Becoming a Licensed Marriage Family Therapist in Tennessee

The field of marital and family therapy is considered a healing art. In this art, a therapist is dealing with emotional and mental disorder as it relates to the families, couples, and individuals. In addition, learned techniques and methods to treat these disorders is required. Thus, it is required of an individual who wishes to practice this art to be licensed first. It is illegal to practice in Tennessee and most states without a license. To become licensed in Tennessee a person must first meet certain educational requirements. In addition, he or she must show accrued work experience under direct supervision and finally successfully completing a state exam.

General Qualifications for Licensure

In Tennessee, the application for licensure must be submitted with applicable fee along with all required documentation. In addition, the general qualifications must be met.

  • Must be at least 18 years of age
  • Show evidence of being of moral and ethical character
  • Meet Educational Requirements
  • Post Masters Supervised experience
  • Pass State Licensing Examination

Education Requirements for Marriage and Family Therapist (MFT) Licensing in Tennessee

According to the General Rules governing Marital and Family Therapist in the state of Tennessee anyone looking to obtain a license must show proof of completion of at least a master's degree program in marriage and family therapy. This program must be approved by the COAMFTE or its equivalent.

MFT Educational Track Education Requirements Education Length Available Programs
Undergraduate Work Earn a Bachelor's Degree in Counseling 4 Years Online or Campus
Graduate Work Earn a Master's Degree in Counseling 5-6 Years Online or Campus
PHD or Doctoral Work Earn a Doctorate in Counseling 7-8 Years Online or Campus

The program must include:

  • Three courses in Human Development and Personality
  • Three courses in Marriage and Family Studies
  • Three courses in Marriage and Family Therapy
  • One course in professional ethics
  • One course in applied professional research
  • One course in Assessment and Diagnosis of Cognitive and Behavioral problems
  • Practicum/Internship Supervised (No less than 300 hours)

Learn more about TN MFT degrees.

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Supervised Postgraduate Work Experience Requirement

In Tennessee there is a minimum supervised work experience requirement that must be met before one can become a marriage and family therapist. Two years experience working under the direct supervision of a licensed marriage and family therapist is necessary. During this time, accrual of 1000 hours of clinical practice must be documented. Direct supervision consisting of 200 hours must also be documented.

Marriage and Family Therapists Examination Requirements in Tennessee

For those individuals considering a career in marriage and family therapy in Tennessee must pass the licensing exam put forth by the AMFTRB. The exam is both written and oral. A passing grade on the written state exam is required before the oral exam can be administered. The oral exam is administered by three approved committee members.

Their assessment is forwarded to the board. Applicants must receive 75% or above to pass.
Oral Exam Shall Cover

  • Content knowledge and interpretation
  • Knowledge of code of ethics pursuant to rule 0450-02-13
  • Other areas deem appropriate by the committee

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Career Outlook In Tennessee

The field marriage and family therapy offers a challenge for anyone interested in making a difference in the lives of families and couples. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics this employment is on the rise 14% in this field. The average yearly income for 2022 was $43,190 for Tennessee MFTs, which equates to $20.77 per hour. In addition, there were 1,800 marriage and family therapists employed in Tennessee in 2022.

For more information call 615-532-3202 or the Tennessee Department of Health website.

Research Additional Psychology Professional Licenses Granted by Tennessee:

2022 US Bureau of Labor Statistics job market trends and salary figures for marriage and family therapists are based on national data, not school-specific information. Conditions in your area may vary. Data accessed August 2023.

Schools with MFT Degree Programs Accepting Students from Tennessee