Pennsylvania Addiction Counseling Schools & Education Requirements


Certification Requirements in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania offers accreditation for Addiction Counseling through the Pennsylvania Certification Board (PCB). To become a drug and alcohol counselor in Pennsylvania, the college or university you choose must be accredited in the state. There are several types of certifications available through the PCB, including the Associate Addiction Counselor (ACC), which is an entry level drug and alcohol counseling credential.


Other PCB certifications are:

  • CAAC (Certified Associate Addiction Counselor)
  • CADC (Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor)
  • CAADC (Certified Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor)


Please visit the Pennsylvania Certification Board (PCB) for more information -


To become a certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor, with a Bachelors degree or higher, the CADC requirements in Pennsylvania are as follows:

  • Bachelors degree must be in a human service related field
  • Two years (4000 hours) of supervised employment


With a degree in a non-human service related field, applicants for Alcohol and Drug Counselor positions must have three years (6,000 hours) of supervised employment.


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In addition, 300 hours of education is required for the field of addiction counseling; and must include 6 additional courses in professional ethics and responsibilities, and 6 courses in communicable diseases as well. Also note that in Pennsylvania, a CADC is a 2 year credential that must be recertified.


Schools Offering Addictions Counseling Training in PA

In total, there are 26 colleges in Pennsylvania that offer addiction counseling training. There are 17 cities in PA that have these schools, and the largest numbers of accredited addiction counseling schools are in Philadelphia and Pittsburg. We have included the top 3 schools which offer the necessary and accredited courses, in order for you to pursue a career in Addiction Counseling.


Chestnut Hill College – Philadelphia

Chestnut Hill offers programs that include a Master of Science (M.S.) degree in clinical counseling psychology. The M.S. program is also offered on the DeSales University campus located in Center Valley, PA.

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Carlow University – Pittsburgh

Carlow offers an undergraduate Psychology program and provides the necessary academic requirements for those students wishing to pursue a career in Addiction Counseling.

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Community College of Allegheny County

Community College of Allegheny County offers a program that can prepare you for certification in becoming a drug and alcohol counselor. The courses include:

  • Introduction to Psychology
  • Understanding Chemical Dependency
  • Drug and Alcohol Clinical Practicum
  • Ethnic and Diversity Studies

Learn more about the Drug and Alcohol program at CCAC:


Walden University – PA Online

Walden University is an accredited institution that offers courses and programs online. Walden offers over 20 advanced degree programs, including Masters and Doctorates, all of which can be completed online. Degree programs are available in both Psychology and Health and Human Services.

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