Becoming a Licensed Marriage Family Therapist in Massachusetts

A marriage family therapist is a person that is trained to help individuals overcome emotional and mental disorders that may be disruptive to their families. A marriage family therapist must have excellent listening skills as they will be required to listen closely to their clients to help them come up with a plan of action to make their lives better. This may include using cognitive behavioral therapy to help their clients understand how to turn their harmful thoughts into more positive ones.

In the state of Massachusetts there are numerous opportunities for those that are trained in family therapy. In order to become licensed in the state there are several requirements that must be met as outlined below.

Educational Requirements for Marriage Family Therapists in Massachusetts

In the state of Massachusetts a person that wishes to become a licensed marriage family therapist must have either a master’s degree or doctoral degree in marriage and family therapy. A person may have a master’s or doctorate degree in a related field as well as long as the degree is from a school that has been accredited by the state.

MFT Educational TrackEducation RequirementsEducation LengthAvailable Programs
Undergraduate WorkEarn a Bachelor's Degree in Counseling4 YearsOnline or Campus
Graduate WorkEarn a Master's Degree in Counseling5-6 YearsOnline or Campus
PHD or Doctoral WorkEarn a Doctorate in Counseling7-8 YearsOnline or Campus

The graduate program that a person attends must include a minimum of sixty credit hours. If the program consists of less than sixty credit hours the person must show that they have completed graduate level courses outside of their program in order to meet this requirement.

The graduate level courses must include three graduate level courses in the following areas:

  • Marital and family studies
  • Marital and family therapy
  • Human development: at least one course in this area must be in psychopathology or an equivalent course.

The total number of courses in the above areas must be equal to nine or more. In addition, the student must complete two courses one in professional studies and the other in research of some type.

The final educational requirement is a practicum or clinical internship.

Learn more about Massachusetts MFT degrees.

Additional Requirements for Marriage Family Therapists in Massachusetts

In addition to the educational requirements an individual will need to have two years of experience working full time or the equivalent working part time, which is 3360 hours. This experience is after completing the master’s degree program and must include clinical experience that is supervised with family groups, individuals, groups, couples, or public and private organizations.

A private practice is not considered to be an acceptable setting for this post master supervised clinical experience. There are 200 hours of supervision required that must include 100 hours of individual supervision. The two years of experience that is required must include 1000 hours of contact hours under the direction of a supervisor that is approved. At least 500 of these hours must be face to face contact hours with families and couples.

After meeting the above requirements the person must then achieve a passing score on the licensing examination.

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Career Outlook In Massachusetts

The number of jobs available in this field is expected to grow exponentially from 2010 through 2020. Insurance companies are expected to begin paying for therapy sessions for their clients that will aid this growth. In addition, the increase in the population will play a role as well. The local government and hospitals employ the most mental health counselors. Outpatient centers are fairly common places of employment for family health counselors.

As of the year 2010 there were 1230 marriage and family therapists in the state of Massachusetts. The average median salary for family therapists in the state was $51,920. This is higher than the national average for this field which is $45,720. For mental health counselors the average wage is $38,150.

Research Additional Psychology Professional Licenses Granted by Massachusetts:

Schools with MFT Degree Programs Accepting Students from Massachusetts