Marriage and Family Therapist in Canada – Career, Salary

Learn how to become a marriage and family therapist in Canada with many more other things you need to know.

Family life in Canada is precious that no one wants anything to happen to it, that’s why marriage and family therapists in Canada are always sought for to fix any family issue that may lead to scandal.

Marriage is a happy bond that no one wishes to enter to have problems. On the same hand, family is made possible from a successful marriage. Life is not complete without one having a happy home. Happy home is born out of a family that lives in peace.

Therefore, Marriage and Family is something both male and female honours and holds tight. Never wish to have problems of any kind come into it.

Nonetheless, marital problems and family issues are hard to avoid. This is so because individuals that come together to make marriage possible have individual differences. To put up with these individual differences, proper understanding, unconditional love and tolerance are needed in any marriage and family.

Hence, the true meanings and practical applications of these understanding, love and tolerance need a trained and professional marriage and family therapist.

This article will enlighten you with the meaning and who a marriage and family therapist is; what do marriage and family therapists do; how to become a marriage and family therapist in Canada with many more other things you need to know.

What is Marriage and Family Therapy?

Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT) is a branch of psychology that addresses the behaviors of all family members and the way these behaviors affect them and people around them.

Marriage and family therapists are licensed mental health professionals who received training in both psychotherapy and family systems. Therapists help couples or family members overcome difficult situations, reconcile differences, and cope with mental or emotional issues as well.

As a subset of psychotherapy, marriage and family therapy addresses the behaviors of all family members and how those behaviors affect individuals and relationships between individuals.

Who is a Marriage and Family Therapist?

Marriage and Family therapist (MFTs) is a person who received professional training in psychotherapy and family systems, and has the license to diagnose and treat mental and emotional disorders within the context of marriage, couples and family systems.

Moreover, marriage and family therapists (MFTs) are trained to provide counseling services to individuals, couples, and families in need. They work within the context of relational systems to address a variety of mental, emotional, and relational issues.

They may also provide programs to enrich family relationships, premarital preparation, and parent education.

What do Marriage and Family Therapists do?

There are quite a number of things that MFTs do as a professional service to their clients. Those things are:

Marriage diagnosis

They diagnose families and treat cognitive, affective, or behavioral mental and emotional disorders within the framework of marriage and family systems.

Collection of family information

They collect and review information about clients – individuals, married couples, or families, using interview, case history, and observation techniques, funnel approach, and appraisal and assessment methods.

Identification of problems

They help clients to identify personal and interactive problems and to achieve effective personal, marital, and family development and adjustment.

Marriage and Family counseling

Marriage and Family therapist provides individual, marital, and family counseling services to couples, adults and children, applying psychotherapeutic and family systems theories and techniques.

Family Guidance through difficult circumstances

Difficult circumstances and life changes can cause pressure to individuals and their relationships, so marriage and family therapists often help families who are facing difficult situations including divorce, job loss, illness, or the death of a loved one.

Also therapists help family members by counseling them and navigating them through the emotional struggle of their circumstances, while also teaching coping skills to help them move on and thrive going forward.

Relationship mediation

Some couples and families hire marriage and family therapists to mediate for conflict that they cannot handle on their own. Therapists here provide individuals with useful communication tools that will help promote reconciliation and encourage self-awareness.

Psychological disorder diagnosis

When one member of a married couple or family is experiencing psychological distress through a diagnosed or undiagnosed mental health disorder, marriage and family therapists are trained to recognize and diagnose a range of conditions including depression, anxiety, personality disorders, and others.

Once the mental health issue is addressed, it becomes easier for healing to begin for both the individual and their family members.

Abuse and addiction counseling

Marriage and family therapists are trained to address severe and dangerous problems such as addiction, substance abuse, and domestic violence.

Hence, they prioritise the safety of individuals within the couple or family. Therapists are also trained to break dysfunctional cycles of addiction and abuse, on an individual or generational basis.

How to become a Marriage and Family Therapists in Canada

Becoming a Marriage and Family therapist in Canada will take you a series of academic attainments which ranges from bachelor degree to Masters degree. However the step to become marriage and family therapist are explained below

Get a Bachelor’s Degree

The first step is to attain a bachelor’s degree in marriage counseling. Individuals who want to have this career must get this degree to proceed further. In Canada, if you are not able to find any university that specifically offers a degree in marriage counseling, then the degree in the equivalent will also work.

Moreover, you can do your majors in cognitive psychology, interpersonal relationships, or similar. Any clinical experience or internships are an added advantage.

Go for your Master’s Degree

Marriage and Family therapy in Canada demands that you attain the Master’s degree right after you have completed your Bachelor’s degree. Becoming a professional marriage therapist demands both the bachelor’s and master’s degree in marriage counseling.

Of course, if specific marriage counseling is not available in Canada, going for some relevant courses would do. Participating in some research activities would be helpful to attain the knowledge and experience of this field.

Real Clinical Experience Counts

You need to have clinical experience though it may vary according to provinces. But, there are a specific number of hours that you will complete in getting clinical experience irrespective of the place you are in Canada. If you have completed those specific hours of supervised work, you become eligible to provide marriage and family therapy in Canada.

Moreover, the standard clinical experience that almost every province desires is of two years. And, in case you have completed two years and that specified number of hours in counseling marriages, you are eligible to become a professional marriage and family therapist in Canada.

Attain Licensure

After you have completed these three steps, you will have to attain the licensure in your state. Now after attaining the bachelor’s and master’s degree in marriage counseling, you become eligible to sit for the licensing exam of your state.

Though, some of the states have the permission to conduct their own exam while others need to do it through Examination in Marital and Family Therapy. The officials governing this exam, and you specifically need to answer the MCQs to provide professional counseling therapy in Canada.

Persist with your Education

The licenses usually last for two years, and after that, you will have to renew it. Professional therapists need to attain more knowledge of this field to proceed further in this industry. You will have to update yourself by getting knowledge from different online programs, workshops, and other relevant courses. This is how you can maintain your license to work as a MFT in Canada.

Marriage and Family Therapy schools in Canada

There are not too many schools that offer this marriage and family therapy in Canada, however a few number of schools that offer it includes:

  • University of Winnipeg is one of the few Marriage and Family Therapy graduate programs in Canada.
  • Calgary Regional Health Authority. Family Therapy Training Program
  • Argyle Institute of Human Relations. Marriage and Family Therapy Program.
  • The University of British Columbia
  • Trinity Western University
  • Grand Canyon University
  • Northcentral University Canada
  • Liberty University Online Canada

Marriage and Family Therapist salaries in Canada

The average pay for a Marriage Family Therapist in Canada is $72,192 a year and $35 an hour in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Though, the average salary range for a Marriage Family Therapist in Canada is between $52,364 and $88,645.

Entry-level positions start at $61,816 per year, while most experienced workers make up to $79,106 per year.

Family therapist: salaries per region
British Columbia $73,365
Ontario $64,123

Marriage and Family Therapy jobs in Edmonton, Ontario

The following are the duties of those who work to provide professional training on  marriage and family therapy mostly in and institution. They are:

  • Plan and implement programs/strategies with specific student’s and or groups of student’s within the classroom environment as outlined by the specialist and classroom team
  • Plan and implement small and large group strategies and activities within the classroom environment that support the development skills of skills of identified students
  • Develop materials related to different programs and strategies as determined by the Therapeutic Specialist
  • Provide support to families by assisting with home program preparation, modelling and monitoring
  • Monitor, record and provide feedback on family relational matters
  • Maintain appropriate records of planned programs and student attendance
  • Monitor effectiveness of programs and strategies designed to meet specific objectives
  • Develop and maintain specific notes for Therapeutic Specialist and classroom team regarding students’ progress and response to current program strategies follow up through contact notes, progress notes, anecdotal observations and or conversation
  • Share information with classroom teaching team regarding planned strategies/programs and communicate with Therapeutic Specialist to determine appropriate level for programming and additional follow up required;
  • Model and discuss strategies and supports as appropriate with classroom team

Other responsibilities are

  • Work collaboratively with multi-disciplinary team members to implement strategies;
  • Attend multi-disciplinary team meetings;
  • Participate in cohort preparation time and meetings;
  • Assist in the delivery of workshops/seminars;
  • Conduct screenings to facilitate interpretation of results;
  • Assist in administering informal/formal screening tools to gather information;
  • Record and maintain results for use by the Therapeutic Specialist;
  • Assist with preparing of materials, scheduling activities, as directed by Therapeutic Specialist or Assistant Manager (e.g. summer treatment programming);
  • Perform checks and maintenance of equipment and materials, including cleaning and organizing of materials room;
  • Assist with Therapeutic Specialist operations such as scheduling, record keeping, safety/maintenance of equipment, monitoring inventory (e.g. screening and assessment protocols);
  • Participate in department meetings;
  • Provide input into strategic planning;
  • Provide cover off and assist team with peak workloads and projects
  • Participate in special events
  • Maintain technical knowledge and credentials through a range of professional development activities.
Frequently Asked Questions

How much do Marriage and Family Therapists make in canada?

The Marriage family therapist in Canada makes an average salary of $72,282 per year or $36.56 per hour.

How do I get a Marriage and Family Therapy job in Ontario?

  • Must be proficient in written and spoken English
  • Hold a master’s degree or doctoral degree in marriage and family therapy from a program approved by COAMFTE,
  • You must be a licensed marriage and family therapist
  • Candidates must have at least five years of post-licensed clinical experience in delivery of family systems therapy including one-year equivalent to the GS-11 grade level.