You are here

Home » State Human Resources » Compensation & job classes » Classified Job Listing » » State of Washington Class Specification

State of Washington Classified Job Specification


<< Classified Job Listing

Class Code: 353M
Category: Social Services

Class Series Concept

See Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor 1.


This is a fully qualified journey level. Independently provides vocational rehabilitation counseling and case management to a client caseload consisting of individuals with varying degrees of disabling conditions to assist them in achieving a competitive employment outcome. Incumbents determine their own work methods within Federal and agency policies to provide needed vocational rehabilitation services under direct supervision of a Vocational Rehabilitation Supervisor and guidance of a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor 4.

Distinguishing Characteristics

This is the journey-level classification providing vocational rehabilitation counseling and direct case management services to agency clients. Independently integrates vocational rehabilitation service delivery with other core programs within the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), and provides liaison with an array of other programs that co-enroll Department of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) clients into their services.

Typical Work

Provides vocational rehabilitation counseling and devises own work methods to provide vocational rehabilitation services to a caseload;

Determines client eligibility for DVR services by obtaining and analyzing relevant medical information, identifying the disability-related barriers to employment that require VR services, and, when necessary, conducting Trial Work Experiences, to determine is an individual’s disability is too significant to achieve and employment outcome;

Provides vocational rehabilitation counseling to support, guide and foster clients’ insight and understanding of their strengths, capabilities and disability-related barriers to employment, promote their self-reliance and informed choice, and assist in identifying the steps and VR services required to achieve a competitive employment outcome;

Arranges and interprets results of diagnostic testing and other vocational rehabilitation assessment tools;

Conducts a comprehensive assessment of each client’s needs for vocational rehabilitation services, including: 1) their strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, and interests; 2) their disability-related barriers to employment; and 3) the labor market projections and suitability of their desired employment goal;

Obtains a benefits analysis report and interprets the results to assist and counsel clients receiving Social Security Disability Insurance and/or Supplemental Security Income to understand how earned income from employment will affect their benefits and choice of an employment goal;

Assists clients in developing and implementing a written individualized plan for employment based on their active participation and informed choice, identifying the client’s employment goal along with the steps, timelines and vocational rehabilitation services that are required to eliminate or reduce the individual’s disability-related barriers to achieving an employment outcome;

Approves each client’s individualized plan for employment, and revises or amends the plan when needed;

Manages and spends an allotment of case service funds to authorize and pay for vocational rehabilitation services required by clients;

Assesses and supports client's progress throughout rehabilitation process and addresses any newly identified disabilities or barriers to employment;

Closes cases when clients achieve an employment or are ineligible for DVR services, no longer available or participating in DVR services, or request case closure;

Assists client and employer with post-employment services and provides employer with necessary information regarding reasonable accommodations;

Participates in statewide, regional, and unit staff meetings, classes, workshops, agency training opportunities, professional workshops, and conferences;

Provides service delivery liaison on a regular schedule with one or more of the following organizations that jointly serve DVR or DSB clients: DSHS Developmental Disabilities Administration, DSHS Community Services Division, DSHS Juvenile Rehabilitation, County Developmental Disabilities Programs, local Behavioral Health Agencies, local High Schools, Public Institutions of Higher Education, WorkSource Centers, and programs that represent underserved or unserved populations;

Performs other duties as required.

Knowledge and Abilities

Knowledge of: vocational rehabilitation, independent living, assistive technology, secondary and post-secondary education, and other federal and state requirements of the Rehabilitation Act as well as other core programs within the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act; community resources, private and public sector employer expectations and hiring practices; current labor market information and trends; disability-specific agencies and resources; appropriate vocational rehabilitation counseling techniques, methods and practices; medical, psychological and social aspects of disability; effect of earned income on disability benefits.



Ability to: assist clients with all types of disabilities to develop and carry out feasible individualized plans for employment; gain confidence and cooperation of clients; write and speak effectively; establish and maintain effective working relationships.

Legal Requirement(s)

There may be instances where individual positions must have additional licenses or certification. It is the employer’s responsibility to ensure the appropriate licenses/certifications are obtained for each position.

Persons legally authorized to work in the U.S. under federal law, including Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients, are eligible for employment unless prohibited by other state or federal law.

Desirable Qualifications

A Master’s degree in rehabilitation counseling, psychology, counseling, or a field related to vocational rehabilitation (such as one that promotes the physical, psychosocial, or vocational well-being of individuals with disabilities),

* The following Master’s degrees will qualify:
1. Rehabilitation Counseling
2. Psychology with an emphasis/major concentration of coursework in one of the following areas:
• Clinical Psychology
• Counseling Psychology
• Educational Psychology
• School Psychology
3. Social Work
4. Marriage and Family Therapy
5. Marriage, Family and Child Counseling
6. Counseling, regardless of emphasis
7. Education with an emphasis/major concentration of coursework in one of the following areas:
• Rehabilitation Counseling
• Special Education
• Educational Counseling
• Counseling and Guidance
• Mental Health Counseling
• Community Counseling
• School Counseling
8. Vocational Evaluation


A current Certification as a Rehabilitation Counselor by the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC),

A Master’s degree with at least 18 quarter and 12 semester credit hours specified as follows:

1. ONE graduate course with a primary focus on the Theories and Techniques of Counseling, and

2. THREE graduate courses, each with a primary focus on one of the following areas:

a. Occupational Information
b. Job Development and Placement
c. Medical Aspects of Disabilities
d. Foundations of Rehabilitation
e. Psychological Aspects of Disabilities
f. Personal and Vocational Adjustment, and

3. TWO graduate courses, each with a primary focus on one of the following areas:

a. Assessment
b. Research Methodology
c. Vocational and Career Development
d. Community Resources
e. Case Management
f. Delivery of Rehabilitation Services,


Three years of paid experience as a vocational rehabilitation counselor or similar paid experience in vocational counseling, job placement, vocational assessment, or other areas of rehabilitation counseling. This experience may be gained either before or after obtaining the qualifying education or CRCC certification. One year of the paid experience may be substituted with unpaid experience consisting of:

a. Direct work with individuals with disabilities in a setting such as an independent living center;
b. Direct service or advocacy activities that provide such individuals with experience and skills in working with individuals with disabilities; or
c. Direct experience as an employer, as a small business owner or operator, or in self-employment, or other experience in human resources, recruitment, or experience in supervising employees, training, or other activities that provide experience in competitive integrated employment environments.

Class Specification History

New class adopted January 11, 1991.
Revise class. Revises minimum qualifications, adopted November 15, 1991.
Revise class. Revises minimum qualifications, adopted November 19, 1999.
Revise class. Revises minimum qualifications, adopted January 14, 2000.
Revise class. Revises minimum qualifications, adopted November 9, 2001.
Revise class. Revises definition adopted May 30, 2002.
Revise class. Revises definition, distinguishing characteristics, title, (formerly Vocational Rehabilitation Lead Counselor), adopted October 1, 2003.
Revise class. Revises class code (formerly 37100), general revision; adopted May 10, 2007, effective July 1, 2007.
Revise class. Revises typical work, desirable qualifications, changed June 20, 2007, effective
July 1, 2007.
Salary adjustment; added class series concept; revised definition, distinguishing characteristics, typical work, knowledge and abilities, desirable qualifications; adopted June 30, 2017; effective July 1, 2017.

Revised Legal Requirements; effective June 6, 2024, due to adopted legislative action.