Looking for a more fulfilling career? UMF’s Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology with an emphasis in Creative Arts may be just what you’re looking for.

The Master’s program provides a solid clinical foundation while integrating the creative arts into the practice of counseling and psychotherapy. It offers students across Maine and beyond the training and experience necessary to deliver a wide array of counseling services. A special focus on creative arts allows our graduates to work with the unique needs of individuals for whom traditional talk therapy is inappropriate, such as those with dementia and autism.

Program at a Glance

  • Convenient blended format: 70% online / 30% in-person (every Friday)
  • 64 graduate credit hours
  • Emphasizes developing individual understanding of how arts can enrich counseling practice

Be Well Prepared for Licensure While You Learn

The M.A. in Counseling Psychology program is designed to assist students in their preparation for State of Maine licensure as a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC). The program facilitates the development of counseling skills through professional clinical training and immersion in various creative endeavors: creative writing, music, painting. With appropriate post-graduate experience, graduates will be well prepared for the Maine State Licensing Exam to become a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC).

This program will prepare you to be eligible for licensure in the State of Maine. Visit the UMaine System State Authorization & Licensure page to learn more about the licensure requirements in other states and territories, in addition to the contact information needed to inquire further into the licensure requirements associated with this program.

A Unique Approach

A unique feature of the M.A. Counseling Psychology program at UMF is the opportunity to explore the creative arts at the graduate level while simultaneously completing a program of study in the field of counseling. The creative arts are valued for their own sake, even as they are integrated into your understanding of the counseling process.

Significantly, our program does not promote a specific vision of creative or expressive art therapy. Rather, it encourages you to develop your own understanding of how the arts can supplement or enrich the counseling enterprise. You will be exposed to a broad range of theoretical perspectives and will develop an approach to counseling that is uniquely your own.

The M.A. program is coordinated by faculty in the UMF Division of Psychology and Human Development, an academic community with a rich history of delivering innovative psychology curricula rooted in the humanistic tradition. This 64-credit hybrid program offers both online instruction and every Friday students will meet for in-person sessions on campus.

University Headquarters Best Master's Degrees badgeUMF is rated by University Headquarters as having some of the Best Master’s Degrees in Maine (#2 overall). University Headquarters is an industry-leading, independent educational organization that compiles a comprehensive set of information for students who wish to pursue a higher education.

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NEW – A Part-Time Option

We realize a full-time Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology may not work for busy working adults, so we now offer this Master’s program with a Part-Time option.

With this new Part-Time option, you’ll take the same coursework as our Full-Time program, but instead you can complete it in 4 years rather than in 2 years. Instead of attending class on campus all day each Friday, those in the Part-Time program will come to campus just every other Saturday. The result is you can complete your Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology degree in four years — while still allowing you to work your full-time job.

Fourth Year Internship
Your fourth year will be solely dedicated to your off-campus internship, including a seminar class you’ll attend on campus.

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What Our Master’s Students Have to Say

Counseling Psych-Creative Arts Grad Marley Smith

“Working towards this Master’s degree is so important to me because mental health is an issue, globally. There are currently not enough well-trained providers to support all the needs in the communities, not just here in Maine, but across the country. This program’s unique approach to mental health will prepare me and my colleagues to treat our clients more holistically and support a well-rounded path to healing.”

— Marley Smith from Windham, Maine

Student in UMF M.A. in Counseling Psychology – Creative Arts focus

Smith was attending medical school at St. Georges University in Grenada, but decided she wanted a wellness model with more acknowledgment of the human condition.

6 Core Principles Guide Our Program

The M.A. Counseling Psychology is guided by six core principles:

  • The Experience of Community We provide a holistic educational experience involving sustained relationships with faculty and other students.
  • Long-term Mentoring Relationships Our faculty are committed to building mentoring relationships with their students.
  • Teaching Excellence We emphasize engagement in the classroom, experiential learning, and guidance and support.
  • Theoretical Eclecticism Be exposed to a broad range of theoretical perspective
  • Interdisciplinary Education Our program draws upon the wisdom of multiple disciplines.
  • Personal Growth Complete coursework that is personally rewarding and rich in experiential experiences.

Graduates of the M.A. in Counseling Psychology will be prepared to serve their communities as creative, productive, service-oriented leaders in the counseling profession.

Career Outlook & Outcomes

25% Projected Growth

Much faster than average growth for counseling professions in next 10 years

Source: 2021 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

417 Million

Number of Americans living with Alzheimer’s and related dementias by 2060

Source: Centers for Disease Control (CDC)

Benefits of Creative Arts Therapies

U.S. Veterans Administration uses creative arts therapies for those who are “resistive to other treatment approaches”:

  • chronic pain
  • neurocognitive disorders
  • Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Substance Use Disorder
Given these realities, counselors with creative arts emphases may find employment in an expanding range of settings:
  • nursing homes
  • assisted living facilities
  • home health agencies
  • community mental health agencies
  • inpatient and outpatient children’s treatment centers
  • facilities providing services to veterans and their families

In-Person and Online: The Best of Both Worlds

The master’s program is taught in-person and online, with roughly 30% of the program taught in-person and 70% online. Typically, the 30% in-person instruction takes place every Friday.

Our graduates have consistently told us that this format allows them to experience the best of both worlds: the convenience of online education with the ability to make connections and expand your professional network through face-to-face interaction.

Application Process & Due Dates

All applicants are strongly encouraged to contact the Division of Graduate & Continuing Education office prior to application to discuss the program and professional goals. Call us at 207-778-7502 or email us at gradstudies@maine.edu.

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis, and will be considered when complete. Students may enroll in some courses as a non-matriculated student prior to acceptance into the program.

Due Dates

  • Priority Deadline of November 15th for an Expedited Admissions Decision
  • Rolling Admissions after November 15th

How to Apply

To apply for the M.A. in Counseling Psychology with an Emphasis in the Creative Arts program, you will need to provide the following:

Applicants must have a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited college or university.

A foreign degree must be validated by World Educational Services, Center for Educational Documentation, Inc., or other appropriate agency. The decision to accept the degree is made on a case-by-case basis by the Associate Dean for Graduate and Continuing Education.

Please provide official transcripts from each institution you have attended (including both the undergraduate and graduate level). Official transcripts must be sent directly from the institutions to the UMF’s Office of Graduate Studies. If you attended a UMaine System school (UMA, UMF, UMFK, UMM, UM, UMPI, or USM), the Office of Graduate Studies can obtain your transcript for you.

A unique feature of the MA Counseling program at UMF is the opportunity to explore the creative arts at the graduate level while simultaneously completing a program of study in the field of counseling. The program facilitates the development of counseling skills via professional clinical training and a focus on the creative arts (e.g., music, painting, creative writing).

In a 500-word essay, please explain your reasons for seeking admission to this program. Feel free to discuss your experience or interests in music, creative writing, or any other art.

Please provide two letters of reference. These individuals should know you in a professional or educational context and speak to your abilities for graduate study.

Please provide a copy of your current resume.

Participants in this program will be required to satisfy a criminal background screening.

If you are requesting that graduate-level coursework be transferred from another institution into this UMF Master’s program, in addition to your transcript you must submit the syllabi for each course you would like considered for transfer. Transfer decisions are made at the time of admission.

A student, with the approval of the Admissions Committee, may transfer up to 9 graduate credits from another institution into his/her academic program; only 3 of these credits may be in the core of the program. These credits must have been earned from a regionally accredited institution, within 5 years prior to admission, and with a minimum grade of B (or equivalent). Graduate credits applied toward an undergraduate degree cannot be used toward the Master’s degree.

University of Maine at Farmington. Make the Most of Your Education.

Getting a master’s is a big deal, so make the most of your education with a quality program at nationally recognized University of Maine at Farmington. Well-known for excellence in teacher education, UMF offers a number of graduate programs for teaching professionals, including 5 on-campus Master’s degree programs, 10 different Graduate Certificate programs, a 100% online Master’s program, a Special Education Alternative Route to Certification, and more. We also offer a new Master’s in Counseling Psychology with a Creative Arts Focus that provides a solid clinical foundation while integrating the creative arts into the practice of counseling and psychotherapy.

The University of Maine at Farmington is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE).

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Want to learn more about UMF’s unique approach to the M.A. in Counseling Psychology?


We’re happy to answer any questions you may have. Give us a call at 207-778-7502 or email us