Screening criteria and processes of marriage and family therapy training programs
Dickinson, Elizabeth A.
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The research questions under consideration in this study are: a) what characteristics do AAMFT accredited training programs in marriage and family therapy and programs seeking accreditation consider important when screening applicants for acceptance; b) do these characteristics vary by the theoretical frameworks taught in the training programs; and c) what processes are used to determine the presence of these characteristics in applicants? The "MFT Screening Inventory" was distributed to 31 MFT training programs. The questionnaire asked for a rating of 66 items which related to the importance of desired characteristics in a candidate for marriage and family therapy training. Programs were also requested to specify the theoretical framework(s) from which they train, and to send any application materials or other material pertinent to screening. A total of 10 questionnaires were returned with a return rate of 32%. Differences were found in comparing important characteristics and theoretical frameworks; and screening processes of the interview, written recommendations, and written statements were descr ibed. In order for the results to be conclusive, important characteristics must be operationalized, and processes for determining the presence of these characteristics must be highly defined.