- The Marital & Family Therapy MS degree is now offered online and on campus!
- The online MFT MS program accepts students who reside in California and approved SARA states. No international students are accepted into the online MFT MS program at this time. Students from each of the United States, its territories, and international students are invited to apply to the campus-based MFT MS program.
- For the online MFT MS program, courses use a combined synchronous and asynchronous format. Practicum placements are completed in person and local to the student as available and with approval of the program.
- All application fees currently waived!
- Online and on-campus programs now accepting applications for Fall 2023! Apply by 2/3/23 (priority) or 6/30/23 (standard).
- Tuition waivers are available for those interested in adding a Play Therapy or Drug and Alcohol Counseling certificate to their program (see below for more information).
- Earn your degree in two years from the only COAMFTE-accredited MFT program in the Inland Empire. Upon graduation, you are eligible to sit for California licensure as an MFT. Students in the campus-based program may add 4 units to their program and also sit for the California LPCC.
At a Glance
- On-campus 2-year (full-time) or 3-year (part-time), 90 quarter unit academic program
- Online 2.5-year (full-time) or 3.5-year (part-time), 90 quarter unit academic program
- Only COAMFTE-accredited program in the Inland Empire
- Earn hours above BBS requirement before graduation
- On-campus start dates in September and January; online students begin in September
- No GREs or prerequisites required
- Internships across the Loma Linda University Health system of care and throughout the community
- Embedded curriculum for practice with active-duty military and veterans
- Christian environment emphasizing integrated learning, respect for all persons, and compassionate whole person care
- Embedded professional self-care
The Loma Linda University MFT is one of the most well-established programs in the state of California and has the distinction of being COAMFTE-accredited. There is a strong emphasis on whole person care and interdisciplinary learning. A Christ-centered approach is utilized to promote wellness for individuals and families. The program is based on the values of compassion, integrity, excellence, freedom, and justice. There is a low faculty to student ratio, which allows for significant academic and professional mentoring.
The MFT program is unique in that there are multidisciplinary settings available within Loma Linda University for its students. These include the Loma Linda University Medical Center, Children's Hospital, the inpatient Behavioral Medicine Center, and the outpatient Behavioral Health Institute.
General Admission Requirements
To be eligible for admission to the Marital and Family Therapy MS program, applicants must have a bachelor's degree with a minimum overall grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 in the last 45 quarter (30 semester) credits from a regionally-accredited institution and meet all other requirements outlined in the University Catalog. In addition, applicants must provide evidence of academic competence, professional comportment, and mature judgment. Individuals whose undergraduate degree is in still progress may be accepted pending satisfactory completion prior to beginning the master’s degree program. Applicants with an undergraduate degree offered in a language other than English must provide TOEFL scores in accordance with university policy.
Applicants may apply to begin to the campus-based Marital and Family Therapy MS program full-time or part-time in Fall (September), Winter (January), or Spring (March) quarter. Applicants may apply to begin the online MFT MS program in Fall (September). Application deadlines vary according to the academic calendar and are posted. Applicants should plan on the process taking a minimum of two to three months.
Online Application Process
Applications for admission are completed, paid for, and submitted online. Applicants are asked to provide current and permanent contact information, academic history, names of three recommenders, and a description of their rationale choosing to enroll in the Marital and Family Therapy MS program at Loma Linda University.
Letters of Recommendation
On the application form, individuals are asked to list the names, professional positions and e-mail addresses of three individuals who can recommend them for the Marital and Family Therapy MS program. At least two of the recommenders should be current or former professors who know the applicant's academic history, and one of the recommenders can be a current or former employer or supervisor. Recommendations from friends, relatives, or co-workers are not acceptable. When the application is submitted each of these individuals will receive an email with a link to access the recommendation form, which is to be completed and submitted online.
It is the applicant's responsibility to contact all colleges and universities attended since graduating high school and request that sealed, official transcripts be sent directly from the institution to the following address:
Loma Linda University
11139 Anderson St.
Loma Linda, CA 92350
After three recommendations and all official transcripts are received, qualified applicants will be invited to an on-campus or Zoom interview with faculty. Following that interview, faculty make a recommendation to the Dean regarding acceptance.
Notification of Admissions Decision
Applicants will be notified of the admissions decision within two to three weeks following the interview.
The MFT MS program here at Loma Linda University has allowed me the growth and knowledge to excel in my career as a therapist. Both the staff and my cohort created a supportive and comfortable environment for me. I have grown and learned much more about myself and what it means to be a therapist in the field of mental health—while continuing to maintain a balance of my own needs and support in the process.
Program Overview and Goals
The MS degree in marital and family therapy is designed to give students an excellent academic and clinical background, accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE) and approved by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences, which prepares students for professional practice working with individuals, couples, and families in a variety of settings. These include, but are not limited to, medical, legal, educational, community mental health, managed care, church settings and private practice.
Education and training are offered with the purpose of preparing students to be effective with a variety of mental health problems such as co-occurring disorders, serious emotional disorders, crisis care, chronic and/or serious mental illness, child and elder abuse, emancipation issues, and homelessness and complex relational issues. Great care is taken to include training that addresses issues of cross-cultural awareness, diversity, law and ethics, systemic approaches to treatment along with other evidence-based modalities, life-span development, family and community systems, community integration for support and resources, collaborative case coordination, and a focus on elimination of discrimination and stigma of mental illness. Education emphasis includes relational therapy, marriage and couple therapy, and systemic practice.
*All posted schedules are subject to change based on program scheduling needs.
The Medical Family Therapy Specialization is designed for individuals with an interest in working with patients and families living with an illness, injury, or disability. Courses include relevant family systems-informed theories and models, assessment and intervention skills, emphasis on diversity and social contexts, and collaborating with medical professionals, and unique self-of-therapist considerations. The specialization in medical family therapy prepares students to work as a member of the healthcare team in addressing the biopsychosocial-spiritual needs of patients and families. Individuals trained can work in medical settings, private practice, schools, community settings, mental health facilities, etc.
The Medical Family Therapy Specialization consists of 6 units of coursework and a 9-month fieldwork experience in an approved healthcare setting.
- CFSD 540 Introduction to Medical Family Therapy (3) - Winter quarter, online asynchronous
- CFSD 544 Health and Illness in Families (3) (Prerequisite: CFSD 540) - Spring quarter, online asynchronous
Candidates will complete a minimum of 3 quarters of fieldwork in an approved medical or health-related clinical setting during their second year in the MFT MS program. The experience prepares students to participate as a member of a collaborative team to help support the biopsychosocial-spiritual needs of patients and families.
MFT MS students must apply and be accepted into the Medical Family Therapy Specialization program during the Fall quarter of their first year. Application consists of the following steps:
- Personal statement submitted to Program Coordinator Jacqueline Williams-Reade, PhD.
- Recommendation from Lena Lopez Bradley, PhD and Monique E. Willis, PhD.
- Interview with Jacqueline Williams-Reade, PhD and additional faculty and/or advanced students.
Application deadline: November 1.
Students entering an MS degree program within the Department of Counseling and Family Sciences in academic year 2022-2023 who are interested in obtaining certification in Play Therapy or Drug & Alcohol Counseling will receive a tuition waiver for the certificate program of their choice. Students interested in this benefit are required to enroll in elective courses specified by their academic advisor. Given available spaces, students enrolling in the Systems, Families, and Couples PhD program may also take advantage of this benefit. Tuition waivers do not apply to any units used to support the student's primary degree program.
The faculty at Loma Linda are compassionate, proficient, exceptional individuals who helped me to grow as both a clinician and a learner.
Loma Linda University’s policy on anti-discrimination states the following: The University is committed to equal education and employment opportunities for men and women. While Loma Linda University (LLU) gives preference in its selection processes to students and employees who are aligned with the faith-based mission of the University and the Seventh-day Adventist Church, LLU does not and shall not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, medical condition, physical handicap, mental condition, veteran’s status, or age in the provision of any of its services. In the department of counseling and family sciences, we adhere to this policy and additionally do not discriminate against anyone on the basis of socioeconomic or relationship status.
Dual License Eligibility
The campus-based MS in Marital and Family Therapy is approved by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences (BBS) to prepare their students for both the License in Marital and Family Therapy (LMFT) and the License in Clinical Counseling (LPCC). For this option, students are required to add four academic units to their program.
For information on our student demographics, as well as student and faculty achievement information, please click here.
*Applications received by the priority deadline are reviewed first and receive admission responses earlier. Applications received after the priority deadline and before the standard deadline are reviewed as they are submitted and until the program has reached capacity. If you have any questions about when your application might be reviewed, please contact the program director.