First Online Marriage & Family Therapy Master's and Doctoral Degree Programs Introduced by Northcentral University

Prescott Valley, Arizona, October 23, 2009 — The world's first 100% online master's and doctoral degree programs in Marriage & Family Therapy (MFT) designed to meet the educational standards of the American Association of Marriage & Family Therapy (AAMFT) were introduced today by Northcentral University (, an innovator in online higher education.

According to Dr. Branden Henline, Director of Marriage & Family Therapy Training at Northcentral University, the all-new regionally accredited and clinically focused master's and doctoral degree programs are the first online programs of their kind. What's more, every member of the University's MFT faculty is a trained and practicing family therapist. "We have worked hard to design a curriculum and clinical training process that follows the national standards for MFT education," Dr. Henline said today. "Our master's and doctoral degree programs are a great option for people that need the flexibility of online training. There is not another online degree program that offers this training with a genuine focus on the profession of marriage and family therapy."

Indeed, according to Henline, other marriage and family therapy degree programs have residency requirements, which can be costly and difficult to schedule. Some programs that appear to be focused on marriage and family therapy are in fact generic counseling programs that offer a few courses in family therapy. "Marriage and family therapy is a unique profession and requires a curriculum that is clearly focused on training MFTs. Northcentral University offers genuine family therapy training with a course-by-course focus on MFT practice."

Northcentral University's clinically focused Marriage and Family Therapy Master's and PhD degree programs can lead to a career as a licensed therapist and can prepare students for therapeutic and educational careers in a variety of settings, including private practice, mental-health centers, public-service agencies, correctional institutions, the military and schools.

These degrees provide an integrated learning experience that explores family and couple dynamics, family therapy models and interventions, therapy with children and adolescents, couple therapy, working with people in crisis, issues related to gender and diversity, individual and family development, ethics and current research in family therapy. Degree requirements also involve ongoing clinical work and supervision. The degree offerings prepare students for a professional practice consistent with their personal goals. The fact that the coursework is designed to meet the AAMFT's rigorous requirements ensures that the education and training received reflects the highest academic and ethical standards.

Northcentral offers the following programs:

Master of Arts (MA) in Marriage and Family Therapy

This program develops the personal and professional skills necessary for an effective practice and is designed to meet national standards so graduates can seek licensure in the area where they reside. Individuals are encouraged to review their own local licensure regulations in order to ensure that this program meets their needs.

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Marriage and Family Therapy

This program offers advanced clinical education and training, opportunities to develop specializations tailored to individual interests, research coursework and opportunities, and supervision training and experience. As a PhD graduate, individuals will be prepared to carry out advanced clinical work and supervision and/or education and research in the field of marriage and family therapy. Doctoral Specializations are available in General Family Therapy, Child and Adolescent Therapy, Couple Therapy, Medical Family Therapy, and Therapy with Military Families.