program brochure - Kent State University

Kent State University
Rehabilitation Counselor
Education Program
Dr. Phillip Rumrill, Coordinator
Rehabilitation Counselor Education Program
Department of Educational Foundations and Special Services
405 White Hall
Kent State University
Kent, Ohio 44242
Telephone: (330) 672-0600
Fax: (330) 672-2512
The mission of the graduate program in Rehabilitation Counseling at Kent State
University is to prepare future rehabilitation counseling professionals to provide services
to people with disabilities. This is accomplished through community-based experiences
within an interdisciplinary context. Students learn strategies through academic
coursework and field experience for empowering people with physical, sensory, and
mental disabilities to enjoy rewarding, productive lives. Students work collaboratively
with professional agencies to help people with disabilities achieve maximum
independence and high quality of life.
The objectives of the Rehabilitation Counseling program are to provide students with the
knowledge, competencies and opportunities to:
1. Understand the experiences, values, and perspectives of people with disabilities
and their families;
2. Enable people with disabilities and their significant others to become active
participants in the rehabilitation process;
3. Encourage people with disabilities to participate as active citizens of their
4. Identify and address the attitudinal, environmental, economic, political, and
systemic barriers that may impede people with disabilities from achieving their
life goals;
5. Develop and demonstrate counseling techniques and career development
strategies to assist people with disabilities in establishing the skills they need to
participate actively in all aspects of society;
6. Join the rehabilitation counseling profession and adhere to the highest ethical
standards, always in the best interests of people with disabilities.
Rehabilitation Counseling is a counseling specialty offered at Kent State University.
This description has been written to clarify the role and function of the rehabilitation
counselor and the preparation offered at Kent State University. The unique competencies
that you would acquire in this program are not interchangeable with community
counseling, social work, school counseling, or other counseling specialties.
Rehabilitation counseling is a process – a process that builds upon the strengths and goals
of persons with disabilities. Typically, clients of rehabilitation counselors are late
adolescents and adults who have physical, emotional, or intellectual disabilities. The
goal of rehabilitation counseling is integration and inclusion of persons with disabilities
in society. The mission of the Rehabilitation Counselor Education Program at Kent State
University is to prepare competent professionals who will provide quality service to
persons with disabilities.
Rehabilitation counselors work in a variety of settings. Employers of rehabilitation
counselors include hospitals, public agencies (e.g., vocational rehabilitation, mental
health, developmental disabilities), Bureau of Worker’s Compensation, drug and alcohol
treatment centers, correctional facilities, community-based programs, comprehensive
rehabilitation facilities, private industry, and proprietary rehabilitation.
The process of rehabilitation is defined by values which permeate each phase of the
rehabilitation process: individualization, integration, independence, and industry. Each
individual with a disability has a unique constellation of strengths, abilities, weaknesses,
interests, hopes, goals, and fears. An individualized process is employed to define and
implement a program of services and counseling to enable and empower persons who
have disabilities.
The curriculum at Kent State University is imbued with the belief that early and continual
service and development of professional skills predict success as a rehabilitation
counselor. Course content is tied to observable skills and thoughtful practice.
Throughout the four semesters of full-time academic coursework, students gain
supervised experience as rehabilitation counselors. This includes an internship
experience which can be completed in a variety of settings including rehabilitation
agencies, community mental health centers, Bureau of Worker’s Compensation, county
boards of MR/DD, schools, hospitals, drug and alcohol treatment centers, and community
This process of professionalization for the rehabilitation counseling student occurs
throughout the learning experience. With completion of 75% of coursework the student
is eligible to sit for the written examination by the Commission on Rehabilitation
Counselor Certification. This nationally standardized examination is scheduled for those
desiring to become Certified Rehabilitation Counselors (C.R.C.) The C.R.C. is a
credential recognized internationally as evidence of competence and professionalism ni
the field of rehabilitation counseling. In addition, sub-specialization in deafness,
transition, and job development and placement are available.
The student must meet the admission standards of the Graduate School of Education.
Applicants for the Rehabilitation Counseling Program are interviewed throughout the
year and may be admitted to start studies in the Spring, Fall, or Summer.
Catalogues, application materials, and information regarding admission are available at
the Graduate School of Education Office, 308 White Hall, Kent State University, Kent,
Ohio 44242-0001. Telephone (330) 672-2576.
No prerequisite major is required for the Rehabilitation Counseling program. Academic
performance is regarded as an important factor in selection. To be admitted, applicants
must have at least a 2.75 undergraduate grade-point average. Acceptable qualifications
may be determined by consultation with the Coordinator of the Rehabilitation Counselor
Education program.
Following receipt of the Graduate School of Education application, the Program
Coordinator will arrange an interview with the student applicant. The ability of the
student to utilize the program’s learning sequence and his/her potential for success in the
field of rehabilitation counseling are assessed during the interview. If the student is
accepted into the program, notification is sent to the applicant immediately. As courses
are arranged sequentially, it is advantageous for full-time students to start the program in
the fall semester. Students may attend part-time and extend the program over a longer
period of time. Course sequence for part-time student and students who are unable to
begin work in the fall semester is planned with close faculty advisement. Most classes
are offered n the evening to accommodate part-time students in the program.
A Student Handbook containing information about the program and directions for
different phases of study is distributed to new students. Students are strongly encouraged
to join the National Rehabilitation Counseling Association (NRCA) and/or the American
Rehabilitation Counseling Association (ARCA) as part of their professional
Each student is assigned a faculty advisor. Individual meetings with advisors are held as
needed throughout the year.
Robert W. Flexer earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Rehabilitation from
Pennsylvania State University and received a doctoral degree in Rehabilitation Research
from the University of Connecticut. His work experience includes rehabilitation
counseling in mental health, teaching special education, and directing research projects in
a Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Habilitation of persons with mental
retardation and/or developmental disabilities. Dr. Flexer teaches and works in the area of
developmental disabilities and specializes in integrated service delivery of vocational,
educational, and other social services.
Connie McReynolds earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Oklahoma City
University and Emporia State University, respectively. She received her Ph.D. in
Rehabilitation Psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. A former
Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor for the state of Kansas, Dr. McReynolds’ research
interests include HIV/AIDS, psychiatric disabilities, substance abuse, and career
Phillip Rumrill earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in psychology and counseling
from Keene (New Hampshire) State College and received his Ph.D. in Rehabilitation
from the University of Arkansas. His professional experience includes substance abuse
counseling, advising college students with disabilities, and teaching in the Rehabilitation
Counseling Program at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Dr. Rumrill’s research
interests include implementation of the Americans with Disabilities Act, chronic illness,
and the career development implications of disability.
Courtney Vierstra received her Ph.D. in Special Education with an emphasis in
Rehabilitation Counseling from Kent State University. Her professional background
includes direct service and managerial experience in working with people with
developmental disabilities and traumatic injuries, job development and placement, case
management, and vocational evaluation. Dr. Vierstra’s research interests include issues
facing students with disabilities in higher education, emerging disabilities and
rehabilitation implications, psychosocial and vocational implications of multiple
chemical sensitivity, issues facing people with chronic illnesses, and disability legislation
and policy.
RHAB 6/77712 Introduction to Rehabilitation (3 hours): (Fall/Spring)
Introductory course surveys philosophy, history and legislation in rehabilitation, which is
defined as a process, social movement and public mandate. Particular emphasis is given
to the role and function of the rehabilitation counselor in the private and public sectors.
RHAB 6/77725 Psycho-Social Impact of Disability (3 hours): (Fall)
Introduction to major concepts in rehabilitation regarding the impact of disability of the
individual, the family and the community. Normalization, stigma and adjustment to loss
RHAB 6/77729 Measurement and Appraisal in Rehabilitation (3 hours): (Fall/Summer)
Review of measurement theory and principles as applied in rehabilitation. Demonstration
of instruments used in vocational assessment.
EDUC 65510 Statistics I for Educational Services (3 hours): (All Semesters)
Introduction to descriptive and inferential statistics used in educational services research:
univariate and bivariate techniques (correlation and simple regression); hypothesis
testing; non-parametric techniques. Enhanced use of the GB-STAT package.
RHAB 6/77723 Medical Information for Rehabilitation Counselors(3 hours): (Spring)
Study of the physical impact of disease or injury on individuals; available medical and
restorative resources; skills in interpreting medical reports and rehabilitation planning.
RHAB 6/77731 Individual Counseling Procedures for Rehabilitation Counselors (3
hours): (All Semesters)
Development of belief system as a counselor, skills in communication, interviewing,
problem identification, goal-setting and program development are fostered by lecture,
video feedback and simulation.
RHAB 6/77732 Occupational Aspects of Disability (3 hours): (Fall/Spring)
An introduction to a wide range of occupational and vocational analysis through job
analysis, job seeking, job placement, job restructuring, work adjustment and independent
living approaches.
CHDS 6/78182 Career Development and Guidance (3 hours): (Fall/Spring)
The world of work, theories of career choice, techniques in career guidance. An
introductory course in the careers area for practitioners in education, helping services,
human resources and personnel.
RHAB 6/77743 Psychiatric Rehabilitation (3 hours): (Spring)
Review of psychiatric, alcohol and other drug-related disabilities and their treatment.
Topics include psychosocial rehabilitation, case management and psychotropic
RHAB 6/77744 Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation (3 hours): (Fall)
Review of substance abuse treatments, trends, modalities and community agencies;
vocational implications of substance abuse; vocational assessment issues and job
placement options.
RHAB 6/77736 Individual Counseling Practicum in Rehabilitation Counseling ( 4 hours
total – 2 hours/semester): (All Semesters)
Supervised, controlled exposure to rehabilitation clients; examine alternative modes of
intervention; group and individual feedback sessions using audio and videotape
RHAB 6/7776 Seminar on Research in Disabilities (3 hours): (Spring/Summer)
Survey of the research literature in disabilities. Guidelines for evaluating and
implementing research findings. Acquaints students with current research. Evaluation of
design, statistical analysis and conclusions.
RHAB 77792 Internship in Rehabilitation Counseling (6 hours): (All Semesters)
Assignments to rehabilitation agency for extensive and intensive applications for
rehabilitation counseling, consulting and coordinating. Supervision of internships shared
jointly by rehabilitation agency and the university instructor.
RHAB 6/77728 Adjustment and Training Groups in Rehabilitation (3 hours): (Fall)
Groups are studied as intervention for adjustment to disability and skill training through
readings, lectures, and experiential approaches.
The remainder of the curriculum is composed of Universal Professional Requirements
prescribed by the College of Education and Electives (a total of 4 hours), which must be
pre-approved by the student’s faculty advisor. The following page presents the M.Ed.
program prospectus, which lists all required courses.
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