For over a decade, ACA’s VISTAS program has been a valuable database of counseling resources for ACA members.  VISTAS encourages the submission of articles that focus on current, high priority topics of interest to counselors that are written by counselors. The quick turn-around time for input into the database means that ideas and resources can be made available to counselors much sooner than through traditional publications.

VISTAS was established in 2004 by ACA in collaboration with Counseling Outfitters to capture the valuable knowledge and resources that are shared at the ACA annual conferences. In 2007, NCDA joined the VISTAS initiative, and the submission invitation was extended to NCDA conference presenters. In 2008, ACES conference presenters were invited to submit papers. AMHCA and ASERVIC began contributing papers in 2011 and AACE invited presenters to participate in 2012. As a result, VISTAS Online has now become a major source of counseling information, with an online library that now contains hundreds of full-text articles.

Special Features of VISTAS

• Articles are selected by a peer review panel of ACA professional leaders, scholars, and subject matter specialists; the selection process meets the established guidelines for peer reviewed/refereed publications. 

• Because it is totally digital, VISTAS is not limited to a set number of articles that can be accepted. All papers that reviewers identify as meeting the criteria for quality, content, relevance, utility, accuracy, and grammatical correctness can be accepted.  

• A major goal of the VISTAS program is to provide a database of practical resources written by counselors for counselors. Therefore, preference is given to peer-to-peer, how-to-do-it articles and research studies that include a strong “implications/recommendations” section. 


Accessing the VISTAS Database

VISTAS can be accessed through the ACA Web site. You can access VISTAS articles through the Knowledge Center.

Becoming a VISTAS Author

Writing for VISTAS offers you:

• An opportunity to acquire a peer reviewed/refereed publication for your professional vita—an essential for promotion and merit increases. 

• A fast turnaround time for disseminating the outcomes of your research and experience to other counseling professionals.

• Flexibility in writing style and format.

• An opportunity to be included in ACA’s professional counseling online library—the largest and most up-to-date database of counseling resources available.

• An ideal venue for counselor educators to introduce graduate students to the process of preparing and submitting articles for professional publication.

• An excellent means for assuring that the knowledge and resources you have presented at a conference reach an audience far beyond those who were able to attend your program.
Specific guidelines for preparing and submitting articles can be accessed at VISTAS Guidelines.

A large number of VISTAS articles are based on programs presented at national ACA or ACA Division conferences. However, this is not a requirement. If you have developed a practice or program that works for a particular population or have conducted research that has practical implications, we strongly urge you to prepare and submit a VISTAS paper so that you can share your knowledge and resources with others.

Quarterly schedule of deadlines: In order to provide authors with the opportunity to submit papers year-round and to shorten the turn-around time from submission to publication, we have established four review periods for VISTAS submissions. These will occur in the first weeks of the following months: October, January, April, and July. The deadlines for submission will be around the first day of these months.


Contact us via e-mail at VISTASonline@counseling.org.

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