Addictions Counseling

The Addictions Counseling certificate program is housed within the Clinical Mental Health Program. Individuals can pursue the certificate on its own, in conjunction with a Master's Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, School Counseling, or Marriage and Family Therapy, or other clinical based masters degree. Furthermore, it provides an opportunity fo professionals working in the addiction field to advance their knowledge. This certificate prepares students to work with individuals and families struggling with substance use disorders or in recovery. The certificate program, upon completion, prepares students to pursue appropriate supervision toward North Carolina Substance Abuse Professional Practice Board (NCSAPPB) credentials.


To provide specialized education in addictions counseling for bachelor level helping professionals working with substance abuse clients and master's degree-seeking students currently enrolled in degree programs in counseling or related fields at Appalachian.


The program provides students the knowledge and skills to become counselors who are leaders in the addiction field.


Applicants must have a Bachelor's degree from an accredited institution and complete the ASU Graduate School Application form.

Students currently pursuing a Masters degree need to submit a graduate certificate program of study here: Change of Graduate Program Form

Get more information on the application process for the Addictions Certificate (PDF, 72 KB).

Graduate Bulletin, Graduate Certificate in Addictions Counseling


The Addictions Counseling Certificate is a 12-hour program of study. Courses are offered during regular fall and spring semesters, as well as a summer institute. Students must take four of the following Addictions Counseling courses. Courses do not have to be taken in any specific order. Students within a Master's program may be able to complete the Certificate within the normal length of their program; however, there is no guarantee that they will be able to obtain all the classes required prior to their graduation date. It may be necessary for some students to complete their certificate after they have graduated.


The following courses do not need to be taken in any specific order. Prerequisites for classes need to be waived by the administrator of the addictions concentration. Courses with the **** are mandatory. Students in the CMHC degree program must have a CCS or CIS as a supervisor for the internship course.

****HPC 5560 The Addictive Process (offered fall and spring semester)
****HPC 5570 Counseling the Addicted Person (offered every fall semester - limited enrollment)
****HPC 6570 Appalachian Addictions Institute (offered every summer session and can be taken twice for credit) link

HPC 5274 Substance Abuse in Family Systems (offered every spring semester)
HPC 5710 Helping the Troubled Employee (offered on demand)
HPC 6770 Current Issues in Addictions (offered on demand)


Our substance abuse counseling curriculum has been approved by NCSAPPB for board eligible candidates. The North Carolina Substance Abuse Professional Practice Board (NCSAPPB) licensure/certification process for addiction counselors in North Carolina is a separate process from this certificate program. If an applicant wants to be a Licensed Clinical Addictions Specialist (LCAS) or Certified Substance Abuse Counselor (CSAC) in North Carolina, the applicant would need to contact the board directly for information on this process. After completing the certificate, students will still need to complete necessary contact and supervision hours if they wish to seek licensure or credentials.

Students enrolled in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and completing the Addiction Counseling Certificate at Appalachian State University must have a CCS (Certified Clinical Supervisor or CIS (Certified Clinical Intern Supervisor) as a supervisor during their internship semesters and are counseling people with a Substance Use Disorder will qualify for the Criteria C status. Upon graduating and completion of the Addiction Counseling Certificate register with the NCSAPPB under LCAS-A through Criteria C and 2,000 hours will be considered for approval which will go towards the necessary 4,000 hours needed to move from LCAS-A to LCAS. This means, LCS-A you will still need to obtain 2,000 hours post-master's degree of CCS supervised substance abuse work experience to obtain your LCAS

All other students in a Master Degree program (with a clinical focus) who are not enrolled in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree program would apply for their LCAS-A under "Criteria A". For example students graduating from a Master Degree program from Appalachian State University, Marriage and Family Therapy degree program or Professional School Counseling degree program who complete the Addiction Counseling Certificate will register with the NCSAPPB under LCAS –A through Criteria A and will need to complete 4,000 hours of post-master's degree supervised substance abuse experience under a CCS or a CIS.

Bachelor's degrees students who have a Baccalaureate degree and working in a mental health related field with people who have addiction issues may apply for the Addiction Counseling Certificate only at Appalachian State University. Once students complete the Addiction Counseling Certificate they can contact the NCSAPPB to determine eligibility to become a CSAC.

Contact the NCSAPPB for more information on the credentialing process (

The Al Greene Appalachian Addictions Institute

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT: The 2020 Al Greene Appalachian Addictions Institute will be CANCELLED this year due to COVID-19.
Details and schedule for 2021 Al Greene Appalachian Addictions Institute coming soon. 

This annual summer institute is designed to provide graduate students and working professionals with an opportunity for in-depth exploration of cutting-edge clinical issues and topics within the addictions field. We hope to see you there next year!

This summer Addictions institute can be taken up to two times for credit toward the certificate. This summer institute gives students the opportunity to learn from various addictions professionals, as well as to network with members of the field. This is an intensive, week-long institute which may be attended in full for credit toward the Addictions Certificate, or in part for CEUs. 

Coordinator: Dr. Mark Schwarze
Reich College of Education
151 College St,
Boone, NC 28608
Phone: (828) 262-6046
Fax: (828) 262-8372

The Department of Human Development and Psychological Counseling at Appalchian State University has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider (ACEP No. 3001). Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. The Department of Human Development and Psychological Counseling at Appalchian State University is solely responsible for all aspects of the program.