Jul 15, 2024  
2024-2025 Graduate Catalog 
2024-2025 Graduate Catalog

Rehabilitation Counseling and Disability Sciences, M.A.

College of Behavioral and Community Sciences
Department: Child and Family Studies
This major shares a core with Clinical Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling M.A.

The Rehabilitation Counseling and Disability Sciences (RCDS) major trains counselors to work with persons with physical, mental, emotional, and chemical disabilities. Training emphasizes psychological, social, medical, and vocational aspects of disability, and the development and refinement of personal adjustment counseling skills. Graduates with this M.A. are prepared for careers as both rehabilitation counselors and professional disability specialists. 

Rehabilitation counseling is a counseling specialty focused primarily on disability advocacy and vocational rehabilitation counseling for individuals with physical, mental, and/or developmental disabilities. This program prepares professionals to work with the growing population of people with disabilities in the U.S. with an emphasis on contemporary, state of art research and assistive technology in disability science.

With the increasing demands for rehabilitation counselors, this curriculum allows easy access for prospective students who maybe working full-time, residing outside the Tampa Bay area, and/or having limited resources to attend a traditional educational program.
After completion of this program, students are eligible to become credentialed as Certified Rehabilitation Counselors.  With this national certification, students will be licensed and prepared to work for various agencies serving people with disabilities. In addition, students graduating with this degree can obtain leadership positions in human resources and other agencies advocating for disability rights and disability justices. 

Major Research Areas: 
Vocational Rehabilitation; Rehabilitation Counseling; Disability Justice; Disability Advocacy; Diversity; Equity; Professional Counseling

Admission Requirements

Must meet University Graduate Admissions and English Proficiency requirements.  

  • Baccalaureate degree in one of the behavioral, social, health-related, or educational disciplines preferred
  • GRE
  • Personal interview
  • Undergraduate statistics or research course
  • Three Letters of recommendation from academic, professional, and/or volunteer supervisors, preferably at least one letter from an academic faculty member
  • One-page statement of goals/career objectives. This should include why you are applying to this particular program, how you believe the program can help you achieve your goals, and any relevant experience in the field.
  • A Resume/CV outlining academic, professional, and/or volunteer work/experience
  • Complete a background check prior to Field Experience placements (if necessary)


Total Minimum Credit Hours - 60 Credit Hours

  • Shared Core Requirements – 30 Credit Hours
  • Additional Required Courses – 21 Credit Hours
  • Practicum/Internship – 9 Credit Hours
  • Comprehensive Exam: Cumulative Student Portfolio

Additional Required Courses (21 Credit Hours)

Complete the following (or other graduate course approved by the Graduate Director):

Internship/Practicum (9 Credit Hours)

Complete the following:

Comprehensive Exam

This is satisfied with a passing grade on the Final Student Cumulative RCDS Portfolio.