National Certified Counselor (NCC) | NBCC

Home /National Certified Counselor

National Certified Counselor (NCC)

The National Certified Counselor (NCC) is the premier certification for the counseling profession. Holding the NCC demonstrates to colleagues and the public that you have voluntarily met high national standards for the practice of counseling.

The benefits of certification include use of the NCC certification mark, access to low-cost liability insurance, national advocacy efforts for the counseling profession and more.

Application Requirements

You must meet the following requirements in order to obtain certification as an NCC. Some requirements may differ if you hold a state counseling license. For more information, log in and start your application.


You must hold a master’s degree with a major study in counseling including at least 48 semester or 72 quarter hours of graduate-level academic credit in counseling.


Your coursework must cover the following nine content areas:

Learn more about the required coursework content areas.


You must document at least 100 hours of counseling supervision.

Work Experience

You must document having completed at least 3,000 hours of counseling work experience.

Examination Requirement

You must obtain a passing score on the National Counselor Examination for Licensure and Certification (NCE) or the National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Examination (NCMHCE).


You are responsible for ensuring that your behavior adheres to the standards identified in the Code of Ethics.

Examination Information

For purposes of national certification, the NCE and NCMHCE are offered twice a year (April and October). You will have four hours to complete the examination. You exam results will be uploaded to your ProCounselor account within four–five weeks of the examination.


Once you complete the application process, you will need to meet ongoing requirements in order to maintain and recertify your NCC.