Is an MFT Degree Worth It?
What Is an MFT Degree?
Common Requirements to Become a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT)
- Earn a bachelor’s degree
- Earn a master’s degree in psychology, marriage and family therapy, or a related mental health field. This process is overseen by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE). If you need greater flexibility than what an on-campus MFT degree program typically provides, you may want to consider an online MFT program.
- Complete your supervised field experience requirement. Requirements for how many supervised hours you need before you can take your licensing exam vary.
- Pass the exams required by your state. State requirements will vary. Some states may require the MFT National Examination, managed by the Association of Marital and Family Therapy Regulatory Boards (AMFTRB).
What does the LMFT curriculum typically include?
What Do LMFTs Do?
What does that look like in the course of a day, week or month on the job?
Where Can LMFTs Find Employment?
Pros and Cons of Getting a Master’s Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy
After the MFT Degree – Potential Salary and Student Debt
Salaries of LMFTs vs. Mental Health Counselors and Social Workers
Job Outlook for MFT Graduates vs. Mental Health Counselors and Social Workers
Summing It All Up: Should You Get a Marriage and Family Therapist Degree?
If you are trying to change careers or learn more expertise, then an MFT degree may help you gain the skill sets you need to be competitive in the job market. A degree will also provide you with up-to-date information regarding the latest techniques and methods that marriage and family therapists are using to help their clients cope.
Online MFT programs are designed to reflect the on-campus experience. While in-person programs allow for more face-to-face interactions with your teacher, there are often downsides to attending class on-campus that are made up for in online programs. Some students thrive in an environment free from the distractions of their classmates so they can work at their own pace while absorbing the course material. It all comes down to your learning preferences when deciding if an online MFT program is a good fit.
Most degree programs take around two years to complete as a full-time student due to the number of clinical hours and different settings needed to prove competency as a therapist. In that time, aspiring MFTs will learn to master the fundamentals of counseling to be prepared for work in their own private practice or setting of choice.
Marriage and family therapists are able to diagnose and treat substance abuse and mental health problems. They train for at least two years in supervised clinical situations before obtaining their license to practice. During this time, they are under the direct supervision of an LMFT who demonstrates the best practices when it comes to diagnosing and treating issues. MFTs are able to diagnose and provide solutions to families and couples for most of their specific needs and will utilize other professionals, like a psychiatrist, when necessary.
MFTs play an integral role in the interpersonal development of their clients. They diagnose and provide treatments to equip their clients with the tools they need to grow confident and happy. Marriage and family therapists are crucial in healing interpersonal relationships that need third-party help to mend. They facilitate conversation that promotes interconnectedness and self-awareness.
It may seem like mental health counseling and marriage and family therapy are similar but there are slight differences that set them apart. While an MFT does help couples and families to overcome their mental health issues, they are able to offer guidance in other areas of healing as well.