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Online BA in Psychology: Foundations of Alcohol & Drug Abuse Counseling

Psychiatrist in meeting with client

Earn a Psychology Degree Designed for Substance Abuse Counseling

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  • Duration 3.5 years
  • Cost per Credit $410
  • Credit Hours 120

Program Benefits

  • Prepare for in-demand counseling careers
  • Earn graduate credit towards the MS in Clinical Mental Health Counseling (optional)
  • Access courses on your schedule through an online, asynchronous classroom
  • One-on-one instruction from expert faculty in a program that accepts up to 90 transfer credits
  • Ranked #16 in online addiction counseling bachelor’s programs by University HQ1

Become a Supporter for Individuals Overcoming Addiction

Make a difference in the lives of those impacted by addiction with an online substance abuse counseling degree from The American Women’s College of Bay Path University (TAWC). With support from expert faculty, you’ll explore the causes of substance abuse disorders and prepare to effectively support those struggling to overcome addiction.

Gain Addictions Counseling Skills

3.5 Years

120 Total Credits

The online BA in Psychology: Foundations of Alcohol & Drug Abuse Counseling degree requires the completion of 120 total credits, including TAWC’s psychology core courses and the program’s major courses.

This program offers the optional opportunity to get started on a master’s degree by completing graduate-level courses in lieu of certain psychology core requirements.

To view the complete list of program courses, visit the curriculum for all psychology programs.

Required Foundations of Alcohol & Drug Abuse Counseling Major Courses

In this course students will apply the practices for effective reading and writing introduced in ENG 114 to the distinctive language and forms of various disciplines. This course lays the foundation for academic and professional research and stresses the use of appropriate and effective information sources. Readings for a variety of academic audiences will provide students with strategies to communicate in the sciences, business and technology, psychology, liberal studies, and the social sciences. Research and documentation skills appropriate to the disciplines are stressed. In addition to leading students through the research process from start to finish, this course will examine the many ramifications of academic honesty.

Prerequisite: ENG 114

This course is designed to assist, encourage, and challenge students to develop more fully their awareness and knowledge of self and others in a culturally pluralistic society. Basic concepts and ideas that are relevant to multicultural human service and development will be introduced. Culture and environment will be discussed as interactive experiences and basic dimensions of diverse groups will be explored.

Prerequisite: PSY 101

This course explores a wide range of personality, behavioral, and cognitive disorders. The symptoms, etiology, and dynamics of various disorders are studied, and a variety of therapeutic theories and techniques are discussed.

Prerequisite: PSY 101

This course investigates the major personality theorists from Freud to more recent and contemporary theorists like May and Rogers. Emphasis is placed on the critical evaluation and practical application of each theory reviewed.

Prerequisite: PSY 101 and junior or senior status

This course provides the student with a knowledge of the biological components of behavior. Basic neuroanatomy and neurochemistry are discussed with respect to a variety of topics such as emotions, sensation, aggression, sleep, memory, reproductive behaviors, eating disorders, and certain forms of psychopathology.

Prerequisite: PSY 101 and junior or senior status

This class examines drug and alcohol abuse and dependency. Analysis of the present opiate epidemic, types of illicit drugs, behavioral and biological effects, the common pathway for the addictive process, and the etiology of addiction as a brain disorder including the relative roles of genetic and environmental influences are explored. Psychological impact of addiction, as well as various forms of treatment, including cognitive behavioral therapy, 12-step recovery, and medication assisted treatment, are also addressed. Students will understand the consequences of use, for both the individual and for society, and some of the failed responses of government and the legal system to this disease.

Prerequisite: PSY 101

This course explores the behavioral, cognitive, emotional, and social factors that affect physical health. Prevention, intervention, and treatment techniques will be discussed with an emphasis on approaches to changing unhealthy practices and maintaining health.

Prerequisite: PSY 101

Social behavior is studied from a psychological perspective. Topics addressed typically include: small group behavior, personal perception, attitude acquisition and change, leadership, conformity, and prejudice.

Prerequisite: PSY 101 and junior or senior status

This course introduces fundamental skills used in the helping profession including, interviewing, developing rapport, and elements of the counseling process. The multicultural, ethical and legal considerations, non-verbal behavior, and self-care will also be addressed.

Prerequisite: PSY101, Jr/Sr status

The BA in Psychology: Foundations of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counseling program requires 41 credits of major electives:

  • Developmental Psychology Elective (3 credits)
  • Experiential Electives (6 credits)
  • General Electives (32 credits)

Learn more about which courses apply to these credits by speaking with an enrollment counselor.

Choose one of the following

This course provides students with the foundation in counseling ethics. This course will cover basic ethical principles such as informed consent and confidentiality; during this course, students will demonstrate an understanding of ethics by comparing codes across the mental health professions. This course will also cover professional issues such as self-awareness and the business of psychopathology.

Prerequisite: PSY 101

Ethics and Professional Conduct in Psychology This course is designed to provide students with a practical awareness of ethical standards and codes of conduct in the field of psychology. Students will review and critically analyze case studies which incorporate such topics as ethical decision making, informed consent, confidentiality, boundary and relationship issues, professional competence, supervision, and multicultural and diversity issues.

Choose one of the following

This course explores some of the key areas within the field of clinical psychology, with particular emphasis on assessment (cognitive, personality, and diagnostic) and treatment (crisis intervention and psychotherapy). Various forms of psychotherapy, including psychodynamic, cognitive, and humanistic/experiential therapy, will also be examined.

Prerequisites: PSY101, PSY240, and Jr/Sr status

This course will focus on the principles of substance use counseling. Substance use counseling theories, orientations and treatment models will be evaluated for effectiveness. Students will learn, discuss and practice different facilitation styles and approaches to individual, family and special population’s substance use counseling. Role playing will be utilized to demonstrate appropriate skill development as it relates to substance use counseling. This class, including role playing, will provide opportunities for students to apply theoretical knowledge to clinical situations.

What You’ll Learn

The online BA in Psychology: Foundations of Alcohol & Drug Abuse Counseling degree offers essential skills identified by leading researchers and practitioners in the field. You’ll build career-ready skills for clinical counseling, intervention, health psychology and supporting those with substance abuse disorders.

By Graduation, You’ll Have Skills to:

Substance Abuse Counseling Careers: A Growing Need for Professionals

Based on research published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the counseling field is expected to grow 22% and create more than 77,000 new positions for counselors by 2031.2 With the online substance abuse psychology major, you’ll prepare for in-demand substance abuse counseling positions and gain the academic credential to increase your professional value with a master’s degree.

Explore Major Careers

Learn from Industry Experts

At The American Women’s College, your learning is expanded by the rich workplace experience our faculty bring to the classroom. Faculty are professionals who hold an array of titles in the fields they teach. Their involvement in the day-to-day challenges of their role and industry brings curriculums to life with real-world examples as you connect what you learn to what they share.

Faculty Spotlight

Each faculty member at TAWC incorporates real industry experience into each lesson. As a student, you’ll receive personalized, one-on-one support and graduate fully prepared to face the challenges of your chosen field.

Michelle McGrath, MA, Senior Director, Psychology Programs

Michelle comes to Bay Path with a combination of experience in the field of psychology as well as higher education. She began her career working as a licensed clinician in a variety of mental health settings, and eventually transitioned to working in higher education where she could combine her interests.

Prior to coming to Bay Path University, she worked at Southern New Hampshire University supporting students in a variety of roles, including university counselor, academic advisor, and adjunct faculty member. An undergraduate education major, Michelle has found that her passion lies with education and student support. Having worked in both a traditional and online undergraduate program, Michelle is able to apply her broad experience to enhancing The American Women’s College psychology program both online and on ground. She is inspired daily by the stories of her students and the motivation and dedication they have for their education.

Choose Your Major

Customize your BA in Psychology program by choosing from a variety of career-focused majors designed to help you achieve your professional goals.

BA in Psychology: Child Psychology

The online BA in Psychology: Child Psychology examines the physical, intellectual, emotional, social, and moral aspects of child development.

BA in Psychology: Counseling Foundations

The online BA in Psychology: Counseling Foundations major offers experiential learning through instruction, role play, and internships (optional).

BA in Psychology: Forensic Psychology

The online BA in Psychology: Forensic Psychology major combines insights of psychology within the mental health, criminal justice, and legal systems.

BA in Psychology: Human Services and Rehabilitation

The online BA in Psychology: Human Services & Rehabilitation degree explores the needs of individuals and communities in social, rehabilitation and human services settings.

Frequently Asked Questions

Explore our frequently asked questions for in-depth answers. If you don’t find what you’re looking for, reach out to us.

Choosing a major for your degree allows you to gain career-ready skills in a specific area of expertise. These specialty skills will allow you to stand out among other professionals in your field and better compete for the position you want.

You’ll complete 120 total credits to earn the online Foundations of Alcohol & Drug Abuse Counseling degree. You can review courses now.

No, a major is not required for the online BA in Psychology program. You may choose the standard Psychology degree or one of five major options, which include:

  1. Child Psychology
  2. Counseling Foundations
  3. Forensic Psychology
  4. Foundations of Alcohol & drug Abuse Counseling
  5. Human Services & Rehabilitation

You can learn more about coursework for this program on our curriculum page.

The requirements for the online BA in Psychology program include:

  • Submit your application.
  • Submit official high school transcripts and college transcripts if applicable.
  • Have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0.

You can learn more about our admission requirements on our admission page.

Yes. All students of the online BA in Psychology program are required to take the same psychology core courses. This provides the flexibility to change majors during the program without the risk of losing credits.

Those who hold an online Foundations of Alcohol & Drug Abuse Counseling degree often pursue career titles such as crisis intervention representative, case manager, employment counselor and more. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the field of social service is expected to grow 10% by 2031. Learn more about your career options by visiting our careers page.

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  1. University HQ. Top Rankings for Bay Path University. Retrieved from
  2. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Occupational Outlook Handbook. “Substance Abuse, Behavioral Disorder, and Mental Health Counselors.” Retrieved from