Skip to main content
College of Education »

Advanced Studies in Education and Counseling

Information » Programs » Course Offerings »

Master of Science in Counseling - Option in Marriage and Family Therapy

Master of Science in Counseling Information

Counselors serve valuable functions in fields of education, health and human services, and business. Their domains of practice include public and private educational institutions, medical facilities and allied health agencies, social service agencies and organizations, state and federal human service agencies and programs, correctional facilities, business and industry, and private practice. The program's philosophy is to introduce students to a variety of approaches to counseling, and to encourage the development of competencies within these approaches.

The program combines theory and practice utilizing on and off campus course work and field work assignments. Required courses are offered predominantly in the evening, but most field assignments require daytime participation during normal business hours defined by the off-campus sites.

Students coming from diverse experiential backgrounds are trained at the graduate level to be able to perform entry level duties expected by the counseling profession and its specialty areas. Students are prepared to assume future leadership positions in their area(s) of expertise after additional work experiences have been acquired in the field following graduation.


The following are required for admission to the program:

1. Baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university in a behavioral science, education, or related field.

2. Minimum 2.85 overall grade point average in last degree (not credential or certificate) earned from an accredited institution of higher education. Applicants whose overall GPA is less than 2.85 but meet the University minimum GPA requirement and who present compelling evidence of academic and professional potential either through recent academic performance and/or experiential background, may be considered for admission at the discretion of the program admission committee.

3. International applicants have additional university application requirements including meeting the English language proficiency requirement. Please visit The Center for International Education (CIE) website at for more information.


Candidates must apply separately to both the university and the program by posted deadlines. Applications should be submitted at the same time. Program Option application deadlines may vary.
The application for Graduate Admission to the University is available online through CSUMentor ( One complete set of official transcripts must be submitted with the university application. This set of transcripts will be used to determine grade point average eligibility. Failure to submit transcripts in a timely manner will result in a delayed review of the application.

A separate application to the selected Counseling program Option must be submitted to the College of Education Graduate Studies Office (EED-7). You may only apply to one program per year. A program Option application and directions can be downloaded at The program Option application does not require a set of transcripts. After an initial paper screening, select applicants are invited for an interview with program faculty.

Classified Admission

Successful applicants are admitted to the program Option with Classified Admission status.

Option in Marriage and Family Therapy

Students in this Option will be prepared for licensed independent MFT practice to work in private practice, community-agency settings, government-court settings, hospitals, clinics, Employee Assistance Programs, and city-county-state agencies to provide counseling services for adults, children, families, and couples. Visit the program website for program details (


Take the following course:

EDP 400 Intro to Educational Research (3)
(or equivalent)
Prerequisites: None.

Advancement to Candidacy - Clear Admission

Students should advance to candidacy as early as possible. For advancement to candidacy (Clear Admission status), students must:

1. Fulfill the campus Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR).

2. Complete COUN 510, COUN 513, COUN 515, COUN 522, COUN 608, COUN 609.

3. Maintain a 3.0 grade point average in all course work.

4. Resolve all incomplete grades.

5. Submit to the Graduate Studies Office an Advancement to Candidacy form signed by the program advisor.


Take all of the following (58 units) and choose option A or B below:

  • COUN 508A Family Systems Applied to Aging and Lifespan Development (3)
    Prerequisites: None.
  • COUN 508B Family Systems Methods (3)
    Prerequisites: COUN 508A or consent of instructor.
  • COUN 510 Law and Ethics for Counselors (3)
    Prerequisites: None.
  • COUN 511 Counseling the Alcohol/ Chemically Dependent Person (2)
    Prerequisites: None.
  • COUN 512 Child and Spousal/Partner Abuse (1)
    Prerequisites: None.
  • COUN 513 Introduction to Clinical Interviewing (3)
    Prerequisites: None.
  • COUN 514 Medication and Counseling (2)
    Prerequisites: COUN 513 or consent of instructor.
  • COUN 515 Counseling Theories (3)
    Prerequisites: COUN 513.
  • COUN 522 Counseling Methods and Techniques (3)
    Prerequisites/Corequisites: COUN 513, COUN 515.
  • COUN 543 Human Sexuality Counseling (3)
    Prerequisites: COUN 515.
  • COUN 555 Cross-Cultural Counseling (3)
    Prerequisites: COUN 510, COUN 513, COUN 515; COUN 506 for School Counseling Option, SDHE 538 for SDHE Option, or their equivalent upon approval of the instructor.
  • COUN 556 Counseling Children and Adolescents (3)
    Prerequisites: COUN 515 and COUN 522, or consent of instructor.
  • COUN 557 Counseling Couples (3)
    Prerequisites: COUN 515.
  • COUN 601 Trauma and Grief Counseling (3)
    Prerequisites: COUN 556 or consent of instructor.
  • COUN 608 Seminar in Marriage a& Family Therapy (3)
    Prerequisites: COUN 510, COUN 511, COUN 512, COUN 513, COUN 515, COUN 522. Recommended: COUN 556.
  • COUN 609 MFT Practicum (4)
    Prerequisites: COUN 510, COUN 511, COUN 512, COUN 513, COUN 515, COUN 522 and COUN 608.
  • COUN 638 Group Counseling (3)
    Prerequisites: Admission to the MS in Counseling and/or PPS School Counseling Credential, or School Psychology Program, COUN 510, COUN 513, COUN 515 or equivalent upon approval of instructor.
  • COUN 643D Counseling Field Work: Marriage and Family Therapy (3)
    Prerequisites: COUN 608, COUN 609.
  • COUN 644D Advanced Counseling Field Work: Marriage and Family Therapy (3)
    Prerequisites: COUN 638, COUN 643D.
  • COUN 685 Community Mental Health Counseling (1)
    Prerequisites: None

Take one of the following:

  • EDP 520, EDP 595

Select an Option:

Option A - Thesis (total units: 64):

  • Take EDP 698 Thesis (must enroll in 6 units)

Option B - Comprehensive Exam (total units: 64):

Take an additional 6 units of approved electives from courses in the Counseling program.

Elective options include:

  • COUN 507 Career and Academic Counseling in K-12 Settings (3)
  • COUN 559 Play and Art Therapy for Children/Adolescents (3)
  • COUN 680 Family Trauma Treatment Seminar (3)
  • COUN 681 Spirituality and Counseling (1)
  • COUN 682 Gestalt Psychotherapy (2)
  • COUN 683 Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (2)
  • COUN 684 Advanced Clinical Case Formulation Seminar (1)
  • COUN 692A Introduction Psychodrama (1)
  • COUN 692B Advanced Psychodrama (1)

Advanced Studies in Education and Counseling

Academic Programs

Credential Programs


  • Graduate Certificate in Applied Disability Studies


    College of Education
    University Course Listings
    PDF Document IconPrint (PDF) Versions of the Catalog