Membership Course Pre-Approval Program

AAMFT represents the professional interests of marriage and family therapists throughout the United States, Canada, and abroad with the mission of advancing the profession and the practice of marriage and family therapy. Our members meet rigorous standards for education and training and uphold the highest ethical standards of the profession. 

Not every course in in an existing mental health program meets the educational requirements for AAMFT membership.  This creates frustration for individuals who have completed courses only to find that they are not eligible for AAMFT membership. This also creates dissatisfaction with the educational programs and institutions where the individuals have taken these courses. 

To alleviate the uncertainty of whether a course will be accepted toward the membership requirements, AAMFT has created a program to pre-approve courses for accredited colleges, universities, or established post degree training programs. The pre-approval will be good for a period of 2 years. Hence, any students completing the courses that AAMFT has pre-approved toward the specific core requirements areas during the pre-approved period, would be accepted toward the educational requirements for membership pending successful completion and documentation on an official transcript. This will create less frustration and is a great way to promote your program to current and prospective students.

Special notes:
  • AAMFT's membership standards for educational training requires the completion of a qualifying master's or doctoral degree in marriage and family therapy or an allied mental health field from an accredited educational institution. Students completing course(s) at a post-degree training program will need to document the completion of a qualifying master's or doctoral degree as defined above for AAMFT membership. If the student has a question about their graduate degree, please feel free to contact AAMFT central staff via email at czbikowski@aamft.org.
  • AAMFT's course pre-approval program is not designed to approve workshops, seminars, or other short-term continuing educational events for membership and/or licensure.
  • AAMFT's course pre-approval program is not designed to approve an institution's entire program. Those seeking accreditation for their entire program would need to apply with the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE).

How this works

  • AAMFT will review and pre-approve courses twice a year. 
  • Courses submitted for pre-approval by April 30, will be reviewed and notification sent by June 30.
  • Courses submitted for pre-approval by November 30, will be reviewed and notification sent by January 31. 

To have your program’s course(s) reviewed toward the AAMFT core requirement areas, you will need to submit a course pre-approval form with a copy of the course syllabus and payment fee for each course that you want reviewed. After the above documents have been submitted, AAMFT will review each course submitted from your institution and determine what are of study they fall under. This review is based on our 5 core requirement areas (e.g. marriage and family studies, marriage and family therapy, human development, professional ethics, and research). Please click here to access the AAMFT Curriculum Guidelines which will explain the course content acceptable for each of the core requirement areas. 

After courses have been pre-approved, the educational institution and pre-approved courses will be added to the list at the bottom of this webpage. This pre-approval process is for individual courses only that will be used toward meeting the educational requirements for AAMFT membership. It is not an approval of the entire program. Those seeking accreditation for their entire program would need to apply with the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE). 

Course pre-approval forms and syllabi can be sent via email to coursepreapproval@aamft.org. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact coursepreapproval@aamft.org

Cost

$150 USD standard fee per review of each course. 

Pre-Approval Expiration

Upon pre-approval, each course will be good for a 2-year time period. Because of possible changes to the curriculum, each course that has been pre-approved will need to be resubmitted for pre-approval after 18 months from the time of pre-approval to keep the course in good standing for another 2 years. Courses that are not renewed will be taken out of the pre-approved course list. 

Programs with Pre-Approved Courses

  • Beijing Normal University - Institute for Family and Psychology (Beijing, China)
  • Gratia Christian College - Institute for Family and Psychology (Hong Kong)
  • Satir Institute of the Pacific (Canada)
  • University of Guelph Open Education (Canada)
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