptoms and patterns of adolescent substance abuse, screening methods and assessment tools
- Identifying, evaluating and treating co-occurring disorders, including bipolar, depressive, trauma, personality and anxiety disorders
- Stages, processes and effects of substance abuse disorders, and the professional’s role in prevention, intervention and aftercare, with a focus on recovery and relapse prevention
Careers for Certificate in Addiction Counseling Program Graduates
Substance use and addictive disorders are complex problems that require the attention of specially trained counselors. By earning your certificate in addiction counseling, you will be prepared to help lead individuals out of the depths of addiction, as well as to work with groups and families affected by addiction. A Post-Master of Science in Counseling: Addiction Counseling Certificate may prepare you to pursue positions in any of the following settings:
- Inpatient and outpatient treatment programs
- Hospitals and private practice clinics
- Social service agencies
- Community-based organizations
- Schools and universities
Substance abuse counselors are typically responsible for evaluating clients, identifying underlying issues, creating goals and treatment plans, leading group therapy sessions and working with clients in one-on-one sessions. They may also teach clients coping techniques, help them find jobs to get their lives back on track and provide updates to court-mandated programs.
Addiction Counseling Certificate Program FAQs
If you are interested in pursuing a certificate in addiction counseling, review our answers to these commonly asked questions.
1 COVID-19 has adversely affected the global economy and data from 2020 may be atypical compared to prior years. The pandemic may impact the predicted future workforce outcomes indicated by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics as well. Accordingly, data shown is based on September 2021, which can be found here: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Substance Abuse, Behavioral Disorder, and Mental Health Counselors, retrieved on Feb. 1, 2022.
2 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Drug Overdose Deaths Remain High, in January 2023
* Please note that this list may contain programs and courses not presently offered, as availability may vary depending on class size, enrollment and other contributing factors. If you are interested in a program or course listed herein please first contact your University Counselor for the most current information regarding availability.
* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Programs or courses subject to change.