Student Assistance Coordinator Certificate

Program Overview

This Rider Student Assistance Coordinator (SAC) Certificate qualifies students to apply for the Student Assistance Coordinator Certificate of Eligibility with Advanced Standing (SAC CEAS) in New Jersey, which is supplied by the NJ Department of Education. For students interested in the school counseling profession, the SAC plays a specialized counseling role in the schools. SACs help students who are coping with social, emotional, and behavioral issues related to substance abuse and typically provide drug and alcohol prevention and intervention counseling services. 

Students should consult the NJ Department of Education for the most updated and detailed explanations of the requirements to ultimately qualify for a standard New Jersey SAC certificate.

Curriculum Overview

This certificate is comprised of 21 credits, or seven courses. 

Current M.A. students seeking either the Master of Arts in Counseling Services, School Counseling Concentration or the Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, may fulfill requirements for the SAC certificate as they complete their M.A. degree. Extra courses will be required beyond their M.A. degree requirements. For those who are pursuing a master's in school counseling at Rider, completion of only two extra courses in substance abuse is required. For those who are pursuing a Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, three extra courses are required. 

For practicing counselors interested in acquiring the SAC CEAS, the 21 credits are standard; however, Rider faculty recommend that interested students submit their transcripts to the NJ Department of Education for review and final determination of a required plan of study.

Certificate Offered

  • Student Assistance Coordinator (SAC) Certificate of Eligibility with Advanced Standing

Contact

Christina Hamme Peterson, Psy.D., BCC
Associate Professor, Director of School Counseling and Coaching
Memorial Hall 202
609-895-5487
cpeterson@rider.edu

Program Website: Student Assistance Coordinator
Associated Department: Department of Graduate Education, Leadership, and Counseling


Accreditation Information: The Rider Student Assistance Coordinator (SAC) Certificate program has been approved by the New Jersey Department of Education and meets the educational requirements for the NJ SAC CEAS.

Related Programs

Student Assistance Coordinator Certificate Requirements

For Current Master of Arts in Counseling Services (School Counseling Concentration) Students

Current Master of Arts in Counseling Services students with a School Counseling Concentration, may fulfill requirements for the SAC as they complete their M.A. degree. Two extra courses will be required beyond their M.A. degree requirements. At least one of these courses must be taken before CNSC 580/CNSC 581 Practicum. Currently enrolled students are encouraged to consult with their program advisors for more information on this certificate option.

COUN 515Substance Abuse Counseling3
COUN 516Strategies in Addiction Counseling3
CNSC 580Elementary School Counseling Practicum and Student Assistance Coordinator Practicum3
or CNSC 581 Secondary School Counseling Practicum and Student Assistance Coordinator Practicum

For Current Master of Arts in Clinical Mental  Health Counseling Students

Current Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling students, may fulfill requirements for the SAC as they complete their M.A. degree. Three extra courses will be required beyond their M.A. degree requirements. Currently enrolled students are encouraged to consult with their program advisors for more information on this certificate option.

EDSO 501Foundations of School Counseling: Referral Sources for Clients and Students With Special Needs3
CNPY 518Counseling Children, Adolescents and Families3
CNSC 580Elementary School Counseling Practicum and Student Assistance Coordinator Practicum3
or CNSC 581 Secondary School Counseling Practicum and Student Assistance Coordinator Practicum

All Other Students

The Rider University Student Assistance Coordinator (SAC) Certificate is an approved program by the New Jersey Department of Education. This certificate is comprised of 21 credits, meets 9 content area requirements and is covered in 7 courses:

COUN 515Substance Abuse Counseling3
COUN 516Strategies in Addiction Counseling3
COUN 530Legal and Ethical Issues in Counseling and Psychotherapy3
CNPY 518Counseling Children, Adolescents and Families3
EDSO 501Foundations of School Counseling: Referral Sources for Clients and Students With Special Needs3
EDPS 503Human Growth and Development3
CNSC 580Elementary School Counseling Practicum and Student Assistance Coordinator Practicum3
or CNSC 581 Secondary School Counseling Practicum and Student Assistance Coordinator Practicum

Courses and Descriptions

CNPY 518 Counseling Children, Adolescents and Families 3 Credits

This course will emphasize counselor and consultant behaviors that facilitate the helping process with children, adolescents, and their families. Information and activities will be provided that address age, ethnic, and developmental considerations in counseling children and adolescents. Issues and practices related to crisis intervention will be explored.

CNSC 580 Elementary School Counseling Practicum and Student Assistance Coordinator Practicum 3 Credits

A 100-hour supervised experience in counseling and consultation in an elementary school setting. Students will obtain a minimum of forty (40) contact hours with clients. The course will also provide an historical overview of the school guidance and counseling function. Current practices for assessing, organizing, implementing and evaluating school counseling services will be reviewed. Students will develop knowledge and skills in the development of primary, secondary, and tertiary interventions designed to promote the academic and social development of children of elementary school age. Students will apply knowledge and skills developed in pre-practicum experiences in addressing the needs of school children. Students must be supervised by a Substance Awareness Coordinator (SAC).

Prerequisite(s): COUN 515 or COUN 516.

CNSC 581 Secondary School Counseling Practicum and Student Assistance Coordinator Practicum 3 Credits

A 100-hour supervised experience in counseling and consultation in a secondary school setting. Includes seminar discussions, interview analyses, videotape observations, and individual supervision with the faculty supervisor. Provides the counselor in training with the opportunity to develop and practice skills and techniques necessary for the effective delivery of counseling services in the secondary school setting. Reviews current practices for assessing, developing, organizing, implementing, evaluating, and reflecting on counseling services as they address the special needs of secondary school students. Students must be supervised by a Substance Awareness Coordinator (SAC).

Prerequisite(s): COUN 515 or COUN 516.

COUN 515 Substance Abuse Counseling 3 Credits

Analyzes the development, intervention, and treatment of drug abuse and alcoholism. Designed to assist counselors in identifying drug abuse and alcoholism, examining the specialized approaches of counseling with these clients and reviewing the related elements; i.e., family participation, physical problems, effects on school or job, etc.

COUN 516 Strategies in Addiction Counseling 3 Credits

Analyzes the development, intervention and treatment of co-dependents. Designed to focus on the characteristics of co-dependency and how they were initiated in alcoholic families as well as other dysfunctional families. Symptoms will be discussed in terms of problems with intimacy, trust, eating disorders, assertiveness, love relationships and the differences among co-dependents. Specialized approaches to treating these areas will be discussed. (Classes will involve lecture, discussion and students will learn and experience group exercises for co-dependency treatment.)

Prerequisite(s): COUN 515 or permission of instructor.

COUN 530 Legal and Ethical Issues in Counseling and Psychotherapy 3 Credits

Examines and analyzes the legal, ethical, and professional parameters of counseling and psychotherapy. Discusses legal liabilities and malpractice cases arising from constitutional, tort, contract, family, privacy, and criminal laws. Examines client rights and counselor duties and responsibilities. Explores legal, ethical, and professional implications of third party payment, informed consent, medication, case documentation, client termination and abandonment. Advertisement of counseling services, crisis and case management, consultation and supervision, "duty-to-warn" and court appearances of an expert witness will be explored. Special attention will be given to child abuse reporting issues, dual relationships and to regional legal and ethical developments.

EDPS 503 Human Growth and Development 3 Credits

Provides an overview and broad understanding of life span developmental theories and research applied to counseling services with special emphasis on developmental processes, individual differences and mental health. Includes strategies for working with developmental issues across the life span.

EDSO 501 Foundations of School Counseling: Referral Sources for Clients and Students With Special Needs 3 Credits

Addresses community social services available to clients and special needs students. Reviews principles and methods utilized by social agencies. Representatives of various community agencies are invited to discuss the role and function of the agencies they represent. Students visit various community agencies and report on their work.