Program in Marriage and Family Therapy Falk College of Sport and Human Dynamics Syracuse University

Program in Marriage and Family Therapy Falk College of Sport and Human Dynamics Syracuse University

Syracuse, NY
student ratio
total students
Not Reported
average amount to complete degree
March 15
fall application deadline
acceptance rate
1 Degree Offered
degrees offered


The Department of Marriage and Family Therapy at Syracuse University's Falk College

The Department of Marriage and Family Therapy at Syracuse University's Falk College is one of the longest-standing and most well-respected programs in the country. It offers master and doctoral programs that focus on the family system, factors that impact the family system, and methods that promote the well-being of the family unit.

Its programs have accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education, so they meet the highest academic standards in the field.

David B. Falk College of Sport and Human Dynamics

The David B. Falk College of Sport and Human Dynamics trains students to promote the well-being of individuals at all life stages, their families, and their communities within a social justice framework. Students learn through scholarship, practice, advocacy, civic engagement, and entrepreneurial endeavors.

They pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees in the following departments: child and family studies; marriage and family therapy; public health, food studies, and nutrition; social work; and sport management. Certificate of Advanced Studies (CAS) programs are also available in Addiction Studies and Trauma-informed Practice.

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

The Master of Arts (M.A.) in Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT) degree program is designed to satisfy the academic requirements for clinical membership in the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy. The program, which can be completed on a full or part-time basis, is ideal for mature persons with a serious commitment to the family therapy field.

The MFT curriculum consists of 51 credits of core courses including a master's project or comprehensive writing examination and 500 hours of clinical practice. It also has 9 credits of elective courses.

Exposure to clinical practice begins in the first year of study with observation in the first semester and direct patient contact in the second semester (if clinically prepared). Before the beginning of the second year of study, students submit programs of study to the department chair.

M.A. in MFT Master's Project

The master's project allows students to develop skills that will further their career goals. Examples of master level projects include original research or applied work such as designing a treatment program. Students also write grant proposals, present papers at approved conferences, and publish manuscripts.

M.A. in MFT Comprehensive Exam

The comprehensive examination allows students to demonstrate their ability to integrate coursework and clinical training. It is an 8-hour, closed-book, essay exam that includes 3 questions about a clinical case.

Performance is based on a student's ability to integrate knowledge about marriage and family therapy and use that knowledge to develop clinically sound treatment plans.

Clinical Education

MFT students spend 1 year practicing therapy at the university's Couple and Family Therapy Center. Close supervision by faculty and staff during counseling sessions aids students in strengthening their clinician skills. Students also complete practica that allow them to work with clients at sites throughout the community.

Dual M.A. in MFT and Master of Social Work Program

The dual M.A. in MFT and Master of Social Work (M.S.W.) degree program at Syracuse University is the first program of its kind in the country. It allows MFT students to gain knowledge of social work theories and practices and M.S.W. students to expand their relational clinical experience with couples and families.

The program, which consists of 96 credits, can be completed in 3 years of study. However, students who are admitted to the M.S.W. Advanced Standing program can complete the program with 78 credits in 2 years.

Graduates of the program can pursue licensure in social work and/or marriage and family therapy in any state.

Doctoral Program in Marriage and Family Therapy

The Ph.D. program in marriage and family therapy trains students for advance theory, teaching, and research in the field.

Its 90-credit curriculum consists of M.A. in MFT degree program courses, advanced theory and practice, advanced research methodology, elective courses, advanced practicum, and a dissertation. It also includes a 9-month clinical internship, a doctoral qualifying exam, and an oral exam related to the dissertation.

Students graduate from the program prepared for teaching, supervisory, or research positions in graduate schools, in health care settings, and at training institutes.

Admissions Requirements

Admission criteria for the M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy program include undergraduate transcripts with at least 3.0 GPAs, GRE scores, and TOEFL scores (for international students). Each student also needs three letters of recommendation, a resume, and a personal statement. Applicants may be asked to submit a video interview.

Positive Career Outlook for MFTs

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics employment for marriage and family therapists is expected to grow 41% through 2020, which is considerably faster than the average for other occupations. This growth is attributed to the field's focus on brief, solution-focused treatment; family-centered treatment; and demonstrated treatment efficacy.

Marriage and family therapists may work in several settings including businesses, consulting companies, community mental health centers, courts and prisons, employee assistance programs, inpatient facilities, schools and head start centers, social service agencies, private practice, research institutions, and universities.

Financial Aid at Syracuse University

Graduate students may be eligible for federal loans, college scholarships and paid graduate assistantship positions in research and teaching areas.

Distinguished Faculty

Faculty members in the MFT programs are experienced practitioners, excellent teachers and mentors, and accomplished researchers.

Thomas deLara, Department Chair and Professor of Practice has been instrumental in the growth and development of the MFT program and in the creation of the new Dual Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT) and Social Work (MSW, the first in the country.

Linda Stone Fish, is the inaugural Falk College endowed professor of Marriage and Family Therapy. Her extensive portfolio of presentations and publications spans numerous topics including: supporting LGBTQ youth and families, family systems, suicide prevention and trauma and therapy.

Professor Rashmi Gangamma has research interests in developing effective interventions for individuals and couples experiencing relational distress. She has published articles and written book chapters about couple therapy, therapeutic alliance, recantation processes in domestic violence cases, therapy research methods, and LGBT health issues.

Professor Deborah Coolhart has designed and taught graduate courses as well as supervised students at the Couple and Family Therapy Center. She also has a private practice and publishes research about marginalized groups, particularly clinical issues regarding transgender individuals and their families.

About Syracuse University (SU)

Syracuse University is a private institution that was established in 1870. It has more than 21,000 students who represent all 50 states in the union and more than 125 countries. SU provides a caring and academically rigorous community where students can "explore, discover, and break boundaries" in the classroom and in the real world.

Syracuse, New York

SU is located in Syracuse, New York, in the northeastern region of the United States. It is within driving distance of exciting and historic cities like Toronto and Montreal, Canada; Boston, Massachusetts; and New York City, New York.

Syracuse is also an exciting city that offers a wide array of cultural, entertainment, and shopping venues, as well as numerous educational and employment opportunities.

Location & Contact

Program in Marriage and Family Therapy

Falk College of Sport and Human Dynamics
Syracuse University

Syracuse, NY 13244
United States

Dr. Thomas DeLara


Phone: 315-443-9403

Ms. Felicia Otero

Director of Graduate Admissions

Phone: 315-443-5555

Request More Info

Degrees & Award

  • Degrees Offered
    • Major Degree Levels Offered
    • Marriage And Family Therapy Master of Arts (MA)
  • Degrees Awarded
    • Master's Degrees 26
    • Doctoral Degrees Not reported
    • First Professional Degrees Not reported
    • Other Advanced Degrees Not reported
    • * Shows the number of degrees awarded for the last academic year that data was reported.
  • Earning Your Degree
    • Part-time study available? Yes
    • Evening/weekend programs available? No
    • Distance learning programs available? No
    • Terminal master's degree available? Not reported
  • Degree Requirements
    • Master's Degrees
    • Doctoral Degrees
    • First Professional Degrees Not reported
    • Other Advanced Degrees Not reported


87% of applicants are admitted.
  • Acceptance Rate
    • Applied 87
    • Accepted 76
    • Acceptance Rate 87
    • Enrolled 28
  • Applying
    • Application Fee - Domestic $75
    • Application Fee - International $75
    • Electronic applications accepted? Yes
    • Applications processed on a rolling basis? Not Reported
  • Application Deadlines
    • Type Domestic International Priority Date
    • Fall deadline March 15th February 15th Yes
    • Winter deadline Not Reported Not Reported Not Reported
    • Spring deadline November 15th November 15th Yes
  • Entrance Requirements
    • Master's DegreesGRE General Test
    • Doctoral's DegreesNot Reported
    • First-Professional's DegreesNot Reported
    • Other Advanced DegreesNot Reported
    • International DegreesTOEFL required, TOEFL iBT

Tuition & Fees

  • Tuition & Fees *
    • Tuition & FeesNot Reported
    • *Average dollar amount (tuition & fees) required to complete the degree
  • Financial Support
    • Financial award applicants must submitFAFSA
    • Application deadlines for financial awardsJanuary 1
    • Types of financial support availableTuition Waivers

Student Body

  • Gender
    • Total Graduate Students66
    • Female Percentage86%
    • Male Percentage14%
  • Participation
    • Total Graduate Students66
    • Part-time Percentage11%
    • Full-time Percentage89%
  • Ethnicity
    • Hispanic / Latino5%
    • Black / African American12%
    • White / Caucasian75%
    • American Indian / Alaskan Native0%
    • Asian0%
    • Native Hawaiian / Other Pacific Islander0%
    • Two or more races5%
    • Unknown3%