Specialized expertise in treating 
couples and families.

Specialized expertise in treating
couples and families.

Couple and Family Therapy Overview

The Master of Arts in Couple and Family Therapy program is dedicated to training quality couple and family therapists firmly grounded in systemic theories who are socially responsible and sensitive to diversity with a clear professional identity as a Couple and Family Therapist.

Underlying the training philosophy of the Couple and Family Therapy Department are vital core values including (a) change takes place in the context of relationship, (b) systemic thinking, (c) openness to diversity, (d) sensitivity to cultural context, (e) CFT professional identity, (f) commitment to clinical excellence, and (g) social responsibility. These are achieved through a commitment to our Educational Outcomes. As evidenced by these Educational Outcomes, the Couple and Family Therapy Department is committed to diversity in a variety of ways including the composition of our faculty, supervisors, and students.

With expected job growth as high as 41.2% in the next decade, marriage and family therapist (MFT) again earned a spot in 2013 on U.S. News and World Report’s list of 50 best careers.

Our Couple and Family Therapy program prepares highly skilled, entry-level marriage and family therapists (MFT) to fulfill this rising need for therapists with specialized expertise in a range of couples and family systems. The ability to work with families is particularly valuable for clinicians treating children and adolescents.

We embrace a scientist-practitioner model, which means that we train practitioners who can apply empirically based knowledge and techniques to their clinical practice. Students are trained to perceive children, individuals, couples, and families within complex relational, family, and societal dynamics—a systems perspective.

Family therapy has a deeply rooted history at the Adler University. Alfred Adler, the University’s namesake, was one of the first therapists to apply a systems approach in family therapy. He later went on to establish more than 30 child guidance clinics in Europe to provide parenting education to the community—a tradition carried out today through our Child Guidance Center.

Our robust curriculum is taught in small classes by faculty practitioners who bring real-world experiences to the classroom. Our program draws on the field’s rich clinical traditions, coupled with practicum experiences providing students with strong conceptual, assessment, treatment planning, and intervention skills based on the major models of couples and family therapy.

Through strong faculty support, a dedicated Training Department, and the University’s partnerships with hundreds of community agencies, our students gain valuable practicum and clinical experience in a variety of specialized settings.

Our graduates have a core professional identity as couple and family therapists, and are qualified for membership in the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT). They work in a wide variety of clinical settings including hospitals, schools, treatment programs, community mental health centers, other organizations, and private practice.


This program’s sequence of courses and supervised clinical training are intended to assist professionals in meeting the educational requirements for licensure as a Marriage and Family Therapists (LMFT). LMFT requirements can change, and vary from state to state. Through individualized advising; students will work with our faculty to plan their curriculum in order to meet the criteria for the specific state/s where they intend to practice.

Admission Requirements

  • At least a baccalaureate degree from a college or university regionally accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency or an equivalent degree from an international college or university
  • A grade point average of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale for undergraduate and graduate coursework
  • Completion of the following semester courses in psychology with grades of "C" or better: General or introductory psychology, human development, and research methods or statistics. Equivalent coursework in other social sciences may also be considered. 
  • Applicants who meet the admission standards will be invited for an interview with faculty

The Master of Arts in Couple and Family Therapy (MCFT) program is currently pursuing accreditation with COAMFTE. In accordance with accreditation guidelines, the program would like to provide potential students with information regarding our Student Achievement Data.