50 Most Affordable Accredited Marriage and Family Therapy Programs 2018

Best Counseling Degrees - Marriage and Family Therapy
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By Kirsten Hughes

Are you interested in becoming a therapist and working with individuals, couples and families? A Marriage and Family Therapy degree could be the degree for you. Marriage and Family Therapists (also known as Couple and Family Therapists) specialize in providing psychotherapy in the context of couple and family systems. A master’s and/or doctorate degree in Marriage and Family Therapy will prepare you to assess, diagnose, and treat a broad range of mental health and relational issues from depression, anxiety, substance abuse, behavioral disorders, infidelity, divorce, and much more. Marriage and Family Therapists work in community mental health agencies, private practice, schools, medical settings, and residential treatment centers to name a few. CNN Money listed Marriage/Family Therapist as one of the top 50 Best Jobs in America with a projected 10-year job growth rate at 41.2%.

This list includes some of the best Marriage and Family Therapy programs in the country. There are over 100 COAMFTE accredited Family Therapy degree programs nationwide. We chose to list only COAMFTE accredited programs because this accreditation board provides the gold standard for the field of Marriage and Family Therapy. The COAMFTE ensures that graduates of programs with its seal of approval will have the curriculum and supervised clinical experience accepted by all 50 states to work towards licensure as a Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT). To become licensed, graduates need to pass the national licensure exam and complete post master’s supervised clinical hours (hour requirement varies by state). If a Marriage and Family Therapy program offered multiple degrees, only those that are COAMFTE accredited were listed here. We have selected the most affordable programs for this list (see methodology). The selection listed here includes M.A., M.S., PsyD, and Ph.D. programs in Marriage and Family Therapy.

The programs listed here require the completion of supervised clinical hours while in graduate school (typically 500 hours usually completed in the second year of study). Supervised clinical hours typically take place at the programs on-campus mental health clinic and at an off-site placement. These practicum and internship hours allow students to integrate what they have learned in the classroom in clinical practice with the supportive and instructive supervision of Marriage and Family Therapy faculty and AAMFT approved clinical supervisors. Many graduates of Marriage and Family Therapy programs around the country identify the supervised clinical experience as the most valuable component of their graduate careers.

When considering paying for graduate school remember two things: First, in-state tuition is less expensive (out-of-state tuition is listed here because not all schools offer an in-state rate). Secondly, many graduate programs offer assistantships and scholarships that students are eligible to apply for once enrolled in the program. Assistantships usually allow students to work as graduate teaching fellows and/or conduct research in exchange for a stipend and/or tuition waiver. It is always a good idea to inquire about potentially available assistantships when narrowing down your top choices for graduate programs.

#50 LaSalle University

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Philadelphia, PA

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LaSalle University offers a Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy. Full-time students can complete the program in three years, and part-time students can complete the program in four years. Late afternoon and evening classes are offered to accommodate students’ schedules. The program can also be completed in two years with the accelerated full-time weekend option. Programs are offered at three campuses: the Main Campus in Philadelphia, Bucks County Center, and Montgomery County Center.

  • Tuition: $22,170
  • Graduate Enrollment: 2,027

Courses include

Introduction to Counseling and Psychotherapy: Theories and Interventions, Human Behavior: A Developmental Perspective, Marital and Couples Therapy, Understanding Relationships, and Addictions in the Family.

#49 Alliant International University – San Diego

Master of Arts in Marital and Family Therapy

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD) in Marital and Family Therapy

San Diego, CA

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The Couple and Family Therapy Program at Alliant International University offers two COAMFTE accredited graduate programs; the M.A. and the Psy.D. in Marital and Family Therapy. Both degrees are available at numerous locations San Diego, Sacramento, Los Angeles, and Irvine. San Francisco offers the M.A. only. Programing is designed to meet the individual needs of students in the cohort with day, evening, and part-time scheduling options available. Additionally, some funding is available for eligible students with the Couple and Family Therapy Educational Stipends.

  • Tuition: $21,820
  • Graduate Enrollment: 3,284

Program specializations (depending on degree and location)

Chemical Dependency, Gerontology, Infant-Preschooler Mental Health, Latin American Family Therapy, and LGBT Human Services and Mental Health.

#48 University of Nebraska Lincoln

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy

Lincoln, NE

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The Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy at the University of Nebraska Lincoln offers a thesis and non-thesis option. Students can choose to complete the thesis or not depending on their individual career goals. Along with becoming competent mental health professionals, students in this program will learn to collaborate with other service providers and improve family-centered programs. Additionally this family therapy degree program offers the option to earn a Medical Family Therapy certificate.

  • Tuition: $21,082
  • Graduate Enrollment: 5,069

Courses Include

Research Design and Methods, Implementing Research and Scholarly Practice, Theoretical Foundations of Marriage and Family Therapy, Issues and Ethics for Family Professionals, Clinical Family Therapy, and Collaborative Health Care.

#47 The Forest Institute

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Springfield, MO

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The Forest Institute offers a Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy in which they promote diversity the classroom and clinical experience. The program values diversity in a range of areas including, but not limited to, sexual orientation, gender, ethnicity, religious affiliation, and body type. The school promotes a mutually respectful environment for all students, faculty, and clients to enhance the learning experience.

  • Tuition: $21,056
  • Graduate Enrollment: 254

Courses Include

Clinical Risk Management, Human Diversity, Family Intervention, Marriage and Family Therapy Ethics, Family Assessment, Adult Development, and Advanced Family Therapy.

#46 Northern Illinois University

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy

DeKalb, IL

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Northern Illinois University (NIU) College of Health and Human Sciences offers a two-year Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy degree. While completing practicum hours in working with couples and families at the Couple and Family Therapy Clinic at NIU, students will receive live supervision from faculty members. The Couple and Family Therapy Clinic provides a range of mental health services to community members experiencing challenges in relationships and life cycle transitions.

  • Tuition: $20,965
  • Graduate Enrollment: 5,324

Courses Include

Assessment in Marriage and Family Therapy, Professional Issues in Marriage and Family Therapy, Addiction and Substance Abuse in Marriage and Family Therapy, and Marriage and Family Therapy Strategies: Treatment of Couples.

#45 Oklahoma State University

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy

Stillwater, OK

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The Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy at Oklahoma State University is the only COAMFTE accredited program in Oklahoma. This program offers small cohort sizes with approximately 8 students each year. In the last seven years 100% of the alumni that have taken the national exam to become Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists have passed it on the first try. The majority of students take 2 1/2 years to complete the program. Students in the College of Human Sciences are eligible to apply for assistantships and scholarships.

  • Tuition: $20,733
  • Graduate Enrollment: 5,413

Courses Include

Theoretical Models of Marriage and Family Therapy, Systems Theory: Applications to the Family, Psychopathology/ Psychopharmacology, Coping with Family Crises, and Social and Emotional Development: Research and Theory.

#44 Kansas State University

Master’s in Marriage and Family Therapy

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Marriage and Family Therapy

Manhattan, KS

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Kansas State University offers two graduate programs in Marriage and Family Therapy; a master’s degree and a doctoral degree. Both degrees are accredited by the COAMFTE. A focus in part of clinical training, at Kansas State University, is to integrate research into practice. Faculty research interests cover a broad range of topics from prevention and treatment of intimate partner violence and dating violence to home-based family therapy. Students have up to five years to complete the master’s program and seven years to complete the doctoral program, but both programs are generally completed in three to four years respectively. Many of the students in the program receive funding from university assistantships.

  • Tuition: $20,721
  • Graduate Enrollment: 4,412

Master’s Level Courses Include

Family Systems in Cultural Context, Brief Solution-Focused Therapy, Couples and Sex Therapy, Family Therapy, Experiential Approaches to Working with Children and Families, and Professional Studies in Family Therapy.

#43 Seton Hall University

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy

Education Specialist (Ed.S.) in Marriage and Family Therapy

South Orange, NJ

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The College of Education and Human Services at Seton Hall University offers two COAMFTE accredited Marriage and Family Therapy degrees. A unique feature of the M.S. in Marriage and Family Therapy is that the degree also fulfills the current educational requirements for licensing in New Jersey a clinical alcohol and drug counselor. The Education Specialist (Ed.S.) in Marriage and Family Therapy is a post-master’s program for students with a master’s degree who want to re-specialize in marriage and family therapy.

  • Tuition: $20,428
  • Graduate Enrollment: 4,064

Courses Include

Couple and Family Dynamics: Systemic Perspectives, Research Methods, Human Sexuality, Gender and Ethnicity in Families, and Couples and Family Systems Techniques.

#42 Southern Connecticut State University

Master’s of Marriage and Family Therapy

New Haven, CT

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Southern Connecticut State University offers a Master’s of Marriage and Family Therapy that can be completed on a part-time or full-time schedule. This family and marriage counseling degree has been accredited by the COAMFTE since 1983. The Family Therapy Training Program also offers a program in Gestalt Therapy. Research at Southern Connecticut State University has shown that students with Gestalt Therapy training are less likely to experience feeling overwhelmed with the process of therapy and the content being covered in sessions.

  • Tuition: $20,404
  • Graduate Enrollment: 2,547

Courses Include

Family of Origin, Family Systems Theory, Professional, Legal and Ethical Issues in Marriage and Family Therapy, Family Therapy Outcome Research, Understanding the Treatment of Substance Addictions in Couples and Families, and Diversity, Oppression and Social Functioning.

#41 Central Connecticut State University

Master’s of Marriage and Family Therapy

New Britain, CT

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Central Connecticut State University offers two tracks for students to complete their master’s in Marriage and Family Therapy. Students must choose one track and stick with it throughout the course of the program. The options are an evening or weekend cohort track. Full- and part-time options are also available. Students interested in the evening track are offered admission twice a year (Fall and Spring). Admission for the weekend track occurs once a year (Summer). Twenty students are accepted into each cohort.

  • Tuition: $20,175
  • Graduate Enrollment: 2,094

Courses Include

Professional, Ethical, and Legal Issues in Marriage and Family Therapy, The Family Life Cycle, Families in Context: Gender and Cultural Dimensions, Experiential, Intergenerational and Psychodynamic Family Therapies, Couples Therapy, Dysfunctional Family Processes, and Research Methods in Marriage and Family Therapy.

#40 Seattle University

Master of Arts in Relationship and Pastoral Therapy

Seattle, WA

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The School of Theology and Ministry at Seattle University offers a Couples and Family Therapy program for students interested in integrating systems theory and theological education in clinical practice. This COAMFTE accredited Master of Arts in Relationship and Pastoral Therapy prepares graduates through couples and family therapy education and spiritual training to support diverse individuals, couples, and families from all faiths and cultures.

  • Tuition: $20,025
  • Graduate Enrollment: 2,814

Courses Include

Relationship & Pastoral Therapy in a Multicultural Context, Family Therapy Theory, Advanced Relationship & Pastoral Therapy Skills, Integrating Systemic & Spiritual Approaches to Couples Therapy, Spiritually-Infused Systemic Child & Adolescent Treatment, and Psycho-Spiritual Development.

#39 Lewis and Clark College

Master of Arts in Marriage, Couple, and Family Therapy

Portland, OR

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Lewis and Clark College located in Portland, OR offers a Master of Arts in Marriage, Couple, and Family Therapy. A Master of Science option is also available for students who have demonstrated an interest in research and wish to complete a thesis project. Marriage, Couple and Family Therapy students can choose one of four areas of specialization if interested. This program follows a cohort model, and students will work collaboratively throughout the program. For students interested in gaining international experience in teaching, research, and co-therapy, Lewis and Clark offers a final semester internship to two eligible students each summer at the Bishop Magambo Counselor Training Institute in Ft. Portal, Uganda.

  • Tuition: $19,872
  • Graduate Enrollment: 1,395

Marriage, Couple, and Family Therapy Areas of Specialization

Addictions Treatment, International Family Therapy, Sex Therapy, and Ecopsychology.

#38 University of Louisiana at Monroe

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Marriage and Family Therapy

Monroe, LA

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The University of Louisiana at Monroe offers a M.A. and Ph.D. in Marriage and Family Therapy, both accredited by the COAMFTE. This program does offer some graduate assistantships to the on-site clinical M.A. and Ph.D. students. Both degrees focus on clinical practice, with the Ph.D. having the added component of quantitative and qualitative research. Students in the M.A. program have the option to complete a thesis.

  • Tuition: $19,434
  • Graduate Enrollment: 1,369

Masters Level Courses Include

Methods in Therapy and Counseling, Marriage and Family Development, Couples, Intimacy, and Sexuality, Counseling Special Populations, Strategies for Parent-Child, and Life and Career Development.

#37 University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy

Las Vegas, NV

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The Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy at University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) requires the completion of 60 credit hours and typically takes 2 1/2 years. UNLV is ranked as one of the top ten most ethnically diverse universities in the country. The Marriage and Family Therapy training program serves an ethnically diverse population, allowing students to gain critical skills in providing culturally competent services.

  • Tuition: $19,410
  • Graduate Enrollment: 4,751

Courses Include

Introduction to Marriage and Family Therapy, Counseling Across the Lifespan, Diversity in Marriage and Family Therapy, Family Dynamics, Diagnosis in Marriage and Family Therapy, Sexual Issues in Marriage and Family Therapy, and Family Systems Theory.

#36 San Diego State University

Master of Science in Counseling with a Concentration in Marriage and Family Therapy

San Diego, CA

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San Diego State University’s Department of Counseling and School Psychology offers a M.S. in Counseling with a concentration in Marriage and Family Therapy. This program is for full-time students only. The cohort begins together in June and works closely together for two years to complete the program. Each cohort has 30 students, but students also break into smaller groups of six for clinical training and supervision. The application process for this program is competitive, with only 15-20% of applicants gaining admission into the program.

  • Tuition: $19,292
  • Graduate Enrollment: 4,800

Curriculum Domains Include

Foundations of Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Human Development: Individual and Family, Family systems and social constructionist coursework, Sociocultural and larger systems coursework, Supervised clinical experience, Professional studies, and Research and inquiry.

#35 Appalachian State University

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Boone, NC

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The Marriage and Family Therapy Program at Appalachian State University encourages students to study and explore a variety of models of therapy in an effort to determine the one that they are most drawn to use in their work as a therapist. Students will graduate from this program with a Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy. Marriage and Family Therapy students at Appalachian State University can apply for internship stipends, funded by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). These internships are aimed at providing services to youth living in rural Appalachian communities. Students awarded this grant will receive a stipend of $10,000 over the course of their 12 month internship.

  • Tuition: $19,029
  • Graduate Enrollment: 1,813

Courses Include

Theories of Marriage and Family Therapy, Assessment and Diagnosis in Marriage and Family Therapy, Marriage and Family Counseling: Clinical Issues, Mediation and Divorce Therapy, Substance Abuse in Family Systems, Sexual Abuse Counseling, and Multicultural Counseling.

#34 Saint Louis University

Master of Arts in Family Therapy

Master of Arts in Family Therapy with a concentration in Medical Family Therapy

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Medical Family Therapy

Saint Louis, MO

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Saint Louis University offers three Family Therapy degrees: M.A. in Family Therapy, M.A. in Family Therapy with a concentration in Medical Family Therapy, and Ph.D. in Medical Family Therapy are available. The Family Therapy degree prepares graduates to provide clinical counseling to individuals, couples, and families. The concentration in Medical Family Therapy prepares graduates to collaborate with healthcare professionals, with the goal of meeting the biopsychosocial needs of clients. The Ph.D. requires an additional 51 credits beyond the master’s program and includes courses in areas such as Integrative Care and the Neurobiology of Interpersonal Behavior with an added emphasis on research in the field of medical family therapy.

  • Tuition: $18,986
  • Graduate Enrollment: 4,776

Courses Include

Introduction to Family Therapy, Ethical and Legal Issues, Foundations of Couple and Family Therapy, Diagnosis and Assessment in Family Therapy, Group Counseling, Behavioral Medicine and Integrative Care, Foundations of Multicultural Family Therapy, and Families, Health, and Illness.

#33 Antioch University Seattle

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Seattle, WA

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The Couple and Family Therapy Program at Antioch University in Seattle offers a Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy. Students may begin this program in the fall, winter or spring quarter, and classes are offered in the late afternoons and evenings. Internships take place in a variety of settings depending on the student’s areas of interest – from homeless shelters to penitentiaries to in-patient psychiatric hospitals. All students are required to complete 20 hours of personal counseling as a part of the program. This degree can be completed in 2 1/2 to 3 years.

  • Tuition: $18,849
  • Graduate Enrollment: 654

Courses Include

Family of Origin Systems, Multicultural Perspectives, Communication and Counseling Skills, Counseling Individuals in the Family System, Human Development in the Family Life Cycle, Ethics in Family Practice, and Research in Family Practice.

#32 East Carolina University

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Medical Family Therapy

Greenville, NC

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East Carolina University offers two COAMFTE accredited Marriage and Family Therapy programs; a Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy and a Ph.D. in Medical Family Therapy. The M.S. in Marriage and Family Therapy supports students in integrating theory and technique to develop a personal therapeutic orientation. In clinical training students will become competent in numerous areas such as conducting a biopsychosocial-spiritual interview with individuals, couples, and families, and developing culturally sensitive and collaborative treatment plans. Students in the Ph.D. program in Medical Family Therapy will conduct research, teach, and supervise while collaborating with healthcare professionals and families to support the integration of medical and mental health care.

  • Tuition: $18,724
  • Graduate Enrollment: 5,379

Courses for the Master of Science Include

Family Systems Theory, Family Therapy, Family Therapy Issues, Critical Issues in Sexuality, Gender Roles, & Families, and Critical Issues in Family and Cultural Diversity.

#31 Utah State University

Master of Science in Family, Consumer, and Human Development with an emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy

Master of Marriage and Family Therapy

Logan, UT

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Utah State University offers two degree options for Marriage and Family Therapy students; a Master of Science (MS) in Marriage and Family Therapy, which requires the completion of a thesis, and the Master of Marriage and Family Therapy (MMFT), which does not require a thesis. Practicum is completed in both onsite and offsite programs, all of which are supervised by AAMFT approved supervisors. A significant amount of the supervisory activity is “live” supervision (through one-way mirrors or reviews of video taped sessions) to provide students will current and supportive training.

  • Tuition: $18,321
  • Graduate Enrollment: 3,427

Courses Include

Survey in Marriage and Family Therapy, Foundations in Marriage and Family Therapy, Gender and Diversity in Marriage and Family Therapy, Clinical Issues in Marriage and Family Therapy, and Assessment in Marriage and Family Therapy.

#30 Abilene Christian University

Master’s of Marriage and Family Therapy

Abilene, TX

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The College of Biblical Studies at Abilene Christian University offers a Master’s in Marriage and Family Therapy degree. This program is designed to be completed by full-time students in two years; the program does not accept part-time students. This master’s degree in marriage and family therapy is taught through a Christian worldview, and students will be supported in integrating theory and spirituality in the classroom and in their clinical work with individuals, couples, and families. Graduates of this program will be prepared for careers in secular and faith-based settings.

  • Tuition: $18,228
  • Graduate Enrollment: 734

Courses Include

Family Theory/ General Systems Theory, Couples Therapy, Marital and Family Assessment, Sexual Therapy, Family Life Cycle, Cultural Diversity in Marriage and Family Therapy, Theological Perspectives on Human Behavior, and Addictive Disorders.

#29 Iona College

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy

New Rochelle, NY

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The Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy at Iona College is one of only three COAMFTE accredited marriage and family therapy programs in New York State. This program examines individual, family, and couple development with an additional emphasis placed on the development of the therapist. The faculty in the Marriage and Family Therapy program at Iona College believes it is important to support students in understanding themselves and what they bring into the room as therapists.

  • Tuition: $18,220
  • Graduate Enrollment: 702

Courses Include

Principles of Life Span Personality Development, Group Process in the Family, Relational Psychopathology, Marital Therapy Seminar, Parenting, Human Sexuality, Family Approaches to Therapy, Marriage, Family, and Friendship Therapy, and Ethics in Marriage and Family Therapy.

#28 University of Saint Joseph

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

West Hartford, CT

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The University of Saint Joseph (USJ) offers a Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy designed for all students interested in becoming professional therapists. Classes are held in the evenings and students can be enrolled full or part-time depending on their schedules and personal needs. USJ’s Marriage and Family Therapy program provides special topics courses to support students in staying current with trends and specializations in the field of marriage and family therapy, including areas such as Play Therapy and Medical Family Therapy.

  • Tuition: $17,808
  • Graduate Enrollment: 1,591

Courses Include

Communications and Systems Theory, Treating Addictions in the Family, Human Sexuality: Behavior and Treatment, and Gender Issues and Diversity in Therapy.

#27 Valdosta State University

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy

Valdosta, GA

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The Marriage and Family Therapy degree at Valdosta State University (VSU) is focused on providing preparing graduates to work as licensed marriage and family therapists. The program is dedicated to recruiting, training, and graduating students from diverse backgrounds. The Family Therapy program at VSU has attracted students from around the country. Applications are accepted throughout the year (up until July 15th) until all the slots for the fall start are filled. Interviews can take place on the phone or on campus face-to-face.

  • Tuition: $17,364
  • Graduate Enrollment: 2,167

Courses Include

Relational Theory, Practice, and Ethics, Foundations of Family Therapy, Development in the Family System, Research in Family Therapy, Diversity, Inclusion, and Social Justice, and Legal Issues in Family Therapy.

#26 Nova Southeastern University

Master of Science in Family Therapy

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) Family Therapy

Fort Lauderdale, FL

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Nova Southeastern University offers a Master of Science and a Ph.D. in Family Therapy. Students in the Master’s program may be enrolled part time or full time, and classes typically take place in the afternoons and evenings. The Master’s program strives to prepare students to provide clinical services to culturally and sexually diverse individuals and couples in a range of settings. The Ph.D. is designed for students with a master’s degree that wish to gain advanced skills in clinical work and research in order to contribute to, and provide leadership in, the field of couple and family therapy.

  • Tuition: $16,532
  • Graduate Enrollment: 20,514

Courses Include

Introduction to Systems Theory, Substance Abuse/Addictions and Critical Issues in Systems Theory, Clinical Practice in Marital and Family Therapy, Group Psychotherapy, Diversity and Psychosocial Issues, and Human Sexuality and Gender.

#25 Fairfield University

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Fairfield, CT

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Fairfield University offers a Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy. This program addresses issues related to social justice throughout the curriculum and clinical training. In order to provide a range of options for internship and practicum, the Marriage and Family Therapy program has connections with 45 sites. The program is committed to serving diverse client populations, supporting a diverse student body and having a faculty representing diversity.

  • Tuition: $15,920
  • Graduate Enrollment: 1,046

Courses Include

Foundations of Marital and Family Therapy, Divorce, Single Parenting, and Remarriage, Intervention in Structural and Strategic Family Therapy, Couples Therapy, Multicultural Issues in Counseling, Human Sexuality and Sexual Dysfunction, and Research in Marriage and Family Therapy.

#24 Northcentral University

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Marriage and Family Therapy

Scottsdale, AZ

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Northcentral University’s School of Marriage and Family Sciences offers both a M.A. and a Ph.D. in Marriage and Family Therapy. This program is one of only two schools on this list offering online degrees. This is the only program on the list offering an online Ph.D. Northcentral University does not require its students to travel to complete residency requirements. All coursework is completed online. Students will complete face-to-face practicum and internship clinical hours and supervision with a qualified supervisor in their local area.

  • Tuition: $15,557
  • Graduate Enrollment: 10,678

Ph.D. Specialization Options Include

Child and Adolescent Therapy, Couple Therapy, General Family Therapy, Medical Family Therapy and Therapy with Military Families.

#23 University of Southern Mississippi

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy

Hattiesburg, MS

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The University of Southern Mississippi offers a Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy. A full-time track and a part-time track are available, and the program can be completed in two to four years. The program admits up to 16 students annually. Most graduate students will receive graduate assistantships that could include a stipend and/or tuition. Graduate assistantships are only available to full-time students.

  • Tuition: $15,550
  • Graduate Enrollment: 2,774

Courses Include

Individual and Family Life Cycle Development, Advanced Study of Marriage and Family Therapy Studies, Gender and Culture in the Family, Couple Therapy, Parents and Children: Problem Resolution, and Practice of Family Research.

#22 St. Mary’s University

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Marriage and Family Therapy

San Antonio, TX

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The Department of Counseling and Human Services at St. Mary’s University offers a Master of Arts and Doctorate of Philosophy in Marriage and Family Therapy. These degrees are designed as practitioner and advanced practitioner/researcher degrees respectively. St. Mary’s University is a Catholic Marianist University founded in 1852. St. Mary’s features a diverse student population of all faiths and backgrounds.

  • Tuition: $15,070
  • Graduate Enrollment: 1,475

Courses Include

Mental Health and Psychopathology, Human Sexuality, Crisis Counseling, Foundations of Marriage and Family Therapy, Strategies of Family Therapy, MFT Outcome Research, and Working with Latino Families.

#21 University of Wisconsin – Stout

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy

Menomonie, WI

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The University of Wisconsin – Stout offers a Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy. This program offers a cohort model (13 students each year) and onsite clinic for clinical hours. Classes are offered on Mondays and Tuesdays. This program has been accredited by the COAMFTE since 1977. It is one of the two longest-accredited Marriage and Family Therapy programs in the country. Note: Minnesota residents may qualify for in-state tuition due to state reciprocity agreements. In-state tuition is less than what is listed here. The University of Wisconsin – Stout is located in rural Northwestern Wisconsin and is interested in increasing the diversity of students in the program. Students representing diversity are encouraged to apply.

  • Tuition: $14,995
  • Graduate Enrollment: 1,105

Courses Include

Theories of Family Process, Cultural Competence in Family Therapy, Couples Therapy and Sex Therapy, Lifespan, Family and Human Development, Counseling Children and Adolescents, and Professional Issues in Couple and Family Therapy.

#20 University of Houston Clear Lake

Master of Arts in Family Therapy

Houston, TX

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The Master of Arts in Family Therapy program at University of Houston Clear Lake was one of the first accredited programs in Texas (COAMFTE accredited since 1983) and has over 650 graduates. Features that will appeal to budget-conscious students include out-of-state tuition waivers (Dollars for Scholars Program), potential annual scholarships, and the low cost of living in Houston. The Family Therapy program at the University of Houston Clear lake values and attracts diverse students. Houston is the 4th largest city in the U.S. and one of the most diverse cities in the world.

  • Tuition: $14,904
  • Graduate Enrollment: 3,311

Courses Include

Introduction to Family Therapy, Family Assessment, Group Psychotherapy, Substance Abuse: Causes and Treatments, Cross-Cultural Perspectives on the Family, Systems and Symptoms, and Couple and Sex Therapy.

#19 Our Lady of the Lake University – Houston

Master of Science in Psychology with a concentration in Family, Couple and Individual Psychotherapy

The Woodlands, TX

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Our Lady of the Lake University offers a Master of Science in Psychology with a concentration in Family, Couple and Individual Psychotherapy (FCIP) at both the Houston and San Antonio campuses. This program emphasizes a strengths-based perspective and collaborative process in therapy. Cultural competence is central to the program’s values, and students will be trained in providing services to individuals, couples, and families from diverse backgrounds. An emphasis is placed on cultural as well as linguistic diversity.

  • Tuition: $14,678
  • Graduate Enrollment: 1,372

Courses Include

Introduction to Systemic Approaches to Psychotherapy, Psychopathology: Etiology, Diagnosis, & Treatment Planning, Family Processes Across Cultures, Theoretical Foundations of Individual and Family Psychotherapy, and Psychotherapy with Children, Adolescents, and Their Families.

#18 University of Akron

Master of Marriage and Family Counseling/Therapy

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Counselor Education and Supervision: Marriage and Family Counseling/Therapy

Akron, OH

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The University of Akron offers a Master’s degree and Ph.D. in Marriage and Family Counseling/ Therapy. Both degrees are dually accredited by COAMFTE and CACREP. Graduates of the Master’s program will be prepared for licensure and careers in a variety of settings based on personal preference and goals. The program claims a 95% completion rate and a licensure exam pass rate of 96%. The doctoral program aims to prepare graduates to work in the field of marriage and family therapy as advanced practitioners, teachers/supervisors, and researchers.

  • Tuition: $14,364
  • Graduate Enrollment: 4,455

Courses Include

Marriage and Family Therapy: Theories and Techniques, Systems Theory in Family Therapy, Marital Therapy, Multicultural Counseling, Techniques of Counseling, Issues in Sexuality for Counselors, Multicultural Counseling, Statistics, Research Design, and Clinical Supervision.

#17 Mercer University

Master’s of Family Therapy

Macon, GA

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Mercer University School of Medicine offers a Master of Marriage and Family Therapy. The program’s mission includes preparing medical students and marriage and family therapy students to work collaboratively as they provide services to individuals, couples and families. This program is offered on the Macon and Atlanta campuses.

  • Tuition: $14,127
  • Graduate Enrollment: 3,932

Courses Include

Marriage and Family Therapy Methods, Addiction Processes in Families, Marital, Couple and Sexual Issues in Family Therapy, Human Development Across the Lifespan, Loss and Grief Across the LIfespan, and Ethics and Professional Practice.

#16 Capella University

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Counseling/Therapy

Minneapolis, MN

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Capella University is one of two programs that made this list offering an online marriage and family counseling degree. This COAMFTE and CACREP accredited program combines online coursework, residencies, and clinical experience to fulfill practicum requirements. Each component builds on the others to ensure graduates are well prepared to enter the field as counselors and therapists and work towards marriage and family therapy licensure.

  • Tuition: $13,770
  • Graduate Enrollment: 26,060

Courses Include

Introduction to Marriage and Family Counseling/ Therapy, Family Therapy Theory and Methods, Marriage and Family Systems, Professional Ethics in Marriage and Family Counseling/ Therapy, Counseling and Advocacy with Diverse Populations, and Group Counseling and Clinical Applications in Marriage and Family Therapy.

#15 Texas Tech University

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Marriage and Family Therapy

Lubbock, TX

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The Marriage and Family Therapy Doctoral Degree Program at Texas Tech University (TTU) has been accredited by the COAMFTE since 1981. The doctoral program at TTU prepares graduates to be experts in research, clinical work, and academic instruction with goals of contributing to the field of marriage and family therapy. The Ph.D. program generally accepts between 5-8 students each year. Applicants to this program need to have a master’s degree, preferably from another MFT program. The program is typically completed in 3-5 years.

  • Tuition: $13,731
  • Graduate Enrollment: 6,067

Courses Include

Diversity in Marriage and Family Therapy, Qualitative Methods in Marriage and Family Therapy, Grant Writing, Writing for Publication, Addictions and the Family, and Gender, Violence, Grief/ Loss.

#14 Argosy University

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Draper, UT

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Argosy University at the Salt Lake and the Twin Cities campuses offer a COAMFTE accredited Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy. Students will be evaluated to make sure they have mastered specific core competencies as they progress through the program to ensure their success as clinicians. The Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy degree program at Argosy University, Twin Cities offers an optional concentration in Forensic Counseling.

  • Tuition: $13,628
  • Graduate Enrollment: 135

Courses Include

Theories of Family Process and Development, Schools of Family Therapy, Psychopathology and Assessment, Couples and Relational Family Therapy Skills, Individual and Personality Development, and Social and Cultural Foundations of Therapy.

#13 Evangelical Theological Seminary

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Myerstown, PA

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Evangelical Seminary offers a Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy. This marriage and family counseling degree integrates biblical principles and Christian faith with marriage and family theories. Students will learn together with the support of the faculty in the cohort model. Graduates go on to work in a variety of settings, from churches to private practice.

  • Tuition: $12,480
  • Graduate Enrollment: 113

Courses Include

Survey of Christian Theology, History and Theology of Marriage, Assessment in Marriage and Family Therapy, Children and Adolescents in Family Therapy, Gender and Ethnicity, Abusive and Addictive Family Systems, and Ethical, Legal, and Professional Issues in Family Therapy.

#12 Purdue University

Master’s of Marriage and Family Therapy

Hammond, IN

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The Marriage and Family Therapy program at Purdue University Calumet highlights theory, research, and practice. The program currently accepts 9 students into each cohort. Full-time students can complete the 61 credit hour program in 2-3 years. A master’s thesis is required for graduation. Graduates of this program have a 100% employment rate.

  • Tuition: $12,208
  • Graduate Enrollment: 1,032

Courses Include

Couple and Sex Therapy, Trauma and Recovery in Family Therapy, Advanced Child Development, Diversity and Social Justice in Family Therapy, Family Therapy Skills, Transgenerational Family Therapies, and Contemporary Issues in Family Therapy.

#11 St Cloud State University

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy

St. Cloud, MN

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St. Cloud State University offers a Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy. This family therapy degree program operates on the cohort model, with all classes having an experiential element intended to keep students engaged and connected to their work and each other.

  • Tuition: $11,839
  • Graduate Enrollment: 1,631

Courses Include

Family Systems, Clinical Issues in Marriage and Family Therapy, Family Assessment, Psychodiagnosis, Assessment, and Treatment Planning, Professional Skills and Procedures, and Child Development and Treatment.

#10 Friends University

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy

Lenexa, KS

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The Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy degree is offered at both the Wichita and Greater Kansas City Area (Lenexa) campuses. Classes typically take place on weekday afternoons and evenings. 60 credit hours are required for completion of the program, which consists of Core Curriculum requirements, Clinical Training requirements, and elective course requirements.

  • Tuition: $11,358
  • Graduate Enrollment: 569

Courses Include

History of Marriage and Family Therapy and Systems Theory, Professional Ethics in Marriage and Family Therapy, Research in Marriage and Family Therapy, Sexuality, Intimacy, and Sex Therapy, and Family Development, Stress and Violence.

#9 Christian Theological Seminary

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Indianapolis, IN

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The Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy at Christian Theological Seminary combines psychological and theological studies to prepare students to counsel individuals, couples, and families. Clinicians will be prepared to address both the mental health and spiritual needs of clients. Students will complete all of their clinical hours on campus at the Christian Theological Seminary Counseling Center. Interested students can combine this degree with the Master of Divinity.

  • Tuition: $11,198
  • Graduate Enrollment: 188

Clinical Situations Students Will Gain Expertise in Include

Crisis counseling, premarital counseling, couples counseling, children and teens in family counseling, play therapy. Additionally, Spanish speaking students will have the opportunity to provide therapy for Spanish speaking families.

#8 Pfeiffer University

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Charlotte, NC

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The Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy at Pfeiffer University is offered at both the Charlotte and Raleigh-Durham campuses. This COAMFTE accredited program will prepare graduates to take the national licensing exam. Students in the program are expected to be enrolled every semester throughout the program to ensure consistent clinical training. Students in the program are expected to participate in local, state, and national conferences. Additionally, to contribute to the growth and development of the students as therapists, all students are required to participate in confidential personal growth counseling throughout the course of the program.

  • Tuition: $10,765
  • Graduate Enrollment: 909

Courses Include

Assessment and Treatment Planning in Family Therapy, Family Therapy: Children and Adolescents, Advanced Psychopathology in the Family Context, Couples Therapy, Theory, and Techniques, andIntroduction to Family Systems.

#7 Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Louisville, KY

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Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary offers one of the few seminary-based Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy programs in the United States. This degree can be earned as a dual degree with a Master of Divinity leading to ordination as a minister. Graduates of this program go on to work as mental health professionals in a range of settings, including agencies to churches. Cohort sizes over the last 10 years have ranged from 5-14 students. In the last few years, 100% of graduates of this program have gone on to obtain state licensure as Marriage and Family Therapists.

  • Tuition: $10,546
  • Graduate Enrollment: 199

Program Goals

For graduates to be prepared to work as Marriage and Family Therapists, for graduates professional ability to reflect theologically on their work, for graduates to have entry level pastoral counseling skills, for graduates to represent and value diverse religious background, culture, racial and ethnic identity, gender, and sexual orientation.

#6 Indiana Wesleyan University

Master of Arts in Counseling

Marion, IN

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The Marriage and Family Counseling degree at Indiana Wesleyan University is accredited by both the CACREP and COAMFTE. This program approaches marriage and family therapy from a Christian worldview. Students working toward their Master of Arts in the Marriage and Family Counseling/ Therapy program will gain clinical skills through internship and practicum experience off-site as well as on-site at the programs therapy and research center. Students will receive supervision and feedback from faculty and peers through live sessions with a two-way mirror as well as through video taped sessions.

  • Tuition: $10,235
  • Graduate Enrollment: 4,193

Courses Include

Theory and Techniques of Helping Relationship, Theories and Treatment of Addiction, Legal, Ethical, and Professional Issues, Multicultural Counseling, Foundations of Marriage and Family Therapy, and Emotionally Focused Therapy with Couples and Families.

#5 Bethel Seminary

Master of Arts in Marital and Family Therapy

San Diego, CA

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Bethel University offers a Master of Arts in Marital and Family Therapy through the Bethel Seminary. The COAMFTE accredited Marriage and Family Therapy degree program is offered at the San Diego campus. This program integrates Biblical teaching and provides students with a spiritual foundation. Courses are offered on campus in the afternoons and evenings.

  • Tuition: $10,230
  • Graduate Enrollment: 178

Courses Include

Families in Context: Gender, Class, and Culture, Dynamics of Family Process, and Professional and Legal Issues.

#4 Regis University

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Broomfield, CO

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Regis University offers a Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy. The 60-credit-hour interactive program at Regis University prepares clinicians to provide advocacy and promote social justice in working with clients. Students will complete practicum and internship hours for their Marriage and Family Counseling degree at the department’s state-of-the-art counseling laboratory and at local mental health counseling agencies. Regis University offers the M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy at three campuses: North Denver, Broomfield, and Colorado Springs.

  • Tuition: $10,224
  • Graduate Enrollment: 4,550

Courses Include

Human Growth and Development, Theories of Family Therapy, Cultural Issues and Social Justice, Assessment and Diagnosis, Integrated Healthcare, Counseling Techniques, Techniques in Family and Couple Therapy, Substance Abuse Treatment, Gender Development and Sexuality, and Counseling Military Families.

#3 Converse College

Master’s of Marriage and Family Therapy

Spartanburg, SC

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Converse College’s Marriage and Family Therapy Degree requires the completion of 60 credit hours. The majority of courses are offered in the evenings and on weekends. Students will complete a 12 month practicum experience providing individual, couple and family therapy at WestGate Training and Consultation Network. The Masters of Marriage and Family Therapy degree at Converse College prepares culturally competent practitioners to treat a range of issues for diverse populations.

  • Tuition: $8,210
  • Graduate Enrollment: 587

Courses Include

Systems of Family Therapy, Diagnostics of Mental Disorders in Interpersonal Systems, Cultural Competence and Family Therapy, Marital and Family Therapy Supervision, Treatment of Adult Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse, and LGBT Issues in MFT.

#2 St. Mary’s University of Minnesota

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Minneapolis, MN

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The Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy at St. Mary’s University of Minnesota is designed for adult learners. The majority of students complete the program in three years, but an accelerated pace is also available for students who wish to complete the program in two. St. Mary’s University aims to make their advanced degrees convenient and accessible, offering multiple potential start dates as well as flexible course scheduling and blended delivery models.

  • Tuition: $7,668
  • Graduate Enrollment: 3,596

Courses Include

Foundations of Family Therapy, Developmental Psychology, Theories of Personality, Psychopathology, Counseling Theory and Technique, Multicultural Studies of the Family, Couple Relationships, Assessment of Couples and Families, Neuroscience in Couple Therapy, Premarital Counseling, Addictions and Family Therapy, and Marriage and Family Therapy with Immigrant Families.

#1 Brigham Young University

Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy

Doctor of Philosophy in Marriage and Family Therapy

Provo, UT

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Brigham Young University (BYU) offers two COAMFTE accredited Marriage and Family Therapy programs, with both a Masters (M.S.) and Ph.D. degree available. This program is offered by the School of Family Life. Students working towards their Marriage and Family Therapy degree (M.S. and Ph.D.) will complete 10-15 hours of clinical work with individuals, couples and families per week.

  • Tuition: $6,310
  • Graduate Enrollment: 3,358

Courses Include

Theoretical Foundations of Family System, Theoretical Foundations of Marital and Family Therapy, Analysis and Treatment of Human Sexual Development, Addictions and Violence in Families, Issues of Gender and Ethnicity, Ethical and Professional Issues for Family Therapists, Parent Education, Family Economics, Child and Adolescent Socialization, Familial Influences on Social Development, Emotional & Moral Development, and Theories of Human Development.

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