Program Learning Outcomes:
Self-Awareness and Contextual Understanding: The MFT program will prepare students to become culturally competent therapists who can critically analyze themselves and their clients across ecological contexts. Students will be able to:
- Develop a practice of cultural self-awareness and reflectiveness that critically evaluates how one’s beliefs, values, behaviors, personal experiences and cultural context affect one’s approach towards providing mental health treatment with clients of diverse backgrounds, belief systems, and relationship constellations.
- Identify the ways in which the surrounding socio-political, historical, and cultural contexts impact the mental health experiences of individuals and communities of diverse identities and cultural backgrounds.
- Explore and analyze power, privilege, and marginalization, as it relates to therapy practice, through multiple perspectives, worldviews, and epistemologies.
Theoretical Grounding: The MFT program will prepare students to identify and critically analyze theory to address a wide range of clinical counseling and mental health issues, such that students will be able to:
- Identify the legal and ethical standards related to marriage and family therapy and professional clinical counselor practice and understand how they apply in various service contexts and with diverse populations.
- Understand the major theoretical concepts of counseling and mental health treatment to address a variety of mental health concerns and diagnoses from a strengths-based and culturally inclusive perspective.
Diagnosis, Assessment, and Research: The program will prepare students to become culturally competent therapists who understand socio-cultural complexities associated with diagnosis, assessment, and research. As culturally responsive therapists, students will be able to:
- Conduct culturally sensitive clinical and diagnostic assessments of clients’ mental health functioning that account for the influences of relationships, cultural backgrounds, identity, biological determinants, historical context, and development variables.
- Conceptualize psychopathology and psychiatric diagnosis in a way that recognizes the impact of environmental variables, social norms, cultural values, physiological and biological determinants, and relationship dynamics as variables that influence the presence of pathology.
- Develop foundational crisis assessment and intervention strategies that promote stabilization, utilize community resources and strategies that promote stabilization, utilize community resources and strengths, and respects clients’ unique cultural, developmental, mental health needs.
- Understand concepts of psychological trauma, including the range of traumatic experiences, symptomatology, and issues related to diagnosis, developmental impacts and counseling treatment.
- Understand ethical research, procedures and practices, such as reflexivity in the role of the researcher, and what methods align with distinct forms of inquiry.
- Understand how to be a consumer of research in marriage and family therapy and how to use research to inform and improve culturally competent practice.
Therapeutic Interventions and Clinical Practice: Students in the program will be able to understand, identify, and demonstrate the foundational components of culturally competent counseling in marriage and family therapy, clinical counseling, and relationship therapy. As practitioners, students will be able to:
- Understand the components of collaborative treatment planning, employing a client-centered and strengths-based approach.
- Identify culturally accountable, strengths-based evidence-based treatment interventions for application to diverse populations with a variety of mental health diagnoses.
- Provide effective, evidence-based, and culturally responsive therapy and counseling treatment for individuals, children, groups, families, couples, and diverse relational constellations dealing with mild to severe mental health issues under appropriate supervision of trained mental health practitioners.
- Demonstrate culturally responsive, evidence-based counseling and psychotherapy skills necessary for working with a wide range of individuals, families, couples, groups, and other relationship constellations across the lifespan.
Major Requirements (60 units)
Below are the current requirements for the Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology with a concentration in Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT). The Marriage and Family concentration requires 60 credits of coursework and supervised clinical traineeship experience during the third year.