Degree Completion and Graduate Programs - Marylhurst University in Portland, Oregon

Art Therapy or Counseling Post-Graduate Certificate: How to Apply to Marylhurst

These certificate are designed for applicants with a master’s or doctoral degree in a related field who are not seeking a second master’s degree, but are seeking professional preparation in art therapy and counseling. If at any point you have questions, please reach out us. We’re happy to help: or 503.699.6268.

Application Deadline

Marylhurst’s Art Therapy Counseling program accepts new applicants each year to start in the upcoming fall term. We request that you submit your completed application by Jan. 31. Later applications are accepted and considered on a case-by-case basis.

Art Therapy or Counseling Certificate: Admissions Requirements

Because you are applying to a post-graduate program at Marylhurst, we require that you hold a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution with a 3.0 cumulative G.P.A. For the Art Therapy certificate, your master’s should be in a counseling-related field, like social work.  For the Counseling certificate, your master’s should be in art therapy.

admissions-staff-maruska-lynch-marylhurstMaruska Lynch – Graduate Admissions Counselor

“Continuing your education and furthering your professional skills is key to lifelong success within the Art Therapy and Counseling field.  Marylhurst Art Therapy Counseling post-graduate certificates offer coursework that keeps you current, grows you as a therapists and expands your abilities within the field. I am here to help you navigate the admissions process. Please feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions or need assistance.”

Contact Information

Application Process

Here are the items you will need to submit to formally apply for the Art Therapy or Counseling certificate program. Please review the list carefully and, if at any point, you have questions, we’re here to help you. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.

  • Complete the online application. Select either Art Therapy certificate or Counseling certificate under the program of study.
    Don’t worry about finishing the application in one session. You can save your work, log out and return to the application at a later time. Your information will be saved.
  • Pay the $50 nonrefundable fee
  • Within the online application, you will also be directed to submit:
    • Resume
    • Official transcripts for all colleges and universities attended
    • Recommendations
    • Miller Analogies Test scores (minimum score of 50% or higher)
    • Art Therapy certificate applicants only
      • Brief autobiography
      • Art portfolio
      • Supervised human services experience
      • Problem response
      • Essay
    • Statement of Intent (Counseling certificate applicants only)

Interview with Department Faculty
Once you submit your application documents, we’ll schedule an interview with qualified applicants. This is your chance to discuss your goals and expectations of the program with department faculty.

Official Transcripts
Official transcripts must arrive at Marylhurst University in the original unopened envelope as issued by the originating institution with an institutional stamp or signature on the closed envelope flap. Sounds very legal, but it’s pretty straightforward: contact your previous institutions and request an official transcript to be sent directly to Marylhurst: 17600 Pacific HWY, PO Box 261, Marylhurst, OR 97036-0261. Official transcripts can also be sent via a secure delivery service such as National Student Clearinghouse, eSCRIP-SAFE, or Parchment. Directions on how to do this will also be available within the online admissions application.

We really simplified this process. All you will need are the names and contact information (email) for your recommenders. In the online application, you will be prompted to input their information. This sends your recommenders an email with directions on how to submit their recommendation letter. Easy, right?

Autobiography (Art Therapy certificate only)
We’re not looking for a novel, but we do want to know about your life, your experiences and a little more about your background. And by brief, we mean two-to-three pages at the max. This is really your chance to let our faculty know who you are, your viewpoints and past experiences.

Essay (Art Therapy certificate only)
This is a six-page paper in which you briefly describe:

  • Your view on what the practice of art therapy is all about.
  • Notable aspects of your work-related experiences and career development.
  • Why you have chosen to pursue art therapy counseling and discuss previous involvement with human services professions. How these professions have influenced your goals. You may include relevant personal information and life experiences.
  • Your professional objectives for seeking admissions, including goals for using your education shortly after graduation and in the following five and ten years. Describe how you would pursue these goals.
  • Your personality strengths and weaknesses that may impact upon your function and ability as a graduate student and as an art therapy counseling practitioner.

Problem Response (Art Therapy certificate only)
Please respond to the following scenario: You are working as an art therapist counselor in a community mental health day treatment setting. You function as a professional member of a clinical treatment team consisting of a psychiatrist, psychologist, social worker, occupational therapist and other mental health counselors. You have established a close relationship with a 45-year-old female client who has a history of violence toward herself and others, but is currently functioning very well. She comes to the day treatment program several times weekly and participates in a variety of activities. This client chooses to confide in you, beginning by saying, “I can tell you this because I trust you and I know you won’t betray my confidence to anyone else.” How would you respond to this client? In two pages or less, justify your answer.

Statement of Intent (Counseling certificate only)
This is a short (one-to-two pages) statement in which we want to know why you are interested in pursuing this certificate at Marylhurst. Consider sharing your career aspirations or personal goals.  We just want to know a little more about you and your motivations for going back to school. View the complete instructions.

Miller Analogies Test (MAT)
This is a standardized test that many graduate schools require. Through a series of 100+ questions (computer-based), it assesses your logical and analytical reasoning. This test helps us better understand your potential success as a graduate student. Please send scores directly to the Office of Admissions at Marylhurst. Minimum score of 50% or higher. For general information and test locations, visit

  Are you applying as an international student?  Please review these additional requirements for graduate international student applicants.

Let’s get started.

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