The educational requirements to earn a license in Marriage and Family Therapy is an enormous undertaking. The learning, however, doesn’t end when the license is granted. Most states have continuing education requirements for the LMFT in order to renew their license. The type of courses specified may vary from state to state and the number of total MFT CEUs may vary as well. How are these CEUs fulfilled? In the past the MFT had to use vast resources of time and money to travel to workshops and conferences in order to fulfill all of their required CEUs. Now all states allow some, if not all, continuing education to be obtained from sources online, dramatically reducing the time and financial commitment to earn their CE credits.
The MFT in any state will often meet a variety of clients from various demographics. The MFT CEU requirements were instituted in order to assure that even though the therapist has graduated, their education in their field has not stopped. There are periodic changes in the laws and changes in family dynamics that are ongoing; therefore, the therapist needs to evolve with them. New insight and perspective is critical in this rapidly changing world where the average family dynamics are evolving more quickly than ever before
MFT continuing education may be satisfied at least in part, in some states by therapists who publish research papers or studies in professional journals. The requirements as well as limits on publication for CEUs vary from state to state. While family dynamics, ethics and laws are in flux especially in times of economic pressure, the demands on the MFT’s time increase. What this means in terms of satisfying CE requirements is that there is simply less time to keep up with more.
Satisfying MFT Continuing Education Requirements
Most MFT licenses are granted for a period of 2 to 4 years. The traditional way to renew this license was to personally attend a workshop or seminar. The good news is that most states don’t mandate that all of the required CEUs be obtained in this manner. Now there is greater flexibility on how to fulfill the mandated continuing education.
One of the options, as previously stated, to fulfill CEUs for MFT continuing education is the submission of published research papers. Most states will allow this, but with limitation, usually up to 10 hours of credit. It will be important to note that specific documentation will need to be submitted with the request to use this method.
All licensed Marriage and Family Therapists must attend some face-to-face seminars as part of their CE fulfillment. The good news is that every state now permits licensees to use online CE providers to obtain a third to all of their CEUs. Each will vary in the total amount allowed through this venue. So, now as the thriving therapist provides tools for their clients to deal with their burdens, they too have a tool to deal with their burden of continuing education, in regards to time and finances. Now they have more resources to put back into their practice.
Each licensed therapist needs to be aware of the limits set by their respective state board in regards to the utilization of online CEUs for MFTs. These rules may change from year to year. There are a few states, California being one of them, that allows all required units be obtained from an online source. In California, the one caveat to this is the program needs to have an interactive component with electronic processing of the exam. Otherwise, California limits the self-study programs to only half of the total requirements. Other states may have similar restrictions. With the rapid changes in technology and the increasing reliability of online programs, this trend of availability and permissibility will only increase as well.
So, now a MFT’s practice doesn’t have to suffer lost time; rather the continuing education courses can be utilized during non-client hours. This opens up far more opportunities for the MFT when researching CE options. No two practices are completely alike, thus, the need for a variety of choices is paramount. The field of online continuing education presents numerous courses available to meet the wide diversity among practicing therapists. Another benefit of the vastness of online CE is the opportunity for a licensee to venture into territories not yet explored within their field.
Something to keep in mind as one looks into acquiring CE units online is the specific requirements of their own state board. There will be some important variations between states. Also, make sure that which ever online provider is used, that they have obtained approval to offer CE in the MFT’s state of licensure. A qualified provider will have posted all of their approvals and provider numbers.
Aspira is a leader in online MFT continuing education, proving to be a valuable source in obtaining CEUs for MFTs. Aspira offers many courses to choose from in an easy to navigate website. Visit Aspira at www.aspirace.com today!