Master of Science in Marriage, Family, and Child Counseling



Prerequisites to the program include three foundation psychology courses: Developmental Psychology (at SFSU, PSY 431), Theories of Personality (at SFSU, PSY 451), and Psychopathology (at SFSU, PSY 452). These courses may be taken at any accredited junior college, college, or university.

COUN 690, Field of Counseling, may be taken before or during the first semester in attendance. Please note that students whose ONLY specialization is Rehabilitation Counseling do not need to take COUN 690.

Course  Title  Units
COUN 700 Theories of Counseling 3
COUN 702 Developmental Foundations for Counselors 3
COUN 703 Psychological Foundations for Counselors 3
COUN 705 Practicum and Internship 3
COUN 706 Counseling Process 3
COUN 715 Assessment in Counseling 3
COUN 720 Career Counseling 3
COUN 736 Advanced Counseling Process and Internship 3
COUN 738 Addiction 3
COUN 794 Seminar in Research 3
COUN 811 Group Counseling Process 3
COUN 827 The Consultation Process 1
COUN 833 Social and Cultural Foundations in Counseling 3
COUN 857 Law and Ethics in Counseling 3
COUN 858 Couples and Family Counseling 3
COUN 859 Counseling Aspects of Sexuality 2
COUN 860 Couples and Family Counseling II 3
COUN 861 Seminar on Child Treatment 3
COUN 890 Integratice Counseling and Internship 3
COUN 891 Case Studies and Internships 3
COUN 892 Culminating Experience 3
  Minimum Total 60

Recommended Two year Program for Marriage, Family & Child Counseling (Comming Soon)

Recommended Three year Program for Marriage, Family & Child Counselin (Comming Soon)

Marriage, Family & Child Counseling Specialization Faculty

Dr. Kwan, Kwong–Liem Karl, Coordinator

Dr. Robert A. Williams

Dr. Wanda Lee

Dr. Tiffany O'Shaughnessy

Marriage, Family & Child Counseling Program

A note about terminology: the Department is aware that the term MFCC ( marriage, family, and child counseling) has been replaced by MFT ( marriage and family therapy); however, since MFCC still appears in the degree title, which can only be changed by the Chancellor's Office, we will use the term MFCC when referring specifically to the degree. We will use the term MFT when referring to the program as the field.

The major objective of this specialization is to provide training for students in the field of marriage and family therapy consistent with State of California requirements for licensing and accreditation requirements for certification. We are guided by these requirements and by the emergence of mental health counseling as one of the major service providers for the community. As such, it is our responsibility to focus our generic and specific efforts toward professional development, which include theoretical and developmental foundations, psychodiagnostic skills, and a broad range of counseling and therapeutic abilities with a culturally diverse population. Consistent with the general mission of the Department of Counseling, the MFCC specialization recognizes the need for close coordination with the field and the maintenance of a responsive curriculum.

Marriage, Family & Child Counseling License

All students who elect to complete the M.S. in Counseling: MFCC concentration will be eligible to apply for the MFT License through the Board of Behavioral Science Examiners (BBSE). The graduate degree is one part of the overall process in being licensed. It is important to note that the license is granted only after the applicant has completed the following requirements:

  • A master's degree in counseling: concentration in Marriage, Family, and Child Counseling option. All courses must be taken as a graduate student within the Degree program.
  • Three thousand (3,000) hours of supervised clinical experience (students must complete 12 units of graduate study before counting hours), under the direct supervision of a licensed MFCC, psychologist, clinical social worker, or board certified psychiatrist with at least 1,700 hours to be obtained on a post-master's level.
  • The passing of an oral and written examination given by the Board of Behavioral Science Examiners. This examination cannot be taken until an applicant is within 90 days of completion of the 3,000 hours of clinical practice.

There are numerous regulations and criteria that relate to these requirements, and the Board of Behavioral Science Examiners frequently changes them. The Department makes every attempt to keep current with changes and communicate such changes to students. Because of this fact, however, it is recommended that you be alert to departmental communications and attend any informational meetings that are announced. In addition, it is also suggested that you write to the Board of Behavioral Science Examiners and request an application packet, which will contain current laws regulations, and forms for you to verify clinical experience and other relevant information. The address is:

Board of Behavioral Science Examiners

1625 No. Market Blvd, #5-200

Sacramento, California 95834

Phone: 1.916.574.7830

Fax: 1.916.574.8625

With regard to the supervised clinical experience requirements, the BBSE will accept no more than 1,300 hours gained during a student's "trainee" status (pre-MS degree), however, all 3,000 hours may be gained following the award of the M.S. It is important to note that this requirement is independent of the department's fieldwork requirements, although it is frequently possible to use field work hours accumulated in conjunction with practicum courses for the purposes of licensing.

The Department of Counseling does not use clinical practice hours accumulated in the process of completing the practice for the meeting of BBSE clinical experience requirements. Since all students are placed in field settings for each semester they are in a practicum, it is the field supervisor's responsibility to indicate whether or not he/she qualifies under BBSE rules to credit student supervision hours within the agency; however, the Department of Counseling must approve and monitor placements and hours for BBSE purposes. Hours will only start to be counted after a student has completed 12 units. This does not include COUN 690. A placement in the field, particularly for the first level practica (COUN 705-706 and COUN 735-736), is not made by the Department based upon any assumption of meeting BBSE requirements for the accumulation of supervised clinical hours necessary for licensing. The Department makes every effort to assure that second level practicum placements (COUN 811-892 and COUN 891-892) meet the BBSE's criteria. Students should not reject a possible placement solely on the grounds that the hours cannot be counted towards licensing.

Students who elect to meet the professional specialization requirements in the MFT must document 600 hours of supervised field work in this specialization (this is a departmental accreditation [CACREP] requirement, not a BBSE requirement).

All students who plan to seek an MFT license after completion of the M.S. program must register with the BBSE as an intern. Failure to do so will prevent any supervised clinical experience hours gained in the post-MS status from being counted. Every applicant for an MFT intern license must submit a sealed official transcript that contains the statement M.S. in Counseling: MFCC. This can be obtained from the Registrar and may take six weeks to receive after completing all requirements.

Instructions on how to apply for an intern registration number.

Department of Counseling, BH 524

San Francisco State University

1600 Holloway Avenue

San Francisco, California 94132

Phone: 1.415.338.2005


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