4757-25-01 Education requirements for admission to the examination for marriage and family therapist.

The requirements for licensure are generally set forth in section 4757.30 of the Revised Code.

(A) Pertaining to the educational requirements, the board further prescribes that: a "graduate degree in marriage and family therapy" is defined as a degree that meets all of the following criteria:

(1) The program or concentration shall clearly be identified as marriage and family therapy. Such a program shall specify in pertinent institutional catalogues and brochures its intent to educate and train marriage and family therapists. Examples of this include statements explaining the distinction between MFT and other human service areas, statements that the program prepares students to pass the national MFT examination, or statements that the program prepares students for MFT state licensure.

(2) The marriage and family therapy curriculum shall stand as a recognized entity within the institution and have a marriage and family therapy faculty.Marriage and family therapy faculty identify with the MFT profession by having a doctoral degree in "Marriage and Family Therapy," holding a state license in MFT, being clinical members of the AAMFT, and/or being AAMFT approved supervisors.

(3) The marriage and family therapy coursework shall have a major focus on marital and family systems and systemic therapeutic interventions. Marriage and family therapy coursework shall include at least two graduate courses in paragraph (A)(3)(a) of this rule and at least one graduate course in paragraphs (A)(3)(f)(v) to (A)(3)(b) of this rule of the following areas of marriage and family therapy.:

(a) Marriage and family theory studies: Courses in this area should present a fundamental introduction to marriage and family studies, including the historical development of the relational/systemic perspective and empirical foundations of the field of marriage and family therapy. This area facilitates students developing knowledge of the early and contemporary theories of MFT. It should provide a substantive understanding of the major theories of systems change and the applied practices evolving from each theoretical orientation. Major MFT theories include but are not limited to: strategic, structural, contextual, Bowenian, narrative, solution-focused, object relations, experiential, emotion focused, and internal family.

(b) Research: This course facilitates students developing competencies in marriage and family therapy research and evaluation methods and in evidence-based practice, including becoming an informed consumer of couple, marriage, and family therapy research.

(c) Professional ethics: Courses in this area shall include the "American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy" (AAMFT) code of ethics, confidentiality and liabilities of clinical practice and research, professional ethics as a marriage and family therapist, professional socialization, and the role of the professional organization, licensure, state and federal legislation, independent practice and inter professional cooperation. Religious ethics courses and moral theology courses do not meet this requirement.

(d) Individual and family development: This course shall address individual and family development and biopsychosocial health across the lifespan from a systemic perspective.

(e) Appraisal of individuals and families: This course shall include the framework for understanding individuals, couples and families. Course content shall address from a relational/systemic perspective, psychopharmacology, physical health and illness, traditional psycho diagnostic categories, and the assessment and treatment of major mental and emotional disorders, including the appropriate use of the current edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders.

(f) Practicum: Includes a supervised training experience consisting of the provision of marriage and family therapy to clients and is acceptable to the board as defined in paragraphs (A)(3)(f)(i) to (A)(3)(f) (v) of this rule.

(i) Applicants, who begin their program after January 2015, shall have a minimum of two semesters or three quarters of qualified supervised clinical practicum and/or qualified internship with five hundred hours of direct face-to-face client contact with individuals, couples, and families and one hundred hours of supervision. Applicants, who begin their program before January 2015, shall have a minimum of two semesters or three quarters of qualified supervised clinical practicum and/or qualified internship with three hundred hours of direct face-to-face client contact with individuals, couples, and families and sixty hours of supervision.

(ii) Applicants, who begin their program after January 2015, shall have two hundred fifty hours of the five hundred hours of direct client contact with couples and/or families present. Applicants, who begin their program before January 2015, shall have one hundred fifty hours of the three hundred hours of direct client contact with couples and/or families present.

(iii) The clinical practicum and internship experience must be under the supervision of an independently licensed marriage and family therapist with supervision designation, an AAMFT approved supervisor, an AAMFT supervisor candidate, or an independently licensed mental health practitioner who shall have demonstrated competence in the area in which he/she is supervising and have training in legal and ethical issues relevant to marriage and family therapy.

(iv) Applicants shall document their practicum and internship experience on a form prescribed by the board. The form shall be completed by the supervisor or supervisors and shall document the student's competency, client contact hours, and supervision hours in all areas designated on the form. The form shall be completed and submitted by the student at the time of examination request.

(v) Prior to the beginning of the practicum, the student shall have completed three courses in marriage and family therapy.

(4) In addition to the coursework listed under paragraph (A)(3) of this rule, the marriage and family therapy coursework completed must include five courses in the following marriage and family therapy content areas.

(a) Family therapy with diverse, multicultural and/or underserved communities: This course facilitates students developing competencies in understanding and applying knowledge of diversity, power, privilege and oppression as these relate to race, age, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, socioeconomic status, disability, health status, religious, spiritual and/or beliefs, nation of origin or other relevant social categories, in the practice of marriage and family therapy. This includes developing competencies in working with sexual and gender minorities and their families as well as anti-racist practices.

(b) Clinical treatment of individuals, couples and families: This course facilitates students developing competencies in systemic hypotheses, treatment planning and interventions specifically designed for use with a wide range of diverse individuals, couples, and families, including sex therapy, same-sex couples, working with young children, adolescents and elderly, interfaith couples, and includes a focus on evidence-based practice. Courses must include content on crisis intervention.

(c) Couples therapy: This course provides theories and skills in providing therapy with couples, including family of origin issues, new marriages, marriage preparation, non-traditional marriages, multi-cultural issues, partnerships, and divorce.

(d) Family therapy with children, adolescents, or young adults: This course should provide training in unique diagnostic and treatment considerations in working with children, adolescents, or young adults. This includes collaboration with medical providers and educational systems. The course must include exposure to empirically supported treatment modalities for children and adolescents.

(e) Sexuality and family therapy: The physiological, psychological, and socio-cultural variables associated with sexual identity and sexual behavior including sexual dysfunctions. This course should include systemic theory based treatment.

(f) Substance abuse and addictive disorders in marriage and family therapy: This course covers the physical and psychological aspects of psychotropic medication, alcohol, and other substances on relationships and behavior as well as systemic treatment approaches to substance use disorders.

(5) Programs accredited by the "Commission On Accreditation Of Marriage And Family Therapy Education" (COAMFTE) at the time of applicant's degree conferral are recognized as meeting the requirements for a graduate degree in marriage and family therapy.

(6) Applicants who possess a degree from a program not accredited by the "Commission On Accreditation Of Marriage And Family Therapy Education" (COAMFTE) shall submit a request to this board for approval in meeting the educational requirements for admission to the examination for the marriage and family therapy license. Program approval may be obtained by the applicant submitting to the board written evidence that the degree meets the requirements set forth in paragraphs (A)(1) to (A)( 3) of this rule.

(B) Supplemental coursework, including supplemental clinical practicum/internship experience, taken after the completion of the degree program may be acceptable if the applicant meets either of the following:

(1) Holds a conferred degree in marriage and family therapy as defined in paragraphs (A)(1) and (A)(2) of this rule, acceptable to the board, and achieved both of the following:

(a) Completes the necessary coursework and/or clinical practicum/internship experience from a marriage and family therapy program as defined in this rule,

(b) Obtains written permission for each supplemented course and/or practicum/internship experience from the board prior to the beginning of the course and/or practicum/internship experience and completes said course(s) and/or practicum/internship experience within five years of approval.

(2) Applicants, who possess a master's degree and are enrolled in a COAMFTE accredited doctoral program having completed all coursework except for dissertation.

(C) Post-graduate supervised direct client contact hours obtained out of state may satisfy a deficit in the number of practicum/internship hours as specified in paragraph (A)(3)(f)(v) of this rule. These substituted hours shall not be counted toward the two years of required supervised practice for IMFT licensure.

(D) Applicants who are denied admission to the examination shall be afforded an opportunity for a hearing pursuant to Chapter 119. of the Revised Code.

Effective: 7/1/2016
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 11/03/2019
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 4757.10 , 4757.30
Rule Amplifies: 4757.30
Prior Effective Dates: 4/10/04, 1/10/08, 10/18/09, 11/3/14