Summary Report for:
21-1015.00 - Rehabilitation Counselors
Counsel individuals to maximize the independence and employability of persons coping with personal, social, and vocational difficulties that result from birth defects, illness, disease, accidents, or the stress of daily life. Coordinate activities for residents of care and treatment facilities. Assess client needs and design and implement rehabilitation programs that may include personal and vocational counseling, training, and job placement.
Sample of reported job titles: Case Manager, Human Services Care Specialist, Job Coach, Program Coordinator, Program Specialist, Rehabilitation Counselor, Rehabilitation Specialist, Vocational Case Manager, Vocational Placement Specialist, Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (VRC)
Tasks | Technology Skills | Tools Used | Knowledge | Skills | Abilities | Work Activities | Detailed Work Activities | Work Context | Job Zone | Education | Credentials | Interests | Work Styles | Work Values | Related Occupations | Wages & Employment | Job Openings | Additional Information
- Prepare and maintain records and case files, including documentation such as clients' personal and eligibility information, services provided, narratives of client contacts, or relevant correspondence.
- Develop rehabilitation plans that fit clients' aptitudes, education levels, physical abilities, and career goals.
- Monitor and record clients' progress to ensure that goals and objectives are met.
- Confer with clients to discuss their options and goals so that rehabilitation programs and plans for accessing needed services can be developed.
- Maintain close contact with clients during job training and placements to resolve problems and evaluate placement adequacy.
- Confer with physicians, psychologists, occupational therapists, and other professionals to develop and implement client rehabilitation programs.
- Arrange for physical, mental, academic, vocational, and other evaluations to obtain information for assessing clients' needs and developing rehabilitation plans.
- Analyze information from interviews, educational and medical records, consultation with other professionals, and diagnostic evaluations to assess clients' abilities, needs, and eligibility for services.
- Develop and maintain relationships with community referral sources, such as schools or community groups.
- Locate barriers to client employment, such as inaccessible work sites, inflexible schedules, or transportation problems, and work with clients to develop strategies for overcoming these barriers.
- Develop diagnostic procedures to determine clients' needs.
- Collaborate with clients' families to implement rehabilitation plans, such as behavioral, residential, social, or employment goals.
- Participate in job development and placement programs, contacting prospective employers, placing clients in jobs, and evaluating the success of placements.
- Arrange for on-site job coaching or assistive devices, such as specially equipped wheelchairs, to help clients adapt to work or school environments.
- Manage budgets and direct case service allocations, authorizing expenditures and payments.
- Collaborate with community agencies to establish facilities and programs for persons with disabilities.
- Accounting software — Budgeting software
- Analytical or scientific software — Test interpretation software
- Calendar and scheduling software — Fanatic Software Informant; Microsoft Office Outlook (Calendar); Scheduling software
- Data base user interface and query software — Data input software
- Document management software — Adobe Systems Adobe Reader
- Electronic mail software — Email software; Microsoft Outlook
- Internet browser software — Microsoft Internet Explorer; Microsoft Mobile Explorer MME; Netscape Navigator; Web browser software
- Medical software — Chart Links; Client information database software; Electronic medical record EMR software
- Mobile location based services software — Global positioning system GPS software
- Mobile operator specific application software — Microsoft ActiveSync
- Office suite software — Microsoft Office ; Microsoft Office Mobile
- Presentation software — Microsoft PowerPoint
- Spreadsheet software — Microsoft Excel
- Transaction security and virus protection software — Encryption software; Virus protection software
- Voice recognition software — Word recognition software
- Word processing software — Microsoft Word
Hot Technology — a technology requirement frequently included in employer job postings.
- Computer mouse or trackballs — Alternative mouse options
- Desktop computers
- Digital telephones — Voice over internet protocol VoIP systems
- Global positioning system GPS receiver — Global positioning system GPS receivers
- Intercom systems
- Keyboards — Alternative computer keyboards
- Laser fax machine — Laser facsimile machines
- Laser printers
- Lasers — Laser pointers
- Liquid crystal display projector — Liquid crystal display LCD projectors
- Mobile phones — Smartphones
- Notebook computers
- Personal computers
- Pocket calculator — Handheld calculators
- Special purpose telephones — Multi-line telephone systems
- Tablet computers
- Voice synthesizers for the physically challenged — Voice output communication aids
- Therapy and Counseling — Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.
- Customer and Personal Service — Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
- Psychology — Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
- Education and Training — Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
- English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
- Clerical — Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
- Administration and Management — Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
- Sociology and Anthropology — Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.
- Computers and Electronics — Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
- Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
- Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
- Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
- Service Orientation — Actively looking for ways to help people.
- Writing — Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
- Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
- Time Management — Managing one's own time and the time of others.
- Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- Negotiation — Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.
- Systems Analysis — Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
- Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
- Persuasion — Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.
- Instructing — Teaching others how to do something.
- Operations Analysis — Analyzing needs and product requirements to create a design.
- Systems Evaluation — Identifying measures or indicators of system performance and the actions needed to improve or correct performance, relative to the goals of the system.
- Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
- Learning Strategies — Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.
- Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
- Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
- Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
- Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
- Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
- Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
- Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
- Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
- Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
- Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
- Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
- Fluency of Ideas — The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).
- Originality — The ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem.
- Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
- Assisting and Caring for Others — Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.
- Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
- Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
- Communicating with Persons Outside Organization — Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
- Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
- Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards — Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
- Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
- Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others — Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.
- Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
- Coaching and Developing Others — Identifying the developmental needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or otherwise helping others to improve their knowledge or skills.
- Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
- Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings — Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
- Provide Consultation and Advice to Others — Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups on technical, systems-, or process-related topics.
- Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates — Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.
- Scheduling Work and Activities — Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.
- Interacting With Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
- Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
- Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others — Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks.
- Developing Objectives and Strategies — Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.
- Selling or Influencing Others — Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions.
- Developing and Building Teams — Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.
- Performing Administrative Activities — Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.
- Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People — Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.
- Performing for or Working Directly with the Public — Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.
- Training and Teaching Others — Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
- Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others — Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
- Thinking Creatively — Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
Detailed Work Activities
- Maintain client records.
- Develop treatment plans for patients or clients.
- Monitor clients to evaluate treatment progress.
- Confer with clients to discuss treatment plans or progress.
- Collaborate with other professionals to assess client needs or plan treatments.
- Arrange physical or mental health services for clients.
- Evaluate the effectiveness of counseling or educational programs.
- Refer individuals to educational or work programs.
- Evaluate characteristics of individuals to determine needs or eligibility.
- Develop working relationships with others to facilitate program activities.
- Assist clients in handling details of daily life.
- Develop tools to diagnose or assess needs.
- Evaluate potential problems in home or work environments of clients.
- Confer with family members to discuss client treatment plans or progress.
- Manage organizational or program finances.
- Collaborate with other professionals to develop education or assistance programs.
- Contact With Others — 61% responded “Constant contact with others.”
- Face-to-Face Discussions — 71% responded “Every day.”
- Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 63% responded “Every day.”
- Work With Work Group or Team — 54% responded “Extremely important.”
- Telephone — 57% responded “Every day.”
- Coordinate or Lead Others — 36% responded “Extremely important.”
- Electronic Mail — 64% responded “Every day.”
- Frequency of Decision Making — 56% responded “Every day.”
- Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 43% responded “Very important results.”
- Structured versus Unstructured Work — 43% responded “Some freedom.”
- Freedom to Make Decisions — 37% responded “A lot of freedom.”
- Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 50% responded “Very important.”
- Letters and Memos — 47% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
- Time Pressure — 36% responded “Every day.”
- Duration of Typical Work Week — 43% responded “More than 40 hours.”
- Physical Proximity — 27% responded “Very close (near touching).”
- Deal With External Customers — 32% responded “Extremely important.”
- Frequency of Conflict Situations — 30% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
- Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 39% responded “Very important.”
- Spend Time Sitting — 34% responded “Less than half the time.”
- Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People — 23% responded “Once a year or more but not every month.”
- Responsible for Others' Health and Safety — 35% responded “Moderate responsibility.”
|Title||Job Zone Five: Extensive Preparation Needed|
|Education||Most of these occupations require graduate school. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D. (law degree).|
|Related Experience||Extensive skill, knowledge, and experience are needed for these occupations. Many require more than five years of experience. For example, surgeons must complete four years of college and an additional five to seven years of specialized medical training to be able to do their job.|
|Job Training||Employees may need some on-the-job training, but most of these occupations assume that the person will already have the required skills, knowledge, work-related experience, and/or training.|
|Job Zone Examples||These occupations often involve coordinating, training, supervising, or managing the activities of others to accomplish goals. Very advanced communication and organizational skills are required. Examples include pharmacists, lawyers, astronomers, biologists, clergy, neurologists, and veterinarians.|
|SVP Range||(8.0 and above)|
Interest code: SI Want to discover your interests? Take the O*NET Interest Profiler at My Next Move.
- Social — Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
- Investigative — Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
- Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
- Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
- Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
- Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
- Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
- Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
- Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
- Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
- Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
- Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
- Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
- Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
- Leadership — Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
- Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
- Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
- Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
- Relationships — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
- Achievement — Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
- Support — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
Wages & Employment Trends
|Median wages (2018)||$17.13 hourly, $35,630 annual|
|Employment (2016)||119,000 employees|
|Projected growth (2016-2026)||Faster than average (10% to 14%)|
|Projected job openings (2016-2026)||14,500|
|Top industries (2016)|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2018 wage data and 2016-2026 employment projections . "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2016-2026). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.
Job Openings on the Web
Sources of Additional Information
Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.
- American Correctional Association
- American Occupational Therapy Association
- American Rehabilitation Counseling Association
- Association of People Supporting Employment First
- Commission on Rehabilitative Counseling Certification
- International Association of Rehabilitation Professionals
- National Association of Social Workers
- National Council on Rehabilitation Education
- National Rehabilitation Association
- Occupational Outlook Handbook: Rehabilitation counselors