Top of Page
Skip main navigation

Curriculum Requirements

The Graduate Certificate in Family Systems Health Care consists of eight courses (24 credits), which include biopsychosocial and systemic theories, relationship skills, professional issues, and health care systems.

To complete the requirements for the Graduate Certificate in Family Systems Health Care, students must take 3 courses with prefix SFTM and 5 courses with prefix FSHC. Additional electives can be taken with the approval of the department chair.

SFTM 5310 - Introduction to Systems Theories (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.

SFTM 5321 - Theories of Marital and Family Therapy (3 credits)

This course offers a comparative study of theories of marital and family therapy, including systemic, structural, strategic, intergenerational, contextual, behavioral, experiential therapies, and others, and provides a survey of differences in clinical practices. Prerequisite: SFTM 5310.

SFTM 6320 - Assessment in Marital and Family Therapy (3 credits)

This course provides an overview of methods and instruments used to define problems and indicate solutions. Diagnosis, appraisals, assessments, and testing appropriate to the practice of marriage and family therapy are addressed. This course also includes a comparative study of interactional approaches and individual and family dysfunction assessments.

FSHC 5000 - Family Systems Health Care I (3 credits)

Students receive an orientation to the field of family systems in health care that focuses on the biopsychosocial model for understanding health care issues for patients, families, medical professionals, and health care providers. An in-depth study of relationship and clinical skills that translate well within health care settings will be presented. A case study method will be used to examine the impact of language, culture, beliefs, and specific chronic, debilitating, and terminal diseases upon the experience of illness. The biopsychosocial issues surrounding specific medical conditions throughout the life cycle will be presented.

FSHC 5010 - Family Systems Health Care II (3 credits)

Personal beliefs and philosophies regarding dying, loss, and death will be explored. Bereavement across the life cycle, including developmental issues relating to adults and children and their understanding of loss, will be reviewed. The manner in which other cultures create meaningful rituals for life and death will be presented.

FSHC 5300 - Integration and Collaboration of Health Care Systems (3 credits)

This course is an introduction to health care delivery systems through an investigation of medical models, terminology, and approaches used by physicians, medical specialists, and other health care professionals to diagnose and treat disease and to care for the human condition. Students will be oriented to health care systems and settings including hospitals, clinics, hospices, and private practices. Alternative approaches to health care will also be addressed.

FSHC 5500 - Politics and Economics of Health Care (3 credits)

An overview of the history of medicine will be presented to give students an understanding of how social and political changes affect medical care. Current issues in the health care field will be discussed, such as the growth in managed care companies, proposed nationalized health care, patient/physician/health care system relationships, and the rise in malpractice litigation. The potential roles of a Family Systems Health Care professional within these complex systems will be presented.

FSHC 6400 - Human Systems in Health Care (3 credits)

This course will introduce students to the fundamentals of relationship management within complex organizational settings, with special appreciation of the dynamics that apply within the world of health care. Students will learn to identify, assess, and intervene utilizing principles at both macro and micro levels of operation.

Below is a sample of a degree plan for a full-time student who begins their studies in Fall term. Degree plans will be modified based on a student's enrollment date and pace of study.

Table 1: Degree Plan: 24 credits hours
Fall (August) Winter (January) Summer (May)
Year 1

SFTM 5310 -
Introduction to Systems Theories

FSHC 5000 -
Family Systems Health Care I

FSHC 5500 -
Politics and Economics of Health Care Systems

SFTM 5321 -
Theories of Marital and Family Therapy

FSHC 5010 -
Family Systems Health Care II (Grief and Loss Across Cultures)

FSHC 6400 -
Understanding Human Systems in Health Care Settings

FSCH 5100: External Practicum I

SFTM 6320 -
Assessment in Marital and Family Therapy (may be transferred in)

FSHC 5300 -
Integration and Collaboration Among Health Care Systems
FSCH 5110: External Practicum II

{*Electives offered each trimester}
Return to top of page