The MSBS/Marriage and Family track was designed to meet the needs of students who wish to pursue licensure in marriage and family therapy. According to the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapy,
Marriage and Family Therapists (MFTs) are mental health professionals trained in psychotherapy and family systems, and licensed to diagnose and treat mental and emotional disorders within the context of marriage, couples and family systems. Marriage and family therapists are a highly experienced group of practitioners…They evaluate and treat mental and emotional disorders, other health and behavioral problems, and address a wide array of relationship issues within the context of the family system.
Marriage and Family Therapists broaden the traditional emphasis on the individual to attend to the nature and role of individuals in primary relationship networks such as marriage and the family. MFTs take a holistic perspective to health care; they are concerned with the overall, long-term well-being of individuals and their families. A family's patterns of behavior influences the individual and therefore may need to be a part of the treatment plan. In marriage and family therapy, the unit of treatment isn't just the person - even if only a single person is interviewed - it is the set of relationships in which the person is imbedded. Marriage and family therapy is brief, solution-focused, specific, with attainable therapeutic goals, and designed with the "end in mind."
Marriage and family therapists treat a wide range of serious clinical problems including: depression, marital problems, anxiety, individual psychological problems, and child-parent problems. Research indicates that marriage and family therapy is as effective, and in some cases more effective than standard and/or individual treatments for many mental health problems such as: adult schizophrenia, affective (mood) disorders, adult alcoholism and drug abuse, children's conduct disorders, adolescent drug abuse, anorexia in young adult women, childhood autism, chronic physical illness in adults and children, and marital distress and conflict.
Today more than 50,000 marriage and family therapists treat individuals, couples, and families nationwide. Membership in the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) has grown from 237 members in 1960 to more than 23,000 in 1996. This growth is a result, in part, of renewed public awareness of the value of family life and concern about the increased stresses on families in a rapidly changing world.
The MSBS/Marriage and Family track was designed to meet the academic requirements for the LMFT in the state of Oklahoma and to prepare students to perform well on the written and oral sections of the licensure examination. In addition to the 21 credit-hour core (see Required Core Classes), MSBS/Marriage and Family students will complete an additional 27 credit-hours:
PSY 5393 Systems Theory
PSY 5323 Theoretical Foundations of Marital and Family Systems
PSY 5033 Basic Counseling Skills
PSY 5333 Assessment of Marriage and Family
PSY 5353 Theories of Marriage and Family Therapy
PSY 5343 Marriage and Family Counseling
PSY 5893 Practicum in Marriage and Family Therapy I
PSY 5903 Practicum in Marriage and Family Therapy II
Choose one of the following:
PSY 5223 Psychology of Aging OR
PSY 5313 Psychology of Interpersonal Communication