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Human Services: Addictive Studies

Human Services: Addictive Studies

Just the Facts

Program Start Term: Fall, Spring, Summer
Program Length: 4 Semesters, 1 Summer
Award: A.A.

Completed Online: Both
Completed in the Evenings: Day & Evening
Pathway: Transfer Path
Career Cluster: Social Sciences
Program Locations: Council Bluffs Campus

About the Program

Drug and alcohol counseling can be most rewarding, and you can enter this valuable field by choosing Iowa Western’s Human Services Addictive Studies program. Successful graduates earn an Associate of Arts degree and are prepared to transfer to a four-year institution to complete a bachelor’s degree, or enter the workforce immediately to work in entry-level positions. This program is designed to foster critical and independent thinking.

Using the latest learning technologies in an intimate classroom setting, this program’s curriculum is experiential, giving students the opportunity for service-learning, leadership projects, and semester-long internships. In the end, you’ll meet all the educational requirements to be certified as a Drug and Alcohol Counselor by the Iowa Board of Certification.

After completing this program, you can leap into such entry-level Human Services positions as a youth worker staffer or residential technician. Iowa Western graduates have been hired by Children’s Square, Boys Town, Cooper Village, Youth Emergency Services, Clarinda Academy, and Lydia House, to name a few.


Career Information

The Human Services Addictive Studies program is designed for students intending to either transfer to a four-year institution or enter the workforce upon completion of this two-year degree. This program prepares students with the necessary knowledge and skills needed to become a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor (CADC). This program is designed to meet all educational requirements for the Iowa Board of Certification (IBC) and prepares students for the International Certification and Reciprocity Consortium (IC&RC) national exam. In addition, the addictive studies internship program will assist students in meeting the IBC’s 1,000 required clock hours of supervised substance abuse counseling experience. Career opportunities for Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselors include inpatient and outpatient counseling, conducting individual, family, and group counseling, substance abuse and DUI assessments, case management, and educational seminars.

Career Coach

Program Outcomes

Upon the successful completion of the program students will:

  • Recognize the professional characteristics of a human service worker.
  • Demonstrate effective interviewing and counseling skills when engaging clients.
  • Compose the written documentation required of a human services case manager.
  • Assemble a comprehensive service plan.
  • Recognize the dynamics of vulnerable persons and special populations.
  • Evaluate community and agency resources.


* Because career opportunities associated with this degree are so varied, salaries vary considerably as well. To explore careers and gather specific salary information, we encourage you to visit the following website: IHaveaPlanIowa