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CRC Certification Benefits
Certification as a CRC (Certified Rehabilitation Counselor) indicates a higher level of qualification, to both clients and employers, while providing significant additional benefits for CRCs.The credentialing process for rehabilitation counselors establishes a nationwide measure of professionalism to be used by any agency, employer, or interest group with regard to rehabilitation counseling services. Persons who earn the designation of Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC) must demonstrate that they are of good moral character, meet acceptable standards of quality in their practice, and have the requisite education and professional background. In addition, CRCs are required to practice in accordance with the Code of Professional Ethics for Rehabilitation Counselors.
Major distinctions of CRC certification are:
- National Accreditation - The CRCC holds long-standing accreditation by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA). Visit www.noca.org for more information about NCCA requirements for accredited organizations.
- Eligibility Requirements - CRCC has established stringent eligibility requirements for certification, such as advanced education and work experience. Eligibility categories are based on research into current practices and requirements in the field.
- Competency Standards - A passing score on the CRC Exam ensures that CRCs meet nationally-accepted, key competency standards based on current practices in the field. Research is conducted at regular intervals to ensure the ongoing validity of the exam.
- Code of Ethics - Certified rehabilitation counselors are required to adhere to the CRCC’s Code of Professional Ethics for Rehabilitation Counselors, as overseen by the CRCC Ethics Committee.
- Skill Development - CRCC requires that individuals renew their certification every five years by documenting the accrual of at least 100 clock hours of continuing education or by re-examination.
- CRC Exam Currency - CRCC is committed to the continuous improvement and updating of the research which forms the foundation of the CRC Exam, as well as the techniques used to validate the exam through its administration. The certification process is built upon 40 years of empirical research of the competencies and job functions that are vital to the counselor's performance.
- Written Policies - CRCC has clearly stated policies and procedures regarding all aspects of its certification process as outlined in the CRC Certification Guide.
Advantages of CRC certification are significant.
For individuals with disabilities, CRC certification:
- Promotes consumer protection,
- Provides a standard level of competency counselors should provide, and
- Assures that certified professionals are maintaining their knowledge base and skills.
For CRCs, certification:
- Establishes a professional identity,
- Provides a marketable credential that distinguishes CRCs from other counseling professionals,
- Indicates a higher level of qualification,
- Promulgates a code of ethical practice,
- Demonstrates a commitment to an ongoing upgrading of skills,
- Increases professional flexibility and mobility, and
- Allows for faster career advancement with greater earnings potential.
For employers, CRC certification:
- Demonstrates that certified individuals meet acceptable national standards,
- Establishes a standard level of competency for employee hiring and evaluation,
- Provides employers with counselors who specialize in working with individuals with a range of disabling conditions, and
- Acknowledges counselor preparation and education to provide vocational, personal, or mental health counseling to individuals with disabilities.