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M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy

A Master of Arts Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota is designed to enhance students’ understanding and use of intervention methods with individuals, couples, and families.

Through the program at Saint Mary's, you'll deepen your understanding and skills in facilitating relational health with a diverse client base. And true to our practitioner-based learning model, all instructors are experienced therapists who engage in clinical practice. You'll benefit as you gain confidence through trained therapy simulations, all of which are supervised by licensed professionals.

Saint Mary's curriculum in the Marriage and Family Therapy program prepares graduates to seek licensure with the Minnesota Board of Marriage and Family Therapy. Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists (LMFTs) are mental health professionals who are trained in psychotherapy and family systems. They are licensed to diagnose and treat mental and emotional disorders with individuals, couples, and family systems.

Marriage and Family Therapy Program Handbook (PDF)


Applications for the program are accepted through Jan. 15 of each year. Students admitted to the program will be part of one of two cohorts:

  • The fall cohort, beginning in late August, is flexibly designed for working adults. Courses are held on Monday and Tuesday evenings, and the cohort will take nine semesters, or three years, to complete.
  • The summer cohort, beginning in early May, is intended for students who wish to finish the program at a more accelerated pace. Courses are held throughout the day and evening on Mondays, and the cohort will take seven semesters, or 2.3 years, to complete.



The Marriage and Family Therapy program at Saint Mary's is accredited with the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE) of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT).

Graduates of a COAMFTE accredited program increase the portability of their degree and are better positioned to meet licensing requirements in a number of states. (Most states base their educational requirements on COAMFTE standards.) Specialty accreditation requires programs to maintain rigorous training and outcomes. It is a recognized method for ensuring competence of faculty and the curriculum.


COAMFTE Student Achievement Criteria Data for Saint Mary's University of Minnesota
Accredited: July 2008

Minimum Program Length: 2.3 years
Advertised Program Length: 3 years
Maximum Time to Complete Program: 5 years
Year Students
Entered Program**
# of Students
in Program
% Graduates
who completed
in maximum time
in the
2005-2006 59 52 94.23% 0.00% 52.54% 71.19% 83.05% 100% 97.78%
2006-2007 89 67 95.52% 0.00% 46.07% 55.06% 71.91% 100% 96.36%
2007-2008 78 56 92.86% 0.00% 35.90% 51.28% 66.67% 100% 100%
2008-2009 99 77 94.81% 0.00% 25.25% 47.47% 73.74% 100% 93.94%
2009-2010 128 103 95.15% 0.00% 32.03% 57.03% 79.67% 100% 94.74%
2010-2011 150 123 99.19% 0.67% 38.67% 59.33% 81.33% 100% 88.51%
2011-2012 126 99 96.97% 0.79% 28.57% 57.14% 76.19% 100% 92.41%
2012-2013 112 89 97.75% 0.89% 44.64% 65.18% 77.68% 100% 95.92%
2013-2014 102 86 100% 0.00% 36.27% 64.71% 84.31% 93% 91.30%
2014-2015 66 66 100% 3.03% 51.52% 77.27% 89.39% 94% 94.74%
(Cohort I and II)
58 58 100%


27.59% 79.31% 82.76% 90.00% 100% (n=1)
(Cohort III and IV)
49 3 (remaining cohorts in progress 100% 87.76% in process in process in process 70.00% in process
(Cohort V and VI)
46 in process in process 95.65% in process in process in process N/A N/A
(Cohort VII and VIII)
55 in process in process 98.18% in process in process in process N/A N/A


*The Minnesota Board of Marriage and Family Therapy provides an annual report of the aggregate number of graduates from an institution who sat for, and passed, the AMFTRB National Exam. No data by individual name is available except by self-report. National exam data is not separated by the Minnesota Board of MFT by degree (MA vs. PDI). Per the Minnesota Board of MFT:

Calendar year Number of
Saint Mary's graduates
who took the exam
Number of
exams passed
National exam
pass rate
2008 26 17 65.40%
2009 49 37 75.50%
2010 51 39 76.50%
2011 57 41 72.90%
2012 78 60 76.90%
2013 77 66 85.70%
2014 94 69 73.40%
2015 88 72 81.82%
2016 87 61 70.11%
Jan - June 2017 49 35 71.43%
2018 84 60 71.40%
2019 10 6 60.00%


Gender Headcount Percent
Female 21 62%
Male 13 38%
Race/ethnicity unknown Headcount Percent
Nonresident Alien 0 0%
Race/ethnicity unknown 1 3%
Hispanic/Latino 2 6%
American Indian or Alaska Native 1 3%
Asian 0 0%
Black or African American 2 6%
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 0 0%
White 28 82%
Two or more races 0 0%


Collected by the Office of Institutional Research: Faculty included are faculty and supervisors teaching a marriage and family therapy course in the 2016-17 Fiscal Year.  Data is self-report at time of hire.

Gender Headcount Percent
Female 127 87%
Male 19 13%
Race/ethnicity unknown Headcount Percent
Nonresident Alien 1 1%
Hispanic/Latino 4 3%
American Indian or Alaska Native 1 1%
Asian 4 3%
Black or African American 10 7%
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 0 0%
White 101 69%
Race/ethnicity unknown 25 17%
Two or more races 0 0%


Collected by the office of Institutional Research: Student figures are based on student registration as of the 6th week of classes in the Summer 2019 academic year. Data is self-report at the time of application.


Applicants may apply for admission at any time during the year. The program admits students to begin classes in either the summer or fall. The number of students admitted each year is limited. Admission decisions are based on the applicant's ability to meet the expectations for academic performance outlined in the Program Handbook. Meeting the minimum admission requirements does not ensure admission to the program.

Applicants must have completed an undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited institution and maintained an overall GPA of 2.75 on a 4.0 scale. Applicants must demonstrate the language proficiency necessary for successful graduate coursework.

From Start to Finish

  • You can earn your M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy in a little more than two years.
  • Cohorts begin in the summer and the fall. 

2020 Summer or Fall Admission

Applications for the Summer 2020 and Fall 2020 cohorts are due by Dec. 15. Applications completed prior to Dec. 1 will be guaranteed an admission interview. Applications completed after the Dec. 15 deadline may be considered for the 2020 cohorts only if there is still space available in the program.

Note: Applications are considered complete when they have been submitted with the $25 application fee and all required materials, including official transcript(s) with the applicant’s degree and three letters of recommendation, have been received.

Degree Requirements/Course Descriptions/Application Process

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This program is offered at our Twin Cities location.

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Daniel Lawrence

SGPP Admission - Enrollment Counselor Graduate School of Health and Human Services

LaSalle Hall-TC Campus, LSH116

Campus Box: # 28

(612) 238-4529


Daniel Lawrence
Carlie Derouin

SGPP Admission - Enrollment Counselor, Graduate School of Business and Technology

LaSalle Hall-TC Campus, LSH112

Campus Box: # 28

(612) 728-5198


Carlie Derouin
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