Family Counselor Degree

You may have wondered if there is such a thing as a family counseling degree, and there is! Once you have gained a Master's Degree in Marriage and Family Counseling, you will be able to do research, learn theory and integrate those theories into your daily duties as a family counselor. A family counseling degree will also include theories in the practice of families and family therapy. The theories will also concentrate extensively on marriage. Generally, a student that wishes to embark on a course to attain a family counselor degree must first attend residential colloquia at a university that holds degree courses in family counseling.

It takes a special kind of person to become a family counselor and gaining a degree in the subject will play a huge part in getting a career started in this field. Couples and families all too often face tough times and problems that are unique to that family and/or couple. It is these issues that cause families to seek out the help of a family counselor. The American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT)* determines that the very minimum training a family counselor or marriage guidance officer should be a master's degree in family counseling. In addition to the master's degree a therapist dealing in family matters will need at least two years of on the job training. This usually involves a therapist sitting in on sessions as an observer or is supervised by an experienced family counselor while they practice in real situations.

Once a student has completed a master's degree in family counseling and spent two years being supervised in on the job training, a therapist will have to pass family counseling licensing exams. These exams are state controlled and will vary depending on which state you are practicing in. Some states do not require a licensing exam at all. In addition to all the educational requirements, state exam passes and master's degree are needed for becoming a family counselor; a therapist will also need a character that has empathy, passion and organizational skills. You will need to have brilliant problem-solving skills, good listening skills, and a character that a family can trust when they are having issues and relationship concerns. Family counseling therapists must also be comfortable learning new technologies if they are to embark on a family counselor degree. 


Are you ready to pursue a career in counseling? Get information on schools in your area and online using our counseling degree finder at the top of this page.


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