UNT launches Addiction Studies degree to address rising need for substance use services

In 2019, the National Survey on Drug Use and Health reported about 20 million people in the United States indicated struggling with a substance use disorder the prior year.

DENTON (UNT), Texas – The new bachelor of science degree in Addiction Studies in the University of North Texas College of Health and Public Service (HPS) Department of Rehabilitation and Health Services prepares students for careers working with people with addiction, those at risk, those in recovery and allies. Opportunities in the profession exist in hospitals, community agencies, schools, the judicial system, state and federal government organizations, recovery homes, detoxication programs, and private and public treatment programs.

“Sadly, addiction is not declining, so the need for counselors and auxiliary staff to treat the disorder is greater than it has ever been,” says Paula Heller Garland, addiction studies program coordinator and senior lecturer. “Our program equips students with the necessary skills to do the jobs available in the profession. Much like our program, the addiction profession is diverse. Addiction does not discriminate on the basis of ethnicity, socio-economic status, age, religion or gender identity. This diversity is reflected in our students, as well. We have students from all walks of life, those entering college from high school and non-traditional aged students who are making a mid-life career change. There is a place for everyone in the addiction studies program at UNT.”

The degree, which requires 36-credit hours in the major, provides a broad perspective of addiction studies, and meets all of the State of Texas requirements for licensure as a Chemical Dependency Counselor.

Students may choose from a wide variety of courses, including topics such as: •

  • Addiction
  • Addiction Counseling Theories
  • Drugs and Alcohol
  • Current Issues in Substance Use
  • Professionalism and Ethics

Students may also opt to minor in or receive a certificate in addiction studies.

For more information on the new Bachelor of Science in Addiction Studies, visit https://hps.unt.edu/addiction-studies-bs call (940) 565-2488, or email Paula.Heller-Garland@unt.edu .