Mental Health Counselor Interview Questions

Mental Health Counselor Interview Questions

Mental health counselors provide emotional counseling and guidance to individuals suffering from mental and behavioral disorders. Expect to answer questions that will assess your knowledge of disorders, your interpersonal skills, and your ability to navigate difficult patient situations. As clients may display potentially harmful behavior, be prepared to discuss how you would offer adequate guidance to volatile individuals. In comparison to psychiatrists who are required to have a doctorate in order to practice, licensed mental health counselors must have a master's degree at minimum.

227 Mental Health Counselor interview questions shared by candidates

Top Mental Health Counselor Interview Questions & How to Answer

Here are three mental health counselor interview questions and how to answer them:

Question #1: What are some important differences between the newest Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) and the previous version?

How to answer: Successful mental health counselors stay current on diagnostic changes and clinical advancements. Be prepared to discuss specific examples of differences between versions as well as how such changes affect patient care.

Question #2: How would you handle a patient in crisis?

How to answer: Mental health counselors are likely to have patients in crisis. In your answer, discuss steps you would take to help an at-risk client while maintaining their dignity. If you have previous success dealing with clients in crisis, share the strategies you used to help your client recover.

Question #3: How do you maintain client confidentiality?

How to answer: Employers use this question to test your understanding of confidentiality laws. Discuss how you implement the laws that dictate confidentiality procedures. Your answer should demonstrate your commitment to protecting patients' information.

Top Interview Questions

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Bay Area Community Resources
School Based Mental Health Counselor was asked...June 11, 2016

Interviewer asked how a Counselor should and would work with a family who doesn't respond to communication and doesn't show much interest in working with the School Counselor. Interviewer also asked how a Counselor should handle a case of suspected child abuse.

2 Answers

After reaching out through phone contacts, emails, and mailed letters, I will make a home visit in attempt to visit with the family. I will discuss with the family any problems and together come up with a solution. I worked 17 years in CPS and our agency received calls of suspected abuse from schools. I will first discuss the concerns with my superior and follow their guidelines before contacting CPS. Less

I would try to reach out to the parents in whatever way possible to make a connection with them in the hopes they would be more willing to work with me. I would also work more closely with the student to figure out why his/her parents are not interested in working with a counselor as well as what the extent of the abuse is. Every case is different, so it is hard to say what I would do if the student does not admit to being abused but I still strongly suspect it is happening. Less

Options for Community Living

What would you do if a client said they wanted to kill themselves, someone else, etc.

2 Answers

Talk them down get them some help make sure nothing around so they can hurt they self Less

Be sure to note that if they were a risk to themselves or someone else, that you would try to de escalate any current situation, keep them with you/where u can see them while you call 911. Less

South Bay Community Services

They asked me about the theories that I align with and what methods of counseling I am used to.

1 Answers

I aligned with a person-centered approach and I prefer to use expressive therapy and GIM. Less


Had I ever been involved in an incident before? How do you think patient and staff relations can improve?

1 Answers

Yes to the first question. and I think patient and staff relations can improve when you talk to the patient with respect and you treat them with respect. Less

John Muir Health

Have you worked on an inpatient unit before?

2 Answers

No. But I have experience with Crisis intervention, depression, suicide and risk assessment. Less

I said no, then proceeded to tell the group about my training and experience with crisis intervention. I gave concrete examples of dealing with sucide watch. Less

Westchester Medical Center

Why do you want to work here?

2 Answers

I see a great opportunity to learn and grow

Because it’s close to my house

Third Way Center

Have you ever been physically or sexually abused?

2 Answers

I am currently a student in an undergraduate psychology program. I will be graduating in May and I am looking at interview questions to prepare myself. I don't want to come across as naive, but is it actually legal for potential employers to ask this question? What is the purpose of this question? Thank you for your time. Less

Answer honestly.

US Department of Veterans Affairs

What type of clinical experience do you have in relation to this position.

2 Answers

I provided examples of times I have performed duties.

multiple professional tasks through clinical work, program development and with the opportunity to grow. I am always open to and encouraged to voice ideas to build, develop and expand services offered. I have been able to grow in the therapy area of my passion as well as explore new areas for growth. Less

Willowglen Academy

There were no trick questions.

1 Answers

There were no trick questions.

Chicago Lakeshore Hospital

When can you start?

1 Answers

In 2 weeks

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Glassdoor has 227 interview questions and reports from Mental health counselor interviews. Prepare for your interview. Get hired. Love your job.