Nova Southeastern University

Department of Family Therapy
Last Updated

The Department of Family Therapy (DFT) is committed to providing top quality educational training to graduates who possess expertise in the art and science of human relationships. All faculty and staff are committed to creating an environment that allows for positive, respectful, and collaborative relationships with students. Within such an atmosphere, students learn to manage human relationships in a variety of contexts, which include psychotherapy, health care, social service, education, community, and business. The Department is committed to both academic and clinical excellence. Students receive closely supervised clinical experience at our own Family Therapy Clinic in the Brief Therapy Institute and additional "real life" clinical experiences off campus at a variety of community-based internship sites. A major focus of the program is helping students learn to integrate systemically oriented theories with effective approaches to clinical practice. This integration involves the proactive involvement of faculty with students in co-creating an environment of intellectual openness and curiosity. We are proud to have a diverse student body to go along with a broad range of active faculty interests. These mutually renewing intellectual resources create a learning community of constant excitement and innovation.

Program Overview
Program Administrator
Dr. Tommie V. Boyd (chair)
Department Emphasis
  • 97% Family Therapy
  • 2% Family Systems Health Care
  • 1% Family Science
Campus Enrollment
27,518
Program Options
  • Master’s
  • Doctoral
Areas of Study
  • Therapy (Couples, Marriage, or Family) - Master's
  • Therapy (Couples, Marriage, or Family) - Doctoral
Department Address

3301 College Avenue
Fort Lauderdale-Davie, FL 33314-7796
United States

Phone Number
800-541-6682
Graduate Program
Graduate Courses Offered
  • Introduction to Systems Theories
  • Introduction to Marital and Family Therapy
  • Legal, Ethical, and Professional Issues
  • Human Development Across the Life Cycle
  • Group Psychotherapy
  • Theories of Marital and Family Therapy
  • Couples Therapy: Theory and Application
  • Internal Practicum I & II
  • Human Sexuality and Gender
  • International Issues in Counseling and Therapy
  • Theories of Personality and Psychopathology
  • Assessment in Marital & Family Therapy
  • Clinical Practice in Marital and Family Therapy
  • Diversity in Human and Family Development
  • External Practicum I & II
  • Substance Abuse/Addictions and Critical Issues in Systems Theories
  • Research in Marital and Family Therapy
  • Assessment in Marital and Family Therapy
  • Systemic Family Therapy I, II, & III
  • Language Systems
  • Personality Theories of Psychopathology
  • Quantitative Research I, II, III, & IV
  • Thinking Systems
  • Qualitative Research I & II
  • Academic Writing
  • Family Therapy Topics
  • Supervision and Teaching
  • Independent Study
  • Supervision Practicum
  • Teaching Practicum
  • Dissertation
  • Internship
Master's Level
Masters Program Options
  • Marriage and Family Therapy
Masters Comments

The M.S. in Marriage and Family Therapy is designed to help students develop clinical excellence and prepare for careers as marriage and family therapists. Students are prepared to assume professional positions in private practice, employee assistance programs, managed care and health care organizations, child care and child development systems, family service agencies, schools, churches, hospitals, and other clinical and organizational settings. The 48-credit hour degree program consists of coursework and clinical practice. Training is concentrated on brief, interactional models of family therapy, preparing our graduates to practice in a time-sensitive, cost-effective manner.

Doctoral Level
Doctoral Program Options
  • Marriage & Family Therapy (DMFT)
  • Marriage & Family Therapy (Ph.D.)
Doctoral Comments

The Ph.D. in Family Therapy is a 96-credit-hour program designed for individuals holding master's degrees in a mental health field who wish to fully grasp both the historical as well as cutting edge theory informing the current practice of family therapy. The program is also dedicated to understanding the relationship between theoretical ideas and the variety of established and emerging schools of family therapy. The program is designed to enhance students' clinical skills in order to make them top level practitioners, while at the same time demonstrating the place of qualitative and quantitative research in this pursuit. Graduates of the program should look forward to productive careers in academic, supervisory, clinic, and community based employment settings. The Doctorate in Marriage and Family Therapy (DMFT) is a 78-credit-hour program and is practitioner oriented terminal degree. The primary emphasis of the DMFT degree program is different from the Ph.D. program in that it seeks specifically to produce professionals whose chief contributions will be in the clinical rather than academic sphere. Still, there is a great deal of overlap in the core curriculum between the two programs.

CFLE Information

NCFR recognizes schools offering undergraduate and graduate degree programs with course work that follows the Standards and Criteria required for approval as a Provisional Certified Family Life Educator (CFLE). NCFR approval allows the school to offer their graduates the opportunity to apply for Provisional Certification using the Abbreviated Application process. The CFLE Checklist represents the courses that meet the CFLE criteria at that school. Students must complete all the courses on a checklist in order to qualify to apply for the CFLE designation through the Abbreviated Application process.