As our population ages, the need for professionals that have experience in working with elders will rise exponentially. By focusing on the psychological, physical, and social needs of adults over the age of 50, you will become highly skilled in helping patients overcome the life challenges that occur as individuals age. Be prepared to guide, assist, and support adults and their families through rigorous, yet rewarding coursework that places a special emphasis on strength-based, holistic counseling approach. Our MA in Clinical Psychology concentration in Healthy Aging earned AUSB the CAMFT Award for Outstanding School, recognizing the program’s innovative model of education for future professional providers of mental health services to our country’s fastest growing and most underserved population – older adults and their families.
This degree is offered by AU Santa Barbara.
AUSB’s Healthy Aging concentration is unique in its focus on a strength-based, holistic counseling approach that supports resilience in older adults and their families. Students in the Healthy Aging concentration meet all course requirements towards MFT licensure while focusing on the psychological, physical, and social needs of the growing population of older adults and their families.
This concentration is a response to the critical need in the counseling field, for professionals to serve the expanding and growing needs of adults over 50 and their families. Students who complete this concentration will be well equipped to meet the growing demand, both nationally and globally, for trained professionals with an expertise in Healthy Aging.
The concentration includes:
- Assessment and counseling skills around the challenges and opportunities of healthy aging from a wellness perspective
- Support and prevention resources for families and caretakers of older individuals
- Emergency and crisis intervention training
- Clinical fieldwork and supervision
- All of the courses required for licensure as a Marriage and Family Therapist in the 95-unit program
- Total Units 96 for Healthy Aging MFT (or 105 units with optional 9th quarter MFT/LPCC).
- This concentration meets the educational requirements for California licensure as a Marriage and Family Therapist with a concentration in counseling with older adults.
- Theories of Psychotherapy in Context
- Human Development and Diversity
- Multicultural Awareness: Self, Culture, and Context
- Crisis, Disaster and Emergency Response*
- Research Methods*
- Clinical Skills I: The Psychotherapeutic Relationship
- Contemporary Theories of Psychotherapy
- Social, Cultural, and Systemic Aspects of Aging
- Theories of Family Systems
- Psychological Assessment: Evaluating Individuals and Systems in Context*
- Clinical Skills II: The Psychotherapeutic Process
- Group Theories*
- Professional Ethics and the Law
- Psychopathology *
- Clinical Skills with Families and Couples
- Practicum: Professional Orientation -w-
- Domestic Violence: Spousal, Elder and Child Abuse
- Healthy Development Throughout the Aging Process
- Practicum I: Clinical Evaluation and Crisis Intervention with Older Adults
- The Process of Group Psychotherapy
- Psychopharmacology for Therapists*
- Clinical Skills with Older Adults
- Practicum II: Treatment Planning and Clinical Interventions with Older Adults and their Families
- Intimate Relationships
- Substance-Related Disorders and Other Addictive Behaviors*
- Loss and Bereavement Through the Life Cycle -w-
- Practicum III: Case Conceptualization with Older Adults and their Families
- Advanced Family Therapy: Special populations -w-
- Psychotherapy with Children and Adolescents
- Community Mental Health
- Substance-Related & Co-Occurring Disorders in the Older Adult*
- Practicum IV: Integrating Clinical Skills with Older Adults and their Families
- Advanced Family Therapy: Evidence-Based Practice*
- Trauma Counseling
- Human Sexuality and Counseling*
Optional Fall Quarter to add LPCC coursework:
- Evaluation Outcome and Research*
- Social and Cultural Factors of Assessment and Evaluation*
- Career Theories and Practice in the System *
- Psychopharmacology for Therapists *
* = online/hybrid or weekend
w = weekend only
The MA in Clinical Psychology program and all concentrations, including Healthy Aging, start in Fall and Winter Quarters.
How to Apply
For the concentration in Health Aging, please see admissions information for the MA in Clinical Psychology.
Caring Together Caregiver Symposium
The MA in Clinical Psychology program partnered with the Santa Barbara Family Service Agency and Alzheimer’s Association to present Caring Together Caregiver Symposium. Below are videos of the Keynote Presentation “Finding Gratitude and Positive Meaning in Family Caregiving” with Barry J. Jacobs, PsyD and Julia L. Mayer, PsyD and a panel discussion with professional representatives of organizations serving caregivers, as well as a Q & A session.
Eligible undergraduate students can fast track their graduate degree, including our MBA, MFA, MA in Clinical Psychology, or PsyD in Clinical Psychology programs, by applying for admission through one of AUSB’s Pathway programs. Those accepted receive grants applied toward BA tuition. Learn more about our BA Pathway programs.