Program Details

Master of Science in Professional Counseling with an Emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy

Offered By: College of Humanities and Social Sciences
Next Start Date:
Program Now Enrolling
ProgramLength:
Total Program Credits: 74
Online: 8 weeks [More Info]
Transfer Credits:
Up to 12 credits or 1/3 of the program
Program Tuition Rate:
Online: $500 per credit. [More Info]

Overview

Change Lives Through a Career in Counseling

The Master of Science in Professional Counseling with an Emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy program is designed for students interested in becoming professional counselors. Within this program, advance your knowledge and develop skills necessary to identify, assess and address marriage and family-related issues, including, but not limited to, communication and substance use issues, parent-child relationships, different family dynamics and couple's issues. You also explore facets of spousal and child abuse, crisis intervention and trauma counseling.

Curricula features a systems theory approach within the counseling field to assess different family dynamics. Help families work together as a unit to solve individual issues, understand the actions of one another's roles and adopt positive behaviors as a team.

The marriage and family therapy program within the College of Humanities and Social Sciences has been aligned to the standards established by the National Board for Certified Counselors. This degree does not lead to marriage and family licensure; make sure to review your state's marriage and family licensure board to see requirements. However, students graduate with the essential comprehensive training for moving onto national certification and licensure in Arizona as a counselor. Graduates of this MS in counseling with an emphasis in marriage and family therapy program may apply for state licensure after passing the state-mandated testing.

Degree Outcomes

Apply Systems Theory to Family and Couple Relationships

Acquire emphasized knowledge of the role, value and benefits of family systems theory as it applies to the assessment and treatment of couples and families. Other areas of expertise include systemic perspectives of couples and family dynamics, diverse family systems and the impact of addictive disorders. Supervised practicum and internship experiences enable you to develop practical counseling skills that you can apply to confidently perform all activities of a qualified professional counselor. Upon completion of the program, you may possess the skills and techniques for premarital and divorce counseling, parenting, family therapy and more.

Didactic coursework and supervised fieldwork experience provide you with the increased knowledge base and skills to work with diverse client populations, analyze key components of counseling ethics and develop a counseling treatment plan. Varied coursework encompasses counseling theory, addictions and substance use disorders, social and cultural diversity issues and human growth and development.

What You Will Learn

Develop Relevant Expertise in Counseling

The marriage and family therapy program features main competencies in the following areas:

  • Professional counseling models and practice
  • Ethics
  • Social and cultural foundations
  • Research
  • Professional growth and development in professional counseling
  • Marriage and family therapy

Career Outcomes

Make a Difference in Counseling

Students who earn a Master of Science in Professional Counseling with an Emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy degree are prepared to pursue careers as counselors, behavioral health counselors or mental health counselors. Upon completing this program, you will develop into a counseling professional who is well-equipped in health and behavioral sciences to evaluate varying issues related to relationships and family, as well as provide treatment solutions based upon in-depth analysis.

Course List

The programs offered at Grand Canyon University may vary by content and course length. You are currently viewing the program version available in Arizona. In order to view the specific course content and credit length available for your state, please contact a counselor at 1-855-GCU-LOPE or click here to request more information.
Major:
74 credits
Total Degree Requirements:
74 credits

Program Core Courses

Course Description

This course is designed to prepare students for the graduate learning experience at Grand Canyon University. Students have opportunities to develop and strengthen the skills necessary to succeed as graduate students in the health sciences. Emphasis is placed on utilizing the tools for graduate success.

Course Description

This course provides a broad understanding of counseling ethics, legal standards, and responsibilities, including professional identity, report writing, record keeping, and service reimbursement for professional and substance-use-disorder counselors. Also covered are the history of and current trends in counseling. Important goals of this course are to help students develop a strong personal and professional ethic, as well as an appreciation for the value of professional collaboration and identity.

Course Description

This course provides a comprehensive survey of the major counseling theories and principles. Coursework includes the following theories: psychoanalytic, Adlerian, existential psychotherapy, behavioral, cognitive behavioral, person-centered, reality therapy/choice theory, and rational emotive behavioral therapy (REBT).

Course Description

This course provides a broad understanding of the stages, processes, and effects of substance use disorders, social and psychological dynamics of substance use disorders, and the professional's role in prevention, intervention, and aftercare, including recovery and relapse prevention. This course also explores theories and models of treatment of substance use disorders, drug classification, and assessment. It also continues building foundational knowledge, utilization of professional resources, and exploration of standards to help students prepare for licensure/certification within the counseling industry.

Course Description

This course provides a broad understanding of group development, group dynamics, group counseling theories, and ethical standards with reference to professional and substance use disorders counseling. The course also addresses group process components, appropriate selection criteria, developmental stage theories, group members? roles and behaviors, and group leadership styles and approaches.

Course Description

This course provides a broad understanding of issues and trends in a multicultural and diverse society. Studies in this area include the following: attitudes and behaviors based on such factors as age, race, religious preference, physical disability, sexual orientation, ethnicity and culture, family patterns, gender, socioeconomic status and intellectual ability; individual, family, group, and community strategies for working with diverse populations; theories of multicultural counseling and identity development; and multicultural competencies. Students examine a variety of cultural populations in multiple regions of the United States, exploring issues and trends that are associated with each population. Cultural considerations for immigrants, refugees, and undocumented immigrants are also addressed.

Course Description

This course introduces students to the basic principles of psychopharmacology and the effects of psychoactive substances. Students examine the behavioral, psychological, physiological and social effects of psychoactive substance use, and learn to recognize symptoms of intoxication, withdrawal, and toxicity. The class covers various screening options, limitations, legal implications, and the utilization of pharmacotherapy as part of substance addiction treatment.

Course Description

This course is divided into two distinct and separate sections. The first part of the course examines human sexuality and systems of sexual therapy. Psychological, biological, social, and moral perspectives on sexual development and functioning are also examined. The last part of the course provides an understanding of the nature of aging and the elderly. Theories and strategies for facilitating optimum care of the elderly are addressed. Elder abuse, dependent adult abuse, and neglect of the aging and elderly are explored. Sexuality, mental health, physical health, the role of substance use disorders, and family issues are also addressed.

Course Description

This course provides a broad understanding of counseling processes, including characteristics and behaviors that influence the helping processes. Included are age, gender, ethnic differences, verbal and nonverbal behaviors, personal characteristics, and orientations. The development of counseling techniques is emphasized, including establishing and maintaining the counseling relationship; diagnosing and identifying the problem; formulating a preventative, treatment, or rehabilitative plan; facilitating appropriate interventions; and successfully terminating the counseling relationship.

Course Description

This course provides an understanding of the nature and needs of individuals at all developmental levels. Theories of individual and family development, transitions across the life span, theories of learning, theories of personality development, and strategies for facilitating optimum development over the life span are addressed.

Course Description

This course provides a broad understanding of the structure and dynamics of the family, which may include assessment and methods of marital and family intervention and counseling.

Course Description

This eight-module course is divided into three distinct and separate sections. The first three modules examine crisis intervention and trauma counseling; Theories and strategies of trauma counseling and facilitating crisis interventions are also addressed. The second three modules examine spousal or partner abuse assessment, detection, and intervention strategies. The legal and ethical issues, the role of substance use disorders, and children in families where domestic violence and abuse occur are also addressed. The last two modules examine child abuse assessment and reporting. Legal and ethical issues and specific California child abuse assessment and reporting codes are also examined.

Course Description

This course provides an introduction to basic tests and appraisal in counseling. Individual and group approaches to testing, assessment, evaluation, behavioral observations, computer-managed and computer-assisted methods will be addressed. The following statistical concepts will also be addressed: scales of measurement, measures of central tendency, and indices of variability, shapes and types of distributions, correlations, reliability, and validity.

Course Description

This course provides a broad understanding of career development and related life factors including psychotherapy, career counseling techniques and processes, career development theories, decision-making models, issues of diversity, and interrelationships between work and family.

Course Description

This course introduces research methods and basic statistical analysis, including the following: importance of research, opportunities, and difficulties in conducting research. Research methods such as qualitative, quantitative, single-case designs, action research, and outcome-based research are addressed.

Course Description

This course provides a conceptual framework for the use of assessment and diagnostic tools for the development of appropriate treatment interventions for a variety of behavioral health and substance use disorders. Included is an introduction to the use of the diagnostic tools, including the DSM, and the integration of diagnostic and assessment information, in the development of treatment plans.

Course Description

This course introduces the study of mental illnesses and the science of psychopathology. The goal is to provide counseling students a conceptual understanding of psychological and behavioral dysfunction that occurs in mental illnesses. The course includes a survey of major psychiatric disorders and their causes.

Course Description

Students in this course are introduced to a variety of testing instruments used to determine a client's emotional or mental status. Assessment procedures are explored within the context of diagnosis and treatment planning. This course focuses on the administration and interpretation of individual and group standardized tests of mental ability, personality, and measurement.

Course Description

This course examines the dynamic processes of traditional and nontraditional family and couple relationships and the role, value, and benefits of family systems therapy. The biopsychosocial perspectives of family and family systems are evaluated. Assessment and treatment of couples and families are addressed.

Course Description

This course examines the historical and theoretical perspectives of couples and family dynamics, including dating, premarital therapy, marriage, changes in the parental relationships across the lifespan, and divorce. This course examines the development of problems within the family of origin; it addresses the dynamics of the parent/child relationship. Topics include divorce, domestic violence, and family reunification, including integration of returning veterans. Skills and techniques relevant to couples, premarital counseling, divorce counseling, family therapy, group therapy, and parenting are explored.

Course Description

This course examines the dynamic processes of nontraditional family systems including multiracial families, blended/step families, same-sex relationships and families, single-parent families, adoptive, foster, transitional families, and separated families.

Course Description

This course examines the impact of substance use and addictive disorders on family systems. Various treatment interventions are discussed. The treatment roles and responsibilities of addicted individuals and their families are also examined.

Course Description

This is a supervised fieldwork experience under the supervision of a faculty member and an on-site clinical supervisor approved by the college or university. Documentation of a minimum requirement of 100 hours of counseling-related activities, which include 40 direct contact hours, is submitted to Typhon and monitored by the office of field experience. Students may not progress to PCN-662A without the required amount of hours submitted to Typhon and proper approval. State licensure requirements may mandate additional hours. Students must review and adhere to their state board's additional requirements. Practicum/field experience hours: 100. Prerequisites: Completion of all didactic coursework in the program; a GPA of 3.0 or better; and maintenance of student professional liability insurance in the amount of $1 million, $3 million.

Course Description

Students use this supervised practicum/internship experience to develop their counseling skills and to perform all the activities that a regularly employed professional counselor would be expected to perform in a supervised setting. The practicum/internship is performed under the supervision of a faculty member and an on-site clinical supervisor approved by the college or university. Documentation of 150 hours of counseling-related activities, which include 50 direct contact hours, is submitted directly to the college’s office of field experience for verification and tracking. Practicum hours: Addiction Counseling students, 150 total hours; Professional Counseling students, 600 total hours. State licensure requirements may mandate additional hours. Students must review and adhere to their state board's additional requirements. Prerequisites: PCN-622; a GPA of 3.0 or better; maintenance of student professional liability insurance in the amount of $1 million, $3 million; and college approval.

Course Description

Students use this supervised practicum/internship experience to develop their counseling skills and to perform all the activities that a regularly employed professional counselor would be expected to perform in a supervised setting. The practicum/internship is performed under the supervision of a faculty member and an on-site clinical supervisor approved by the college or university. Documentation of 150 hours of counseling-related activities, which include 50 direct contact hours, is submitted directly to the college’s office of field experience for verification and tracking. Practicum hours: Addiction Counseling students, 150 total hours; Professional Counseling students, 600 total hours. State licensure requirements may mandate additional hours. Students must review and adhere to their state board's additional requirements. Prerequisites: PCN-622; a GPA of 3.0 or better; maintenance of student professional liability insurance in the amount of $1 million, $3 million; and college approval.

Course Description

Students use this supervised practicum/internship experience to develop their counseling skills and to perform all the activities that a regularly employed professional counselor would be expected to perform in a supervised setting. The practicum/internship is performed under the supervision of a faculty member and an on-site clinical supervisor approved by the college or university. Documentation of 150 hours of counseling-related activities, which include 50 direct contact hours, is submitted directly to the college’s office of field experience for verification and tracking. Practicum hours: Addiction Counseling students, 150 total hours; Professional Counseling students, 600 total hours. State licensure requirements may mandate additional hours. Students must review and adhere to their state board's additional requirements. Prerequisites: PCN-622; a GPA of 3.0 or better; maintenance of student professional liability insurance in the amount of $1 million, $3 million; and college approval.

Course Description

Students use this supervised practicum/internship experience to develop their counseling skills and to perform all the activities that a regularly employed professional counselor would be expected to perform in a supervised setting. The practicum/internship is performed under the supervision of a faculty member and an on-site clinical supervisor approved by the college or university. Documentation of 150 hours of counseling-related activities, which include 50 direct contact hours, is submitted directly to the college’s office of field experience for verification and tracking. Practicum hours: Addiction Counseling students, 150 total hours; Professional Counseling students, 600 total hours. State licensure requirements may mandate additional hours. Students must review and adhere to their state board's additional requirements. Prerequisites: PCN-622; a GPA of 3.0 or better; maintenance of student professional liability insurance in the amount of $1 million, $3 million; and college approval.

Faculty Bios

Program Locations

Online

Online

Pursue a next-generation education with an online degree from Grand Canyon University. Earn your degree with convenience and flexibility with online courses that let you study anytime, anywhere. GCU offers the most experienced leadership in delivering online degree programs. Full-time faculty members and fully trained adjunct instructors, equipped with strong academic backgrounds and practical experience in their fields, support you every step of the way. Designed with the career-oriented professional in mind, our online classes provide an intimate environment that stimulates engaging and challenging discussions. Choose from programs across our distinct colleges, in high-demand employment areas. Classes begin frequently.
Evening

Evening

Grand Canyon University’s evening programs cater to the demands of working professionals who prefer an in-person learning environment. Our night classes meet just once per week and offer the interaction and discussion of a typical college classroom. Night classes are designed for a specific number of students, providing a warm and nurturing environment that supports an engaging experience. In an evening cohort, you will progress through your degree program with the same career-minded classmates, providing an opportunity to network and forge relationships that go beyond the classroom. Classes begin frequently at various locations, including our main campus.

* The Department of Education defines how an institution must calculate a program's On-Time Completion rate for federal disclosure purposes. The On-Time Completion rate is based on a program’s published required number of months to complete all degree requirements as provided in the institution’s catalog. Completion statistics are updated every January and are based on the cohort of students who graduated between 7/1 – 6/30 of the preceding year. The On-Time Completion rate is determined by the number of students in the cohort who completed the program within the published program length divided by the number of students in the cohort who graduated.

Online and Evening program disclosures Online and Evening program disclosures

* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Program subject to change.