How to Become an Addiction Counselor in Utah

Addiction Counseling Education Guide for Utah

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What is Addiction Counseling?


Utah is home to a number of colleges and universities that offer addiction counseling degree programs. These programs prepare students to work with individuals and families affected by substance abuse and addiction. Addiction counseling is a helping profession that offers individuals struggling with addiction the opportunity to receive guidance and support. Often, the best counselors for those struggling with addiction is someone who has been through the process of recovery themselves. However, that is by no means a requirement.

Addiction counselors are professionals who help people with addiction problems. They work with clients to help them overcome their addiction and live a healthy life. Addiction counselors can use many different techniques to help their clients including individual and group counseling, education, and support when they struggle with relapse.


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Online Addiction Counseling Education in Utah


Most addiction counseling programs include coursework in counseling and psychology, as well as classes on addiction and its effects. Students also participate in a practicum or internship experiences, which provides them with hands-on experience working with clients. Graduates of these programs typically find jobs in social service agencies, hospitals, outpatient clinics, and private practices. Some graduates may also find work as addiction counselors in residential treatment facilities or halfway houses.

Most addiction counselors have a bachelor’s degree in psychology or counseling and all states require addiction counselors to have some sort of licensure or certification. In order to become licensed or certified, addiction counselors must complete a certain amount of training and pass an exam. In Utah, the Board in charge of licensure for addiction counselors only require that you have a high school diploma or GED. However, you do have to have completed a substance abuse counseling program with 200 hours of training and 200 hours spent in a substance use disorder-related, supervised practicum.

Addiction counseling is a growing field as more people struggle with addiction problems each year. If you’re interested in helping people overcome their addictions, then becoming an addiction counselor may be the right career for you.

Online Associate Degree in Addiction Counseling (AS)

An online associate degree in addiction counseling provides students with the necessary skills and knowledge to work with individuals struggling with addiction. While you technically don’t need even an associate degree to work as an addiction counselor in Utah, there are few other ways to ensure that you earn pertinent training that will meet the 200 hours training requirement. Additionally, those who could oversee your 200 hours of required supervised training are unlikely to give you a position if you don’t have some sort of education. So, why not earn at least an associate degree?

These online degree programs typically take two years to complete, and they provide students with a foundation in addiction counseling, human services, psychology, and social work. An associate degree in addiction counseling will prepare students for a career working with individuals struggling with addiction. This degree provides students with the necessary skills and knowledge to help addicts overcome their substance abuse issues. These professionals provide individualized counseling, support, and guidance to help their clients recover from addiction and to work with families of addicts and provide education about addiction and its effects on the family unit.

Online Bachelors Degree in Addiction Counseling (BS)

Addiction counseling is a field that is growing in popularity. A bachelor’s degree in addiction counseling can prepare students for a career working with individuals and families affected by substance abuse and addiction. And, because many addiction counselors who are just starting out choose to only earn an associate degree, it will put you in the best possible position to start finding good positions and earning promotions right away after you graduate.

Most online addiction counseling programs at this level will include coursework in psychology, sociology, and human development. Students will learn about different approaches to treatment and prevention, as well as how to communicate effectively with clients. Internships or practicum experiences are often required as well, providing students with the opportunity to gain hands-on experience working with clients.

An online BS degree in addiction counseling can open the door to many different career opportunities. Counselors may work in private practice, hospitals, or rehabilitation centers. They may also work for government agencies or non-profit organizations.

Online Masters Degree in Entrepreneurship (MS)

An online master’s degree in addiction counseling can provide students with the skills and knowledge necessary to become a professional addiction counselor. This type of degree program typically takes two years to complete and often requires the completion of a practicum or internship.

Students enrolled in a master’s degree program in addiction counseling will take courses that cover topics such as psychopathology, human development, assessment and diagnosis, treatment planning, and ethics. In addition, students will also have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience through internships or practicums.

Graduates of a master’s degree program in addiction counseling can find employment in a variety of settings such as outpatient clinics, substance abuse treatment facilities, hospitals, and private practice. With the proper training and education, graduates of this program can make a positive impact on the lives of those struggling with addiction. Additionally, you may also take this opportunity to gain further education in general counseling. By earning a graduate degree in counseling, you can set yourself up to gain further licensure in the area and further knowledge to help the patients you already have.

Online PhD Degree in Addiction Counseling (PhD)

Most addiction counselors have a bachelor’s degree in psychology, sociology, or social work. Some states require addiction counselors to be licensed as social workers. A few states have certification programs for addiction counselors.

Those who want to advance their career beyond the level of addiction counselor may consider earning a PhD in addiction counseling or general counseling. This type of program is designed mostly for those who want to teach at the college level or conduct research on addiction counseling techniques.

A PhD in addiction counseling takes about four years to complete and includes coursework in research methods, statistics, and counseling theories. Students also complete a dissertation or doctoral study.

Online Addiction Counseling Certifications

There are many addiction counseling certifications available to help individuals become addiction counselors or broaden the type of patients that they may see. These certifications can be obtained through colleges, universities, or professional organizations.

Some of the most popular certifications include: Certified Addiction Counselor (CAC), National Certified Counselor (NCC), and Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC). Each of these certifications has different requirements, but all require applicants to have a certain amount of experience working with clients with substance abuse disorders.

CAC certification requires applicants to have a minimum of two years of full-time work experience in the field of addiction counseling. NCC certification requires three years of full-time work experience, while LPC certification requires four years.

However, there are also options to earn certification in other forms of addiction, such as sex addiction or shopping addiction. By earning certifications in these other forms of addiction, you can expand the clientele you can help.

Become an Addiction Counseling Professional in Utah


Addiction counseling is a professional field that helps individuals struggling with addiction to substances like alcohol or drugs. The role of an addiction counselor is to provide support and guidance to those who are trying to overcome their addiction. Addiction counselors typically have a background in psychology or social work, and many states require counselors to be licensed. If you’re interested in becoming an addiction counselor in Utah, here are the steps you need to take.

  • Step 1: Earn a bachelor’s degree in psychology, social work, or a related field

    A bachelor's degree in psychology, social work, or a related field can be a great way to start a career in addiction counseling. These programs provide students with the knowledge and skills you need to help people struggling with addiction. Counselors provide support, guidance, and information about treatment options, as well as individual counseling and group therapy sessions. If you're interested in helping people overcome addiction in Utah, then you’ll at least have to complete substance abuse training and 200 hours of practical, supervised experience. By doing this through a degree program, you ensure that the education you earn is accurate, state-approved, that you are more likely to gain access to practical experience, and that will get you the licensure you’re aiming for.

  • Step 2: Complete an internship or practicum in addiction counseling

    Completing an internship or practicum in addiction counseling can provide students with the opportunity to apply what they have learned in the classroom to a real-world setting, not to mention it’s required for full licensure. This experience can help students to decide if they want to pursue a career in this field, and it can also give them valuable experience that will be helpful when applying for jobs after graduation. Internships and practicums typically last for several weeks or months, and students may be required to complete them as part of their degree program.

  • Step 3: Pass the Utah licensure exam for addiction counselors

    Addiction counselors in the state of Utah must be licensed in order to practice. The licensure process requires successful completion of the Utah Addiction Counselor Examination, as well as meeting other requirements such as education and professional experience. Those who earn their license must also complete 60 hours of continuing education every three years to maintain their license.

What Can I Do with a Bachelor's in Addiction Counseling?


If you have a passion for helping others and want to work in the field of addiction counseling, you may be wondering what you can do with a bachelor’s degree in the field. With a bachelor’s degree in addiction counseling, you can pursue a career as an addiction counselor, substance abuse counselor, or drug and alcohol counselor. As an addiction counselor, you will help individuals struggling with addiction identify and overcome the root causes of their addiction. You will also develop treatment plans and provide support to help them through the recovery process. You will provide support and guidance as they work to overcome their addiction and live a sober life.

As a bachelor’s degree is commonly considered the minimum for most careers, you could also shift into a career where a knowledge of human behavior and psychology could be of use. These include things such as human resources and marketing, as well as many others. If you decide addiction counseling isn’t for you at this point, you won’t be completely without options. You can use your bachelor’s to create your own unique career path.

Potential Career Options and Salaries for Addiction Counseling Graduates


  • School Counselor:

    A school counselor is responsible for providing guidance and support to students in an educational setting. They work with students to identify and address academic, personal, and social issues. Counselors also work with parents and teachers to develop plans to help students succeed.

    Necessary Requirements:

    • Master's degree in counseling or a related field
    • State license or certification

    Estimated Salary

    • The median annual wage for school and career counselors and advisors in the US in 2021 was $60,510
    • The mean annual wage for educational, guidance, and career counselors and advisors in Utah is $53,710
  • Organizational Counselor:

    An organizational counselor is responsible for providing counseling and guidance to employees within an organization. They will work with individuals or groups to help them resolve personal, interpersonal, or work-related problems. The counselor will also work to promote positive communication and relationships within the organization.

    Necessary Requirements:

    • Master's degree in counseling, psychology, or a related field
    • 2+ years of experience working as a counselor or in a related field
    • Strong interpersonal and communication skills

    Estimated Salary

    • The mean annual wage for industrial-organizational psychologists in the US in 2021 was $113,320
    • The mean annual wage for counselors (all other) in Utah is $39,950
  • Sports Psychologist:

    A sports psychologist is a professional who helps athletes improve their performance and well-being by providing psychological services.

    Necessary Requirements:

    • A master's or doctoral degree in psychology
    • Experience working with athletes in a clinical or consultative capacity
    • Knowledge of sport psychology principles and techniques

    Estimated Salary

    • The median annual wage for psychologists in the US in 2021 was $81,040
    • The mean annual wage for clinical and counseling psychologists in Utah is $87,030
  • College Counselor:

    A college counselor provides guidance to students on educational and career opportunities after graduation. They work with students to develop academic plans and set goals for their future. These counselors also assist students in navigating the college admissions process.

    Necessary Requirements:

    • Bachelor's degree in counseling, psychology, or related
    • Experience working with adolescents in an educational setting

    Estimated Salary

    • The median annual wage for school and career counselors and advisors in the US in 2021 was $60,510
    • The mean annual wage for educational, guidance, and career counselors and advisors in Utah is $53,710
  • Group Counselor or Therapist:

    A group counselor or therapist is responsible for providing counseling and therapy services to groups of clients. They will create and implement treatment plans, maintain client confidentiality, and collaborate with other professionals to provide the best care possible.

    Necessary Requirements:

    • Master's degree in counseling or a related field
    • Licensed to practice in the state where the position is located
    • Experience working with groups

    Estimated Salary

    • The median annual wage for marriage and family therapists in the US in 2021 was $49,880 and substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselors earned $48,520
    • The mean annual wage for marriage and family therapists in Utah is $86,490 and substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselors earn $66,190
  • Mental Health Counselor:

    A mental health counselor is responsible for providing counseling and therapy services to patients with mental health disorders. They work with patients to help them cope with their disorders and improve their overall mental health.

    Necessary Requirements:

    • Master’s degree in counseling, psychology, or social work
    • Licensed as a counselor or social worker
    • 2+ years of experience working as a mental health counselor

    Estimated Salary

    • The median annual wage for substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselors in the US in 2021 was $48,520
    • The mean annual wage for substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselors in Utah is $66,190
  • Behavioral Therapist:

    A behavioral therapist is a professional who helps people with mental and emotional disorders. They work with patients to help them understand and manage their emotions and behaviors.

    Necessary Requirements:

    • Bachelor’s degree in psychology, social work, or a related field
    • A master's degree in counseling, clinical psychology, or a related field
    • A license to practice in the state where you will be working
    • Experience working with patients with mental and emotional disorders

    Estimated Salary

    • The median annual wage for substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselors in the US in 2021 was $48,520
    • The mean annual wage for substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselors in Utah is $66,190

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