School of Social Work

Chemical Dependency Courses

Thank you for your interest in learning more about Cleveland State University’s Chemical Dependency Counseling course offerings.  Please read through this document to view important information.  After you have had time to read the enclosed information, please feel free to contact the individuals listed below with any additional questions you may have.   

LEVELS OF LICENSURE/ENDORSEMENT FOR CHEMICAL DEPENDENCY COUNSELORS in Ohio

CDCA PRE: Chemical Dependency Counselor Assistant Preliminary (formerly called CDCA I): 

  • Forty (40) hours of chemical dependency specific education in the eight content areas 

CDCA: Chemical Dependency Counselor Assistant  (formerly called CDCA II): 

  • Hold Preliminary CDCA for at least 10 months 
  • Thirty (30) hours of chemical dependency specific education in eight content areas 

LCDC II: Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor II 

  • An Associate's degree in a behavioral science or nursing OR a Bachelor's degree in any field. 
  • One year (2,000 hours) of chemical dependency counseling related compensated work or supervised internship experience. 
  • A job description identifying clinical functions signed by your Clinical Supervisor.
  • 180 hours of chemical dependency education in nine specific content areas. 
  • 220 practical experience hours in the twelve core functions. This may be completed as part of your work experience requirements. 
  • Successful completion of the ADC examination or completion of Examination Waiver Form. 

LCDC III: Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor III 

  • A minimum of a Bachelor's degree in a behavioral science or nursing. 
  • One year (2,000 hours) of chemical dependency counseling related compensated work or supervised internship experience. 
  •  A job description identifying clinical functions signed by your Clinical Supervisor.
  • 180 hours of chemical dependency education in nine specific content areas. 
  • 220 practical experience hours in the twelve core functions. This may be completed as part of your work experience requirements. 
  • Successful completion of the ADC examination or completion of Examination Waiver Form. 

LICDC: Licensed Independent Chemical Dependency Counselor 

  • A minimum of a Master's degree in a behavioral science with documentation of coursework in ten specific content areas. 
  • One year (2,000 hours) of chemical dependency counseling related compensated work or supervised internship experience. 
  • A job description identifying clinical functions signed by your Clinical Supervisor.
  • 180 hours of chemical dependency education in nine specific content areas. 
  • 220 practical experience hours in the twelve core functions. This may be completed as part of your work experience requirements. 
  • Successful completion of the ADC examination or completion of Examination Waiver Form. 

EXCITING OPPORTUNITIES FOR STUDENTS IN THE FIELD OF ADDICTIONS COUNSELING

CSU now offers two separate CD counseling options: 

OPTION 1 CHEMICAL DEPENDENCY COUNSELOR ASSISTANT PRELIMINARY (CDCA PRE): 

Students with at least a high school degree can take a 3 credit online course (SWK 494 at the undergraduate level or SWK 694 at the graduate level).  This course is endorsed by the Ohio Board of Chemical Dependency Professionals (OBCDP) as meeting all the requirements for the CDCA preliminary (which is an endorsement by the board). After successfully completing the course (SWK 494/694) students can contact the OBCDP, fill out an application, pay an application fee, and fill out a felony history statement to apply for their CDCA preliminary.  This endorsement is valid for approximately 13 months.   

Students who wish to retain their CDCA must take an additional class to earn their CDCA (formerly CDCA II).  This class is CNS 501.  Students must have had their CDCA preliminary for at least 10 months before they apply for the CDCA renewable.  Obtaining the CDCA renewable requires another application and registration fee payable to the OBCDP.  According to current policy, the CDCA Renewable is renewable every two years for life.   

Frequently Asked Questions 

Q:  Are the CDCA classes offered above endorsed by the OBCDP? 

A:  Yes!  

Q:  What are the course numbers for the CDCA preliminary and CDCA renewable classes and when are they offered? 

A:  The CDCA preliminary class is SWK 494 for undergraduate students or SWK 694 for graduate students.  Both SWK 494 and SWK 694 are 3 credits and offered asynchronously online.  The CDCA renewable class is CNS 501 and is a 4 credit class that is available in person or via synchronous remote access.

Fall 2021:

  • SWK 494 (3 credits) online August 21 to Dec 11, 2021)
  • SWK 694 (3 credits) online (August 21 to Dec 11, 2021)
  • CNS 501 (4 credits) Saturdays 9am-12:50pm  (August 21 to Dec 11, 2021) 

Spring 2022:

  • SWK 494 (3 credits) asynchronous online (Jan 15 to May 13, 2022)
  • SWK 694 (3 credits) asynchronous online (Jan 15 to May 13, 2022)
  • CNS 501 (4 credits) Saturdays 9am-12:50pm in person or synchronous remote access (Jan 15 to May 13, 2022)

Summer 2022:

  • SWK 494 (3 credits) asynchronous online (May 21 to July 1, 2022)
  • SWK 694 (3 credits) asynchronous online (May 21 to July 1, 2022)
  • CNS 501 (4 credits) Mondays and Wednesday 5pm-9:10pm in person or synchronous remote access (May 21 to July 1, 2022)

Q:  Do I have to have a particular major or previous counseling experience to take the CDCA preliminary courses and earn my CDCA PRE? 

A:  No.  You do not have to have a particular major and you do not need any prior counseling experience to take the classes or earn your CDCA preliminary.   

Q: I have a felony history, does this disqualify me from obtaining my CDCA?   
A:  Not necessarily.  The OCDPB reviews individuals’ felony history on a case by case basis.  There is acknowledgement within the field that many of the best CD counselors have successfully moved away from past personal addiction.   

Q: Who is eligible to take the CDCA preliminary course? 

A: Anybody who is eligible to enroll at CSU (a) high school graduates including those who are in recovery from substance abuse, (b) existing bachelor or masters level students in any degree program who wish to graduate with a OCDPB endorsement, (c) community members who are interested in a first degree, (d) individuals returning to school

for an endorsement to complement their existing degree, or (e) individuals seeking to fulfill continuing education requirements.   

Q: Why would I want to take these classes? 

A: 1.  This program will allow students to place the letters CDCA after their name.   

2.  It will allow students in any field to learn more about chemical dependency related issues for professional or personal reasons. 

3.  It will allow students who major in a field where it is difficult to obtain a license an opportunity to work in the field as a counseling professional.    

4.  It will provide students with necessary credentials to obtain an entry-level job in the substance abuse field.   

5.  Given the widespread occurrence of substance use disorders, it will provide workers in almost any field the knowledge to intervene on a basic level with a client or co-worker who is impacted by chemical dependency.  This is particularly relevant for teachers, and all health care professionals including nurses, PT, OT, psychologists, and social workers. 

6.  It will allow students to distinguish their resume.  For example, a high school teacher applicant who also holds a CDCA credential may be very attractive to many employers. 

7.  In social work, for example, it is desirable for students completing their field practicum to have a CDCA so that the student can provide a greater service to their practicum agency. 

Q: What can I do with a CDCA? 

A: According to the Ohio Revised Code, this is the Scope of practice for chemical dependency counselor assistants (CDCA): 

(A) An individual holding a valid chemical dependency counselor assistant certificate may do both of the following in addition to practicing chemical dependency counseling:  

(1) Perform treatment planning, assessment, crisis intervention, individual and group counseling, case management, and education services as they relate to abuse of or dependency on alcohol and other drugs;  

(2) Refer individuals with nonchemical dependency conditions to appropriate sources of help.  

(B) An individual holding a valid chemical dependency counselor assistant certificate may practice chemical dependency counseling and perform the tasks specified in paragraph (A) of this rule only while under the supervision of any of the following:  

(1) An independent chemical dependency counselor-clinical supervisor, independent chemical dependency counselor or chemical dependency counselor III licensed under this chapter;  

(2) An individual authorized under Chapter 4731. of the Revised Code to practice medicine and surgery or osteopathic medicine and surgery;  

(3) A psychologist licensed under Chapter 4732. of the Revised Code;  

(4) A registered nurse licensed under Chapter 4723. of the Revised Code if such supervision is consistent with the scope of practice of the registered nurse.  

(5) A professional clinical counselor, independent social worker, or independent marriage and family therapist licensed under Chapter 4757. of the Revised Code if such supervision is consistent with the scope of practice of the professional clinical counselor, independent social worker, or independent marriage and family therapist.  

(C) Perform tasks identified and listed in paragraph (KK) of rule 3793:2-1-08 of the Administrative Code as they relate to abuse of or dependency on alcohol and other drugs. These tasks may only be performed while under the supervision of one of those individuals designated in paragraph (K) of rule 3793:2-1-05 of the Administrative Code.  

(D) A chemical dependency counselor assistant may not practice as an individual practitioner.  

OPTION 2 CHEMICAL DEPENDENCY COUNSELING CERTIFICATE JOINT PROGRAM IN COUNSELING & SOCIAL WORK: 

Students can take this 12-credit (5 classes) certificate program offered jointly by the Education Counseling department and the School of Social Work.  This five course sequence is accredited by the Ohio Board of Chemical Dependency Professionals (OBCDP) as providing 180 hours of chemical dependency specific education in nine different content areas required for the following OBCDP licenses: LCDC II, LCDC III, LICDC, LICDC-CS.

Currently, only students who earn their master’s degree in education counseling or social work are eligible to earn the CD certificate; however, other students are welcome to take the courses.  Students without their masters in social work or education counseling can still use the five courses to count towards the 180 hour CD education requirement for licensure by the OBCDP.

As a reminder, these are the levels of Chemical Dependency Counselor licensure in Ohio:

LCDC II: Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor II 

  • An Associate's degree in a behavioral science or nursing OR a Bachelor's degree in any field. 
  • One year (2,000 hours) of chemical dependency counseling related compensated work or supervised internship experience. 
  • A job description identifying clinical functions signed by your Clinical Supervisor.
  • 180 hours of chemical dependency education in nine specific content areas. 
  • 220 practical experience hours in the twelve core functions. This may be completed as part of your work experience requirements. 
  • Successful completion of the ADC examination or completion of Examination Waiver Form. 

LCDC III: Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor III 

  • A minimum of a Bachelor's degree in a behavioral science or nursing. 
  •  One year (2,000 hours) of chemical dependency counseling related compensated work or supervised internship experience. 
  • A job description identifying clinical functions signed by your Clinical Supervisor.
  • 180 hours of chemical dependency education in nine specific content areas. 
  • 220 practical experience hours in the twelve core functions. This may be completed as part of your work experience requirements. 
  • Successful completion of the ADC examination or completion of Examination Waiver Form. 

LICDC: Licensed Independent Chemical Dependency Counselor 

  • A minimum of a Master's degree in a behavioral science with documentation of coursework in ten specific content areas. 
  • One year (2,000 hours) of chemical dependency counseling related compensated work or supervised internship experience. 
  • A job description identifying clinical functions signed by your Clinical Supervisor.
  • 180 hours of chemical dependency education in nine specific content areas. 
  • 220 practical experience hours in the twelve core functions. This may be completed as part of your work experience requirements. 
  • Successful completion of the ADC examination or completion of Examination Waiver Form. 
Frequently Asked Questions 

Q:  WHAT ARE THE COURSES AND WHEN ARE THEY OFFERED? 

A: The certificate courses are offered in the fall, spring, and summer depending on sufficient enrollment. Courses can be taken in any order and multiple courses can be taken at the same time. There are five required courses:  

  1. SWK 694 (3 credits) 
  2. CNS 501 (4 credits) 
  3. CNS 502 (1 credit, can be taken same semester as CNS 503)
  4. CNS 503 (1 credit, can be taken same semester as CNS 502)
  5. One additional course on groups which can be either SWK 615 (3 credits, for MSW students) or CNS 623 (3 credits, for CNS students).  Students who previously took SWK 692 can count that class to meet this requirement.  Nondegree seeking student who are working towards MSW admission should take SWK 615 rather than CNS 623.

Fall 2021:

  • SWK 694 (3 credits) online asynchronous (August 21 to Dec 11, 2021)
  • SWK 615 (3 credits) online or in person see campusnet for schedule (August 21 to Dec 11, 2021) 
  • CNS 501 (4 credits) Saturdays 9am-12:50pm  (August 21 to Dec 11, 2021) 
  • CNS 502 (1 credit) Saturday 1pm-5:10pm (8/21, 8/28, & 9/4 only)
  • CNS 503 (1 credit) Saturday 1pm-5:10pm (9/18, 9/25, & 10/2 only)

Spring 2022:

  • SWK 694 (3 credits) online asynchronous (Jan 15 to May 13, 2022)
  • CNS 501 (4 credits) Saturdays 9am-12:50pm in person or synchronous remote access (Jan 15 to May 13, 2022)
  • CNS 502 (1 credit) Saturdays 1pm-5:10pm in person or synchronous remote access (1/15, 1/22, & 1/29 only)
  • CNS 503 (1 credit) Saturdays 1pm-5pm in person or synchronous remote access (2/12, 2/19, & 2/26)
  • CNS 623 (3 credits) Mondays 5pm-7:50pm (Jan 15 to May 13, 2022)

Summer 2022:

  • SWK 694 (3 credits) online asynchronous (May 21 – July 1, 2022)
  • SWK 615 (3 credits) online asynchronous (May 21 – July 1, 2022 or July 2-Aug 12)
  • CNS 501 (4 credits) Mondays and Wednesday 5pm-9:10pm in person or synchronous remote access (May 21 – July 1, 2022)
  • CNS 502 (1 credit) Saturday 1pm-5:10pm in person or synchronous remote access (5/ 21, 5/28, & 6/4)
  • CNS 503 (1 credit) Saturday 1pm-5:10pm in person or synchronous remote access (6/18, 6/25, & 7/2)

Q: WHICH CLASSES SHOULD I TAKE FIRST?

A: Students are welcome to take all 12 credits in one semester if they desire.  Students wishing to take the classes more slowly are encouraged to take SWK 694 and SWK 615 first (total= 6 credits) and then to take CNS 501, CNS 502, and CNS 503 (total=6 credits).

Q: HOW MUCH DO THE CLASSES COST, CAN I GET FINANCIAL AID?

A: To learn about the cost of classes and financial aid please contact 216-687-5411 or email allin1@csuohio.edu.  The cost of classes can also be found here: https://www.csuohio.edu/treasury-services/tuition-and-fees

Q: WHO IS THE CERTIFICATE DESIGNED FOR?  

A: The certificate is designed for students in the master’s programs in counseling and social work or graduates from accredited programs in counseling (CACREP accreditation) and social work (CSWE accreditation).  Upon graduation with their master’s degree, students who complete this 5 course sequence will earn a Graduate Certificate in Chemical Dependency Counseling from CSU.   

Q: WHO ELSE CAN TAKE THE COURSES?  

A: Those holding an undergraduate degree can take these courses toward the academic hours required for licensure as a chemical dependency counselor. Seniors in the behavioral sciences may also take the 400 or 500 level courses as electives.  Currently, non-master students cannot earn the certificate from CSU (although this may change in the future), but they can use the courses to count towards the 180 hours of chemical dependency education in nine specific content areas required for licensure. 

Q: HOW DOES THE CERTIFICATE WORK?  

A: Once the student has completed the courses and the master degree they fill out a certificate completion form, submit it to the education counseling department secretary, and then they are awarded the certificate. This certificate provides 180 hours of chemical dependency education in nine specific content areas required for the following licenses by the Ohio Chemical Dependency Professionals Board (LCDC II, LCDC III, LICDC).   

Q: IS THE PROGRAM ACCREDITED BY THE OBCDP?  

A: Yes!  CSU was first program in the state to earn accreditation.  This means that the five courses that are part of this certificate program are accepted by the OBCDP as meeting the "180 hours of chemical dependency education in nine specific content areas" requirements for licensure. 

PROGRAM CONTACT:  

COUNSELING: Stephanie Drcar, Ph.D. at s.drcar@csuohio.edu 
SOCIAL WORK: Patricia Stoddard Dare, Ph.D. at p.stoddarddare@csuohio.edu