ERIC Number: EJ889726
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Jul
Abstractor: As Provided
The Present and Future of MFT Doctoral Education in Research-Focused Universities
Sprenkle, Douglas H.
Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, v36 n3 p270-281 Jul 2010
Doctoral education is greatly impacted by context, and the large majority of marital and family therapy (MFT) doctoral programs are PhD programs in research-focused universities. I believe their primary mission is to equip students to become scientist-practitioners and do original research that will advance the science of the discipline, whereas the mission of the typical master's program is to produce strong practitioners who are research informed. It is the emphasis on the scientific method, not the content specialty area, that should be the hallmark of PhD programs in research-focused contexts. I describe metrics for success that include not only research productivity but also the development of a supportive, open, flexible, and generous program culture. The research mission of these programs has been only modestly helped by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education process and the programs are largely not doing the programmatic intervention research that the field needs. As the universities that house these programs are also "raising the bar," the long-term viability of the programs themselves will likely hinge on success in this arena.
Descriptors: Productivity, Scientific Methodology, Doctoral Programs, Family Counseling, Marriage Counseling, Doctoral Degrees, Graduate Study, Research Skills, Research Universities
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A