Sep 22, 2023  
NCU Catalog - October 2020 
NCU Catalog - October 2020 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Department of Marriage and Family Sciences

Mission Statement

The mission of the Northcentral University Department of Marriage and Family Sciences is to provide personalized educational opportunities to students throughout the world that will allow them to acquire the knowledge, skills, and values integral to professional practice within the marriage and family sciences.

Vision Statement

The vision of the Northcentral University Department of Marriage and Family Sciences is to improve the human condition by engaging a diverse community of faculty, staff, and students through education, research, and practice.

Department Goals

The Northcentral University Department of Marriage and Family Sciences promotes the development of:

  • Specialized knowledge and skills in discipline-specific models and theories
  • Ethical professionals
  • Commitment to affirm and promote diversity
  • Research competency
  • Practical skills that positively impact individuals, families, and communities

Licensure and Accreditation

Students at NCU wishing to use their graduate training to acquire a license in a mental health profession have two options.  Those desiring to purse a Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT) clinical licensure are advised to enter the NCU Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy (MAMFT) program.  Those student desiring to become a licensed social worker should choose the NCU Master of Social Work (MSW) program. Northcentral University does not approve or endorse students attempting to become professionally licensed or clinically licensed without successfully completing a formal degree program which prepares them for that licensure.

Only state licensure boards can approve a degree to meet each state’s specific educational requirements. NCU has designed the MAMFT and MSW programs to meet most state licensure requirements. However, it is the responsibility of each student who intends to seek licensure or certification to become familiar with their state’s requirements and ensure the degree meets their state requirements.  Northcentral University faculty can assist students with interpreting or understanding a state’s licensure requirements, or the requirements of any other such entity, but cannot speak for a state licensing board that makes the final determination of any state requirements. Northcentral University cannot guarantee that a graduate of the MFT or MSW programs will be able to obtain a license in a state where they may seek licensure.

Students who complete courses with practical application are responsible for keeping copies of all syllabi and all clinical hours tracking data and supervision records for presentation to any licensing or certification agency. Northcentral provides access to a web-based hours tracking system, however, the University is not responsible for maintaining these records and may not be able to provide this information for students who apply for licensure or certification.

If you wish to pursue licensure, it is important to know that some states require that students have a degree from a program that carries a particular accreditation, such as the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE), the Council for Social Work Accreditation (CSWE), the American Psychological Association (APA), or the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). The MAMFT and the PHDMFT programs are COAMFTE accredited and the MSW program is in Candidacy status with CSWE.

Liability Insurance

Students in internship or practicum courses must purchase liability insurance prior to starting work with clients. Many practicum/internship sites require students to show evidence of liability coverage prior to beginning a practicum/internship. Northcentral requires students participating in practicum/internship to purchase student professional liability insurance, typically available at a lower student rate. Students are required to provide proof of this insurance with minimum coverage accounts of $1,000.000/$3,000,000. Insurance is included in the benefits of student membership in the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) or the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT). Information regarding application for membership is provided in the ethics course of the MAMFT program. Information regarding liability insurance for the MSW program will be provided as students approach their field placement and practicum experiences.

Marriage and Family Therapy Information

MFT Preparation for Practicum

The clinical training process can begin any time after completion of the ninth course (students who are seeking licensure in states that require 60 credits are encouraged to begin after the twelfth course). Once this requirement is met, students are required to complete the Practicum Preparation Process (PPP), including all pre-practicum documents, before they can enroll in their first practicum course and before they can legally see clients in a clinical training site.

Non-Degree Seeking Students - In order to be eligible for clinical work while a student at NCU, non-Degree seeking students need to demonstrate passing grades in all pre-requisite (or equivalent) courses from an accredited university. The six content areas for pre-requisite coursework include: one course in theoretical foundations, one course in professional ethics, one course in clinical assessment, one course in diagnosis/psychopathology, and two courses in treatment methods/models of therapy/counseling. Non-degree students will need to provide a copy of their transcripts to confirm successful completion (passing grades) of these pre-requisite courses.

Practicum Information

Participation in Marriage and Family Therapy practicum courses requires approval from the Director of MFT Clinical Training prior to enrollment in the clinical courses. Students wishing to enroll in a practicum course should begin the approval process with their Academic and Finance Advisor at least three months prior to their anticipated practicum enrollment date. Additional details regarding practicum options within each degree program are included in the program description section.

Internship Information

The Marriage and Family Therapy internship courses require pre-internship approval from the Director of MFT Clinical Training prior to enrollment. The student’s Academic and Finance Advisor should be contacted in order to begin this process. Additional details regarding internship options within each degree program are included in the program description sections.

Non-Degree Seeking Students

Students who are not pursuing a degree with NCU, but who wish to enroll in Practicum or Internship courses must demonstrate that they meet the same clinical readiness standards as NCU degree seeking students.

These standards include:

  • Successful passing of a background check
  • Successful completion of pre-requisite (or equivalent) courses (demonstrated by transcript from an accredited university)
  • Acknowledgement of the informed consent, technology checklist, and clinical handbook documents
  • Proof of an active professional liability insurance policy
  • Clinical readiness interview

Non-degree seeking students must complete the same SASVAC (site and supervisor vetting and contracting) process as degree seeking students. In addition, non-degree seeking students are required to complete an individualized clinical training plan. This plan must be signed by the student and it outlines student and NCU expectations and responsibilities related to the completion of clinical training.


    Post-Baccalaureate CertificateMaster of Arts in Marriage and Family TherapyMaster of Social WorkPost-Master’s CertificateDoctorate of Marriage and Family TherapyDoctor of Philosophy in Marriage and Family Therapy