Certified Clinical Mental Health Counselors (CCMHC) have earned their board certification and offer the highest standards of practice in clinical mental health counseling because they have met stringent education, examination, supervision, experience, and ethical requirements.
You must meet the following requirements in order to obtain certification as a CCMHC. After reviewing the requirements and the CCMHC Certification Eligibility Policy, you can begin your application in our Credentialing Gateway website.
The National Certified Counselor (NCC) is a prerequisite for the CCMHC specialty. If you are not an NCC, please review these requirements.
You must have completed a total of at least 60 semester or 90 quarter hours of graduate-level academic credit in counseling from an institutionally accredited program.
All courses used to fulfill the coursework content areas, with the exception of supervised field experience, must carry at least two semester or three quarter hours of graduate-level credit. No course may be used to fulfill more than one content area. You must have taken a course covering Clinical Diagnosis and Treatment and also must have taken courses covering at least three of the following six content areas:
Learn more about the required coursework content areas.
In addition, you must have completed nine semester or 15 quarter hours of clinical training in supervised field experience. If you do not have nine semester or 15 quarter hours of supervised field experience, you may make use of one of the following alternative options:
You must document at least 100 hours of postgraduate clinical supervision. The individual verifying supervision cannot be related to the applicant and cannot be the same individual providing the professional endorsement.
You must obtain endorsement from a professional colleague who holds a master’s degree or higher in a mental health field. The individual providing endorsement cannot be related to the applicant and cannot be the same individual verifying supervision.
You must document at least 3,000 hours of postgraduate clinical client work experience.
Since you must be an NCC in order to apply for this specialty, you are required to adhere to NBCC’s ethical policies, including the Code of Ethics and the Policy Regarding the Provision of Distance Professional Services.
You must have a passing score on the National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Examination (NCMHCE). You can register for the exam as part of the application for the CCMHC or can document a passing result gained through a state licensure process or other administration.
For purposes of national certification, the NCMHCE is offered twice a year (April and October) in a computer-based exam format at a Pearson VUE testing center. Your exam results will be uploaded to your Credentialing Gateway account within four to five weeks of the examination.
Application Fees for Board Certification
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Once you complete the application process, you will be certified on a five-year cycle and will need to meet ongoing requirements, including continuing education, payment of fees and an ethics attestation in order to maintain your CCMHC.
Once you satisfy all of the requirements, you must maintain your specialty certification through continuing education, payment of annual fees and adhering to ethical standards.
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