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A substance abuse and behavioral counselor will advise those who are suffering from eating disorders, drug addiction, alcoholism and other behavioral problems. They support their client, helping to get them the right treatment so they can modify their behavioral problem or recover from their addiction. These types of counselors can work in a range of settings, including private practices, prisons and community or mental health centers.

Iowa Substance Abuse and Behavioral Counselor Schools

In order to be eligible for a role as a substance abuse counselor, the majority of employers will require you to have a bachelor's or master's degree whilst others may accept high school diplomas and certifications. There are a number of substance abuse counselor schools in Iowa, including:

  • Kaplan University: Established in 1937, Kaplan University is an institute that provides education to undergraduates, graduates and professionals. They offer a vast range of programs including the Bachelor's degree in psychology in addictions. Approved by the National Association for Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors (NAADAC) this program is available at Kaplan University's Des Moines, Cedar Falls, Davenport, Cedar Rapids and Mason City campuses.

  • Southeastern Community College: Located in West Burlington, Iowa, SCC is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and offers a vast range of different courses, including four-year degrees. One of their programs is the Chemical Dependency Counselor Associate of Applied Science Program. This has been established to provide students with the necessary skills needed to become a certified alcohol and drug counselor with the Iowa Board of Substance Abuse.

  • Iowa Lakes Community College: This institute boasts five campus locations - Algona, Emmetsburg, Estherville, Spencer and Spirit Lake, with a plethora of courses on offer. Their Associate of Applied Science Degree in Substance Abuse Counseling is typically a two-year course and is based at their Estherville campus.

Coursework for Iowa Substance Abuse and Behavioral Counselor Programs

Substance abuse counseling programs in Iowa will cover a wide range of topics, teaching you the necessary skills that are required to go on and become a professional counselor. Many of the courses will combine classroom-based study with hands-on experiences in an alcohol and drug treatment center. During your course, you can expect to learn things such as:

  • Chemical dependency counseling
  • Counseling theories
  • Techniques for group counseling
  • Social work
  • Counseling women
  • Working with families of drug and alcohol abuse
  • Social problems
  • Counseling adolescents
  • Public speaking

Iowa Substance Abuse and Behavioral Counselor License

In order to practice as a substance abuse counselor in Iowa, you will need to be licensed, especially if you're working in a private practice. This will require you to gain the Alcohol and Drug Counselor Certification from the Iowa Board of Certification, which can be a temporary certification (tCADC), a permanent certification (CADC) or an international certification (iCADC).

To obtain one of these certificates, you will have to meet the certain criteria laid out by the Iowa Board of Certification. For example, to achieve the CADC certificate you will need a high school or general education diploma with 150 hours of relevant education included and six months full-time experience of working under supervision in substance abuse counseling in the past three years. You'll also need to pass the Supervisor's Counselor Evaluation and the IC&RD ADC exam.

Resources for Substance Abuse and Behavioral Counselor in Iowa

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Programs
  • M.S. in Addiction Counseling
  • B.S. in Counseling with an Emphasis in Addiction, Chemical Dependency, and Substance Abuse
  • M.S. in Christian Counseling of Substance Abuse and Addictive Disorders
  • Why Earn Your Degree from GCU?
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Programs
  • MS in Psychology - Addictions
  • BS in Psychology - Industrial/Organizational Psychology
  • Psychology
  • Programs include Bachelor of Science in Human Services, Bachelor of Science in Psychology in Addiction, and more.
  • Approved as an education provider by the National Association for Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors (NAADAC).
  • Courses cover topics such as addiction science, assessment, prevention, and treatment.
  • Students learn how to identify, plan, and use resources to help improve client situations.
Programs
  • Bachelor of Arts in Substance Abuse Counseling
  • Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
  • Ranked among the 2015 Best National Universities by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Designated as a Military Friendly School every year since 2012 by Victory Media.
  • Offers credit for prior learning and experience through assessment tests.
  • Provides a short term Leadership Certification program in partnership with EQUIP®.
  • Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association (NCA).
Programs
  • Advanced Addictions Counseling Certificate
  • Advanced Addictions Counseling (Certificate) - Online
  • Sports Counseling (Certificate) - Online
  • For the 12th consecutive year, Cal U was named one for the best schools in the Northeast by The Princeton Review 
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  • Quality Online courses at Cal U have the same objectives, content and learning outcomes as campus-based programs and are taught by the same expert professors.
  • Offers private school amenities at a public school cost. Student-to-teacher ratio of 20:1
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Programs
  • Bachelor of Science in Psychology : Addictions
  • Master of Science in Psychology : Addictions
  • Bachelor of Science in Psychology in Addictions
  •  Ranked one of the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs in 2014 by U.S. News & World Report.
  •  Offers a no-obligation, 3-week trial period where students may determine if the university is right for them before they commit to it.
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Programs
  • Certificate in Trauma
  • Master of Arts in Human Services Counseling
  • Master of Science in General Psychology
  • Bachelor of Science in Psychology program helps students prepare for careers in counseling, marketing/sales, human services, ministry, and more.
  • The School of Psychology & Counseling received a 95% match rate for 4th year Psy.D. student internships in 2015.
  • Programmatic accreditation for psychology programs is provided by the American Psychological Association (APA).
  • Regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).
Programs
  • BA in Psychology
  • Master of Arts in Psychology
  • Doctorate in Psychology
  • Non-profit university accredited by WASC Senior Commission
  • Professors with real-world experience and student centered approach
  • Flexible, fully online degree programs responding to the market needs
  • All courses are offered six times a year with clear path to completion and reduced time-to-degree
  • No additional costs for textbooks or other fees
  • Personal support from application to graduation leading to high retention and graduation rates
Programs
  • Psychology (B.S.) Online
  • Ranked among the 2015 Best Regional Universities in the South by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Ranked among the 2015 Best Colleges for Veterans by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Challenging students to live extraordinary lives of personal and professional fulfillment since 1878.
  • Offers programs in business, communication, education, humanities, fine arts, health sciences, and graduate studies.
  • Provides on-campus housing options and study abroad programs for students.
  • Campus features several academic centers for students, including The Writing Center and the Study Place for Achievement (SPA).
Programs
  • Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
  • Has students attend one four-week class at a time and take their final exam before moving on to their next class.
  • Offers 24/7 online tech support, with a typical response time of 4 hours or less.
  • Has online help centers that offer assistance with writing, statistics, medical assisting, and more.
  • Provides job placement assistance to all its students and alumni.
  • Researches trends for growing fields to tailor a more effective curriculum.
Programs
  • Online Master of Arts in Counseling - Professional School Counseling (PSC)
  • Ranked #4 among the 2015 Best Regional Universities in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Designated as 2015 Military Friendly School by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Student to faculty ratio of 12:1, with an average class size of 21.
  • 85% of faculty holds a doctorate or terminal degree in their field.
  • Regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association (NCA).

More Iowa Substance Abuse Counselors Schools

2016 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2014-24 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov; 2014-24 State Occupational Projections, Projections Central, projectionscentral.com

School Name
Campus
Highest Award
Enrolled
Sioux City
Masters
1,138
Storm Lake
Masters
2,548
Pella
Bachelor
1,605
Dubuque
Doctorate
1,230
Cedar Rapids
Masters
1,316
Mount Vernon
Bachelor
1,083
Sioux Center
Masters
1,301
Des Moines
Masters
5,617
Des Moines
Bachelor
1,748
Grinnell
Bachelor
1,654
Ames
Doctorate & First Professional
26,160
Mount Pleasant
Bachelor
834
Dubuque
Masters
1,591
Decorah
Bachelor
2,476
Sioux City
Masters
1,798
Cedar Rapids
Masters
1,506
Davenport
Doctorate
3,870
Indianola
Masters
2,039
West Burlington
Associate
3,351
Dubuque
Doctorate & First Professional
1,560
Iowa City
Doctorate & First Professional
29,117
Cedar Falls
Doctorate
12,692
Fayette
Masters
5,143
Forest City
Bachelor
630
Waverly
Bachelor
1,810
Oskaloosa
Masters
1,949

Job Popularity in Metro Areas for Substance Abuse Counselors

The map below shows job statistics for the career type by metro area, for Iowa. A table below the map shows job popularity and salaries across the state.

Metro Areas Rated for Popularity for:
Substance Abuse Counselors

Listed below are metro areas ranked by the popularity of jobs for Substance Abuse Counselors relative to the population of the city. Salary data was obtained from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

2016 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2014-24 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov; 2014-24 State Occupational Projections, Projections Central, projectionscentral.com

Metro Area
Jobs
Annual Median Salary
Iowa City 140 $51,310
Des Moines 300 $42,070
West Des Moines 300 $42,070

Sources:

  1. Substance Abuse and Behavioral Disorder Counselors Occupational Outlook Handbook 2016-17 Edition, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/substance-abuse-and-behavioral-disorder-counselors.htm, accessed October 31, 2016
  2. O*NET OnLine Summary Report for Substance Abuse and Behavioral Disorder Counselors, http://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/21-1011.00, accessed October 31, 2016

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