ACADEMICS

M.A. Marriage and Family Therapy

As one of HIU’s fastest growing graduate programs, the Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT) program at Hope International University (HIU) has developed a reputation among the highest quality MFT programs in the region. By providing academic and clinical training for a career as a professional marriage and family therapist, students are prepared to treat relational mental health issues with individuals, couples, and families from a family systems perspective.

Mission

The Marriage and Family Therapy Program at Hope International University develops highly trained counselors, grounded in Christian principles, who help families to restore broken relationships, resolve life challenges, and develop adequate and satisfying relationships.

Program Description

The 60-unit program is designed to integrate both theory and practice, grounded in Christian principles. Sound research skills, theoretical teaching, practical application, and clinical training are central to the curriculum. The faculty guides students through academic studies, clinical courses, self-assessment measures, and professional development, all of which provide a rich educational experience. MFT faculty members are current practitioners and they bring their professional experiences to the classroom.

In addition to academic course requirements, students are placed in community based practicum and trainee sites where they undergo real-world training experiences with diverse clientele. Supervisors who have had specific training in MFT supervision and meet rigorous supervision standards supervise students. The MFT program at HIU accepts students from around the world and is dedicated to training students to work with diverse populations.

The program is accredited by the Commission of Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE), the national accrediting body for marriage and family therapy programs. The Accreditation Standards set by COAMFTE require the program to report on student achievement. Click here to view the Student Achievement Criteria. The program also meets the educational requirements of the Board of Behavioral Sciences (BBS) in California, including the requirements of the Business and Professions Code, Section 4980.37, .38, and .40. Graduates may sit for their licensing examination upon completion of the necessary 3,000 supervised hours.

This is an on-ground program completed at our Orange Education Center. Courses last 8 to 16 weeks and are offered in the mornings, afternoons, and evenings. A schedule can be developed to accommodate two to three year completion.

HIU’s on-site counseling center, Hope Counseling Center (HCC), offers counseling services for Hope students, faculty, staff, and the local community. The HCC is a convenient location for some MFT students to gain clinical training hours.

Program Outcomes

The MFT program at HIU will :

  1. Prepare students to pass the MFT licensing examination and demonstrate (1) essential knowledge related to clinical case conceptualization, diagnosis, intervention, and the use of community mental health resources, (2) knowledge of the principles of marriage and family therapy, and (3) the ability to write and articulate their personal theoretical model for therapy. (Knowledge)
  2. Develop skills that reflect high standards of professionalism and commitment to ethical and professional behavior consistent with the standards of counseling and psychology and Christian principles. (Professionalism)
  3. Help students master clinical skills and the ability to apply innovative therapeutic techniques to meet the diverse needs of individuals and families. (Clinical)
  4. Assist students in learning to critically evaluate and conduct clinical research related to all aspects of therapy ensuring the highest quality of therapeutic skill. (Research)

Student Learning Outcomes

Graduates of the Master of Arts (M.A.) degree in Marriage and Family Therapy are prepared to:

PO 1. Knowledge: Student will demonstrate (1) essential knowledge related to clinical case conceptualization, diagnosis, intervention, and the use of community mental health resources, (2) knowledge of the principles of marriage and family therapy, and (3) the ability to write and articulate their personal theoretical model for therapy.

PO 2. Professionalism: Student will demonstrate skills that reflect high standards of professionalism and commitment to ethical and professional behavior consistent with the standards of counseling and psychology and Christian principles.

PO 3. Clinical: Student will demonstrate clinical skills and the ability to apply innovative therapeutic techniques to meet the diverse needs of individuals and families.

PO 4. Research: Student will be able to critically evaluate and conduct clinical research related to all aspects of therapy ensuring the highest quality of therapeutic skill.

Career Resources

Interesting Courses

  • Theories of Marriage and Family Therapy
  • Approaches to the Treatment of Couples
  • Approaches to the Treatment of Children
  • Psychopathology
  • Counseling Older Adults and Their Families
  • Psychopharmacology

Real World Opportunities

All MFT students participate in the clinical training program as part of the Supervised Practicum course, while accruing hours in an approved practicum site. As part of the degree requirements, all students are required to complete at least 325 clinical training hours, which includes a minimum of 225 direct client contact hours. Direct client contact hours include providing therapy to couples, individuals, children, families, and/or groups. Departmental approval must be obtained for a student to Advance to Practicum. All practicum sites and supervisors must obtain departmental approval and comply with all of the current statutes and regulations set forth by the Board of Behavioral Sciences.

 

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Our Alumni Tell Our Story Best

Photo - Mary Trujillo

Mary Trujillo
M.F.T. '08


"From the moment I walked onto Hopes campus, I felt welcomed. The staff took the time to get to know me and give me as much information as I needed. The students and professors became mentors to me and created a safe place for me to share about myself and grow as a Christian leader. The examples of the staff members really motivated me to be the best I could be both in my professional and personal life."

Our Alumni Tell Our Story Best

Photo - Chris Williams

Chris Williams
M.F.T. '07

Marriage and Family Therapist Intern
Pacific Coast Psychological Associates
Fullerton, CA

"The course work is rigorous, thorough and relevant to today's challenges and opportunities. I work with individuals, couples and families who have encountered traumatic life experiences. I have the privilege of working with them towards greater healing, wholeness and fulfillment. Today I maintain close contact with my former professors and classmates, which keeps me growing in my effectiveness. The education lasts a lifetime and the impact lasts forever."

Our Alumni Tell Our Story Best

Larry Bradley
M.A. M.F.T. '08


"I attended Hopes MFT program because of the convenient course schedule, nationally respected curriculum, and faculty that brought not only a textbook to class but real experience by being in the trenches themselves. As a recent graduate, I now have a steady client load of some twenty individuals in a private practice setting. My supervisor has made several comments about the training I have received and has complimented HIU in providing superior academic support in meeting the challenges of individuals in bettering their relationships."

Featured Student

Photo - Rita Atchabahian

Rita Atchabahian
MFT Student

"I love Hope International University and the Marriage and Family Therapy program because Hope is not only a university, it is a family whose vision is centered on God and on creating leaders for Christ. Hope has impacted my life greatly and brought me closer to Christ.

My professors and colleagues challenge me to personal growth and development each and every day, which is helping me learn how to be an effective therapist.

This program is great preparation for my career the faculty members constantly share their professional experiences, and we practice effective techniques in the classroom. "