Marital and Family Therapy
In addition to the high quality training in the general area of counseling, the Graduate Programs in Counseling at Southern Nazarene University offers students the opportunity for specialized education in the area of marital and family therapy. By learning a systems-based and inter-generational approach to counseling, our students are provided the training and skills to have transformational impacts on couples and families in diverse clinical settings.
In the state of Oklahoma, many interested in working in the area of marriage, couples, and family therapy will pursue credentials as a Licensed Marital and Family Therapist (LMFT). Marital and family therapists have the opportunity to provide counseling services to families, couples, and individuals of varying ages and demographics in settings such as community mental health agencies, hospitals, schools, and even private practice.
To become a marital and family therapist, Southern Nazarene University offers a 60-hour degree program that culminates in a Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology (MACP). Students will take a core of 48 credit hours. Upon completion of the 48-core hours, students will move into a 12-hour elective concentration in Marriage and Family Therapy.
PSY 5333 Introduction to Counseling Techniques (3 credit hours)
This course introduces students to the primary concepts related to the process of psychotherapy and the relational ideas that are central to the practice of counseling. Relationship building skills and techniques, including interviewing, reflective listening, and the development of insight and self-understanding are explored. Students are also introduced to basic theoretical concepts, including person-centered and existential theories, to begin conceptualizing counseling cases and to understand the common factors of psychotherapeutic change.
PSY 5313 Lifespan Development (3 credit hours)
Lifespan Development covers theoretical and research approaches to the development of human abilities and behavior throughout the lifespan. The course addresses a variety of theoretical approaches, as well as different developmental tasks across the lifespan. In order to more fully understand the issues and dynamics of counseling, it is imperative to have a clear grasp of the processes involved in human development. Such understandings of development are important because many clients enter counseling with problems that are the result of disrupted or dysfunctional developmental processes.
PSY 5263 Psychopathology (3 credit hours)
This module provides an emphasis on describing, classifying, and differentiating deviant behavior syndromes according to the current, prevailing classification system in the United States (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders). Literature dealing with description, etiology, and prognosis of various disorders will be examined.
PSY 5283 Professional Orientation (3 credit hours)
This course is designed to provide a survey of ethical, legal and professional issues facing counselors and others in human services. Emphasis is given to raising awareness of the complexities of ethical issues in professional practice.
PSY 6113 Theories & Techniques of Counseling I (3 credit hours)
This course provides an overview of the various psychoanalytic, psychodynamic, and interpersonal approaches to counseling, specifically offering an introduction to the various perspectives on theory and technique. This course also examines the historical development of these approaches, the contemporary impact and understanding of these approaches in the counseling field, and the underlying anthropological and philosophical assumptions of these approaches. Students will have opportunity to observe these various approaches, as well to apply them practically through role-play and theoretically through case conceptualization and treatment planning.
PSY 6123 Theories & Techniques of Counseling II (3 credit hours)
This course provides an overview of the various behavioral, cognitive, and other evidence-based approaches to counseling, specifically offering an introduction to the various perspectives on theory and technique. This course also examines the historical development of these approaches, the contemporary impact and understanding of these approaches in the counseling field, and the underlying anthropological and philosophical assumptions of these approaches. Students will have opportunity to observe these various approaches, as well to apply them practically through role-play and theoretically through case conceptualization and treatment planning.
PSY 6253 Marital & Family Systems Theories (3 credit hours)
This course provides an overview of family structure theories and family systems approaches and applications to counseling. This course also examines the historical development of these approaches, the contemporary impact and understanding of these approaches in the counseling field, and the underlying anthropological and philosophical assumptions of these approaches. Students will have opportunity to observe these various approaches, as well to apply them practically through role-play and theoretically through case conceptualization and treatment planning.
PSY 6133 Research Methods I (3 credit hours)
An overview of the various research methodologies used to study behavior. The focus is on application, especially to counseling research. This course is closely tied to development of the thesis. The prospectus is begun during this module.
PSY 6193 Internship I (3 credit hours)
In conjunction with PSY 6493, supervised clinical experience and practice in field-work, as approved by the program. The internship occurs concurrently with course work and follows guidelines set forth in licensure preparation. Internship(s) will total minimum of 450 hours of service.
PSY 6593 Multiculturalism & Diversity in Counseling (3 credit hours)
This course will focus on the diverse demographics with which counselors interact, especially related to race and culture, religion, gender, age, sexuality, disability, and socio-economic status, emphasizing the implications of these factors for counseling. Students will have the opportunity to examine counseling approaches to diverse groups by analyzing various levels of therapeutic intervention, the barriers to multicultural awareness, and ways to incorporate multicultural competencies in organizations. In addition, students will establish a dialogue between theory and practice, between personal reflections and interpersonal exchange, between feelings, actions, and thoughts. Students will be asked to examine personal assumptions regarding internalized presuppositions about other persons and groups of varying demographics. Students will therefore utilize both ethnographic and self-reflective techniques to expand cultural and diversity awareness.
PSY 5153 Psychological & Career Assessment (3 credit hours)
This course provides an introduction and overview of assessment, including the administration, scoring, and interpretation of psychological tests in the areas of personality, intelligence, psychopathology, and occupation/career. This course is designed to help students understand the basics of test construction and measurement, as well as to guide students in the selection and utilization of appropriate assessment measures for diagnosis, conceptualization, and development of treatment plans. In addition, students will examine theories of career development, principles for effective education/career planning, and how to offer information and resources to clients based on assessment results. Students will learn how to integrate assessment results into career and general counseling.
PSY 5233 Alcohol & Drug Addiction & Assessment (3 credit hours)
This course will focus on methods for assessing, diagnosing, and treating alcohol and drug-related problems in counseling settings. The course offers strategies for screening clients for substance-related issues, taking a detailed alcohol/drug history, working with ambivalence and increasing motivation to change addiction behaviors, examining family dynamics that contribute to addiction, treatment planning, and counseling interventions. The course will focus on assessing and treating a full range of substance-related and addiction problems, such as individuals with beginning substance use, individuals that do not acknowledge or understand more serious problems, more pervasive or diagnosed substance related addictions, and family members of those with substance-related problems.
PSY 6493 Internship II (3 credit hours)
In conjunction with PSY 6193, supervised clinical experience and practice in field-work, as approved by the program. The internship occurs concurrently with course work and follows guidelines set forth in licensure preparation. Internship(s) will total minimum of 450 hours of service.
PSY 6213 Group Psychotherapy Techniques (3 credit hours)
This is an applied psychotherapy lab course that engages the student in both the theoretical foundations for group psychotherapy and in the actual experience of facilitating a psychotherapy group. Students will review literature regarding appropriate referrals to this modality of treatment as well as learning techniques to enhance the efficacy of group therapies. Much of this course will involve an experiential learning model as students participate in group process. There will also be an exploration of the use of groups within the Christian community.
PSY 6303 Counseling Children and Adolescents (3 credit hours)
This advanced course will serve as an overview course to introduce students to some of the basic issues that arise when providing services to children and adolescents. We will address issues that arise in working with youth including child maltreatment, divorce, trauma, and legal/ethical issues. Information pertaining to the treatment of childhood disorders based upon empirical evidence (emphasizing behavioral strategies) will be discussed. Special focus will be given to Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) and Coping Cat (anxiety treatment manual). Adherence to the scientist-practitioner model and the relative contributions of research to clinical practice will be emphasized throughout the course.
PSY 6293 Philosophy of Interpersonal Relationships (3 credit hours)
This course begins by making the case that all modern psychotherapeutic discourse is moral discourse and therefore contains presuppositions about the human good life. The course then examines the presuppositions of the Christian tradition regarding human nature, the good life, and the practices that shape human transformation. Students are then asked to examine their own conceptions of human nature and the good life and the relationship of these conceptions to their personal narratives, religions traditions, and cultural and historical contexts.
Marriage and Family Concentration Courses
PSY 6403 Neuropsychopharmacology (3 credit hours)
This course provides an overview of basic neurophysiology, as it is relevant to behavior, mood, and psychopathology. It also examines the neurochemistry of the major classifications of psychotropic medications as they relate to treating mental disorders, their effects and side effects, and relevant concerns for clients that take them. In addition, the course will acquaint students with neurophysiology connected to abuse and addiction of alcohol, prescription drugs, and illicit substance abuse, including the connection between the effects of brain changes and resulting problematic behaviors that are a focus of treatment. It offers students important implications for counseling and educating individuals and families presenting with psychopharmacological, addiction, and other substance-related concerns.
PSY 6273 Family & Systems Psychotherapy (3 credit hours)
This course addresses the practice of family theory application, technique and delivery, and follow-through in family therapy. In addition to the various theories of family structure and process, guiding principles and strategies for assessing families and problems will be presented, as will other techniques for engaging and connecting with families. Students will learn to develop hypotheses and formulate treatment plans that include specific family therapy techniques and interventions. Students will be exposed to practical family systems counseling methods from real life situations. Issues of diversity in families will be discussed and the implications for treatment. Students will also explore their own personal families of origin, identifying roles, patterns, and the impact on their development, functioning, and role as a family counselor.
PSY 6263 Family Crisis Intervention (3 credit hours)
This course provides an emphasis on recognizing, assessing, and responding to a range of crises that arise in the counseling setting. Students will review literature relevant to intervention in crisis situations and observe mental health settings that engage in direct individual and family crisis intervention. Students will be engaged in both the theoretical frameworks for describing and intervening in crisis events, as well as the actual and practical experience of implementing crisis intervention strategies. These individual and family strategies will include emergency assessment, appropriate reporting, and intervention techniques for those with potential to harm themselves or others, for drug and alcohol intoxication-related crises, for situations of abuse and neglect, and for domestic violence. The course will examine individual and family dynamics that contribute to the development of at-risk behaviors, drug and alcohol-related emergencies,and abusive systems, as well as interventions that provide protection against abuse and/or enhance the effective processing of trauma.
PSY 6283 Marriage & Couples Therapy (3 credit hours)
This course is designed to introduce students to the theory, philosophy, and treatment of problems typically encountered by couples. The role of the counselor and strategies of intervention will be emphasized. During this course students review the fundamentals of assessment and intervention with couples and how this differs from psychotherapy with individuals, groups, and families. This is a practice and technique-focused course and a significant portion of the course will be devoted to demonstrations, role-plays, and the practical implementation of couples counseling skills.
The faculty and administration in the Graduate Programs in Counseling take the process of training counselors very seriously. The application process is therefore very thorough and critical to both our admissions and educational process. We greatly value our application process that accepts only those whom we believe will make the best counselors. We do not require the GRE because we do not want to simply quantify potential applicants. Our desire is for our admissions process to allow us to get to know each applicant as a person in order to see if that person will be a good fit for our program, and that our program will be the right program for the applicant. Also, we firmly believe that our program is challenging, demands excellence from our students, and more than adequately prepares all of our students for the variety of situations faced as a counselor. We are looking for future students who can excel in the classroom, be flexible in thought, and have the ability to connect with and engage others from various backgrounds and circumstances. We accelerate our program because we want our students to get the best training possible, while also being able to start their career as soon as possible.
You must meet the following requirements to apply to our program:
- Hold a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited college or university
- Taken at least 18 hours of psychology related undergraduate coursework (General or Introduction to Psychology and Statistics are required)
- GPA of 3.0 or higher is considered competitive
International Students: Please click here to find out more about the application requirements. http://snu.edu/international-admissions
If you need assistance with a learning, physical, or psychological disability that may affect your application process, we encourage you to contact the Academic Center for Excellence, Disability Services at (405) 717-6272 (M-F 8:00-5:00). All students with disabilities are encouraged to seek assistance from ACE (LRC 325).
Bethany: Fall Semester (Early Admissions – March 1st; Regular Admissions – June 1st)
Bethany: Spring Semester (October 15th)
Tulsa: Fall Semester (August 15th)
Total program cost includes tuition, a laptop*, books, fees, advisement, student services, library fees, portfolio hours, cap and gown for graduation, etc. Total program cost is locked in at the program start and good for the duration of a program if the program is completed according to the original program of study.
MA, Counseling Psychology
MS, Counseling Psychology
NOTE: Tuition and any program fees are due at the Organizational Meeting. This includes the first installment, if you are on a payment plan.