2019-2020 Academic Catalog 
    Dec 03, 2021  
2019-2020 Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Marriage & Family Counseling Postgraduate Certificate

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The CIU’s Clinical Counseling Program offers a Postgraduate Certificate in Marriage and Family Counseling (PGCMFC) that provides advanced training in counseling with couples, families, children, and adolescents. This advanced training and internship experience emphasizes a systems model based on a biblical design of relationships and cultural sensitivity.


In addition to satisfying the general admission requirements, applicants must complete the application process as specified below.

*Note: Current Clinical Counseling students must go through the following PGCMFC application process after filling out the “Add a Program” section on the “Graduate-Level Record Change” form prior to graduation to be considered for admission.

Admission Requirements

  • Complete CIU application form and PGCMFC essays and submit application fee.
  • Completed master’s program in a clinical mental health or equivalent program with a minimum 3.0 GPA from a regionally accredited institution. (Applicants must request official transcripts from all colleges and/or universities attended to be sent directly to Admissions. Note: Applicants who have attended an institution outside the United States must have transcripts evaluated through World Education Services (WES). Contact CIU Admissions for details.)
  • Submit current résumé or curriculum vitae.
  • Clinical Readiness Reference: Present or past clinical supervisor or employer who has direct knowledge of the applicant’s clinical work and can speak to the applicant’s clinical skill level and readiness for an advanced training certificate program using the Clinical Reference Form. (Additional information may be requested, such as Professional Performance Review [CIU alumni] and/or additional reference.)
  • Sample counseling (actual or role play) video recording (10-15 min.) with self-critique of strengths and weaknesses of session.
  • Online Interview.

Final admission decisions are based on both the application and the interview admission process for both program alumni and non-program applicants. The written application deadline is mid-May and interviews are offered throughout the academic year.

Transfer Policy

(Prior program course credit and non-program credit transfer policy)
Alumni who have completed the Master of Arts in Counseling may apply eligible, prior program course credit from their M.A. program towards the PGCMFC. The following courses will be considered for transfer toward the PGCMFC from another accredited school: CNS 6820 - Family Systems Theory , CNS 6931 - Internship I  and CNS 6932 - Internship II . Transfer credit must be approved by the student’s advisor and the dean. Additional policies governing transfer credit are outlined in the Admissions  section of this catalog.

Program Hours, Internship, Licensure

The PGCMFC program requires 24 credit hours for graduation. M.A. in Counseling alumni who have taken electives consistent with the PGCMFC program, must complete at least 12 credit hours as part of the certificate.

Completion of this program requires a minimum of nine (9) graduate semester hours in clinical experience. The clinical experience must include a minimum of six hundred (600) total hours of internship experience including individual and group supervision and a variety of professional activities and resources in addition to direct service. Face-to-face client contact must include a minimum of three hundred (300) hours of which one half (1/2) must be relational (i.e. talking about a relational issue in the counseling session, not necessarily having more than one client in the session).

For South Carolina marriage and family licensure, a total of at least 50 hours of clinical supervision throughout all three internships (I, II, and III) must be provided by an approved Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Supervisor (LMFT/S). In situations where an LMFT/S is required outside of the regular internship setting, the student bears the responsibility to secure and pay for all expenses for such clinical supervision.

Graduates of this certificate program who are M.A. in Counseling alumni (graduates 2010 and licensure track) with the approved LMFT/S supervision are eligible to apply for South Carolina State Licensed Marriage & Family Therapy Associate (LMFT/A) certification. Non-alumni graduates of this certificate program may be eligible to apply for South Carolina State Licensed Marriage and Family Therapy Associate (LMFT/A) certification if the M.A. program from which they graduated meets all the certification requirements. Applicants can contact the South Carolina Licensing Board to obtain the educational requirements for certification at www.llr.state.sc.us/POL/Counselors.

Time Limit

The time limit for completion of all requirements is four years, measured from the date a student begins coursework in the PGCMFC.

Completion Requirements

  • Students must complete the 24 hours of specified coursework with a minimum GPA of 3.0 with no grade lower than a “C” in order to receive the PGCMFC.
  • Satisfactory faculty recommendation based upon emotional, spiritual, and professional health, and maturity

Note: It is the student’s responsibility to complete all prerequisite, course, and degree requirements. Students must petition any changes to the curriculum as outlined in this catalog at least one semester prior to graduation.

Course of Study for Program Graduates (12)


* Might be required to complete internship requirements
** May be taken as electives during the M.A. in Counseling program

Suggested Program of Study


This Certificate Program is not eligible for federal Title IV financial aid funds – i.e. Federal Direct Loans. Students who are interested in exploring other financial aid options should contact the Financial Aid Office.

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