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M.A. in Marital and Family Therapy

Marriage and family therapy is about providing support. And partnering with clients for positive change.

Bethel’s M.A. in Marital and Family Therapy provides the skills to fulfill your call to strengthen and support individuals, couples, and families. Marital and family therapy students train to pour their lives into listening, caring, and sometimes confronting. Part of our mission is to build your spiritual, emotional, and mental strength so you can use your gifts to bring light to a suffering world.

Program Details

M.A. in Marital and Family Therapy

Our marital and family therapy program combines Christian theology with clinical practice and theory, so you're prepared to provide therapy to couples and families and bring hope to those who are hurting. This program fulfills the requirements for licensure as a marriage and family therapist in California.

Delivery: Face to Face

Location: San Diego

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Integrating Christian Theology with Clinical Practice

We know that life’s challenges affect us spiritually, emotionally, and physically. That’s why studying couples and family therapy, while integrating a theological perspective, is relevant and vital.  Here, you’ll have the best of both worlds—Christian theology and spirituality along with clinical theory and practice. Treating your clients holistically stimulates healing and fosters hope.

seminary graduates serving around the world

average number of hours committed per week to online programs

Program Highlights

Theoretical and theological integration

Our program is designed for students who want to integrate theoretical and clinical training with biblical and theological study so they can conduct therapy with families, couples and individuals from a holistic perspective.

Instruction and supervision by scholar-practitioners

Our professors are scholar-practitioners who contribute to the field through supervising, teaching, writing, and research. They also maintain clinical practices serving individuals, couples, and families.

COAMFTE accreditation

Bethel’s program in San Diego is the only seminary marriage and family therapy program in California currently to be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE).

Licensure preparation

The program fulfills all academic requirements for licensure as a Marriage and Family Therapist in California.

Professional Care

Graduates of Bethel’s marital and family therapy program become counselors and therapists in private, community, and church-based settings, as well as continue on to doctoral programs.


Learn how to:

  • Establish strong therapeutic relationships with clients
  • Know and work within the laws and ethical standards for MFT practice
  • Assess, diagnose, and treat a wide range of psychological and relational disorders
  • Identify and support the strengths and resilience of individuals and families
  • Adapt therapeutic approaches to a wide range of client diversity
  • Understand the effects of long-term mental illness and persistent poverty
  • Work collaboratively with a wide range of mental health and ministry professionals


Our graduates work in places like:

  • Private practices
  • Community mental health centers and clinics
  • Government- and private-funded agencies
  • Behavioral health hospitals and units
  • Church-based therapy centers
  • Pastoral ministries to individuals and families
  • Public and private preK-12 schools and universities
  • Missionary, pastoral, and denominational care

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