Saint Mary's University of Minnesota
Saint Mary's University of Minnesota


(612) 248-1202

(612) 248-1202

M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy—Learn in a Practitioner-based, Accredited Program

Facilitate healthier relationships among diverse clients.

Enhance your understanding of intervention methods with individuals, couples, and families by earning the Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy. The curriculum can prepare graduates to meet the educational requirements for licensure as a Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) in Minnesota.

In this practitioner-based curriculum, you will go through trained therapy simulations supervised by license professionals and explore topics in areas such as:

  • Human development
  • Marital studies
  • Contemporary issues in marriage and family therapy

This program, offered on Saint Mary's Twin Cities and Rochester, MN, campuses, is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE) of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT), 112 S. Alfred Street, Alexandria, VA 22314, (703) 838-9808. Graduates of a COAMFTE-accredited program increase the portability of their degree and are better positioned to meet licensing requirements in a number of states (many states base their educational requirements on COAMFTE standards) 1


Human Development Courses (9 credits)

MFT605 Individual and Family Lifespan and Development (3 cr.)

MFT608 Psychopathology and Treatment Planning in Developmental Systems (3 cr.)

MFT635 Systemic Assessment and Treatment of Sexual Concerns (3 cr.)

Marital Studies Courses (14 credits)

MFT615 Multicultural Studies of the Family (3 cr.)

MFT616 Therapy with Couples and Intimate Partners (3 cr.)

MFT617 Foundations of Family Therapy I: Theoretical and Conceptual Origins (3 cr.)

MFT618 Introduction to Trauma and Crisis Intervention in MFT (2 cr.)

MFT619 Foundations of Family Therapy II: Contemporary Theories and Models (3 cr.)

Marriage and Family Therapy Courses (9 credits, including Contemporary Issues courses)

MFT628 Advanced Applications of Relational Theory and Systemic Interventions (3 cr.) MFT650 Assessment of Couples and Families (3 cr.)

Contemporary Issues in MFT (1 cr. per course, minimum 3 courses)

MFT568 Advanced Diagnostic Assessment and Treatment Planning from a Systemic Perspective (1 cr.)

MFT569 Psychopharmacology and Couple and Family Therapy (1 cr.)

MFT570 Systemic and Relational Group Therapy (1 cr.)

MFT571 Attachment Theory in Couple and Family Therapy (1 cr.)

MFT572 Advanced Diagnostic Assessment and Treatment Planning from a Systemic Perspective (1 cr.)

MFT573 Introduction to Play Therapy (1 cr.)

MFT574 Parenting Interventions (1 cr.)

MFT575 Spirituality and Family Therapy (1 cr.)

MFT576 Marriage and Family Therapy with Immigrant Families (1 cr.)

MFT577 In-Home Family Therapy (1 cr.)

MFT578 Art Therapy with Families (1 cr.)

MFT579 Introduction to Grief and Loss Issues in Family Therapy (1 cr.)

MFT580 Family Therapy with Families with Disabilities (1 cr.)

MFT581 Medical Family Therapy (1 cr.)

MFT582 Use of Self in Marriage and Family Therapy (1 cr.)

MFT583 Assessing and Treating Substance Abuse/Dependency (1 cr.)

MFT584 Couple and Family Therapy with Gay and Lesbian Families (1 cr.)

MFT585 Family Therapy with African American Families (1 cr.)

MFT586 Working with Returning Military Personnel and Their Families from a Systemic Perspective (1 cr.)

MFT587 Marriage and Family Therapy in Rural Areas (1 cr.)

MFT588 Working systemically with the Eating Disorder Population (1 cr.)

MFT589 Separating and Divorcing Couples (1 cr.)

MFT590 Working with Later Life Families: Aging from a Family Perspective (1 cr.)

MFT591 Family Mediation (1 cr.)

MFT592 Neuroscience in Couple Therapy (1 cr.)

MFT593 Adoption and Foster Care Issues in Family Therapy (1 cr.)

MFT594 Impact of Trauma in First Responders and Their Families (1 cr.)

MFT595 Premarital Counseling (1 cr.)

MFT596 Hoarding Disorder and Families (1 cr.)

MFT597 Trauma and Play Therapy (1 cr.)

MFT598 Mindfulness Based Couples and Family Therapy (1 cr.)

MFT599 The Business and Practice of MFT (1 cr.)

Research Course (3 credits)

MFT620 Statistical Techniques and Research Methods in MFT (3 cr.)

Professional Issues Courses (4 credits)

MFT642 Marriage and Family Therapy: Professional Issues and Orientation (1 cr.)

MFT690 Ethical Issues and Professional Practices in Marriage and Family Therapy (3 cr.)

Practicum (8 credits minimum)

MFT645 Couple and Family Therapy Community Practicum (2 cr.)

MFT671 Couple and Family Therapy Clinical Practicum I (required) (2 cr.)

MFT672 Couple and Family Therapy Clinical Practicum II (required) (2 cr.)

MFT673 Couple and Family Therapy Clinical Practicum III (required) (2 cr.)

MFT674 Couple and Family Therapy Clinical Practicum IV (as needed) (2 cr.)

MFT675 Couple and Family Therapy Practicum Completion (0 cr.)

Final Requirements

Final requirements of the program include the following:


MFT680 Capstone Course in MFT (1 cr.)

MFT791 Integration Paper and Oral Examination (0 cr.)


Students admitted to the program will join one of two cohorts:

  • The fall cohort, beginning in late August, designed for working adults. Courses are held on Monday and Tuesday evenings, and the cohort takes nine semesters, or three years, to complete.
  • The summer cohort, beginning in early May, is intended for students who want a more accelerated program. Courses are held throughout the day and evening on Mondays. This option takes seven semesters, or 2.3 years, to complete.
The Princeton Review named Saint Mary’s a
"Best Midwestern College" for 2019.

1This program is designed to prepare students to seek licensure as Marriage and Family Therapists in Minnesota. Any student interested in professional licensure should verify requirements with their state licensing board before enrolling in any degree program.
2Courses listed may not reflect all current degree requirements as published in Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota’s Course Catalog. Contact an enrollment counselor today for more information about this program.



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