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Curriculum

This Doctoral in Family Therapy is a 78-credit-hour degree program that integrates systemically oriented theory and clinical practice, language and thinking systems, and qualitative and quantitative research. The D.M.F.T. program curriculum educational outcomes are described in the catalog.

Leveling courses must be completed prior to beginning doctoral level courses. These credit hours do not count toward the 78 credit hour degree requirement.

DMFT 5001 - Doctoral Seminar I (1 credit)

General orientation to doctoral studies: Students learn advanced ethics, diversity, and social justice while focusing on research, writing, and library skills necessary for authoring papers in doctoral courses and for publications.

DMFT 5002 - Doctoral Seminar II (1 credit)

Continuation of DMFT 5001: Students are introduced to professional development opportunities in diverse settings, specific details regarding professionalism, program and portfolio requirements, internships, and Applied Clinical Project. Prerequisite: DMFT 5001

DMFT 5006 - Introduction to Systems Theory (3 credits)

This course provides an overview of theories that use metaphors of system, pattern, interaction, and communication to describe human behavior and relationships as well as the study of the emergence of theories from cybernetics to language studies.

DMFT 5010 - Systemic Family Therapy I (3 credits)

The study of those systemic therapies informed by cybernetics and oriented to the social organization of communication are included in this course. Emphasizes are placed on the work of the Mental Research Institute and Solution-Focused Brief Therapy. Prerequisites: Core courses and co-requisite DMFT 5006

DMFT 5020 - Systemic Family Therapy II (3 credits)

This course centers on Narrative Therapy theory and practice. Students will extensively explore assumptions, including distinctions between structuralist and post structuralist thought, which underline this model and contrast with other therapeutic models. Practice methods will focus on various maps and scaffolds which describe and organize Narrative practices. Students will explore the application of these assumptions and practices to a range of therapeutic problems as well as diversity and community issues.

DMFT 5030 - Systemic Family Therapy III (3 credits)

This course acquaints students with the basic concepts of the natural systems approach to family therapy. Emphasizes are placed on family-of-origin issues, multigenerational systems processes, and biological/evolutionary contributions to the understanding of human systems.

DMFT 5040 - Systemic Family Therapy IV (3 credits)

Study of the complexities and subtleties of language and the art of therapeutic implication are focused on in this course with discussions on the relationships between hypnosis and brief therapy; draws on the work of Milton Erickson as a primary resource.

DMFT 5130 - Crisis Management (3 credits)

This course provides students advanced skills in clinical crisis management. Additional emphasis on supervision and training of other professionals working with crisis situations.

DMFT 5312 - Advanced Substance Abuse Training (3 credits)

This course addresses the application of modern and postmodern ideas to substance abuse, addictions, and critical issues in the practice of therapy. Emphasis is placed on the application of modern and postmodern ideas to substance abuse, additions, and critical issues based on research, theories, practice, and treatment. Also included are other critical issues of culture, ethnicity, gender, race, religion, violence and other areas of critical concern in social systems. Through course assignments and instructor approval, advanced doctoral students will construct an advanced level component to include specific requirements regarding certification and supervision in addictions.

DMFT 5340 - Grant Writing and Funding Opportunities (3 credits)

This course introduces students to the basics of grant writing and funding opportunities. Students will learn about the different types of funding agencies, where to looking for funding, idea development, writing letters of inquiry, preparing a budget, and how to develop a complete proposal. Students will practice writing various components of a grant.

DMFT 5410 - Quantitative Research I (3 credits)

This course covers fundamental concepts and practices in quantitative research method by introducing measurement and statistics, questionnaire development, and experimental and quasi-experimental research designs for the study of human sciences. Exemplary studies from family therapy literature are included.

DMFT 6200 - Internal Practicums I - IV (3 credits)

These supervised clinical courses consist of the application of systemic therapy ideas and practices at the Department of Family Therapy in house at the Family Therapy Clinic.

DMFT 6210 - Clinical Practicums I - II (3 credits)

Clinical practicums I and II provide students with hands-on supervision in a team setting to promote their clinical skills and work with others.

DMFT 6300 - External Practicum I - II (3 credits)

Advanced clinical training and supervision is provided to enhance the practice of systemic therapy from strength based, solution oriented models of therapy that can be incorporated in a wide variety of community settings. Faculty approval is required. Prerequisite: DMFT 6200

DMFT 6320 - Supervision Practicum (3 credits)

Extensive live supervision and case consultation experience with clinicians in learning systemic therapies is conducted in the DFT in house Family Therapy Clinic. Students receive supervision of their supervision of others by AAMFT faculty supervisors. Faculty approve required. Prerequisite: DMFT 6310

DMFT 6325 - Fundamentals of Supervision in Marriage and Family Therapy (3 credits)

This course will introduce students to the fundamentals of supervision in marriage and family therapy in clinical settings. It also meets the coursework requirements for becoming an AAMFT Approved Supervisor.

DMFT 6400 - Evidence-Based Research (3 credits)

To promote the advancement of understanding research conducted in the MFT field, this course provides an opportunity to better understand and make informed decisions in practice and supervision based on evidence-based methods.

DMFT 6410 - Qualitative Action Research (3 credits)

This course introduces students to an action-research paradigm in which the investigator often invites clients as co-researchers. The effect of this includes an impact on the system especially with the cyclic and reflective nature of the process. This type of research can assist therapists in understanding their practice.

DMFT 6558 - Couples Therapy: Theory and Application (3 credits)

In this course, students will examine their own experiences, biases and values about couples and working with couples as well as the historical development of couples' therapy. Students will learn current clinical approaches to couples therapy and evidenced-based models for working with couples. Students will examine current couple and marital research as well as assessment instruments used for working with couples. Students will examine specific professional, ethical, and legal issues associated with couples work. Issues of diversity and a commitment to multicultural exploration are demonstrated and interwoven throughout all discussions as students explore specific areas of work with couples such as extra-marital affairs, intimate partner violence, divorce, step-parenting, and health and illness.

DMFT 6600 - Preliminary Review (0 credits)

The Preliminary Review is an organized review of and personal reflection upon the collective body of work a student has produced during their progress through their first year. A written self-review of professional growth, personal growth, and responses to challenges, along with other significant contributions is submitted for faculty review.

DMFT 6950 - Applied Clinical Project (1 credit)

The Applied Clinical Project is a capstone experience of a student's demonstration of ability to be able to articulate and demonstrate to other mental health professionals their unique area of systems based practice expertise. The ACP should be a project the student carries out under faculty supervision from concept, to proposal, to implementation, and finally through eventual evaluation of the effectiveness of the program.

DMFT 7302 - Theories of Personality and Psychopathology (3 credits)

A review of major theories of personality and psychopathology are the focus of this course, emphasizing psychiatric diagnostic classification systems. The study of implications for treatment and comparisons with interactional approaches are included. Prerequisite: DMFT 5006.

Following is a sample of a degree plan for full-time students who begin their studies in the Fall trimester. Degree plans will be modified based on a student's enrollment date and pace of study.

Fall Winter Summer

DMFT 5001
Doctoral Seminar I

DMFT 5006
Introduction to Systems Theories

DMFT 5010
Systemic Family Therapy I

DMFT 6200
Internal Practicum I

DMFT 5001
Doctoral Seminar I

DMFT 5020
Systemic Family Therapy II

DMFT 5130
Crisis Management

DMFT 6200
Internal Practicum I

DMFT 6400
Evidenced- Based

DMFT 5001
Doctoral Seminar I

DMFT 6325
Fundamentals of Supervision in Marriage and Family Therapy

DMFT 6558
Couples Therapy: Theory and Application
DMFT 7302
Theories of Personality & Psychopathology

OR

Elective

DMFT 6600
Preliminary Review

DMFT 5002
Doctoral Seminar II

DMFT 5030
Systemic Family Therapy III

DMFT 5410
Quantitative Research I

DMFT 6210
Clinical Practicum (BTI

Elective

DMFT 5002
Doctoral Seminar II

DMFT 5040
Systemic Family Therapy IV

or Elective

DMFT 5340
Grant Writing for Funding Opportunities

DMFT 6320 Supervision Practicum

External Practicum I

DMFT 5002
Doctoral Seminar II

DMFT 6300
External Clinical Practicum

DMFT 6320
Supervision Practicum

DMFT 6410
Qualitative Action Research

DMFT Clinical Portfolio

DMFT 5312
Advanced Substance Abuse Training

Or

Elective

DMFT 6950
Applied Clinical Project I

DMFT 6950
Applied Clinical Project II

Celebration & Graduation
(June)

Notes: Courses are prerequisite to the program and not included in the 96 credit requirement. Portfolios are completed by the end of the third year.

A variety of elective courses that enhance student learning are offered over the course of the program.

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