What is an Associate MFT?

Associate Marriage and Family Therapist (AMFT) was previously called an “Intern.”  When most people hear the word “intern,” they often think of a student volunteering, no (or little) education, or someone just starting in a job position without any experience.  The term was recently changed January 2018 to Associate. An Associate MFT already has their Master’s Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy, along with clinical hours under their belt. They are required to have a minimum of 300-500 clinical counseling hours before they even graduate from college, and many AMFTs have a couple thousand hours under their belt! Associate MFTs need 3000 hours before they can apply to become a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist.

The Associate Marriage and Family Therapist must be approved by the Board of Behavioral Sciences and are required to have weekly supervision meetings. During the supervision training, they will review each case with their supervisor (either verbal or by showing video of therapy sessions), gain education and training from their supervisor, and discuss the ethics and legal issues of being a therapist. The great thing about working with an Associate is that you not only get help from that therapist, but your case is reviewed by the supervisor. Basically, you get two minds at the cost of one therapist. Not only do Associates have weekly supervision meetings, but they also attend trainings and learn while they work.

The fee for working with an Associate starts at $135 per therapy session. Each session is for 50-minutes long. Some people meet with the therapist once a week, and others meet every other week or once a month. It all depends on the goals set for each client.

Meet the San Diego Therapists working at Estes Therapy in the Mission Valley office.

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