Course Descriptions

Required Courses

MFTH 6800: Relational Theory, Practice, and Ethics (3 credits).
Introduces students to the foundational epistemological theories and practices in marriage and family therapy, history of the field and current developments, and the ethics and values associated with a systemic orientation to change. Students are expected to cultivate the ability to practice from a systemic lens.

MFTH 6900: Foundations of Family Therapy
Prerequisite: Admission to the program
Introduction to postmodern theory & social constructionism with a focus on understanding human interaction, meaning making, and problem resolution through both relational and narrative lenses. Students will explore the relationship between meaning, language, stories, and cultural discourse.

MFTH 7050: Diversity, Inclusion, and Social Justice (3 credits).
Prerequisite: Admission to the program and MFTH 6800
An in-depth study of the skills, sensitivities, and theoretical ideas needed by family therapists to encounter otherness and navigate the interface between professional responsibilities, ethics, social justice, and the social and political context of treatment. Students are expected to cultivate the ability to practice from a culturally sensitive lens.

MFTH 7101: Family Systems Theories (3 credits).
Prerequisite: Admission to the program and MFTH 6800
An in-depth study of family systems theory. Emphasis on the major schools of thought included in a systems analysis of the family and current issues and ideas within family systems discourse.

MFTH 7102: Interventions in MFT (3 credits).
Pre or Co-requisite: Admission to the program and MFTH 7101 
A review of the various intervention techniques employed by the major theoretical approaches to MFT. Emphasis on skill development, video and role-play demonstrations, and linking practice and theory with appropriate treatment goals.

MFTH 7103: Advanced Theories Seminar (1 credit each; may be repeated; students must take at least two). 
Prerequisite: Admission to the program, MFTH 7102, clinical experience. 
A series of seminars that allow students to develop in-depth understanding of at least two theoretical approaches to MFT. Examples of offerings include structural/strategic, family of origin, narrative/constructivism, and solution-oriented.

MFTH 7200: Research in Marriage and Family Therapy (3 credits).
Prerequisite: Admission to the program and a statistics course 
Quantitative and qualitative methods for research design and data analysis in marriage and family therapy. Emphasis on current outcome and process studies and on critical evaluation and application of research data.

MFTH 7350: Legal Issues in MFT (1 credit).
Prerequisite: Admission to the program and MFTH 6800 
Legal responsibilities and liabilities in the practice of family therapy. Addresses issues such as limits to confidentiality, therapist liability, and client privilege. Includes working with the legal system and relevant aspects of family law. 

MFTH 7400: Psychopathology & Pharmacology in MFT (3 credits). 
Prerequisite: Admission to the program and MFTH 6800 
Psychological, biological, and medical issues in the practice of MFT and an introduction to pharmacology. Emphasis on DSM IV diagnosis within a systemic context and collaboration with other mental health professionals.

MFTH 7500: Development in the Family System (3 credits).
Prerequisite: Admission to the program
Human growth and development within the family system. Includes theories of individual development, developmental tasks over the family life cycle, normative and non-normative change, processes of divorce and remarriage, and social, economic, and ethnic influences on the family life cycle. Implications for practice are emphasized. 

MFTH 7600: Practicum in Marriage and Family Therapy  (6 credits, repeated for a total of 18 credits).
Prerequisite: Admission to the program, MFTH 7102, and approval of the MFT faculty. 
Supervised experience in the practice of marriage and family therapy. Includes practice and live supervision at the Marriage and Family Therapy Training Clinic as well as experience in community placements. Requires a minimum of 20 hours per week. Must be taken three successive semesters for a total 500 hours of direct client contact.

MFTH 7601: Treatment Issues in Family Therapy (3 credits).
Prerequisite: Admission to the program and MFTH 7102 
Applications of family systems approaches to the treatment of issues facing families in crisis and transition. Addresses grief and loss, substance abuse, family violence and abuse, child and adolescent behavioral problems, and chronic physical and mental illness. Emphasis on conceptualization and treatment planning.

MFTH 7602: Couples and Sex Therapy (3 credits). 
Prerequisite: Admission to the program and MFTH 7102 
Treatment techniques for intimate relationships. Emphasis on premarital and commitment issues, anger and conflict, gender and intimacy, and techniques for treating sexual dysfunctions.

MFTH 7700: Assessment in Marriage and Family Therapy (3 credits).
Prerequisites: Admission to the program, MFTH 7101, and MFTH 7500 
How to assess family processes within a developmental context. Models for assessing family functioning and use of individual and family assessment instruments will be included.

MFTH 7880: Professional Ethics Seminar (1 credit).
Prerequisite: Admission to the program
Addresses professional issues in the workplace. Includes marketing oneself, politics in the workplace, professional licensure and clinical membership, working in interdisciplinary teams, professional wellness, and the ethics, values, and decision-making associated with current practice issues.


(other elective courses may be approved on an individual basis)

MFTH 7510: Human Sexuality and Gender (3 credits)
The cultural, social, physical, psychological, and interpersonal aspects of human sexuality and gender. Includes gender role socialization and the development of gendered identities, sexual functioning and attraction, sexual orientation, and problems related to sex and gender. 

MFTH 7550. Family Stress and Crisis (3 credits)
Understanding normative and catastrophic stress, trauma, and crisis across the lifespan from a family systems perspective. Focus on approaches to prevention and intervention with families, agencies, and communities.

MFTH 7650: Special Topics in MFT  (1 credit each, may be repeated).
A rotating series of seminars addressing important contemporary issues in the field of marriage and family therapy. Examples of topics include working with children, working with adolescents, spirituality, family violence, and substance abuse.

MFTH 7980: Internship in Marriage and Family Therapy (1-5 credits; Does not apply toward degree.)
Supervised experience in the practice of marriage and family therapy at FamilyWorks and/or at a community placement. Internship in MFT is ONLY for those students who have completed all other coursework but have not yet accrued their 600 client contact hours.

MFTH 7990: Directed Study in Marriage and Family Therapy (1-3 credits)
Requires admission to the program and consent of instructor 
Specialized study in an area of Marriage and Family Therapy under the direction of a faculty member.

SOCI 7021: Statistical Applications in Sociology (3 credits)
Evaluation of social statistics and data management for applied research problems. Students will gain skills in determining which statistics to use for particular research problems and designs, which statistics provide the most practical means for reading and interpreting data, and what computer software is available to facilitate data analysis in sociology.

SOCI 6000: Sociology of Mental Health (3 credits)
Introduces students to the history and causes of mental illness as well as the language of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual. The relationship between mental illness and the major sociological variables, such as social class, race, gender, age, and marital status will be analyzed. Students will evaluate mental illness from the institutional and client points of view.

CRJU 7500: Seminar in Criminal Behavior and Personality (3 credits)
An advanced study of specific criminal behavior types emphasizing violent offenders, sexual deviants, the anti-social personality, and the criminally insane.

SOCI 6130: Social Gerontology (3 credits)
Study of the social phenomenon of the aging process, the life cycle, and patterns that include social roles, medicalization of aging and death, and the values, norms, and beliefs related to these phenomenon. Emphasis on the social changes that have occurred as medical technology and science impact on the culture and institutional patterns related to aging and death. Study of the process of dying will include the entire life cycle and new efforts to deal with this complex social phenomenon.

SOCI 6700: Family Sociology  (3 credits).
The social context of contemporary issues facing families. Includes family history, cross-cultural issues, research and theory regarding changing gender roles, family violence and abuse, divorce, single parenting, work families, sexual orientation, non-traditional families, and other relevant issues.

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