Become a marriage and family therapist

General information

Please review the information below to determine your eligibility before completing your application for admission.

Consult this page to find the establishments offering training granting access to the marriage and family therapist permit.

A profession with title and activities reserved by law

Only those with a marriage and family therapist permit issued by the Order who are registered on the membership roll of the Order can use this professional title and exercise the professional activities reserved, and shared with some other professions, by the Professional Code.

The profession’s scope of practice is defined by the Code as follows:

Assess the relationship dynamics of couples and families, determine a treatment and intervention plan, and restore and improve a couple’s or a family’s lines of communication with a view to fostering better relations between spouses or family members in interaction with their environment.

A form of psychotherapy

Marriage and family therapy is a form of psychotherapy, as the core of its practice consists in dispensing a psychological treatment in order to bring about significant changes in the dynamics or relationship structure of a couple or a family. Québec legislation modernized the professional system in 2012, defining psychotherapy and its practice. (s.187.1 ff of the Professional Code).

The marriage and family therapist must therefore hold a psychotherapist permit issued by the Ordre des psychologues du Québec to practice marriage and family therapy in Québec. Until obtaining this permit, the marriage and family therapist can practice conjugal and family interventions as long as this complies with the Regulation respecting the psychotherapist’s permit, as this type of intervention does not constitute psychotherapy. Consult the web site of the Ordre des psychologues du Québec or contact this order for any information regarding the psychotherapist permit.

Eligibility

Eligibility for the marriage and family therapist permit is laid out in section 26 of the Order in Council respecting the integration of marital and family therapists into the Ordre professionnel des travailleurs sociaux du Québec.

For applicants trained in Québec

1. You must hold a Master’s degree from a Quebec university

You must have taken 135 hours or 9 credits of theoretical training during your Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in:

  • Human development
  • Theoretical models of personality and behaviour
  • Intervention models or methods

The applicant must hold a Master’s degree in the field of mental health or human relations to be eligible for a psychotherapist’s permit, issued by the Ordre des psychologues du Québec, in accordance with the Regulation respecting the psychotherapist’s permit (please consult the site of the Ordre des psychologues du Québec).

 

2. You must have additional training after your Master’s degree

You must have completed, after obtaining a Master’s degree:

Theoretical training in family and couple studies, in marriage and family therapy, in human development and in couple and family ethics of at least 360 hours or 24 credits, completed with an organization in the marriage and family therapy field, each credit representing 45 hours of attendance in class and personal work.

The 360 hours or 24 credits are broken down as follows:

  • 90 hours or 6 credits in family and couple studies;
  • 135 hours or 9 credits in marriage and family therapy;
  • 90 hours or 6 credits in human development; and
  • 45 hours or 3 credits in couple and family ethics;
  • At least 500 hours of practical training in marriage and family therapy, under the supervision of a person meeting the requirements for admission as a clinical member and certified supervisor to the Association des psychothérapeutes conjugaux et familiaux du Québec or the Quebec Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.
  • 100 hours of supervision with the supervisor performed during the practical training. Based on a pro-rated calculation, group supervision hours can be recognized if there are no more than 4 persons in the supervised group.

Graduates of the M.Sc. (A) in Couple and Family Therapy from McGill University are eligible for the marriage and family therapy permit  as well as the psychotherapist permit issued by the Ordre des psychologues du Québec.

For applicants trained elsewhere in Canada and the United States

  • You must hold a Master’s degree in marriage and family therapy or
  • A Master’s degree in mental health or human relations followed by training in marriage and family therapy.

As with students trained in Québec, your application is evaluated in accordance with the eligibility criteria of the Order-in-Council. You must have taken 135 hours or 9 credits of theoretical training during your Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in:

  • Human development
  • Theoretical models of personality and behaviour
  • Intervention models or methods

You must also have completed, after obtaining your Master’s degree, or, in the course of your Master’s degree in marriage and family therapy:

Theoretical training in family and couple studies, in marriage and family therapy, in human development and in couple and family ethics of at least 360 hours or 24 credits, completed with an organization in the marriage and family therapy field, each credit representing 45 hours of attendance in class and personal work.

The 360 hours or 24 credits are broken down as follows:

  • 90 hours or 6 credits in family and couple studies;
  • 135 hours or 9 credits in marriage and family therapy;
  • 90 hours or 6 credits in human development; and
  • 45 hours or 3 credits in couple and family ethics;
  • At least 500 hours of practical training in marriage and family therapy, under the supervision of a person meeting the requirements for admission as a clinical member and certified supervisor to the Association des psychothérapeutes conjugaux et familiaux du Québec or the Quebec Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.
  • 100 hours of supervision with the supervisor performed during the practical training. Based on a pro-rated calculation, group supervision hours can be recognized if there are no more than 4 persons in the supervised group.

For applicants trained outside Canada and the United States

You must attach the comparative evaluation issued by the Ministry of Immigration, Francization and Integration (MIFI). This evaluation allows you to situate the level of your studies outside Québec within the Québec educational framework. Only education or training judged equivalent to Master’s level university studies is sufficient to generate an analysis of your application for purposes of recognition by equivalence.

We suggest that you take this step as quickly as possible, given the time required by MIFI. Please note that this procedure can be undertaken directly from abroad.

You can submit an application, accompanied by an up-to-date curriculum vitae, to Johanne Malo to obtain a letter requesting priority processing of your file at MIFI, with a view to obtaining the comparative evaluation of your studies.

To obtain more information about MIFI, you can consult their website at www.micc.gouv.qc.ca . You can also contact the Ministry at 514 864-9191 for the Montréal region, and elsewhere in Québec, toll-free at 1 877 864-9191.

As with students trained in Québec, your application is evaluated in accordance with the eligibility criteria of the Order-in-Council. You must have taken 135 hours or 9 credits of theoretical training during your Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in:

  • Human development
  • Theoretical models of personality and behaviour
  • Intervention models or methods

You must also have completed, after obtaining your Master’s degree, or, in the course of your Master’s degree in marriage and family therapy:

Theoretical training in family and couple studies, in marriage and family therapy, in human development and in couple and family ethics of at least 360 hours or 24 credits, completed with an organization in the marriage and family therapy field, each credit representing 45 hours of attendance in class and personal work.

The 360 hours or 24 credits are broken down as follows:

  • 90 hours or 6 credits in family and couple studies;
  • 135 hours or 9 credits in marriage and family therapy;
  • 90 hours or 6 credits in human development; and
  • 45 hours or 3 credits in couple and family ethics;
  • At least 500 hours of practical training in marriage and family therapy, under the supervision of a person meeting the requirements for admission as a clinical member and certified supervisor to the Association des psychothérapeutes conjugaux et familiaux du Québec or the Quebec Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.
  • 100 hours of supervision with the supervisor performed during the practical training. Based on a pro-rated calculation, group supervision hours can be recognized if there are no more than 4 persons in the supervised group.

Changes to come

The Order has submitted a draft Regulation on standards of equivalence for the issuance of marriage and family therapist permits of the Order to the Office des professions du Québec. Upon adoption of this regulation, the eligibility requirements of the Order-in-Council will be replaced by those of the new regulation.

These standards of equivalence are based on the Master’s program of McGill University in Couple and Family Therapy which permits access to the marriage and family therapist permit since 2015. Accordingly, this degree issued by McGill University will be added to the Regulation respecting the diplomas issued by educational establishments that grant access to permits and specialist certificates of professional orders.

Documents to attach

The following documents must be attached to your application for admission:

1. Membership Application / Registration on the membership roll of the Order as marriage and family therapist

Application for admission | Form 2019 – 2020
You must complete the Membership Application /Registration on the Roll of the Order as Marriage and Family Therapist  (PDF, 507 Ko) .
For assistance, consult the Guide for your OTSTCFQ Application for Admission or Reregistration  (PDF, 1,06 Mo).

2. Official transcripts

Attach to your application the official transcripts from Bachelor’s and Master’s programs considered relevant to satisfy the required qualifications (original documents).

3. Copies of your degrees or diplomas

Attach to your application a copy of the degree or certificate for your training in marriage and family therapy and a copy of your Master’s degree, if appropriate.

4. Detailed course description

Attach a detailed description of the content of each university courses in the Bachelor’s and Master’s programs as found in the catalogue of the university published in the year you trained.

5. Official attestations

Attach to your application official attestations (originals) of the marriage and family therapy training institution, confirming:

  • The number of hours of direct contact with clients undertaken as part of the marriage and family therapy training (practical training)
  • The number of hours of supervision received as part of the practical training in marriage and family therapy specifying, for each of the supervisors, their name and qualifications, their professional order (or orders) and/or professional associations. A curriculum vitae could also be required.

6. Curriculum vitae

Attach a copy of your curriculum vitae to the application.

 

7. Appendix C (if you have been declared guilty by a court of a criminal offence or by a disciplinary body of another order in Québec or elsewhere

You are obliged to inform the Order of such a decision.

To do so:

Send us your documents by mail or by email  to the following address:

Secretary of the Order
Ordre des travailleurs sociaux
et des thérapeutes conjugaux et familiaux du Québec

255 Crémazie Blvd. East, Suite 800
Montréal, Québec H2M 1L5

jfsavoie@otstcfq.org

Applications of persons declared guilty of a criminal or disciplinary offence are reviewed by the Admissions and Equivalence Committee, whose recommendations are transmitted to the Executive Committee of the Order.

This may take up to 12 weeks.

 

8. Office québécois de la langue française Form (if applicable)

Please consult the linguistic requirements  to determine if you must complete the Formulaire de l’Office québécois de la langue française with the view to taking a French exam.

Fees payable

The fees payable will vary according to your situation at the time you apply .

These fees are not refundable.

Professional liability insurance

You are required to have professional liability insurance if you practice the profession (whether full time, part time or occasionally). See our page on professional liability insurance  to find out more.

If you are in independent practice or not covered by professional liability insurance by your employer, you are obliged to purchase the Order’s professional liability insurance.  You may request an exemption by completing Appendix B.

And then?

Send your documents by mail or drop them off in person at:

Service des admissions
Ordre des travailleurs sociaux
et des thérapeutes conjugaux et familiaux du Québec

255 Crémazie Blvd. East, Suite 800
Montréal, Québec H2M 1L5

IMPORTANT
Applications received by email or fax will not be processed.

Time for processing an application for admission

You should expect to wait from 3 to 4 months for your permit and registration on the membership roll of the Order from the time your file is considered complete.

Retention time for incomplete applications

An incomplete file is destroyed one year from the date you were informed that your application was incomplete.

You will have to initiate a new admission procedure, including the payment of fees for opening your file and, if applicable, the review of your file.

If you have any questions, please contact:

Johanne Malo, Executive Assistant
Admissions Service
Telephone: 514 731-3925, ext. 240
Toll-free: 1 888-731-9420, ext. 240
jmalo@otstcfq.org

Partager