Licensure & Supervision FAQ
Many pre-licensed and licensed professionals have questions about licensure, and supervision is a big part of this process. Below, we’ve tried to answer some of the most commonly asked questions on these topics.
Q: Can you apply for licensure without a site or supervisor?
A: You can apply for associate licensure without a site or supervisor. You will need to add a note that says you looking for employment and/or a supervisor. Applying for licensure early will enable you to take the exam closer to graduation than if you wait. Keep in mind that once you are granted an associate license you have a total of 5 years to complete all necessary hours for full licensure.
Q: I am accruing hours in another state. Can I still apply for licensure in GA?
A: Yes. As long as your site placement and supervision meet the requirements under GA law, your hours will still count toward licensure.
Q: When can I start accruing my hours for licensure?
A: You can start accruing hours the date your degree is awarded. It is important to remember, however, that all site placements and supervisors must be approved by the Composite Board. This means, if your internship turns into employment and you start accruing hours, you run the risk of the site or supervisor not being approved and those hours not counting. So, if you’re going to start accruing hours before you get approved, just do it eyes open!
Q: I was told that I don’t meet the requirements for associate licensure, but I may meet them for full licensure. How does that work?
A: The Georgia Composite Board outlines a different track to obtain MFT licensure for those who have a master’s degree, but do not hold an active AMFT license. In order to determine if you meet the criteria for this track see (b) 1, 2, 3, and 4. http://rules.sos.ga.gov/GAC/135-5-.06?urlRedirected=yes&data=admin&lookingfor=135-5-.06
Q: I submitted my application for associate licensure but was rejected due to educational requirements. I was not told what courses I need to take or anything. What do I do?
A: Make sure that the courses you took match the description of requirements in the GA rule: “Program Equivalent to a Marriage and Family Therapy Degree Program means an organized course of study at an accredited educational institution consisting of a master’s degree and additional post-master’s degree coursework which includes three courses in marriage and family studies; three courses in marriage and family therapy; three courses in human development, one of which must be a course in either psychopathology or the diagnosis of mental problems and conditions; one course in marriage and family therapy ethics; and one course in research.” We recommend that you closely review your transcript and/or contact your program of study and ask them to help you match up the courses you took with the requirements above. If you are lacking a course or a proper description, you may need to take a course to satisfy the board rule.
Q: Can I have multiple sites to complete my hours for licensure?
A: Yes, you can have multiple sites. Documentation for each site, director, and supervisor must be on file with the Composite Board.
Q: I have no idea how to contact my former supervisors and/or directors? Is there any way around getting their signatures?
A: You should contact your program and ask them what documents they have on file. Many programs keep documentation for situations like this. If Forms A & B can not be completed, you must submit Form C to the Board as part of your application.
Q: I’m trying to determine if my job meets the requirements for obtaining my hours. What is “direct clinical experience?”
A: According to the Board Rules, “Direct Clinical Experience means time spent in client contact as therapist or co-therapist, in supervision, in case staffing, or in case consultation.”
Q: I am licensed in another state but I would like to get licensed in GA. How do I get licensed in GA?
A: Georgia has no reciprocity with any other state. Everyone wanting to obtain an MFT license in GA must fill out an application. For clinicians licensed in California, be aware that GA only accepts scores National MFT Exam. If you only took the CA MFT exam you will need the approval to take the AMFTRB and receive passing scores.
Q: My COMAFTE accredited program reduced the required number of clinical hours and supervision hours I need to receive my degree. Does that still meet the requirements to get my associate license?
A: No. As of 2021 Georgia still requires 500 contact hours and 100 supervision hours of practicum to meet standards for associate licensure in GA.
Q: I am currently enrolled in an online, COAMFTE accredited MFT program. The agency where I am doing my practicum/internship does not currently have any MFTs on staff. Can I receive practicum/internship supervision from an LPC or LCSW and still apply for the Associate MFT license when I graduate?
A: If you are planning to apply for an Associate MFT license, your 100 hours of practicum/internship supervision must be provided by an AAMFT Approved Supervisor. If an AAMFT Approved Supervisor is not available to you at the practicum/internship site, you will need to contract for off-site supervision by an Approved Supervisor even though the agency may require that you also receive supervision from a staff member for accreditation or certification purposes. Board Rule 135-5-.05 (2) (b) 1 & 2.
Q: How many hours of supervision do I need?
A: For MFT licensure in Georgia you need 200 hours of supervision, 100 of which need to come from an AAMFT approved supervisor. If you graduated from a COAMFTE accredited school, those 100 AAMFT hours will be met by your program, and post-graduation, you’ll need to get 100 more supervision hours. Of course, we recommend you use AAMFT-approved supervisors for as much of your supervision as possible, however up to 100 hours of supervision may be provided by another professionally qualified supervisor that has been approved by the Composite Board.
Q: Who can supervise me?
A: The Composite Board has final approval over professionals that can supervise you. If you contract with an AAMFT or CPCS supervisor, the Board typically recognizes their advanced training in supervision and approves them based on their credentials. Any supervisor must be approved by the Composite Board for your hours to be counted toward licensure.
Q: How does the GA Composite Board define a “Board Approved Supervisor?”
A: The GA Composite Board defines a Board Approved Supervisor as a “person who is licensed as a marriage and family therapist and who has been approved by the GA Composite Board…to provide supervision of the practice of marriage and family therapy. To obtain such approval, the person must submit documentation of the following: five years of full-time post-licensure experience; 180 hours of experience providing marriage and family therapy supervision for at least two supervisees during a period of no less than two years and no more than five years; 36 hours of supervision received from an AAMFT Approved Supervisor or a GA Board Approved MFT Supervisor specifically in the skill of providing marriage and family therapy supervision, a minimum of 24 hours of which shall have been individual supervision-of-supervision and a recommendation from each of the supervisors who provided supervision-of-supervision attesting to the applicant’s competence as a supervisor. In addition, the Board may, at its discretion, accept a supervisor who is licensed as a Marriage and Family Therapist in another jurisdiction and who has been designated as an Approved MFT Supervisor by the Board that licenses Marriage and Family Therapists in that jurisdiction.” Board Rules 135-5-.05 (1) (a) and 135-5-.06 (1) (c). An AAMFT Approved Supervisor is an example of someone who meets the above definition.
Q: How do I know if a supervisor is a good fit for me?
A: We recommend looking for a supervisor that will help you with areas of growth that you have identified. You may seek out a supervisor with a specific modality specialty or someone who works with a population you are interested in. You can ask about their preferred structure of supervision sessions, their cost, whether or not they assign work outside of your supervision hour, etc. For more tips and information on how to find a supervisor, click here.
Q: Where can I find a supervisor?
A: The quickest way to locate an AAMFT-approved supervisor is on the AAMFT.org website. You can filter by states and/or zip codes to help narrow your search. There is also Motivo, a virtual supervision service that helps connect licensees to supervisees based on stated criteria. You may also find a job that provides you with on-site supervision as part of your employment. It is important that any supervision you receive meets the requirements set forth by GA Law. http://rules.sos.ga.gov/GAC/135-5-.05
Q: How much does supervision cost?
A: There is no specific answer for this. Some applicants are able to get supervision included with their jobs, which does not cost any out-of-pocket expense. Some applicants need to hire a supervisor to meet the requirements for their application. Supervisors can charge their traditional hourly rate or have a different rate structure for supervision, which may differ for groups and individuals.
Q: What is the process for changing supervisors and/or my employment site?
A: You will need to submit new forms to the Composite Board for the supervisor and/or job site, which are pages 14-17 of the associate application. Only the Composite Board can approve a new site and/or supervisor. Changes to your application must be received by that Board within 30 days of said change.