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Credential in Pupil Personnel Services, School Counseling

Become an Advocate and Guide for Your Students.

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PPS Credential Overview

As a school counselor, the difference you make in a child’s life as a school counselor can last a lifetime. The PPS credential in school counseling certification program is designed for students with a master’s degree in the psychology, counseling, or education fields who want to pursue a career as a credentialed California school counselor in K–12 schools. The Pupil Personnel Service program will guide you on how to get the PPS credential for a rewarding career in school counseling and prepare you with the counseling skills you need to help students succeed in school and life.

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CTC-Approved Curriculum

Our school counseling program is approved by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CTC), one of the highest standards in the country and the world.

Bridging Theory and Practice

Gain real-world experience with our internship credential opportunity. This qualifies you to work in California’s K-12 schools as a school counselor or a school social worker while completing your course requirements, ensuring you're not just ready but also experienced.

Tailoring Your Path to Success

We understand that our students come from diverse educational and professional backgrounds. We put emphasis on an individualized education plan for you to be a successful pupil personnel worker. Whether you're a current student, a recent graduate, or a professional with a related degree, we have a flexible option tailored for you.

Preparing You for Real-World Challenges

Our program is designed not just to educate but also to empower. You will display leadership in:

  • Data-Based Decision-Making and Accountability
  • Consultation and Collaboration
  • Effective Instruction and Development of Cognitive/Academic Skills
  • Socialization and Development of Life Skills
  • Student Diversity in Development and Learning
  • School and Systems Organization, Policy Development, and Climate
  • Prevention, Crisis Intervention, and Mental Health
  • Home/School/Community Collaboration
  • School Counseling Practice and Development
  • Information Technology

Learn from the Best

Our pupil personnel services department is composed of active professionals in pupil services as well as psychological services. They bring real-world insights into the classroom to fill your learning experience with practical knowledge and current trends in school counseling and student services.

Throughout the PPS credential program you’ll be taught by professors who are working professionals, eager to share their real-world experiences, challenges, and successes in the educational psychology field and professional clinical counseling practice. All educational counseling school personnel are committed to social justice and diversity, which is evident in their activities within the community.

When outside the classroom, you’ll often find your professors working with community organizations and underserved populations, engaging in school social work practice, providing support and services, and putting their efforts towards making positive change. When an expert is needed for commentary on television or radio on the subject of school counseling and social development, you’ll often find one of your professors on the air.  



Pupil Personnel Services Credential Information

Online Programs

Alliant has been an early leader in online education, and our teacher credentialing programs are designed with both full-time students and busy, working individuals in mind.

Practical Application

Our practicum, which includes a practicum course completed online and practicum hours completed at a school site, is integral to the school counseling program and provides you with 100 hours of Practicum and 800 hours of Internship.

Hands-on Faculty

Faculty are working professionals in educational counseling and mental health with lived experience, and small class sizes ensure you get focused and individualized attention.



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Pupil Personnel Services Credential Information

PPS Online Program Learning Outcomes/Goals

The Pupil Personnel Services certificate is a specialized credential that qualifies professionals to work as counselors within the school district. This credential equips individuals with the necessary skills and knowledge to support the students in their  academic, career, and personal development.

  1. Use educational systems, theories, and standards to drive their counseling program as a school psychologist, focusing on campus safety as well the students' personal, academic, career, and social development.
  2. Provide direct and indirect services, incorporating counseling theories and career knowledge to support child welfare and ensure a comprehensive counseling program available to all in the school district.
  3. Demonstrate leadership qualities by advocating, collaborating, and implementing a comprehensive counseling program through self-evaluation, advisory councils, data collection, action planning, and program management.
  4. Understand the importance of data-driven counseling programs as an education specialist, employing sampling, methodology, and analysis to report on school profiles and student outcomes, aligning with the ASCA National Model's emphasis on achieving measurable results.  

Links and Downloads

School Performance Fact Sheet


Frequently Asked Questions


I already have a master’s degree. Can I just complete the PPS credential?

You may qualify for the PPS-only option if you already hold a master’s degree in a related field (counseling, MFT, counseling psychology, special education, etc.). We ask prospective students to fill out a transfer credit evaluation form and submit a copy of their transcripts to determine if they qualify.


What scholarship and financial aid options are available to me?

Private and public scholarships can help you meet the cost of your education, and Alliant offers institutional scholarships for many of our students. Learn more about these scholarship opportunities here. Additional financial aid is available for those who qualify in the form of loans, grants, federal work study, and military aid. Learn more in our Financial Options Guide.


When does the PPS credential program start?

The Pupil Personnel Service program is an eight-week term program and is open for enrollment during each of those respective enrollment periods. You can find a copy of our eight-week term academic calendar here.


How long does it take to complete the online PPS in school counseling credential program?

This is a 49-credit program and takes a minimum of two years to complete over 11 terms.


What assignments do students have to complete for their practicum?

Students will complete 100 hours of practicum or fieldwork and assignments will vary throughout the course of the PPS program. Example practicum assignments include the following:

  • Peer counseling
  • Personal and career assessments
  • Personal counseling experience in either an individual or group context
  • School-based programs serving parents and family members
  • Community service programs serving children and families
  • Shadowing a school counselor
  • Observing classroom instruction
  • Attending district and school-based meetings

What is the modality of this program?

All coursework for the program can be completed online, allowing you flexibility with your schedule. The residency is a one-day weekend meeting, either online or on campus, during each of the individual and group counseling courses. On-campus residencies are held on our Northern California or Southern California campuses.

woman with special education teaching credential standing in front of students

"In my experience with Alliant, it was very clear from the start that there was a commitment to education being the great equalizer. I feel like I got tools through my learning at Alliant that are allowing me to become a better teacher and reach out to everyone in my classrooms."

Evelyn Serrano
CSOE Alumna

Why Alliant

At Alliant, our mission is to prepare students for professional careers of service and leadership and to promote the discovery and application of knowledge to improve lives. We offer an education that is accredited, focused on practical knowledge and skills, connected with diverse faculty and alumni, and aimed at the student experience.

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CSOE offers a variety of degrees, certificates, and credentials in education that prepare you to make a lasting difference through teaching, counseling, leadership, advocacy, administration, management, and community work. Whether you’re looking for an online degree program or an in-person learning experience for your higher education, we are here to guide you every step of the way.


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