Frequently Asked Questions


When are new graduate students accepted?

Students are accepted during the Fall Semester only. The application deadline is January 15.

Do I have to take the GRE?

GRE results are required regardless of your Grade Point Average. Request for GRE waivers are permitted but must be submitted via email to Sarah Balmer after you have completed the entire application process. GRE waiver decisions will be made upon review of completed applications.

How many hours can I take in the non-degree seeking status (also known as special student status)?

No more than twelve (12) hours will be accepted by the Graduate School. Additional hours will not be transferred into the graduate program.

How many hours can I transfer into the program?

The Graduate School will accept coursework constituting up to 40% of the USF Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling Program at the discretion of the Chair and the Program. The following rules apply to all transferred credit:

  • Transfer credits must be from a program accredited by the Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE) or the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP).
  • Courses that were completed to meet the requirements for another degree cannot be counted as transfer credit toward a second degree.
  • Students must petition through the Graduate Transfer Course Form to have transfer credits accepted into the graduate program, and students are responsible for providing a syllabus for each course to be considered. The Graduate Transfer Course Form can be found here: This must be completed and submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies preferably in the first semester, but no later than the second semester the student is enrolled in the graduate degree program.
  • A grade of B or better must be earned in order for transfer credits to be approved.
  • Field placement coursework will not be accepted as transfer credit under any circumstances.
  • Transferred courses must be at the graduate level and acceptable to the program.
  • Courses that were earned seven or more years before the student applied for admission to the program will not be accepted as transfer credit.
  • Transfer of direct equivalent courses syllabi must be approved by the faculty member who teaches the course and a copy of the syllabi must be submitted for approval. Please submit to your Academic Advisor here and they will forward to the correct faculty member.

Can I have the required courses waived in the program?

No. The only exception is transfer of direct equivalent courses from Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE) or Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) accredited graduate programs. In addition, courses will not be waived for work experience.

Are dual degree programs possible?

Yes, this program is referred to as our Five Year Program (please note that the 5-Year program is currently under administrative review; no new applications are being accepted at this time). You must receive both degrees at the same time and complete the 54 hours of required courses in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling (no substitutions) plus 6 hours of Department approved electives. The electives may be required courses toward another masters degree.

Where can I get information about licensure?

For licensure as a Mental Health Counselor, please visit Florida Department of Health - LMHC. For licensure as a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor, please visit Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification.

I was accepted, but haven't taken any classes for a few semesters. Do I need to reapply?

You will need to reapply if you haven't taken any courses in a year.

I want to do my practicum next semester. What do I need to do?

  1. At approximately six weeks into a new semester, Dr. Amanda DePippo sends out a "Field Placement Announcement" to all students interested in Practicum I, II, or Internship for the following semester (or in the case of Spring, for the following semester(s) since she asks for interest for both Summer and Fall). In the Announcement, she specifies a date by which the student must submit the Field Placement Application and Field Placement E-Form. These documents MUST be submitted in order to be eligible to register for the class for that following semester.
  2. If the student already has a site confirmed, they should submit the Field Placement Application and proof of professional liability insurance. Insurance can be obtained through Health Care Providers Service at The next step is to submit an on-line Field Placement E-Form to Dr. Amanda DePippo.
  3. If the student does not have a site, he/she should review our Intern Placement Tracking Database (IPT) for a list of our approved sites. The organization ID is: usfrmhc. If you do not yet have a username and password, you will receive that in your Foundations course during your first semester in the program. If he/she needs assistance in obtaining a site, contact Dr. DePippo at 813-974-1265 or send an email. The student should speak with the placement site and arrange an interview toward the goal of working at that site the next semester for the appropriate number of hours. If the site is not listed as a pre-approved site placement, site approval must be given by Dr. Amanda DePippo and a Handbook for Field Supervisors and Agencies must be distributed. Once a site is secured, follow the same process stated in #2.
  4. When approval has been granted by Dr. DePippo, a permit to register for a Practicum or Internship class will be issued. Be aware that permits are: a) issued on a first-come, first-serve basis; and b) class specific, i.e., once you're permitted for a specific class, there is a very good chance that you will not be able to transfer into another one. Once a permit has been issued, a student may register for the associated practicum or internship class.
  5. A separate application and proof of insurance must be filled out for each Practicum I, Practicum II, and Internship.
  6. Please note: You may view the How To Secure a Field Placement Site webcast. Also, some general tips are offered on the Field Placement E-Form.

A final note: It is imperative that you obtain a copy of the USF Graduate Catalog and review the requirements and deadlines. There is also a website for the Graduate School, which contains relevant information and application forms. This is your responsibility, and it may save you significant problems later.