Family Therapy, M.A., Ph.D.

Saint Louis University’s graduate family therapy programs can prepare you to specialize in marriage and family therapy. An emphasis is placed on providing service to individuals, couples, families and the community.

About the Program

Accredited by the COAMFTE, SLU’s graduate medical family therapy program recognizes the primacy and importance of scientific inquiry, diversity and social justice. Our students respect and accept multiple perspectives and strive to practice in a collaborative engagement with other professionals and the community.

Master's Curriculum and Program Details

SLU’s Master of Arts in family therapy is based on a systemic/relational view of individuals, couples and families. It fulfills the course and practicum requirements toward licensure in Missouri as a licensed marital and family therapist.

The program requires a minimum of 60 credit hours beyond a bachelor's degree. Prerequisites include 18 credit hours in the behavioral sciences. Program requirements include didactic courses, two semesters of practicum, three semesters of internship in a community setting and a minimum of 500 hours of direct clinical contact. The concentration in medical family therapy prepares you to function as part of an integrated care team in addressing the biopsychosocial needs of individuals and families.

Ph.D. Curriculum and Program Details

SLU’s doctorate in medical family therapy prepares you to work within an integrated health care setting in collaboration with medical and mental health professionals. Coursework focuses on theory, practice and research in the field of couple and family therapy, with an emphasis on intervention in primary care medical settings and as adjunct health providers in specialty care.

The doctoral program involves a minimum of 51 credit hours of coursework beyond the master's degree, plus comprehensive examinations and original research culminating in the dissertation (12-plus credit hours). The Ph.D. has a clinical component in which you will be trained in both mental health and medical settings as part of an integrated care team of health professionals. Students are required to complete a nine- to 12-month internship.

  • Craig W. Smith, Ph.D.
  • Katie Heiden-Rootes, Ph.D.
  • Dixie Meyer, Ph.D.
  • Nancy C. Morrison, Ph.D. (Emeritus)
  • Douglas Pettinelli, Ph.D.
  • Max Zubatsky, Ph.D.
Graduates with a degree in medical family therapy go on to clinical positions in medical and mental health centers, private practice and consulting. You will also be prepared for academic, research or clinical positions.
Tuition and Fees

Saint Louis University takes pride in being one of Barron's Best Buys in College Education and Kiplinger's Best Values in Private Colleges.

For information regarding the upcoming academic year’s tuition rate, fees and financial aid, visit SLU Financial Services.

2017-2018 Tuition and Fees
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Financial Aid

Scholarships and Financial Aid
Graduate assistantships are awarded each spring for the following academic year. All current and newly admitted students are invited to apply for these assistantships on a competitive basis. Learn about financial aid options at Student Financial Services.

Applicant Criteria

M.A. applicants are required to have a minimum of 18 credit hours of undergraduate coursework in the social sciences.

Prerequisites for the Ph.D. program include a master's degree with a marriage and family therapy program accredited by COAMFTE or a related mental health area with coursework equivalent to a COAMFTE accredited program.

You’ll need the following items to apply:


Application Requirements

Application form and fee
Three letters of recommendation
GRE scores
Professional goal statement
Doctoral program only: scholarship sample (e.g., thesis, manuscript, journal article)

Requirements for International Students

Application Deadline

Students should apply by Jan. 15.


Accredited by COAMFTE

This program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE) of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.