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.

EducationGraduate Degree
Work/Life Balance
3.3 ★
Salary Range--
Career Opportunity
3.2 ★
Avg. Experience2-4 years

Counselor Salaries

Average Base Pay

$56,978 /yr
Same as national average
Not including cash compensation
See More Insights
$36K
Median: $57K
$90K
See More Insights
Glassdoor Estimated Salary

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
$56,978/yr
L3
L4
Staff Counselor
$56,230/yr
See Career Path

Counselor Insights

Read what Counselor professionals have to say about their job experiences and view top companies for this career.
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!”

Swasthya SewakSwasthya Sewak
Medical Counselor
Sep. 26, 2019

“it is very cordial place to work and you get lot of opportunities to grow your skills and upgrade your career”

Step-By-StepStep-By-Step
Counselor II
Jul. 28, 2019

“The training was terrible and I had no idea what I was meant to be doing at any point.”

SevenMentorSevenMentor
Counselor
Aug. 13, 2021

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

Gold Arrow Camp
Group Counselor
Jan. 7, 2022

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

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.”

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!)”

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)”

See More

Counselor Interviews

Related Careers

Academic Counselor
$58,460
13% skills overlap
School Counselor
$67,672
38% skills overlap
Admissions
$42,424
25% skills overlap
Therapist
$66,754
13% skills overlap

Counselor jobs

Frequently asked questions about the role 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:
  • Academic Counselor
  • School Counselor
  • Admissions
  • Therapist

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