M.A. Program Admissions Frequently Asked Questions
How long does it take to complete the Master's Program?
The Master's Program is designed to be completed in two years. If the practicum hours in the second year are not completed concurrently with coursework, then the program may extend into a third year.
How long are the classes on the weekends?
Each semester unit is the equivalent of 15 hours of class time. Typically, a three unit course takes place over two weekends separated by three or four weeks. Classes are held on Friday night for 4 hours, Saturday for 9.75 hours, and Sunday for 8.75 hours, totaling 22.5 hours per weekend.
How much can I expect to pay for books per year?
You should budget $1300 to $1600 per year for textbooks and readers.
How long is the comprehensive exam?
The comprehensive exam is taken at the end of the second year after completion of all coursework. It is an in-class examination consisting of 150 multiple choice questions that address specific clinical problems, theory, multi-cultural issues, a general knowledge of counseling psychology, and other areas covered through coursework. A score of 75% is required for passing.
How many practicum hours do I need to complete in order to graduate?
In order to graduate, you need to accrue a minimum of 500 hours of supervised clinical experience. The maximum number of hours you can accrue as a student "trainee," and apply toward licensure, is 1300 hours. A total of 3000 supervised hours is required for MFT licensure. Once you graduate, you are an MFT intern and you will continue to accrue the remainder of the 3000 hours through an internship.
Where can I get more information about MFT licensure?
For additional information, refer to the Board of Behavioral Sciences' website at www.bbs.ca.gov.
How much will my total tuition per semester be?
Total tuition cost per semester varies based on the number of classes you take. You should expect to pay $850 per unit.
Do you have financial aid, scholarships, or grants?
The Wright offers financial aid in the form of Federal Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Loans and Federal Perkins Loans. Students may borrow up to approximately $20,500 per school year. Please contact the Financial Aid Office at (510) 841-9230 ext. 137 or email: email@example.com. Please also visit www.fafsa.ed.gov for additional information.
Are there any discounts/options for student work for reduced tuition?
Not at this time.
What is the need in California for MFTs?
To have a clearer understanding of job availability for MFTs in California, you may want to look at popular job posting sites. For example, on Craigslist (www.craigslist.org) search under jobs for counselor, MFTI, MFT, or therapist. Professional Organizations like CAMFT (www.camft.org) also post internship and job openings on their website and in their monthly magazine.
What can I expect for an average salary upon completion?
The Wright cannot attempt to disclose set figures for income. Salary varies by the institution, clients, and hours of work a clinician provides within the year. You may want to check job postings for MFTs to get an idea of the salary range. Upon completion of the Master's program, you should be able to assume clinical responsibilities at an entry level under the supervision of a licensed mental health professional.
Do you have job placement services?
We do not offer job placement services. However, the Master's Field Placement Office does maintain a list of current Master's level job postings.
What happens if I cannot/do not complete the program? Is there a time frame for course completion? Can I put financial aid on hold?
You are able to defer your classes for up to one year. However, financial aid assistance requires that you have no more than six months without continuous study before you will begin to incur your payments. For detailed information on missing class hours and/or refunds, please refer to the Student Handbook.
How is coursework evaluated? How are the practicum hours tracked?
Students receive a letter grade and an evaluation of professional conduct for each course. Practicum hours are tracked by the student and the agency and reported to the Wright Institute. Students receive credit or no credit for practicum based on the number of hours completed and the supervisor's formal evaluation of the student's progress.
Where do I do my practicum?
Available sites include, but are not limited to, state, county, and community mental health facilities, outpatient clinics, psychiatric hospitals, schools, residential treatment programs, day treatment facilities, chemical dependency treatment programs, rehabilitation programs, and forensic programs. Practicum sites are available throughout the Bay Area and other regions of California. Sites vary by the populations they serve as well as the treatment modality and clinical specialty implemented by the site.
Do I have to work with families or children?
Yes, the BBS requires that each licensee attain "not less than 500 total hours of experience in diagnosing and treating couples, families, and children."
Can I use my job for my practicum?
No, unless the Wright Institute approves the site and there is a demonstrated need. (Please see the Field Placement Handbook section on guidelines for approval of sites.)
Can I collect practicum hours in a private practice?
No, a "trainee" (pre-MA degree) may not earn hours in a private practice setting.
Should I seek my own counseling?
Yes, we strongly encourage it and so does the BBS. You may apply up to 100 hours of personal psychotherapy received by you (triple counted for a maximum total of 300 hours) toward the 3000 hours of supervised professional experience required for licensure as an MFT. For a referral to a therapist, please contact your advisor, Dr. Godfredsen, or Dr. Esherick.