Certificate in Addiction Counseling

The purpose of the Addiction Counseling Certificate program is to prepare professionals for specialized clinical work with clients suffering from substance use disorders (e.g., alcohol or drug abuse/dependence, sometimes termed addictive behaviors or chemical dependency). The program is intended for individuals who already have some background in a counseling-related field

The 18-credit program is designed to be completed in one academic year and is a precursor to obtaining certification or licensure as an addiction, substance abuse, or drug and alcohol abuse counselor. Courses are offered in the evening, following the 8-week “module” format. Students typically attend classes on two evenings per week. Enrollments permitting, accepted students will be able to begin either in late August/early September or in late January. Those beginning in August/September may graduate the following May; those beginning in January should graduate in December.

The curriculum guides students from the basic science of drug action, through the roles played by drug and alcohol use and abuse in society, to the essential elements of clinical practice: all the way from understanding receptor mechanisms of chemical dependency to deciding what next to say to a troubled client. The clinical emphasis is on empirically supported treatments.

Upon completion of this program, students will have completed all educational requirements for certification or licensure as an Alcohol and Drug Counselor in the State of Connecticut as well as certification by the Connecticut Certification Board (CCB), an affiliate of the IC&RC. Licensure (LADC) is available only to persons holding an appropriate master’s degree; those with lesser academic credentials may, however, pursue certification. Supervised experience in the field and a passing score on the International Certification Examination are also necessary before licensure or certification may be conferred.

Graduates may immediately pursue the CCB credential of Counselor in Training (CIT) and will be eligible for entry-level positions as addiction counselors.

August/September Start

Mod. 1

PY 583 Drugs and Behavior I: Basic Science (3 credits)

PY 584 Ethical & Professional Issues in Addiction Counseling (1.5 credits)

Mod. 2

PY 585 Drugs and Behavior II: Applications (3 credits)

PY 586 Culture, Gender, & Special Populations in Addictions (1.5 credits)

Mod. 3

PY 587 Addiction Counseling I: Core Concepts and Competencies (3 credits)

PY 588 Clinical Assessment of Substance Use Disorders (1.5 credits)

Mod. 4

PY 589 Addiction Counseling II: Advanced Techniques (3 credits)

PY 591 Treatment Planning & Evaluation in Addictions Counseling (1.5 credits)

January Start

Mod. 3

PY 583 Drugs and Behavior I: Basic Science (3 credits)

PY 584 Ethical & Professional Issues in Addiction Counseling (1.5 credits)

Mod. 4

PY 585 Drugs and Behavior II: Applications (3 credits)

PY 586 Culture, Gender, & Special Populations in Addictions (1.5 credits)

Mod. 5

PY 587 Addiction Counseling I: Core Concepts and Competencies (3 credits)

PY 588 Clinical Assessment of Substance Use Disorders (1.5 credits)

Mod. 1

PY 589 Addiction Counseling II: Advanced Techniques (3 credits)

PY 591 Treatment Planning & Evaluation in Addictions Counseling (1.5 credits)

Admissions Standards

Students meeting either of the following standards may be admitted:

  • Students holding an earned master’s degree in a relevant field are eligible. Relevant fields include counseling, social work, family therapy, psychology, human services, expressive arts therapies, public health, and nursing. Graduate-level coursework in counseling theories, counseling techniques, and psychopathology is required, either as part of the master’s degree program or separately. Applicants who hold an appropriate degree, but lack one or more of these courses, may (with the approval of program director and department chair) be permitted to complete that coursework as part of the certificate program. This would increase the total number of credits required for program completion.
  • Students lacking a master’s degree must meet all of the following criteria:
    • An earned bachelor’s degree with a major in psychology, social work, or a closely related field and a cumulative grade-point average (G.P.A.) of 3.30 or higher;
    • Completion of at least 9 graduate-level credits (courses in counseling theories, counseling techniques, and psychopathology) with grades of “B” or above in each course. These could be taken at Albertus Magnus concurrently with some Addiction Counseling certificate courses, but admission to the certificate program would be provisional until they were successfully completed.
    • At least 1,000 hours’ employment (e.g., one year as a half-time employee) as a direct care provider in a facility that serves clients diagnosed with substance use disorders.

Students in the latter stages of relevant master’s degree programs at this school (i.e., the M.S. in Human Services and M.A. in Art Therapy programs) may be admitted provisionally prior to degree completion if their schedules make this feasible.

Admission is competitive, and the entire application will be considered. Meeting the basic standards does not guarantee admission. Conversely, students falling slightly short of the preferred standards may be able to qualify based on other achievements.

Admission Requirements

  • A completed application and a $50 non-refundable application fee
  • Official transcripts from all universities or colleges attended
  • For non-native English speakers, minimum TOEFL score of 550 paper-based, 80 internet-based, or 213 computer-based
  • Proof of immunization in accordance with Connecticut State requirements
  • For applicants who intend to use Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Educational Benefits
    • Military, university and college transcripts
    • Certification of Eligibility letter or, for reservists, Notice of Basic Eligibility
    • Veteran’s Intent to Register form
  • A personal statement describing the candidate’s reasons for pursuing this credential. This statement should be between 250 and 500 words (i.e., 1– 2 pages) in length.
  • A resume or C.V
  • Two letters of recommendation from persons who can judge the applicant’s suitability. Ideally, one of these will be from a current or former professor, the other from a current or former supervisor, but having both come from the same type of source is also acceptable.


Ragaa Mazen

Ragaa Mazen

Adjunct Professor, Director of the Master of Human Services Program
Aquinas Hall, Room 110
(203) 773-8574
Stephen Joy

Stephen Joy

Chair,Department of Psychology
Director, Addiction Counseling Program
Professor of Psychology
Aquinas Hall, Room 230
(203) 773-8555
Siobhan O'Leary Evarts, Ph.D.

Siobhan O'Leary Evarts, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Psychology
Director, Master of Science in Clinical Counseling Program
Associate Director, Master of Science in Human Services Program
Aquinas Hall, Room 116
(203) 672-6675

Affiliate Faculty/Adjunct Lecturers

Rachel Hart, M.S., M.S., L.A.D.C.
Clinical Coordinator, Yale School of Medicine

Robert Lambert, M.A., L.A.D.C.
Program Director, Connecticut Counseling Centers – Norwalk

Verica Milivojevic, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Associate, Department of Psychiatry, Yale School of Medicine

Maury Steigman, M.S., M.S.W., L.A.D.C.
Social Worker, Division of Mental Health and Counseling, Yale University Health Services

Carl Williams, Ph.D., L.A.D.C.
Inpatient Unit Director, Crossroads/Continuum of Care

Gainful Employment

In order to be eligible for funding under the Title IV programs, an educational certificate program must prepare students for "gainful employment in a recognized occupation." Federal requirements mandate that institutions disclose gainful employment information and other statistics in relation to certificate programs.

Non-degree programs, including all certificate programs, are considered Gainful Employment Programs subject to the new regulations. Certificate programs include undergraduate certificate programs, post baccalaureate certificate programs, graduate certificate programs, and post-graduate certificate programs.

Programs Exempt from Gainful Employment

The following educational programs offered are not subject to the new Gainful Employment Program regulations:

  • Programs that lead to a degree, including associate’s degrees, bachelor’s degrees, graduate degrees, and professional degrees
  • Programs that are at least two years in length that are fully transferable to a bachelor’s degree program
  • Preparatory courses of study that provide course work necessary for enrollment in an eligible program

For additional information related to the Gainful Employment Disclosure click here

Prior to signing an enrollment agreement, completing registration, or making any financial commitment to the College, all prospective Certificate in Addiction Counseling students must view the Gainful Employment Disclosure Template and submit an Acknowledgement of Receipt to the Division of Professional and Graduate Studies. For more information, please call (203) 672-6767 or email cwood@albertus.edu.

Gainful Employment Debt-to-Earnings (D/E) Rate

Albertus Magnus College does not currently have a debt-to-earnings (D/E) rate as determined by the Department of Education for this post-graduate certificate program.

Professional Counseling Associations

American Counseling Association (ACA)

The ACA, with about 70,000 members, is the one professional group for counselors of all varieties. It includes 20 divisions (specialty areas), of which the largest are those for mental health counselors and school (guidance) counselors; rehabilitation counselors, career counselors, and addiction counselors (see below) are also well represented. The ACA is an important organization. It operates certification programs (NCC and CCMHC) that are linked with state counselor licensure systems. The web page includes a career center with job listings.

International Association of Addictions and Offender Counseling (IAAOC)

This is the ACA division for those interested in addictions and forensics.

Connecticut Counseling Association

This is the local ACA affiliate.

NAADAC: The Association for Addiction Professionals

NAADAC (formerly the National Association for Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors) is, with some 75,000 members, probably the largest professional organization of addiction counselors. NAADAC offers the usual sort of membership benefits and also operates a certification program. The web page includes a career center with job listings.

Connecticut Association for Addiction Professionals

This is the local affiliate of NAADAC.

International Certification and Reciprocity Consortium (IC&RC)

The IC&RC is the largest organization devoted to credentialing addiction counselors, with some 45,000 individuals having earned certification; its local affiliates are linked with many state licensure programs.

Connecticut Certification Board (CCB)

This is the local affiliate of the IC&RC. It administers a voluntary certification program; of even greater importance is the fact that the IC&RC/AODA exam is also used by the state government to help establish eligibility for licensure. The CCB is situated at 100 South Turnpike Road (suite C), Wallingford, CT 06492; telephone (203) 284-8800.

Department of Public Health, State of Connecticut

This is the government agency that regulates licensure of all health care professions, including addiction counselors. The link will take you directly to the home page for addiction counselors. From there, you can quickly obtain the application materials. Contact information is also available there. Some of the forms and other materials also may be found in the "documents of interest" section of the program web site.

Application materials should be sent to:
Albertus Magnus College
Professional and Graduate Studies
700 Prospect Street
New Haven, CT 06511-1189