What does a Counselor do?

Counselors use their training and qualification in counseling methods to help clients manage, cope, and overcome their mental and emotional issues. Counselors listen to their patients and develop treatment plans and coping strategies for difficulties they face in their daily lives. Working in mental health facilities, hospitals, and schools, counselors encourage clients to face and discuss their emotions and their experiences.

Counselors examine issues including substance abuse, bullying, career, depression, stress, and suicide, and work with families to develop a therapeutic process that keeps a comfortably holistic mind and body approach in mind. They help clients define their goals, craft a plan of action, and to gain insight into better ways of doing things and managing life’s challenges. Counselors record a patient’s progress and adjust the treatment plan as needed. When appropriate, they create treatment plans which include appointments with additional counselors, medication, or other services. Counselors need a bachelor's degree in psychology, social work, or counseling and some go on for a master’s degree. To practice this, they need a minimum of three years experience as a professional counselor and state licensing where applicable.

What responsibilities are common for Counselor jobs?
  • Complete incident reports and notify appropriate parties when necessary.
  • Maintain a copy of all relevant records and service plans for clients.
  • Monitor the overall health, safety, and welfare of clients.
  • Assist in monitoring and managing patient community as a therapeutic milieu.
  • Provide a safe, caring, and fun environment for participants.
  • Perform case management and contribute to client care monitoring.
  • Make calls to local ambulance service, fire department, police, or CDPC, as needed.
  • Act as liaison with community and governmental agencies.
  • Teach alcohol/drug education classes and provide other educational services.
  • Transport and supervise clients at designated activities and appointments.
  • May act as a liaison between referral sources and patient.
  • Write progress reports and record other aspects of patient care.
What are the typical qualifications for Counselor jobs?
  • Bachelor's or Graduate's Degree in behavioral sciences, counseling, or psychology or equivalent experience.
  • Is an advocate with adaptable and dexterous skills that meet individual needs.
  • Assist with problem solving and collaborate with teams and clients.
  • Conduct motivational interviews and pays attention to detail.
  • Has prior experience counseling or working in a counseling setting.
  • A critical thinker with discrete and professional skills.
  • Conduct intakes and make recommendations based on observations.
  • Has multilingual skills.
EducationGraduate Degree
Work/Life Balance
3.3 ★
Total Pay--
Career Opportunity
3.2 ★
Avg. Experience2-4 years

How much does a Counselor make?

Confident
$58,833 /yr
Total Pay
$39,217
 /yr

Base Pay

+
$19,615
 /yr

Additional Pay

$58,833

 / yr
$27K$375K
Most Likely Range
Possible Range
See More Insights

Counselor Career Path

Learn how to become a Counselor, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.

L2
Counselor
$58,833/yr
L3
L2

Average Years of Experience

0 - 1
24%
2 - 4
40%
5 - 7
1%
8+
35%
Not including years spent in education and/or training
See Career Path

Counselor Insights

Read what Counselor professionals have to say about their job experiences and view top companies for this career.
Jewish Federation of EdmontonJewish Federation of Edmonton
Counselor
May 7, 2022

“It is a fun environment and it is nice to work with kids in a camp environment.”

Camp WinaduCamp Winadu
General Counselor
Jul 12, 2020

“If you love to have fun and work with kids this is the best place to work!”

EskatonEskaton
Life Enrichment Assistant
Feb 11, 2022

“Every day is different and I enjoy the people I see and the work I do.”

Gold Arrow CampGold Arrow Camp
Group Counselor
Jan 7, 2022

“met the best people and even though it can be stressful... totally worth it in the end.”

SevenMentorSevenMentor
Counselor
Aug 13, 2021

“best coaching institute in PuneVery well managed centre for CCNA CCNP And many More Certification preparation.”

Camp Bow WowCamp Bow Wow
Counselor
Aug 17, 2020

“She finally sits down and tells me what pay is and I asked her about benefits and breaks.”

Camps Airy and LouiseCamps Airy and Louise
Counselor
Jan 20, 2020

“Not the best pay (but pretty much what you expect working at a summer camp)”

Banner Day CampBanner Day Camp
Group Counselor
Dec 3, 2020

“Not the best pay in the world (but they've been raising it year after year!)”

See More

Counselor Interviews

Frequently asked questions about the roles and responsibilities of a Counselor

When working as a Counselor, the most common skills you will need to perform your job and for career success are CPR First Aid, English Language, Written Communication, Fluent English, and IN Spanish.

The most similar professions to Counselor are:
  • Intern
  • Client Services Representative
  • Research Assistant
  • Teaching Assistant

The most common qualifications to become a Counselor include a minimum of a Graduate Degree and an average of 0 - 1 years of experience not including years spent in education and/or training.

Related Careers

Intern
$68,095
Client Services Representative
$67,758
25% skills overlap
Research Assistant
$58,705
No skills overlap
Teaching Assistant
$58,474
63% skills overlap

Counselor Jobs