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LMFT Graduate Program Requirements

Program Requirements

These requirements apply to regionally accredited (non-COAMFTE) and foreign programs.  Graduate degrees from unaccredited universities will not meet the educational requirements for licensure.  See also OAR 833-040-0011.

Program Duration

The graduate degree must have been at least two years in duration, and included a minimum of:
  • 60 semester credit hours or 90 quarter credit hours for graduate degrees granted on or after October 1, 2014; or
  • 48 semester credit hours or 72 quarter hours for graduate degrees granted before October 1, 2014.

Coursework Areas

Degrees granted on or after October 1, 2014

At minimum, the program must have included the following coursework:
  • Individual and Family Development- 4 semester hours or 6 quarter hours;
  • Couple and Family Theoretical Foundation Studies- six semester hours or nine quarter hours;
  • Couple and Family Therapy, Treatment, and Techniques Studies- 6 semester hours or 9 quarter hours;
  • Diagnosis of mental disorders- 2 semester hours or 3 quarter hours;
  • Diversity studies that include issues related to diversity, power and privilege- 2 semester hours or 3 quarter hours;
  • Ethical and Professional Studies- 2 semester hours or 3 quarter hours;
  • Research Methods or Statistics- 2 semester hours or 3 quarter hours;
  • Supporting coursework focusing on counseling and/or systems approaches- 36 semester hours or 54 quarter hours.

Degrees Granted Before October 1, 2014

At minimum, the program must have included the following coursework:
  • Human Development- 4 semester hours or 6 quarter hours;
  • Marital and Family Theoretical Foundation Studies- 2 semester hours or 3 quarter hours;
  • Marital and Family Therapy Diagnosis and Assessment, Treatment, Principles and Techniques Studies- 8 semester hours or 12 quarter hours;
  • Professional Studies- two semester hours or three quarter hours;
  • Research Methods or Statistics- two semester hours or three quarter hours;
  • Supporting Coursework Focusing on the Systems Paradigm for Specialty Areas- 16 semester hours or 24 quarter hours.

Course Content Descriptions

Human Develop & Family Studies
Stresses the complex developmental relationships among individuals in the family. Individually oriented content adapted to a systems paradigm. Stress on the life-cycle of the family and its modifications over time (first child, adolescent sexual development, leaving home, etc.)

Marital and Family Theoretical Foundations
Includes the historical development of systems theory. Human issues are considered from the systems paradigm, including both theoretical literature and practical treatment issues.
 
Marital and Family Therapy Diagnosis and Assessment, Treatment, Principles and Techniques
Includes a comprehensive survey of the major models of system change and the principles and techniques evolving from each model. Applied aspects of therapy practice (range of techniques, indications and contraindications for techniques, intervention rationales, the role of the therapist, etc.).
 
Diagnosis and treatment within the context of marital and family systems of both dysfunctional relationship patterns and nervous and mental disorders; cognitive, affective, and behavioral. Use of appropriate major mental health assessment instruments within a systemic context. Treatment processes for loss, intense stress, suicide, incest, violence, sexual dysfunctions, divorce and remarriage. Diagnosis training is mandatory.
 
Professional Studies
Development of a professional attitude and identity. Studies of professional socialization and the role of professional organizations; licensure; legal responsibilities and liabilities of clinical practice and research; family law; confidentiality issues, code of ethics, etc.
 
Research Methods or Statistics
Research methodology and data analysis, computer research skills, critical evaluation of professional research reports, with emphasis on research relevant to marital and family therapy.

Supervised Experience

The graduate degree must have included a supervised clinical practicum or internship experience that included:
  • For graduate degrees granted on or after October 1, 2014: At least 700 total clock hours, including 280 direct client contact hours.
  • For graduate degrees granted before October 1, 2014: At least 600 total clock hours, including 240 direct client contact hours.
The program's clinical practicum/internship must have:
  • Had supervisory staff with a minimum of a master's degree in the program emphasis and with pertinent professional experience;
  • Made provision for faculty monitoring of operations;
  • Kept records of student-client contact hours including summary of student progress by the supervisor;
  • Had a written agreement with the program and student specifying learning objectives; and
  • Had a mechanism for program evaluation.

Remedying Program Deficiencies

The following types of deficiencies may be remedied in order for an applicant to qualify for licensure.

Coursework Deficiencies

Deficiencies in the coursework requirements may be remedied by completing graduate-level coursework in the deficient area(s) at a regionally accredited institution.

Supervised Experience Deficiencies

Deficiencies in the supervised experience requirement may be remedied by completion of:
  • At least 700 clock hours of supervised clinical experience, including 280 direct client contact hours; or
  • At least five years of full-time post-degree clinical experience, the majority of which must consist of work in relationship issues.

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