Online rehab counseling program tops in nation

Published January 31, 2013

BestRehabCounselingDegrees.com has recognized UB's online master’s of science in rehabilitation counseling as the top online rehab counseling programs in the nation.

UB’s program, which began four years ago under David Burganowski, research professor and program director, placed first in the site’s ranking, a jump from a previous rank of eighth by a similar site, thebestcolleges.org. UB’s on-campus graduate program in rehabilitation counseling is ranked 23rd in the nation by U.S. News and World Report.

“The fact that our online program is ranked number one in the country and our on-campus program is also highly ranked certainly demonstrates the quality of our curriculum and the dedication of our faculty,” says Burganowski.

BestRehabCounselingDegrees.com is a website dedicated to providing information and insight into the best schools from which to obtain degrees in rehabilitation counseling. Other highly ranked programs include those at University of Wisconsin, University of Massachusetts and George Washington University.

UB’s ranking by the site comes soon after the online program underwent an overhaul to meet the new accreditation standards set by the Counsel on Rehabilitation Education (CORE), which is the highest standard for rehabilitation counseling certification. CORE granted UB the maximum eight years of full accreditation through 2020.

UB’s online and on-campus rehabilitation counseling programs are identical in terms of requirements and curriculum, however. The two are separated by their delivery method, says Burganowski. He adds that the 48 credit-hour online program brings in faculty from around the country, most of whom are current practitioners.

Unique to online degrees, the program does not require students to travel to UB to meet with their instructors and colleagues. Students enroll in two online courses per semester during their first two years, and then complete an internship in their own communities during their final year.

Because the degree can be completed anywhere, the program has attracted students from as far as Brazil, Spain and China. 

“We have a student who is a veteran in the demilitarized zone between North Korea and South Korea,” says Burganowski. “This is just another example of how the distance-learning model can work.”