College of Liberal Arts: Department of Sociology, Gerontology, and Substance Abuse Studies: Degree Programs: Substance Abuse Studies

Substance Abuse Studies Degrees available

The bachelor’s degree program at the University of Central Oklahoma offers you the opportunity to become a Certified Alcohol/Drug Counselor (CADC) which will meet the state of Oklahoma’s requirement for certification. This degree will allow for job opportunities in other helping professions as well. Graduates with a bachelor’s degree are trained in the twelve core functions, counseling skills, assessment and treatment of chemical dependency and dual diagnosis. Courses are taught by instructors and professors who have practical experience in the fields of chemical dependency and mental health. Classroom instruction includes a variety of teaching methods so that students will gain knowledge in family counseling, group counseling and counseling with special populations.

The Oklahoma state legislature created a license for substance abuse counselors in 2004. Among the innovations contained in this law was the requirement that a licensed alcohol and drug counselor (LADC) not only have a master’s degree but that the degree shall be in “...alcohol and substance abuse counseling...” or a master’s degree in a behavioral science or counseling related field which is “content-equivalent” to a graduate degree in alcohol and substance abuse counseling.

The law also specifies knowledge areas known as the “the twelve core functions” as well as graduate hours. The graduate degree in substance abuse studies will assist students to develop their skills not only in the therapeutic areas, but also in the area of social advocacy for better treatment/facilities. Leadership/management skill development will be stressed in order to keep pace with the field’s quickly evolving standards of best practices and legal/political changes. Moreover, the graduate degree will promote sound research supporting proper advancements in the treatment of the debilitating diseases of substance abuse and dependency.

Training students to be competent licensed professionals in their field supports both primary goals of the UCO Mission Statement:

  1. to provide excellent education enabling students to achieve their intellectual, professional, personal, and creative potential; and
  2. to contribute to the intellectual, cultural, economic and social advancement of the communities and individuals it serves.

Master of Arts in Substance Abuse Studies

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