MA in Marriage and Family Therapy

Chapman University

Program Description

MA in Marriage and Family Therapy

Chapman University

The Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT) program is specifically structured to prepare students for licensure in California as Marriage and Family Therapists.

Of the 92 state accredited or approved MFT programs, Chapman's is one of only seven programs accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy (COAMFTE).

Our Mission

Our mission is to provide students with the academic and professional training to become competent, ethical, culturally sensitive, and systems-oriented marriage and family therapists who can effectively assess, diagnose, and treat a diverse population of individuals, couples and families.

Onsite Clinical Practicum

For one year, all MFT students conduct individual, couple, and family therapy under direct supervision of licensed mental health professionals at Chapman’s MFT Training Clinic, the Frances Smith Center for Individual & Family Therapy, which opened a new state-of-the-art clinic in January 2011. With eight large observation rooms, each equipped with digital cameras used to record sessions for instructional purposes, the clinic not only provides students with valuable real-world training, but it also strives to improve the quality of life in the greater community.

Very few MFT programs possess an onsite clinic, which enables students to work toward the 3,000 hours they must complete prior to taking the MFT licensing exams in California. Several of our graduates have cited this part of the program as one of the best aspects of their education, as it is very difficult to get this kind of hands-on experience elsewhere.

Educational Outcomes

Program Objectives

  • To prepare students for the profession of marriage and family therapy
  • To admit and graduate a diverse student body prepared for the practice of marriage and family therapy
  • To prepare students for the practice of marriage and family therapy by providing a supervised one-year practicum training experience

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Students will demonstrate a knowledge of family systems theories and be able to successfully apply systems theories in clinical practice
  • Students will demonstrate an awareness of and respect for diversity issues, as well as demonstrate competence in working with diverse clinical populations
  • Students will be knowledgeable of and successfully apply appropriate legal and ethical guidelines necessary for the competent practice of marriage and family therapy
  • Students will be able to conceptualize cases, articulate systemically-oriented treatment plans, and demonstrate overall competence in clinical practice
  • Students will qualify for state MFT internship status necessary for continued progression towards MFT licensure

Faculty Outcomes

  • The faculty will demonstrate excellence in teaching and supervision to advance students in the profession of marriage and family therapy
  • The faculty will demonstrate excellence in scholarly and professional activities that contribute to student learning
  • The faculty will demonstrate excellence in service through engagement in the Chapman University academic community
  • The faculty will mentor students in the practice of marriage and family therapy including issues that demonstrate an understanding and respect for cultural diversity

Research Opportunities

Students are encouraged to take on research and graduate assistantship programs that may provide for the opportunity to publish and/or present their findings at conferences and symposia. Past research opportunities have included:

  • Studying health benefits of meditation and creative movement/conditioning in treating anxiety disorders
  • Examining how men and women cope with infertility

Your Career

According to US News and World Report, a marriage and family therapist was one of the 50 best careers in 2011. Alumni have gone on to:

  • Work in public/non-profit agencies
  • Work in governmental or private agencies
  • Work in private practice settings
  • Work in in-patient facilities
  • Teach college courses

This MFT program may also serve as the foundation for further graduate study in psychology or one of the related disciplines, particularly if students also opt to complete an empirical masters thesis as part of their degree.

Admission Guidelines


You must possess an undergraduate degree in psychology (or equivalent discipline) from an accredited college or university, or you must provide evidence of a satisfactory academic background in all of the following:

  • Abnormal Psychology or Child Abnormal Psychology
  • Child Psychology or Adolescent Psychology or Developmental Psychology
  • Learning Theory or Cognitive Psychology or Physiological Psychology
  • Personality Theory or Social Psychology
  • Research Methods in Psychology or Psychological Assessment
  • Statistics

*You must be enrolled or have completed 4 of the 6 required prerequisite classes by the admission deadline. All prerequisites must be met by the time you have completed your first semester.

This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated April 10, 2016
Duration & Price
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Start date
Sept. 2017
Part time
Full time
805 USD
Start date Sept. 2017
USA Orange, California
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
Duration Request Info
Price 805 USD
per credit.