This classification is viewed as the title for the addiction counselor primarily involved in providing direct alcohol and other drug abuse treatment services. This is an international credential (ADC) that is recognized throughout the world via reciprocity.


The Alcohol and Drug Counselor (ADC) credential is IC&RC’s most widely recognized credential. It is the basis of the mandated credential or license in many jurisdictions.

The ADC credential is designed to be an entry-level credential and covers the basics of addiction counseling.

Earning the ADC:

The ADC is not available in all jurisdictions and requirements, application processes, and fees will vary.

You can find contact information for each IC&RC board, along with the IC&RC credentials offered, in our Member Board Directory

Examination information:

Number of questions: 150

Time to take exam: 3 hours

Content on exam:

  • Screening, Assessment, and Engagement
  • Treatment Planning, Collaboration, and Referral
  • Counseling
  • Professional and Ethical Responsibilities

More details about the ADC examination, administration, content, and reference materials can be found in the ADC Candidate Guide and on the Examination Preparation page.