Program Details

Program Details

Our Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE) accredited program is dedicated to systemic, strength-based, and trauma informed care, social justice, and the formation of resilient clinicians. 

Couples and Family Therapy (CFT) programs are different from other mental health programs that emphasize individual functioning. While couple and family therapists treat individuals, training and case conceptualization focuses on relationships and systemic thinking. Couple and family therapists situate clients’ presenting problems in context and consider relational dynamics, emotional connections, and the influence of generational patterns. To maintain this systemic focus, the theories and interventions focused on in CFT programs are different from those used in other mental health/individual counseling fields.  

Illustration of a brain, tree, and handshake

Clients present many aspects of themselves in therapy (e.g., gender, age, race/ethnicity, religion, spirituality). Clients’ beliefs and worldviews, which are often rooted in their familial, cultural, and faith traditions, inform their experiences of pain, healing, and growth. There is a benefit for clients when therapists are culturally attuned. 

Our courses synthesize systems theory, clinical intervention, ethics, culture, social justice, and self-of-therapist reflection. Throughout the program, students are required to demonstrate clinical skills in this holistic model. Students gain a breadth of knowledge related to the family life cycle, assessment, diagnosis, trauma, resilience, addictions, and the ethics of systemic treatment. 


The MACFT program prepares systemic therapists to promote healing, growth, and relational connectedness.

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Student Learning Outcome 1: Students will integrate systemic theories, skills, and research into clinical practice.

  • Student Learning Outcome 2: Students will provide multiculturally attuned clinical services.

  • Student Learning Outcome 3:  Students will develop legal and ethical competence and adhere to relevant laws and ethical codes. 

  • Student Learning Outcome 4: Students will demonstrate care for self of the therapist and commitment to continued growth. 

Degree Requirements

A list of degree requirements and course descriptions for the Master of Arts in Couples and Family Therapy degree can be found in the Seattle University catalog.

All courses are three (3) credits, unless indicated.

Minimum credits required for degree: 56

Students who do not complete the clinical requirements for graduation by the end of the clinical sequence (Clinical IV) may be required to take additional clinical courses until requirements are met.

Transfer Credit

Accepted students may petition to transfer up to 10 graduate credits from a regionally accredited institution. Previous work must reflect a systemic therapy orientation. These credits are evaluated by the Program Director after admission acceptance. All work toward a degree from Seattle University must be completed within six years. This time limit includes transfer credit.

Professional Memberships

Clinical students are required to become members of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) and the Washington Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (WAMFT).


The process of becoming a licensed marriage and family therapist requires skill development, knowledge of theory, and a lot of paperwork. To ease the burden of collecting, organizing, and reporting clinical and program details, the program uses Tevera, the first subscription cloud-based platform developed for managing practicums, internships, and accreditation for clinical training programs. The MACFT program has been using the platform since 2021. Students, site supervisors, and faculty find it easy to use.

Students use Tevera to secure internships, record signed clinical and supervision hours, and track progress towards our MACFT student learning outcomes. Graduates have lifelong access to their Tevera training record, which can be very helpful when applying for licensure or employment.

The cost is indicated in our "transparent policy" document. Eligible students can use financial aid. Tevera is required for all MACFT students.

MACFT Policies and Assessment Procedures

This document gives an overview of the program's demographics, policies, costs and assessment procedures.

MACFT Policies and Assessment Procedures

The MACFT program equips students with...

  • Knowledge and skills for systemic therapy that is attuned to justice, resilience, and trauma informed care
  • Passion to work with diverse populations in traditional and innovative settings  
  • Supervised internship - providing at least 400 hours of in-person or virtual clinical treatment to relational and individual clients at agencies throughout the Puget Sound area.

Questions about the program?

Kimberly Riley

Reach out to the MACFT team!