The Department of Counselor Education offers an 18 credit-hour program (6 courses) leading to the Certificate in Couple and Family Counseling (CFC). The CFC provides specialized training for counseling students and counseling professionals interested in learning how to apply evidence-based systemic theory, assessment, and intervention to their work with individuals, couples, and families. Licensed mental health professionals in Illinois may be eligible to transfer up to 9 credit-hours.  Students who complete the CFC program are eligible to accrue hours of supervised clinical experience and complete the National Marriage and Family Therapy Exam as a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) in the State of Illinois. Additional information regarding licensure as an LMFT can be found at the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation.

Application Requirements

For applicants who are not current Counselor Education students, the applicant must have a degree in counseling or a closely-related mental health degree from an accredited university program that meets the academic and clinical requirements for licensure as a master's level mental health professional, and submit the following to Graduate Admissions, Northeastern Illinois University, 5500 N. St. Louis Ave., Chicago, IL 60625:

For applicants who are current Northeastern Illinois University students in Clinical Mental Health, Rehabilitation, or School Counseling, submit to your faculty advisor for siganture:

For additional information regarding the application process for the CFC, or if the links are not working, please contact the Department at (773) 442-5550 or email

Curriculum in the Certificate in Couple and Family Counseling

The courses required to complete the CFC program are listed below. All courses are graduate courses.  

Core Courses:

  • COUN 420 Introduction to Family Counseling (3 cr)
  • COUN 421 Advanced Marriage & Family Counseling (3 cr)
  • COUN 431 Couple and Family Systems Study (3 cr)
  • COUN 432 Couples Counseling & Human Sexuality

Elective Courses. Choose any two of the following:

  • COUN 415 Children & Youth in School & Family Systems (3 cr)
  • COUN 425 Addictions Counseling (3 cr)
  • COUN 429 Psychopharmacology (3 cr)
  • COUN 434 Medical & Psychosocial Aspects of Disability (3 cr)
  • COUN 438 Crisis & Trauma Counseling (3 cr)
  • COUN 439 Case Conceptualization & Treatment Planning (3 cr)
  • PSYC 406 Aging & the Family (3 cr)