Marriage and Family Therapists

Human Services > Counseling & Mental Health Services

Projected Growth: Much faster than average

Projected Job Openings

Extensive Preparation Needed

Job Description

Your job is to Diagnose and treat mental and emotional disorders, whether cognitive, affective, or behavioral, within the context of marriage and family systems. Apply psychotherapeutic and family systems theories and techniques in the delivery of services to individuals, couples, and families for the purpose of treating such diagnosed nervous and mental disorders.

Common job titles of Marriage and Family Therapists include:

Experience and Education

Extensive skill, knowledge, and experience are needed for these occupations. Many require more than five years of experience. For example, surgeons must complete four years of college and an additional five to seven years of specialized medical training to be able to do their job.

  • 59.73% said they needed a Master's Degree.

  • 38.32% said they needed a Post-Master's Certificate.


    Determine whether clients should be counseled or referred to other specialists in such fields as medicine, psychiatry, or legal aid.

    Encourage individuals and family members to develop and use skills and strategies for confronting their problems in a constructive manner.

    Maintain case files that include activities, progress notes, evaluations, and recommendations.

    Counsel clients on concerns, such as unsatisfactory relationships, divorce and separation, child rearing, home management, or financial difficulties.

    Ask questions that will help clients identify their feelings and behaviors.

    Develop and implement individualized treatment plans addressing family relationship problems, destructive patterns of behavior, and other personal issues.

    Collect information about clients, using techniques such as testing, interviewing, discussion, or observation.

    Supervise other counselors, social service staff, and assistants.

    Confer with other counselors, doctors, and professionals to analyze individual cases and to coordinate counseling services.

    Provide instructions to clients on how to obtain help with legal, financial, and other personal issues.

    Follow up on results of counseling programs and clients' adjustments to determine effectiveness of programs.

    Confer with clients to develop plans for posttreatment activities.

    Write evaluations of parents and children for use by courts deciding divorce and custody cases, testifying in court if necessary.

    Provide public education and consultation to other professionals or groups regarding counseling services, issues, and methods.

    Gather information from doctors, schools, social workers, juvenile counselors, law enforcement personnel, and others to make recommendations to courts for resolution of child custody or visitation disputes.

    Provide family counseling and treatment services to inmates participating in substance abuse programs.


Videoconferencing equipment

Toy block sets

Photocopying equipment

Personal digital assistants PDA

Personal computers

Multi-line telephone systems

Laptop computers

All Tools

Hand puppets


Doll houses

Desktop computers

Computer laser printers


Intuit QuickBooks

Advantage Software Psych Advantage

American Medical Billing Software PMA

Anasazi Software Client Data System

Beaver Creek Software The THERAPIST

Blueberry Harbor Software Clinical Record Keeper

Care Paths eRecord

All Technologies

Casamba SmartClinic

Cornucopia Software Practice MAGIC

DocuTrac QuicDoc

eMDs Medisoft

EZ2Bill Confidant

EZClaim Healthcare Software EZClaim Advanced Medical Billing

Mdansby The PsychReport

Netsmart Technologies Helper

PM/2 Clinical Planner

PracticePRO Software Systems QuickPractice

Saner Software ShrinkRapt

SumTime Software SumTime

Synergistic Office Solutions SOS Case Manager



Active Listening

Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Social Perceptiveness

Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.


Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Service Orientation

Actively looking for ways to help people.

Judgment and Decision Making

Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Reading Comprehension

Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.


Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Critical Thinking

Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Complex Problem Solving

Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.


Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.


Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.


Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.

Active Learning

Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.


Teaching others how to do something.


Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.

Systems Evaluation

Identifying measures or indicators of system performance and the actions needed to improve or correct performance, relative to the goals of the system.

Operations Analysis

Analyzing needs and product requirements to create a design.

Systems Analysis

Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.

Time Management

Managing one's own time and the time of others.

Learning Strategies

Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.

Management of Personnel Resources

Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.


Listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Comprehension

Communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Expression

Tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Problem Sensitivity

Read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Written Comprehension

Communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Written Expression

Apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Deductive Reasoning

Combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Inductive Reasoning

TEST Your output This field is empty or does not exist This field is empty or does not exist

Occupation Sections


No areas of knowledge found

Real People, Real Stories

Would you look at that! Unfortunately, we don't seem to have any real life stories related to Marriage and Family Therapists.

Perhaps you'd like to be the first? If so, let's talk about featuring your story!