Marriage and Family Counseling Degrees in St. Louis, MO

Nov 26, 2018

Located within roughly ten miles of the city's center, three universities in the St. Louis area offer degrees related to marriage and family counseling.To find out which one is right for you, learn about the program options and requirements at these schools.

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St. Louis Marriage and Family Counseling Schools

According to the Missouri General Assembly, marital and family therapists need a master's or doctoral degree in marriage and family therapy or an equivalent discipline. Additionally, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that all marriage and family therapists must be licensed through the state in which they intend to practice. Licensure requires applicants to have at least a master's degree and two years of clinical experience.

The St. Louis area has a few schools for people interested in becoming a marriage or family counselor. This article focuses on the courses and fieldwork required in graduate programs at three institutions. It also includes a table that you can use to compare several stats for the universities.

  • The University of Missouri-St. Louis enrolls roughly 17,000 students each year, which makes it the largest public university offering a counseling degree in St. Louis. The school, located around 11 miles from downtown, offers a master's degree in clinical mental health counseling.
  • Situated about 1.5 miles from the center of the city, St. Louis University is a private school that has a Doctor of Philosophy in Medical Family Therapy program, which offers both full-time and part-time coursework.
  • Webster University in St. Louis has a master's degree in counseling that allows students to focus on couples, marriage, family and child counseling. The campus is roughly 11 miles from the city's downtown area.

Comparison of Schools

When it comes to choosing a college, a school's costs can be just as important as its academic offerings. The featured universities have considerably different graduate tuition rates; to get more info about this and other school facts, take a look at this table.

University of Missouri-St. Louis St. Louis University Webster University
School Type* 4-year; public 4-year; private not-for-profit 4-year; private not-for-profit
Total Enrollment (2017)* 16,715 14,581 12,736
Campus Setting* Large suburb Large city Large suburb
Graduate Tuition (2017-2018)* $11,201 in-state;
$27,494 out-of-state
$20,346 $13,140

Source: *NCES College Navigator.

University of Missouri-St. Louis

The University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL) is the third largest university in Missouri and the largest in the St. Louis area. The mental health counseling program is the only one in the metropolitan area accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Education Programs (CACREP). The counseling and family therapy department is housed under the university's College of Education.

Master of Education in Counseling, Clinical Mental Health Counseling

This master's degree program prepares graduates for careers in several counseling fields, including those who wish to work as couples and family counselors. This 3-year program also requires students to take courses over the summer. Typical classes may include theories of counseling and group procedures in counseling. There is also a required clinical mental health counseling practicum and field experience.

St. Louis University

The Department of Counseling and Family Therapy offers a Doctor of Philosophy in Medical Family Therapy, which is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE) of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT). The department also offers a master's degrees in couple and family therapy.

Doctor of Philosophy in Medical Family Therapy

The PhD program focuses on the theory, practice and research of couple and family therapy. Students are required to complete 51-credits above a master's degree. Written examinations and a dissertation are mandated prior to graduation from this 3-year program. Coursework includes couple/family therapy, couple interaction, family issues in therapy and clinical supervision. Students learn how to work in consult with medical professionals and provide interventions in medical settings.

Webster University

Webster University is a Tier 1 school with many campus locations around the world. The Master of Arts in Counseling offers an emphasis in marriage, family and child counseling on some of the Webster campuses.

Master of Arts in Counseling, Emphasis in Couples, Marriage, Family and Child Counseling

The Master of Arts in Counseling is offered through the College of Arts and Sciences. Master's students will complete 60 credit hours of coursework. Specific coursework may include family systems theory, psychopathology, foundations of counseling and techniques of group counseling. An internship experience is also required.

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