Here you will find answers to frequently asked questions about the Mental Health Counseling and Behavioral Medicine program at Boston University.

What is the Mental Health Counseling and Behavioral Medicine program?

The Master of Arts in Mental Health Counseling and Behavioral Medicine is a rigorous program designed to meet the requirements for an independent mental health counseling license in Massachusetts and other states. Our goal is to train students in mental health counseling with a complementary background in behavioral medicine and neuroscience

Are there a lot of programs like yours?

Although there are certainly many masters-level mental health counseling programs, we are the only program in the country located on a medical school campus with training in behavioral medicine and neuroscience to augment that in general mental health theory and treatment. We are also one of only two institutions in the state of Massachusetts to have CACREP accreditation.

Does the program have any student-run organizations?

The Mental Health and Behavioral Medicine program has a Student Representative Committeethat is integral to the program. The committee organizes social events, serves as a liaison to the faculty, and puts togeather our yearly newsletter.

When does the program admit students?

We have a rolling admissions process and begin interviews for the program in January. There are no absolute deadlines, although it is best to apply early as we close enrollment once we reach the identified cap for new students.

What standardized testing is required before applying?

The General GRE test is required.  International students are also required to take the TOEFL.

What other things do I need to complete the application process?

To complete the application process you will need three letters of recommendation, official academic transcripts from all previous schools, and a personal statement that describes your qualifications and objectives for our program.   Final candidates are also required to to attend an in-person interview.

What are the requirements of the program?

Students are required to complete a minimum of 60 credit hours of course work a semester, a year-long clinical practicum, and an academic year-long internship.  A complete list of required and elective courses can be found here.

Can MHCBM graduates move into a doctoral program?

Though we do not offer doctoral-level training through our program, many of our alumni have chosen to apply and continue on for a doctorate.  We work closely with students to explore their career goals and determine whether a more advanced degree is necessary for them to be able to achieve these goals.  A terminal master’s degree is almost always enough to work independently as a mental health practitioner, whereas a doctorate is necessary for an academic career.

How much guidance and support could I expect from program faculty?

Our faculty work quite closely with students.  Each student is assigned an academic advisor with whom they discuss academic options career paths and other professional development needs.  We have an open door policy and strongly encourage students to get to know all of our faculty in order to best support and mentor them.


What is the typical background of your students?

Approximately 3/4 of our students come to us immediately after completing their undergraduate degrees.  Many come to us after 2-3 years of working after receiving their undergraduate degrees.  We also have students who come to us after working in a different field, sometimes for many years, and who are looking for a career change.  Most of our students majored in a mental health related field or the hard sciences in their undergraduate institutions, although that is not a requirement for our program. Our students come to us from all across the United States, as well as internationally. 

What kinds of jobs do your graduates get after graduation?

We’re quite proud of the breadth and nature of positions that our graduates are able to obtain.  They vary considerably by age (young children to geriatric populations), setting (schools, impatient facilities, hospital, general outpatient), severity of dysfunction (serious and persistent mental illness, medically ill, relationship issues), and presenting problem.  Many of our alumni have private practices and several have supervised current students while they are on clinical training placements and/or hired them after they graduate.

How can I contact a representative from MHCBM?

Visit the Contact page for more information.