May 22, 2024  
2023-2024 SGPP Catalog and Student Handbook 
2023-2024 SGPP Catalog and Student Handbook

Addiction Studies Certificate

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Programs of Study

Program Description

This program is designed to provide students an understanding of the interrelatedness of addictions and chemical use and dependency on individuals, families, and society. A goal of the program is to provide students with the knowledge and skills needed to be able to recognize and treat individuals with chemical and co-occurring concerns. A variety of treatment approaches are studied with an emphasis on chemical health. Through their coursework and practicum experiences, students are expected to develop competency in the following twelve core functions of an alcohol and drug counselor: screening, intake, orientation, assessment, treatment planning, counseling, case management, crisis intervention, client education, referral, reports and record keeping, and consultation with other professionals regarding treatment and services. The program is designed to meet educational requirements for Minnesota licensure for licensed alcohol and drug counselor (LADC).

Program Outcomes

Graduates of the Graduate Certificate in Addiction Studies program are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Integrate and apply theories and models of chemical dependency in the continuum of care and process of change.
  2. Incorporate into practice research and knowledge of psycho-pharmacology associated with addiction and chemical dependency.
  3. Provide varied counseling techniques focusing on the inclusion of family, systems, and sociocultural factors.
  4. Utilize the 12 core functions of drug and alcohol counseling to create, implement, and evaluate treatment.
  5. Develop rapport and effective methods of treatment for substance abuse with clients from culturally diverse backgrounds.
  6. Provide chemical dependency counseling integrating an awareness and discernment of co-occurring disorders/dual diagnoses.
  7. Foster ethical and professional counseling practices incorporating legal and moral principles and a self-awareness of biases, beliefs, and spirit within their work.

Program Structure and Delivery

The 25 required program credits are made up of 19 credits of coursework in addiction studies and an 880-hour, 6-credit practicum. Courses are provided in a remote delivery format with synchronous and asynchronous learning.

Degree Requirements

Core Courses 19 cr.
Practicum Courses   6 cr.
Total 25 cr.


The faculty members for this program have earned doctorate or master’s degrees. Faculty are selected for their combination of educational and professional experience and expertise.

Admission Requirements

Applicants may apply for admission to the program at any time during the year. Applicants must have completed an undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited institution and maintained an overall grade point average of 2.75 on a 4.00 scale. Applicants must demonstrate the language proficiency necessary for successful graduate coursework. Applicants must complete an interview with a program administrator as part of the admission process.

Applicants for the program will be required to have the following prerequisite coursework completed before regular admission to the program and have earned a grade of “B” or better:

  • Developmental Psychology: PY605 or equivalent
  • Counseling Theory: PY613 or equivalent
  • Ethics and Professional Issues: PY722 or equivalent
  • Psychophysiology: PY606 or equivalent
  • Statistical Techniques: PY620 or equivalent
  • Counseling Skills and Practice: PY724 or equivalent
  • Psychopathology or Abnormal Psychology: PY608 or equivalent

Application Process

Applicants must submit:

  1. Completed application form with the nonrefundable application fee (fee not required for alumni or students seeking readmission or veterans and active military personnel) and,
  2. An official transcript(s) issued to Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota from the institution posting the applicant’s completed bachelor degree and other relevant transcripts documenting program prerequisites and potential transfer credits.  (An official transcript is one that is sent to the university by the credit-granting institution.  Transcripts from countries other than the U.S. must have a course-by-course evaluation completed from an approved member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services ( These would preferably be completed by World Education Services or Educational Credential Evaluators and must be deemed equivalent to accredited U.S. university standards).
  3. A personal statement which includes:
    1. brief description of the applicant’s background, training, and experience and,
    2. statement indicating the career goals of the applicant and their reasons for seeking admission to the program and,
    3. description of the areas the applicant considers to be their strengths and areas in which the applicant wishes to develop greater strengths and abilities and,
    4. personal information the applicant wishes to share.
  4. Three letters of recommendation that verify professional and/or volunteer experience and academic ability and,
  5. A current résumé listing educational background and work experience.
  6. Applicants with international transcripts may require an English language proficiency exam (TOEFL, IELTS, PTE or MELAB).

Please Note: Application materials should be sent to the attention of the Office of Admission on the Twin Cities campus.

Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota
Office of Admission
2500 Park Ave S
Minneapolis, MN  55404

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Programs of Study