• The mission of the Lee University Marriage and Family Therapy Program is to prepare students to become licensed marriage and family therapists who will work from a relational perspective that is holistic, systemic, and contextual.

    Program Philosophy

    Recognizing the complexity of human relationships and the limits of our understanding, we seek to create a shared learning environment that authentically integrates faith, science, and experience into the clinical practice of marriage and family therapy. From our faith, we draw the concepts of hope, love, forgiveness, reconciliation, faithfulness, and commitment. From science, we embrace an empirical worldview where our treatments are evidence-based. We value our different experiences that may be based in our biology, culture, and environment.

    We encourage a therapeutic stance based on curiosity, respect, and openness. We define our calling as one of service, reaching out to the underserved in a broken world. While recognizing reductionistic paradigms have some usefulness, we believe that a holistic approach which simultaneously considers the biological, psychological, social and spiritual aspects of the human experience offers a more powerful framework for case conceptualization, relational diagnosis, and treatment.

    Program Outcome Statistics


    2014/2015 Academic Year Report

    Licensure Exam Pass Rates: Five students have attempted and four students have passed the AMFTRB Exam giving us a pass rate for the year at 80%.

    Employment Rate: Our of our 2011 starting cohort, 13 of the 14 graduates are working in the field and are working toward full licensure as a marriage and family therapist. Out of our 2012 starting cohort, 12 of the 14 graduates are working in the field and are working toward full licensure as a marriage and family therapist.

    Licensure Rate: While no graduate has been out of our program long enough to have full licensure, 6 students from our 2011 cohort and 3 students from the 2012 cohort have temporary licensure as a marriage and family therapist.  

    Goals and Educational Outcomes
    Program Outcomes (POs)
    PO 1 - Knowledge Graduates of our program will successfully pass licensure exams for practice as marriage and family therapists.
    PO 2 – Skills Graduates of our program will successfully obtain employment working as marriage and family therapists.
    PO 3 – Diversity Graduates will demonstrate clinical competency in their work with diverse, marginalized, and/or underserved clients and show attitudes of openness and respect.
    PO 4 – Identity Graduates of our program will obtain licensure as marriage and family therapists and become clinical fellows of AAMFT.
    PO 5 – Stance Graduates will work using an approach to conceptualization, diagnosis, and treatment that is relational, systemic, and contextual.
    Faculty Outcomes (FOs)
    FO 1 - Knowledge Core faculty will obtain sufficient continuing educational units and attend conferences of relationally-focused organizations.
    FO 2 – Skills Core faculty will continue developing skills through workshops and scholarship.
    FO 3 – Diversity Core faculty will serve diverse, marginalized, and/or underserved communities through their service at the MFT Clinic.
    FO 4 – Identity Core faculty will maintain appropriate licensure, clinical fellow status in AAMFT, and certification as an AAMFT Supervisor.
    FO 5 – Stance Core faculty will supervise students with an approach to conceptualization, diagnosis, and treatment that is relational, systemic, and contextual.
    Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs)
    SLO 1 - Knowledge Students will demonstrate the professional knowledge needed for entry-level practice in marriage and family.
    SLO 2 – Skills Students will demonstrate the professional skills of an entry-level marriage and family therapists.
    SLO 3 – Diversity Students will demonstrate clinical competency in their work with diverse, marginalized, and/or underserved clients and show attitudes of openness and respect.
    SLO 4 – Identity Students will identify professionally as marriage and family therapists.
    SLO 5 – Stance Students will adopt an approach to conceptualization, diagnosis, and treatment that is relational, systemic, and contextual.
    Academic Support Services
    The Lee University Writing Center offers free tutorial help to both native and non-native English speakers by appointment. During business hours through the week, Information Services provides both walk-in and phone support to all students and faculty. Several computer labs are placed around campus for student use, including three public non-classroom areas in our primary building (Humanities). The Academic Support Program provides services to students with documented educational challenges. This program offers alternative testing sites, extended test times, readers or scribes for examinations, advising, note-taking facilitation, and mediation between students and faculty. The Financial Aid Office offers financial counseling for graduate students. The library has full-time reference librarians that are available to help students with finding resources. Finally, the Lee University Counseling Center offers free and unlimited therapy services to all of marriage and family therapy students who pay the optional student health fee.
    Governance of the Marriage and Family Therapy Program
    The Marriage and Family Therapy Graduate Committee (MFTGC) is responsible for developing all policies for the marriage and family therapy program. This committee is also responsible for admissions, assessment, hiring recommendations, and responses to student appeals and complaints. The program director is chair of this committee, which includes all core marriage and family therapy faculty members. Major program and policy changes that are approved by the MFTGC are then brought to the Lee University Graduate Council for approval. The program director is responsible for leading the MFTGC and carrying out the policies in the program and the clinic set by the MFTGC. Dr. Williams has the responsibility to maintain oversight of the curriculum, clinical training, clinic and teaching facilities, services offered by the program, and the maintenance and enhancement of the quality of the program. Core faculty exercise governance of the program through their voting membership on the MFTGC. All of these faculty share a commitment for our program mission and philosophy and implement this commitment through development of our educational outcomes.

    Student Roles in Governance of the Marriage and Family Therapy Program:
    • Once a year, all MFT students elect a second-year MFT student to serve on the MFTGC as a full voting member.
    • Minutes of the MFTGC Meeting are sent to all current students.
    • All MFT students are encouraged in the program handbook to express concerns to the representative and to the program director.
    • Any MFT student may request to address to the MFTGC on any issue.
    • MFT students may submit complaints following the process outlined in the program handbook.
    • MFT students are also encouraged to meet in the monthly student concerns meeting held by the program director during the fall and spring semesters.
    • Current MFT students annually assess the program, the program director, the faculty, and the supervisors in the program.
     
    Program Requirements
    Foundations of Relational/Systemic Practice, Theories and Models
    MAFT 511 – Introduction to Family Studies
    MAFT 522 – Traditional and Systemic Therapies
    MAFT 531 – Systems Theory
    MAFT 532 – Postmodern and Socio-cultural Therapies
    MAFT 541 – Family Stress and Resilience
    Clinical Treatment with Individuals, Couples and Families
    MAFT 529 – Play Therapy and Child Trauma
    MAFT 552 – Couple Therapy
    MAFT 559 – Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy
    Diverse, Multicultural, and Underserved Communities
    MAFT 516 – Christian Perspectives on the Helping Profession
    MAFT 547 – Cultural Contexts in Clinical Practice
    Research and Evaluation
    MAFT 555 – Research Methods in Relationship Science
    Professional Identity, Law, Ethics, and Social Responsibility
    MAFT 510 – Ethical, Legal and Professional Issues in Family Therapy
    Biopsychosocial Health & Development Across the Life Span
    MAFT 523 – Human Growth and Development
    MAFT 533 – Human Sexuality
    MAFT 543 – Personality Theory
    Systemic/Relational Assessment & Mental Health Diagnosis and Treatment
    MAFT 514 – Psychopathology
    MAFT 524 – Clinical Assessment, Diagnosis and Treatment Planning
    Required Clinical Experiences
    MAFT 538 – Marriage and Family Therapy Practicum
    MAFT 548 – Marriage and Family Therapy Internship*
    * MAFT 548 must be taken at least twice. It must be repeated until 500 client hours are completed.
    Additional Requirements
    • Attend a Relationally-Focused Conference Attendance (AAMFT Preferred)
    • Pass the Marriage and Family Therapy Comprehensive Examination
    • Pass the Final Project
    • 500 Clinical Hours (including 200 relational hours)
    • 100 Supervision Hours
     
    Clinical Hours Required
    Prior to graduation, you must complete 500 clock hours of face-to-face clinical experience with clients. 200 of these 500 hours must be relational hours, where at least two clients were in the session at the same time and they were in some type of relationship with each other. To complete the practicum and internship experiences in three semesters, students will need to complete 140 hours in practicum and 180 hours in each internship. Students must get at least 100 hours in practicum and 133 hours in an internship in order to get academic credit for the course. Up to 100 of these hours may be “alternative hours” consisting of experiences such as couples or family groups, live cases with reflecting teams directly involved in working with clients, psycho-education, etc.

    Clinical contact hours are defined as therapist and client therapeutic meetings in the same physical location. Activities such as telephone contact, case planning, observation of therapy, record keeping, travel, administrative activities, consultation with community members or professionals, or supervision, are not considered direct client contact. Assessments may be counted if they are face-to-face processes that are more than clerical in nature and focus. Sessions with other systems, groups of individuals who do not define themselves as a couple or family, but come together in a face to face meeting with a therapist for therapy can be counted as clinical hours. A 45-minute therapy session must be counted as 45 minutes, not one hour or as a contact hour.

    Prior to graduation, you must also complete 100 clock hours of face-to-face supervision with either an AAMFT Supervisor or an AAMFT Supervisor in Training. Half of these hours must be based on either video or live observation of your work with clients. 80 of these hours may be group supervision where no more than eight students are present in the supervision session. At least 20 of these hours must be in either individual or triadic supervision. You must have at least one hour of supervision during any week that you are also seeing clients. You should receive one hour of supervision for every five hours of clinical work. Supervision at off campus sites by supervisors who are not AAMFT Supervisors or AAMFT Supervisors in Training will not count for any of the requirements in this paragraph.
    Program Sequence
    Full-Time (2 years)
    Fall – Year One
    MAFT 510 - Ethical, Legal and Professional Issues in Family Therapy
    MAFT 511 - Introduction to Family Studies
    MAFT 514 - Psychopathology
    MAFT 541 - Family Stress and Resilience
    Spring – Year One
    MAFT 522 - Traditional and Systemic Therapies
    MAFT 523 - Human Growth and Development
    MAFT 524 - Clinical Assessment, Diagnosis and Treatment Planning
    MAFT 529 - Play Therapy and Child Trauma
    Summer – Year One
    MAFT 531 - Systems Theory
    MAFT 532 - Postmodern and Socio-cultural Therapies
    MAFT 533 - Human Sexuality
    MAFT 538 - Marriage and Family Therapy Practicum
    Fall – Year Two
    MAFT 543 - Personality Theory
    MAFT 547 - Cultural Contexts in Clinical Practice
    MAFT 548 - Marriage and Family Therapy Internship
    MAFT 516 - Christian Perspectives on the Helping Profession
    Spring – Year Two
    MAFT 552 - Couple Therapy
    MAFT 555 - Research Methods in Relationship Science
    MAFT 548 - Marriage and Family Therapy Internship
    MAFT 559 - Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy
    Part-Time (3 years)
    Fall – Year One
    MAFT 510 - Ethical, Legal and Professional Issues in Family Therapy
    MAFT 511 - Introduction to Family Studies
    MAFT 514 - Psychopathology
    Spring – Year One
    MAFT 522 - Traditional and Systemic Therapies
    MAFT 523 - Human Growth and Development
    MAFT 524 - Clinical Assessment, Diagnosis and Treatment Planning
    Summer – Year One
    MAFT 531 - Systems Theory
    MAFT 532 - Postmodern and Socio-cultural Therapies
    Fall – Year Two
    MAFT 541 - Family Stress and Resilience
    MAFT 543 - Personality Theory
    Spring – Year Two
    MAFT 529 - Play Therapy and Child Trauma
    MAFT 552 - Couple Therapy
    MAFT 555 - Research Methods in Relationship Science
    Summer – Year Two
    MAFT 533 - Human Sexuality
    MAFT 538 - Marriage and Family Therapy Practicum
    Fall – Year Three
    MAFT 547 - Cultural Contexts in Clinical Practice
    MAFT 548 - Marriage and Family Therapy Internship
    MAFT 516 - Christian Perspectives on the Helping Profession
    Spring – Year Three
    MAFT 548 - Marriage and Family Therapy Internship
    MAFT 559 - Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy
    Degree Completion Timeframes
    Although students are encouraged to choose either the two or three year tracks, degree requirements must be completed within six years after formal admission into the program. Course work completed more than 10 years prior to admission is generally not accepted toward meeting degree requirements.
    Tuition and Fees
    View Tuition and Fees from Student Financial Services
    Other required expenses for marriage and family therapy students include annual AAMFT Student Membership ($58 per year), attendance at a conference by a relationally-focused organization, preferably AAMFT ($500 to $1500), iPad (minimum 32 gig), and book fees. Online access to the gateway exams is $75 per semester. During practicum and internship, there is an annual liability insurance fee of $20.
    Accreditation Status
    Lee University is accredited by the Southern Association of College and Schools Commission on Colleges to award, baccalaureate, masters and education specialist degrees. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Lee University. The Marriage and Family Therapy Program is also accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE).
    Student Recruitment
    Lee University’s Marriage and Family Program welcomes all students regardless of race, age, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, relationship status, gender identity, socioeconomic status, disability, health status, religion and spiritual beliefs and/or affiliation, and/or national origin. Requirements for admission include a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution (or foreign equivalent). Admission preferences will be made for students with degrees in the social sciences. Although marriage and family therapists can and do often work with individuals, students applying into this program should specifically be interested in working with couples and families and becoming licensed as a marriage and family therapist.
    Anti-Discrimination
    The Lee University Marriage and Family Therapy Program prohibits the discrimination of students on the basis of race, age, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, relationship status, gender identity, socioeconomic status, disability, health status, religion and spiritual beliefs and/or affiliation, and/or national origin with regard to the recruitment, admission, codes of conduct, hiring, retention, or dismissal of students. The marriage and family therapy program will not remove a student solely on the basis of identifying with a group, class, or category in the above mentioned groups provided he or she is otherwise in compliance with Lee’s Lifestyle Expectations for Graduate Students.

    Faculty and supervisors will also not be discriminated against on the basis of the above mentioned groups, with the exception that all faculty and supervisors of the program are required to be Christian, to teach from a Christian worldview, and to not teach or publish anything contrary to the established doctrines and the Declaration of Faith of the Church of God.
    Lee's Lifestyle Expectations for Graduate Students
    Graduate students will be expected to adhere to all of the rules and policies of Lee University while on campus. Lee University is a smoke-free, alcohol-free, drug-free campus. Graduate students are expected to respect campus norms. Sexual harassment, unwelcome sexual advances, extra- or pre-marital sexual conduct, requests for sexual favors and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature will not be tolerated on campus. Students who are subjected to harassment should promptly contact the Vice President for Student Development.
    Disciplinary Process
    If a student, staff or faculty have a complaint against a student, this complaint is made to the program director. If the complaint cannot be resolved by discussion with the parties involved, the complaint is then taken to the Marriage and Family Therapy Graduate Committee. The student may provide a written defense or may appear before the committee. The committee may require in some circumstances for the student to appear before the committee.
    Student Complaint/ Grievance Process
    If a student has a complaint or grievance regarding the program, faculty, or fellow students, the student should submit a written complaint to the program director, unless the complaint is against the director, in which case the complaint should be given to the Behavioral and Social Sciences Department Chair. The complaint will be reviewed by the appropriate committee, usually the Marriage and Family Therapy Graduate Committee, depending on the nature of the complaint. The student may appear before the committee when the complaint is reviewed.
    Admission
    After submitting the application, fee, essays, transcripts, recommendations and GRE score (if required), potential students will be scheduled for an interview. While in-person interviews are preferred, full consideration will be given to applicants needing phone interviews due to distance from Cleveland, Tennessee. Role-plays will be conducted during the in-person interviews. After completion of the interview, the Marriage and Family Therapy Graduate Committee will meet to determine whether an offer of admissions will be made.
    Retention, Remediation, and Dismissal
    Satisfactory progress toward the degree is required. A student may be disqualified from further graduate work if a 3.0 grade-point average is not maintained. In the event that the grade-point average drops below the minimum level, the student may be given one enrollment period to raise it to the satisfactory level. A cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required for graduation. Special advising will be offered to students in this situation to help raise their GPA. If problems occur regarding competency in the practicum and internship, the supervision team will meet with the student to develop a remediation plan for improvement. If that improvement does not occur within the specified length of time allotted, students may be terminated from the program. Certain serious ethical violations (academic or clinical) can result in immediate termination from the program.
    Transfer Credit
    Lee University will allow up to six semester credit hours of a graduate program to be comprised of transfer credit from a regionally accredited graduate program when the grade received is a “B” or better. The individual program committee must approve application of transfer credits. Exceptions to this policy may be determined by the respective graduate program committees.
    Graduation
    In the first week of the final semester when all coursework will be completed, MFT students should submit an application for graduation through Portico. All client hours must be completed prior to graduation with a copy of the client log turned into the faculty supervisor. The graduate students must defend their final project and pass the comprehensive examination 10 days prior to graduation. Students must also have attended a relationally-focused conference prior to graduation.
    Portability of Degree
    This program prepares you for licensure as a marriage and family therapist in the United States. No guarantees are offered regarding this degree for any other type of professional license or for any other country. Although the degree requirements are built around national models and Tennessee licensure requirements, other states may have additional requirements that are not offered in this program. Some states may require accreditation through COAMFTE, which this program does not currently have. It is up to the student to determine and achieve the requirements of other states for marriage and family therapy licensure.
    Racial and Cultural Composition of Our Faculty, Supervisors, and Students
    The four core faculty of our program, who also serve as the supervisors, are all Caucasian, one who is a female. We have three additional faculty in the program, all Caucasian, two of who are female. Of our 38 current students, 30 are female, five are African-American, two are Hispanic, and one is Asian.
    Grading Policies
    The Lee University graduate programs use the following system of grading and quality points for all graduate-level courses. These letter grades are assigned grade point values as follows:
    A 4.0 quality points
    A- 3.7 quality points
    B+ 3.3 quality points
    B 3.0 quality points
    B- 2.7 quality points
    C+ 2.3 quality points
    C 2.0 quality points
    F 0 quality points
    I Indicates the student's work was incomplete
    P Passing Credit (no quality points)
    IP In Process
    W Student officially withdrew from the class without penalty
    A grade of “I” indicates the student’s work is incomplete. The grade becomes “F” if the work is not completed by the end of the following semester unless a written extension has been approved by the Vice President for Academic Affairs. A grade of “I” is given only to students who encounter some personal difficulty such as a severe illness or an extreme family emergency near the end of the semester. The “I” grade is not given in order to allow students additional time to complete assignments.
    A grade of a "W" (withdrawal) is assigned to a student who, for any reason, officially withdraws or is withdrawn by the official semester date. This "W" is assigned without quality point penalty to the student.

Academic Calendar

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4/28
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5/01
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5/02
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5/05
Spring Commissioning
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