Sep 24, 2023
The Marriage and Family Therapy M.A. and Ph.D. programs are accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE) (with the exception of the non-clinical concentration), and the Marriage and Family Therapy M.A. program is also accredited by CACREP.
The Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from the University of Louisiana at Monroe prepares graduates for careers as scholars/teachers, researchers, supervisors, and senior clinicians. The Marriage and Family Therapy doctorate is a 69 credit hours (minimum) post master’s degree which integrates a systemic oriented philosophy and theory, clinical practice, qualitative research, and quantitative research.
Admission to the Ph.D. program in Marriage and Family Therapy is a two-stage process: (1) An applicant must first meet the requirements for admission to the University and the Graduate School; (2) Specific program requirements must also be met.
Students admitted to the program will have successfully completed a master’s degree program from a regionally accredited institution. Students must complete the standard curriculum of a Council of Accreditation for Marriage and Therapy Education (COAMFTE) accredited master’s degree program prior to the doctoral curriculum.
Students may be admitted who do not have all of the above course work. However, they will be required to complete studies in these areas in addition to the standard doctoral course work.
Priority will be given applicants with:
- A minimum cumulative graduate grade point average of at least 3.50.
- Minimum graduate record examination score of 1,000 (Verbal and Quantitative).
All applicants must:
- Submit three letters of recommendation from professional colleagues who are familiar with her/his character, clinical skills, and ability to perform academically on the doctoral level. Where possible these should include former professors, clinical supervisors, and/or administrators familiar with your training and subsequent practice.
- Complete the admission portfolios and submit them prior to the deadline for admission.
- Demonstrate evidence of both academic competency and clinical skills or the potential for clinical competency.
- Present evidence of relevant work experience.
Finalists in the application process will be required to have a personal interview with the MFT doctoral admissions committee.
Eligibility to Remain in the Ph.D. Program: Students enrolled in the doctoral program must maintain a minimum grade point average of 3.0 during each semester of enrollment. Failure of the student to maintain an overall graduate grade point average of 3.0 or receipt of any grade lower than C in graduate course work, will result in termination from the program and further graduate work at the University of Louisiana at Monroe.
A graduate student who is denied admission to, or further continuance in the Doctor of Philosophy program may appeal for admission or readmission. An appeal must conform to the requirements of the Graduate School and the College of Education and Human Development.
At the time of admission, the student shall consult with his/her advisory committee to determine what “leveling” course work from their Master’s curriculum (if any) will need to be completed prior to pursuing advanced marriage and family therapy studies.
The core curriculum (required post master’s degree courses) for the Ph.D. in Marriage and Family Therapy includes:
Residence Requirements: Students must enroll full time in the program. Beginning with the initial semester of enrollment, students must be in continuous full-time residency for a minimum of 21 months (completing the first 6 terms of study as defined above).
Comprehensive Examination: The Comprehensive Examination is administered during the last semester of residency. This examination consists of a written as well as an oral examination. Failure to successfully complete any part of this examination will result in a revision of the program of study and an additional examination. Failure to pass all sections of this examination after two attempts will result in termination of the student from the program. After satisfactory completion of this examination, the student may then apply for candidacy status.
The Clinical Experience: The clinical experience shall consist of a minimum of 21 semester hours. These shall be designated as follows:
- Fifteen semester hours of practicum.
- Six semester hours of internship minimum. These internship hours shall be obtained over a continuous nine to 12 month experience and shall consist of not fewer than thirty hours per week. This internship will include a minimum of five hundred client contact hours and one hour per week of individual supervision. It is expected that this clinical experience will generally follow the marriage and family therapy course work and will be free of other educational and professional demands. Designed to approximate the intensity of full-time clinical practice, the internship will offer students the opportunity to experience the full range of activities associated with clinical practice. The Director of Clinical Training will work in close conjunction with the onsite approved supervisor. All supervision will be provided by an appropriately designated AAMFT approved supervisor (or the equivalent). A contract detailing expectations and requirements for the internship experience will be signed by all parties before student placement at the internship site. An alternate internship is available for students with 1000 hours of client contact and permission of the Director of Clinical Training.
Dissertation: In addition to the research course requirements, all doctoral students are required to complete a dissertation. Dissertation topics will be related to the field of marriage and family therapy or marriage and family studies. Students are encouraged to pursue the identification of a dissertation topic and the review of the literature prior to the Comprehensive Examination (typically this can be done while taking MAFT 746). The dissertation proposal must be approved by the student’s Dissertation Committee.
The student is expected to enroll continuously for a minimum of three semester hours of dissertation credit each semester until completion of the dissertation. The student must register for a minimum of nine semester hours of dissertation credit during his/her program. Following satisfactory completion of the dissertation as determined by the dissertation committee, an oral defense is required. The dissertation, with recommended changes, will then be submitted to the Graduate School for final approval.
Dissertation Committee: The student’s Dissertation Committee shall consist of the Dissertation Chair and a minimum of two additional members who are representative of the general field of study in which the student expects to perform his/her work. The Dissertation Committee Chair must be selected from the ULM Marriage and Family Therapy graduate faculty and hold the credential of “full member” status on the graduate faculty. The student’s Dissertation Committee is selected by the student in collaboration with the Dissertation Chair, and must be approved by the College of Education and Human Development Graduate Studies Committee, the Dean of the College of Education and Human Development, and the Dean of the Graduate School. Each member must hold credentials as a member or associate member of the graduate faculty.
Transfer of Credit: A maximum of nine semester hours of graduate credit appropriate to the student’s degree program may be transferred from other institutions offering regionally accredited graduate programs. Courses transferred into the ULM doctoral program must have been completed within three years prior to admission. No credits for which a grade of less than a B has been earned may be transferred. Neither internship nor dissertation credit may be transferred into the ULM program.
Time Limit for the Ph.D. in Marriage and Family Therapy: All course work, internships, and the dissertation must be completed within a six-year time period from the date of the first registration in the program. Any appeal for extension beyond the six year requirement must be approved by the Dean of the Graduate School and by the Marriage and Family Therapy Doctoral Faculty.
Policies and Procedures: Policies and procedures for the ULM Marriage and Family Therapy Ph.D. Program are detailed in the program handbook.
Note: To receive graduate credit for a 4000-level course designated ‘For Undergraduate and Graduates,’ a student must be in graduate admission status at the time credit is earned in the course. Credit earned in undergraduate admission status cannot be changed to graduate credit.