naMFT6105 Couples and Sex Therapy
(3 credits)
Syllabus Effective Date: 7/1/2012

Course Description:
This course will address several models of couples and sex therapy. Within each model there will be a focus on assessment of couples’ dynamics, goal setting, and potential interventions. Specific attention will be given to the development of a personal theory of working with couples based on a foundation of existing models. This course is designed to address the program's second Student Learning Outcomes (SLO) which states, "Students will apply family systems oriented clinical skills across a variety of contexts (SLO-2)."

Number Of Activities: 10

Learning Outcomes:
1.  Assess personal values and ideas pertaining to couples therapy and sex therapy.
2.  Demonstrate an understanding of the therapeutic use of information related to human sexuality and gender identity through reading, exploration of values, and the use of therapeutic tools.
3.  Critique the theoretical foundations, process, and effectiveness of models utilized to provide couple therapy.
4.  Create detailed case studies using the approaches discussed in the course, incorporating treatment planning, specific interventions strategies, and integration of case information.
5.  Develop a synthesized personal approach to assessment, treatment planning, intervention, and effective outcomes in couple therapy and sex therapy based on existing models, published research, and personal fit.
6.  Develop cultural competency in the provision of couples therapy and sex therapy.

Course Concepts:
1. Assessment of Personal Beliefs Pertaining to Couples and Sex Therapy
2. Assessing Commitment
3. Individual and Conjoint Work with Couples
4. Models of Couple and Sex Therapy
5. Differentiation and Sexuality
6. Therapeutic Alliance with Couples
7. Enactments Process
8. Research about Couples Therapy
9. Brief Sex Therapy
10. Human Sexuality
11. Cultural Competency in Couples and Sex Therapy

Primary Resources:
These resources are required to complete the course.

Please make sure that you purchase the primary textbook(s) that match the syllabus you are issued. Please let your assigned Mentor know through the Northcentral University messaging system what text(s) you have purchased. Northcentral cannot be responsible for Learner purchase of books that do not match assigned syllabi.

Book
Jacobson, N. S. & Christensen, A.   (1998).  Acceptance and Change in Couple Therapy: A Therapist’s Guide to Transforming Relationships  Norton   ISBN: 0393702901  
Book
Johnson, S. M.   (2004).  The Practice of Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy: Creating Connection  Brunner-Routledge   ISBN: 0415945682  
Book
Schnarch, D   (1998).  Passionate Marriage: Keeping Love & Intimacy Alive in Committed Relationships  W.W. Norton.   ISBN: 0805058265  
Book
Schnarch, D.   (2009).  Intimacy & desire: Awaken the passion in your relationship.  ISBN: 9780825306297  

You may purchase books at www.ncubooks.com.


Additional Resources:
These resources must be used to complete the assignments.

Document/Other
McCarthy, B., Ginsberg, R., & Cintron, J.   (2006).  The fatally flawed marriage: Sometimes it's wiser to help couples part.  Psychotherapy Networker,   30  (2),  http://search.proquest.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/docview/233324748?accountid=28180  
Document/Other
Bograd, M., & Mederos, F.   (1999).  Battering and couples therapy: Universal screening and selection of treatment modality.   Journal of Marital and Family Therapy,   25  (3),  291-312.   http://search.proquest.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/docview/220966693?accountid=28180  
Document/Other
Doherty, W.   (2006).  Couples on the brink: Stopping the marriage-go-round.  Psychotherapy Networker,   30  (2),  http://search.proquest.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/docview/233324955?accountid=28180  
Document/Other
Lebow, J.   (2006).  Research to practice, the marriage-preservation debate: Reexamining the research on divorce.  Psychotherapy Networker,   30  (2),  http://search.proquest.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/docview/233324326?accountid=28180  
Document/Other
Almeida, R.   (2000).  Getting unstuck: Probing beyond the bruises—It's wise to challenge your assumptions about domestic violence.  Family Therapy Networker,   24  (3),  http://search.proquest.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/docview/233310420?accountid=28180  
Document/Other
Ziegler, P., & Hiller, T.   (2002).  Case studies: Good story/bad story—Collaborating with violent couples.  Psychotherapy Networker,   26  (2),  http://search.proquest.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/docview/233310656?accountid=28180  
Document/Other
Links, P. S., & Stockwell, M.   (2001).  Is couple therapy indicated for borderline personality disorder?  American Journal of Psychotherapy,   55  (4),  491-506.   http://search.proquest.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/docview/213142633?accountid=28180  
Document/Other
DSM-IV-TR - Personality Disorders in DSM  PsychiatryOnline   http://dsm.psychiatryonline.org.proxy1.ncu.edu/content.aspx?bookid=22§ionid=1892638  
Document/Other
DSM-IV-TR - Sexual Dysfunctions  PsychiatryOnline   http://dsm.psychiatryonline.org.proxy1.ncu.edu/content.aspx?bookid=22§ionid=1891601#9863  
Document/Other
DSM-IV-TR - Sexual and Gender Identity Disorders  PsychiatryOnline   http://dsm.psychiatryonline.org.proxy1.ncu.edu/content.aspx?bookid=22§ionid=1891601  
Document/Other
Lebow, J.   (2002).  From research to practice: Learning to love assessment: Today's research tools can help you be a better therapist.  Psychotherapy Networker,   26  (5),  http://search.proquest.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/docview/233310944?accountid=28180  
Document/Other
Links, P. S., & Stockwell, M.   (2002).  The role of couple therapy in the treatment of narcissistic personality disorder.  American Journal of Psychotherapy,   56  (4),  522-538.   http://search.proquest.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/docview/213139636?accountid=28180  
Document/Other
Bowman, L. & Fine, M.   (2000).  Client perceptions of couples therapy: Helpful and unhelpful aspects.  The American Journal of Family Therapy,   28  (4),  295-310.   http://www.tandfonline.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/doi/abs/10.1080/019261800437874  
Document/Other
Johnson, S., & Lebow, J.   (2000).  The "coming of age" of couple therapy: A decade review.  Journal of Marital and Family Therapy,   26  (1),  23-38.   http://search.proquest.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/docview/220976996?accountid=28180  
Document/Other
Carol & Michael vignette 
Carol and Michael.rtf
Document/Other
Jim & Rose vignette 
Jim and Rose.rtf
Document/Other
Garfield, R.   (2004).  The therapeutic alliance in couples therapy: Clinical considerations.  Family Process,   43  (4),  457-465.   http://search.proquest.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/docview/218870907?accountid=28180  
Document/Other
Nicole & Steve vignette 
Nicole and Steve.rtf
Document/Other
Butler, M. H., & Gardner, B. C.   (2003).  Adapting enactments to couple reactivity: Five development stages.  Journal of Marital and Family Therapy,   29  (3),  311-327.   http://search.proquest.com.proxy1.ncu.edu/docview/220970172?accountid=28180  
Document/Other
Elliott, D.B & Simmons, T.   (2011).  Marital Events of Americans: 2009 (ACS-13)  U.S. Census Bureau, U.S. Department of Commerce.  
2009 Census Data on Marriage.pdf
Document/Other
Activity 10 Grading Rubric 
MFT6105 Activity 10 Theory of Couple Therapy - Grading Rubric_distributed.pdf
General Information:

Credit Hours:

With the faculty-mentored approach at Northcentral University, credit hours are amassed in a course through student-to-faculty interaction, contact with course-specific content, assignments, and other asynchronous activities. At Northcentral, students can expect to devote between 135-144 hours for each 3-credit course.

Course Participation:

Federal Financial Aid regulations, which Northcentral observes for all students, require that students regularly participate in courses in which they are enrolled. All students must log into the course room at least once per week in order to avoid being noted as a non-participant. Students must use the Northcentral messaging system on the course web site to contact faculty. Should you be unable to participate in your course, you must contact your Academic Advisor who can advise you on the consequences of withdrawing from your course.

Preliminaries/Pre-Course Survey:

Students should review the Student web site and Course Catalog, which contains all relevant policies and procedures. Students should also complete the Pre-Course Survey. The survey goes directly to the faculty and gives the faculty information about new students entering the course.

Assignment Submissions:

The assignment header should include the student's last name, first initial, course code, dash, and assignment number (DoeJXXX0000-1) justified to the left and the page number justified to the right. Faculty may request students to submit an assignment cover sheet, located under University Documents on the Students site. Assignments that do not include cover sheets should have an APA style title page.

The file submittal format consists of the student's last name, first initial, course code, dash, and assignment number (no spaces between characters): DoeJXXX0000-1. Files may be submitted in Word or in the program with which the file was created. Faculty may request resubmission of an assignment using a different file format or program if they cannot access a submitted assignment. In the event that the student is unable to submit the assignment to the professor on the date due through any of the above referenced methods because of computer problems, the student is required to email the assignment to the faculty on or before the assignment due date. In such cases, the student should also communicate with the professor to inform of the assignment transmission.

Northcentral University has adopted the 6th edition of the APA Publication Manual as the style guide for all coursework. Students are expected to follow the APA manual when completing assignments, unless instructed otherwise.  Although the APA manual does not apply to syllabi, NCU attempts to adhere to the manual in its syllabi within technical limitations.

Faculty have the discretion to allow and request resubmission of any assignment, with these stipulations: Comprehensive Exam courses are excluded; graded assignments with objectively correct answers (e.g., statistics assignments) may not be resubmitted; the bulk loading policy may not be violated; the policy that assignments may not be submitted after a course end date may not be violated. Students may decline to resubmit assignments. Faculty cannot request resubmissions in cases of suspected academic integrity violations.


Schedule for Course Completion:

Students may submit assignments early, but the required due date must be met. Faculty will not accept bulk assignments except as explained below under “Submittal Turn-Around Schedule”.  Submitting assignments in the order assigned and reviewing faculty feedback before completing the next assignment  ensures progression according to academic standards and follows the design of the course.

Submittal Turn-Around Schedule:

Faculty have 4 days from the assignment due date to grade and return assignments. If an assignment is submitted early, the faculty may return it prior to the required return date, but they have until 4 days from the assignment due date to return feedback. If an assignment is submitted late, faculty have 4 days from the date of submission to grade and return the assignment. If, for whatever reason, the faculty does not return the assignment within 4 days, the student can submit their next assignment to maintain his/or her assignment due date requirement. Other than these circumstances, students are not allowed to bulk upload assignments. Some courses may have exceptions. Please carefully read all course syllabi. 

 

Note: Turn-around time for courses in the dissertation sequence, excluding CMP courses, range up to 21 calendar days.

Activity Submission Schedule:

 

The Academic Week at Northcentral University begins on Monday and ends the following Sunday night at 11:59:59 pm Arizona time. The assignment due dates for 12 week courses are mandatory.

 

Northcentral University has designed programs and courses around best practices in adult and online learning theory. Students will gain maximum benefit from courses when they are participating fully in each week's activities and assignments according to the course schedule. The University's late policy supports effective time management skills for maximum classroom success.

 

Course Assignments:

 

Each activity is due at the end of an academic week, no later than Sunday at 11:59:59 pm AZ time. For instance, an activity might be scheduled across a two-week period to be completed during the second and third week of the course.  This activity must be completed during that period and must be submitted no later than Sunday evening at 11:59:59 pm AZ time of the third week. Assignments submitted after the original deadline will be considered late, and graded according to the faculty's discretion. Papers submitted 7 or more days beyond the original due date will not be accepted. For example, if an assignment is due on Sunday at or before 11:59:59 pm AZ time, that same assignment will not be accepted if received any time on the following Sunday. No assignments will be accepted after the last day of class.

 

Academic Integrity:

 

Academic integrity includes the commitment to the values of honesty, trust, fairness, respect, and responsibility. Appropriate credit of others for the scientific work and ideas applies to all forms of scholarship, not just publications. The submission of another person’s work represented as that of the student’s without properly citing the source of the work will be considered plagiarism and will result in an unsatisfactory grade for the work submitted or for the entire course, and may result in academic dismissal. Assignments will be submitted by the faculty member to TurnItIn.com for originality evaluation.

 

Self-plagiarism is the act of presenting one’s previously used work as an original work. Self-plagiarism is inconsistent with honesty and truthfulness in scholarship. Northcentral University faculty and students should discuss the expectations of each activity at the beginning of the class. There should be a clear understanding between the faculty member and student regarding the use of prior work in the class. The faculty member must indicate if the student’s response must be an original work or if the student may use prior work in their response to a new activity. For further information on self-plagiarism, review this guide noted in the NCU Writing Center on the subject.

  

Course Learning Assessment/Course Grade:

Students are expected to complete all performance requirements for the course and to demonstrate mastery of the course concepts and course learning outcomes. This may require students to use library resources and to document research with citations, bibliographies, and references as applicable in completing their coursework. Mastery of course concepts may require demonstration of critical thinking and communication skills by a combination of term papers, self-assessments, quantitative reasoning, interviews, observations, written assignments, or other activities.

Mastery of course concepts as demonstrated by successfully completing the performance requirements will determine the grade for this course. Students must follow directions and assignment requirements in the syllabus.

Grading Scale:

The following chart shows the percentages of points awarded to the letter grade for Undergraduate and Graduate grades.

Undergraduate Scoring

 

Graduate Scoring

 

Numerical Points

Letter Grade

Numerical Points

Letter Grade

100-94

A

100-94

A

93-90

A-

93-90

A-

89-87

B+

89-87

B+

86-83

B

86-83

B

82-80

B-

82-80

B-

79-77

C+

79-77

C+

76-73

C

76-73

C

72-70

C-

72-0

F

69-67

D+

 

 

66-63

D

 

 

62-0

F

 

 

 

Northcentral Grading Rubric:

The grading of each assignment is based on the percentages in the Northcentral Grading Rubric: 70% content and 30% presentation. The percentage is calculated by dividing the actual points earned by the total number of points possible for an activity, with the resulting percentage determining the letter grade for the activity or course. View the Northcentral Grading Rubric

Exceptions to the Rubric:

Certain courses/activities do not warrant a written product. Examples include math courses involving solving equations or courses that contain multiple choice exams. In these cases, the writing portion of the rubric does not apply. Scoring for these courses will be based on how many items were answered correctly out of the total number of items possible.

 

Course Overview

Section 1: Evaluation in Couple Therapy
Activity 1:   Evaluation in Couple Therapy   (7 Points)
Section 2: Integrative Couple Therapy
Activity 2:   Integrative Couple Therapy   (7 Points)
Activity 3:   Assignment - ICT Case Study   (12 Points)
Section 3: Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy
Activity 4:   Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy   (7 Points)
Activity 5:   Assignment - EFT Case Study   (12 Points)
Section 4: Relationship Focused Sex Therapy
Activity 6:   Relationship Focused Sex Therapy: Passionate Marriage   (7 Points)
Activity 7:   Relationship Focused Sex Therapy: Intimacy and Desire   (7 Points)
Activity 8:   Assignment - Schnarch Case Study    (12 Points)
Section 5: Process of Couple Therapy
Activity 9:   Process of Couple Therapy   (7 Points)
Section 6: Signature Assignment
Activity 10:   Final Paper - Theory of Couple Therapy    (22 Points)
Section 1: Evaluation in Couple Therapy

In this section you will explore the process of evaluation in couple therapy. Specifically, you will analyze the benefits and process of evaluation with couples and formulate an approach to assessment in couple therapy including levels of commitment and appropriateness of conjoint work. One difficult decision that MFTs have to face is that of deciding whether or not to see couples conjointly or as individuals. Domestic violence and personality disorders are among the top reasons that some MFTs use for working individually with some couples.

Student Learning Outcomes:
The Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy program at Northcentral University has established a set of Educational Outcomes that include Student Learning Outcomes (SLO), Faculty Outcomes (FO), and Program Outcomes (PO). These outcomes are continually measured to determine the program and faculty effectiveness along with student progress. For a complete list of all Educational Outcomes and how each is measured please see the Program Handbook.

The Signature Assignment (Activity #10) will be used to measure student progress on Student Learning Outcome #2.

1. Students will demonstrate knowledge of family systems oriented models of therapy. (SLO-1).

2. Students will apply family systems oriented clinical skills across a variety of contexts (SLO-2).

3.Students will demonstrate an applied knowledge of the AAMFT Code of Ethics (SLO-3).

4. Students will advance their understanding of systemic dynamics within diverse client populations (SLO-4).

Required Reading:
Specific readings are designated in each Activity below.

Activity 1:   Evaluation in Couple Therapy   (7 Points)
As you begin your readings consider the importance of knowing where couple clients rate themselves in terms of commitment to their relationship. If a couple is struggling with each other but committed to working things out they may take a different approach to therapy than two people that both want out. Essentially, there are 5 types of couples:
Activity Resources:
Jacobson, N. S. & Christensen, A. (1998) Chapter 4.
Johnson, S. M. (2004) Chapter 5.
Almeida, R. (2000).
Bograd, M., & Mederos, F. (1999).
Doherty, W. (2006).
Lebow, J. (2002).
Lebow, J. (2006).
Links, P. S., & Stockwell, M. (2001).
Links, P. S., & Stockwell, M. (2002).
McCarthy, B., Ginsberg, R., & Cintron, J. (2006).
Ziegler, P., & Hiller, T. (2002).

Video (sound will start after 13 seconds):


If you are unfamiliar with diagnostic criteria and treatment considerations for personality disorders, you will also benefit from reading the “Personality Disorders” section of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR) (available in Course Resources).

After completing this activity’s readings and watching the video, write a reflective paper formulating a personal approach to assessment in couple therapy. Include in your paper the following:
Length: 3-5 pages (app. 350 words per page) at least one page per question area.

Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA standards. Be sure to adhere to Northcentral University's Academic Integrity Policy.

Submit your document in the Course Work area below the Activity screen

Learning Outcome: 1
  • Assess personal values and ideas pertaining to couples therapy and sex therapy.

  • Section 2: Integrative Couple Therapy

    Required Reading:
    Specific readings are designated in each Activity below.

    Activity 2:   Integrative Couple Therapy   (7 Points)
    In this section you will explore the Integrative Couple Therapy model (ICT). In this activity you will critique the foundation, process and effectiveness of integrative couple therapy.

    Activity Resources:
    Jacobson, N. S. & Christensen, A. (1998) Chapters 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11.

    After completing this activity’s readings write a reflective paper on integrative couple therapy. Briefly describe integrative couple therapy and address these specific topics:
    Length: 3-5 pages (app. 350 words per page) at least one page per question area.

    Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA standards. Be sure to adhere to Northcentral University's Academic Integrity Policy.

    Submit your document in the Course Work area below the Activity screen

    Learning Outcome: 2
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the therapeutic use of information related to human sexuality and gender identity through reading, exploration of values, and the use of therapeutic tools.

  • Activity 3:   Assignment - ICT Case Study   (12 Points)
    ICT Case Study

    For this assignment, apply what you have learned about Integrative Couple Therapy by writing a case study.  The focus of this case study should be on the case vignette that is available in course Resources titled “Jim and Rose.”  In your paper, describe how you would use ICT in your work with this couple.  Specifically, a) describe the beginning stage of therapy (i.e., How would you start therapy?); b) develop a specific treatment plan using at least three interventions from the ICT model; and c) discuss the treatment outcomes that might you expect based on both the specific case and on the more general information in the text about the research on the effectiveness of this model. 

     

    This case study should be 5-7 double-spaced pages in length and it should include specific information from the assigned readings (i.e., concepts from the ICT model) as well as detailed descriptions of the process and outcome of therapy (i.e., how the model would look if it were used with this specific client system).  The content of this assignment will be evaluated using the following criteria:

     

    Description of the beginning phase of therapy                                               3 points

    Discussion of the treatment plan                                                                  3 points

    Discussion of the effectiveness of ICT with this case (outcomes and research) 3 points

    Concepts from the chapter are well integrated with case information               3 points

                                                    Total Points Possible for Content 12 points

     

    When you are finished, submit your assignment to the Assignments area of the course page. 


    Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA standards. Be sure to adhere to Northcentral University's Academic Integrity Policy.


    Learning Outcome: 5

  • Develop a synthesized personal approach to assessment, treatment planning, intervention, and effective outcomes in couple therapy and sex therapy based on existing models, published research, and personal fit.

  • Section 3: Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy

    Required Reading:
    Specific readings are designated in each Activity below.

    Activity 4:   Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy   (7 Points)
    In this section you will explore the Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy (EFT). In this activity you will critique the foundation, process and effectiveness of EFT.

    Activity Resources:
    Johnson, S. M. (2004) Chapters 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 14.

    After completing this activity’s readings write a reflective paper on emotionally focused couple therapy. Briefly describe EFT and address these specific topics:
    Length: 3-5 pages (app. 350 words per page) at least one page per question area.

    Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA standards. Be sure to adhere to Northcentral University's Academic Integrity Policy.

    Submit your document in the Course Work area below the Activity screen.

    Learning Outcome: 3
  • Critique the theoretical foundations, process, and effectiveness of models utilized to provide couple therapy.

  • Activity 5:   Assignment - EFT Case Study   (12 Points)

    For this assignment, apply what you have learned about Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy by writing a case study.  The focus of this case study should be on the case vignette that is available in course Resources titled “Nicole and Steve.”  In your paper, describe how you would use EFT in your work with this couple.  Specifically, a) describe the beginning stage of therapy (i.e., How would you start therapy?); b) develop a specific treatment plan using at least three interventions from the EFT model; and c) evaluate the effectiveness of this model based on the treatment outcomes that might you expect for this specific case and on the personal fit of the model for your own style and beliefs about therapy. 

     

    This case study should be 5-7 double-spaced pages in length and it should include specific information from the assigned readings (i.e., concepts from the EFT model) as well as detailed descriptions of the process and outcome of therapy (i.e., how the model would look if it were used with this specific client system).  The content of this assignment will be evaluated using the following criteria:

     

    Description of the beginning phase of therapy                                           3 points

    Discussion of the treatment plan                                                              3 points

    Evaluation of the model (case outcomes and personal fit)                          3 points

    Concepts from the chapter are well integrated with case information          3 points

                                                    Total Points Possible for Content 12 points

     

    When you are finished, submit your assignment to the Assignments area of the course page.


    Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA standards. Be sure to adhere to Northcentral University's Academic Integrity Policy.


    Learning Outcome: 6

  • Develop cultural competency in the provision of couples therapy and sex therapy.

  • Section 4: Relationship Focused Sex Therapy

    Required Reading:
    Specific readings are designated in each Activity below.

    Activity 6:   Relationship Focused Sex Therapy: Passionate Marriage   (7 Points)
    In this section you will explore Relationship Focused Sex Therapy. In this activity you will critique the foundation, process and effectiveness of the Passionate Marriage Model.

    Activity Resources:
    Schnarch, D (1998) Chapters 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 12.
    Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR) section on "Sexual Dysfunctions" and "Sexual and Gender Identity Disorders" (available in Course Resources).

    After completing Schnarch, D (1998) write a reflective paper on Schnrach’s Passionate Marriage Model. Briefly describe the Passionate Marriage Model and address these specific topics:
    Length: 3-5 pages (app. 350 words per page) at least one page per question area.

    Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA standards. Be sure to adhere to Northcentral University's Academic Integrity Policy.

    Submit your document in the Course Work area below the Activity screen

    Learning Outcome: 4
  • Create detailed case studies using the approaches discussed in the course, incorporating treatment planning, specific interventions strategies, and integration of case information.

  • Activity 7:   Relationship Focused Sex Therapy: Intimacy and Desire   (7 Points)
    In this section you will explore the aspects of intimacy and desire in adult sexual relationships. In this activity you will build off the foundation and process you learned in the previous activity addressing the Passionate Marriage Model.

    Activity Resources:
    Schnarch, D (2009) Chapters 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7.

    After completing the readings from Schnarch, D (2009) write a reflection paper on the primary concepts in these chapters. Address these specific topics:
    Length: 3-5 pages (app. 350 words per page) at least one page per question area.

    Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA standards. Be sure to adhere to Northcentral University's Academic Integrity Policy.

    Submit your document in the Course Work area below the Activity screen.

    Learning Outcome: 4
  • Create detailed case studies using the approaches discussed in the course, incorporating treatment planning, specific interventions strategies, and integration of case information.

  • Activity 8:   Assignment - Schnarch Case Study    (12 Points)

    For this assignment, apply what you have learned about the Passionate Marriage model by writing a case study.  The focus of this case study should be on the case vignette that is available in course Resources titled “Carol and Michael.”  In your paper, describe how you would use the Passionate Marriage process in your work with this couple.  Specifically, a) describe the beginning stage of therapy (i.e., How would you start therapy?); b) develop a specific treatment plan using at least three interventions from the Passionate Marriage model; and c) evaluate the effectiveness of this model based on the treatment outcomes that might you expect for this specific case and on the personal fit of the model for your own style and beliefs about therapy.

     

    This case study should be 5-7 double-spaced pages in length and it should include specific information from the assigned readings (i.e., concepts from the Passionate Marriage model) as well as detailed descriptions of the process and outcome of therapy (i.e., how the model would look if it were used with this specific client system).  The content of this assignment will be evaluated using the following criteria:

     

    Description of the beginning phase of therapy                                          3 points

    Discussion of the treatment plan                                                             3 points

    Evaluation of the model (case outcomes and personal fit)                          3 points

    Concepts from the chapter are well integrated with case information          3 points

                                                    Total Points Possible for Content 12 points

     

    When you are finished, submit your assignment to the Assignments area of the course page.


    Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA standards. Be sure to adhere to Northcentral University's Academic Integrity Policy.


    Learning Outcome: 7


    Section 5: Process of Couple Therapy

    Required Reading:
    Specific readings are designated in each Activity below.

    Activity 9:   Process of Couple Therapy   (7 Points)
    In this activity you will examine other skills and techniques in couple therapy and evaluate current research that is informing the field.

    Activity Resources:
    Garfield, R. (2004).
    Bowman, L. & Fine, M. (2000).
    Butler, M. H., & Gardner, B. C. (2003).
    Johnson, S., & Lebow, J. (2000).
    Marital Events of Americans: 2009 (ACS-13)


    After completing this activity’s readings write a reflective paper on couples therapy specifically looking at therapeutic alliance, using enactments and current couple therapy research. Include in your paper the following:
    Length: 3-5 pages (app. 350 words per page) at least one page per question area.

    Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA standards. Be sure to adhere to Northcentral University's Academic Integrity Policy.

    Submit your document in the Course Work area below the Activity screen

    Learning Outcome: 8

    Section 6: Signature Assignment

    Required Reading:
    No specific readings are assigned for this section.

    Activity 10:   Final Paper - Theory of Couple Therapy    (22 Points)

    As the signature assignment for this course, this activity is used to measure student's progress in accomplishing the Program's Student Learning Outcome (SLO) #2, which states, "Students will apply family systems oriented clinical skills across variety of contexts". For this final assignment you will write an integrative paper that outlines your personal theory of couple therapy. Specifically, describe the process that you use or intend to use with couples in therapy. You are welcome to use any or all of the models of couple therapy that are addressed in this course (ICT, EFT, and the Passionate Marriage model). If there is a different model of therapy that you feel more accurately reflects your theory of therapy you are welcome to use it for this assignment. In using an alternative model, the same expectations of rigor and clarity exist for your descriptions of the various processes of therapy. All concepts and information from existing literature (textbooks, articles, course resources, and other information that you find) must be accurately cited and referenced using APA style.

     

    In order to illustrate your process of couple therapy as outlined in your paper, you need to apply the content of your paper to a specific case.  If you are currently working with couples in therapy, you can use one of your cases as the focus for this assignment.  Alternatively, please view the film, The Story of Us, starring Bruce Willis and Michelle Pfeifer.  You may also select a different film for this assignment but must receive prior approval from the course Mentor to use a different film.  To request permission to use a different film, send a request with a brief description of the film and why it would fit for this assignment to the Mentor via the NCU Message System. 

     

    Once you have selected a case or viewed the assigned or approved film, begin writing your paper.  Your paper should be 10-12 double-spaced pages in length and should cover each of the following topics:

     

    Theoretical Principles (2 points) – Describe the theoretical principles about couple therapy that are central to your work with couples? What are the fundamental presuppositions that guide your work?  As an example, EFT holds adult attachment as a key theoretical lens for its process.  In your paper, describe what is needed for couple relationships to exist in a stable, satisfying, and thriving manner. 

     

    Case Synopsis (2 points) – Provide a brief synopsis of the selected, assigned, or approved case.  Describe the fundamental nature of this couple’s relationship as well as the key problems and interactions that are leading this couple to seek therapy.  Additionally, describe any systemic factors seem to contribute to the problems (e.g., an over-involved parent that prevents conflict resolution) and those that could be used as benefits to the couple (e.g., a strong network of social support for the couple and their relationship). 

     

    Treatment Goals (2 points) – Identify at least three specific and practical treatment goals for this couple that are consistent with your theoretical principles and intended treatment model. “Help the couple fall in love again” is not specific, nor practical enough.  “Stop the domestic violence and establish a safety plan with the couple” and “Help the couple engage in mutually selected leisure activities” are specific and practical enough. 

     

    Personal Model Description (4 points) – Describe your model of therapy with couples in detail noting the specific processes that you use.  This model of therapy must be supported by existing models of couple therapy.  It is not sufficient to explain your own beliefs about what works in therapy (e.g., I work with couples to help them focus on their love for each other and mutual goals that they want to work on).  You must identify a specific model or set of models that provide the framework for your work with couples (e.g., I use an integration of Johnson’s Emotionally Focused model and Schnarch’s Passionate Marriage model with its emphasis on differentiation).  In your description of your preferred model of therapy, describe the key processes that you use to bring about change with your couple clients.  You should describe the processes of building therapeutic rapport, assessment, intervention, and concluding therapy. Each of these processes should be substantiated with citations from the literature regarding the model(s) that you use. 

     

    Specific Interventions (4 points) – Identify and describe at least four specific interventions that you can use with this case based on the model(s) of therapy that you have presented.  The descriptions of the interventions should include information about the purpose and implementation of the interventions and each intervention description should include specific information/application from the selected, assigned, or approved case. 

     

    Effectiveness Research (2 points) – In addition to describing the model and interventions that you will use with this case, discuss the effectiveness of your therapy process based on existing literature for the selected model(s).  Additionally, discuss the indications and contraindications of the model (i.e., for which types of clients is this model most appropriate for use and which cases would be better served by other methods).  For example, can this model be used with couples that struggle with domestic violence?  Do the clients need to be highly intellectual?  Are there any reasons why this process of therapy should not be used?

     

    Attention to Diversity (2 points) – Discuss the issues of gender and diversity as they pertain to your use of this model. 

     

    Strengths and Weaknesses (2 points) – Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of your use of your model of therapy.  This discussion should focus both on the general strengths and weaknesses of your approach and on the specific strengths and weaknesses of this approach with your selected, assigned, or approved case.


    When you are finished, submit your assignment to the Assignments area of the course page.   

    Your instructor will use the following Grading Rubric for this assignment. Please download a copy and carefully review what will be expect for this activity. Your instructor will upload a completed copy along with your graded paper in the Course Work read below.

    Theory of Couple Therapy- Grading Rubric


    Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA standards. Be sure to adhere to Northcentral University's Academic Integrity Policy.


    Learning Outcome: 8, 9


    Post Course Survey:
    Complete the Post Course Survey after submitting your final assignment. The Post Course Survey goes directly to the University and provides information used in both course and Mentor evaluation and assessment. The Post Course Survey is located in the Course Review section of the Learner web site. THE RESPONSES ARE ANONYMOUS.

    Receiving Your Final Grade:
    The final grade should be posted by your Mentor within one week following the course end date. The registrar will send an e-mail notifying you of your grade, and the grade will appear under the Course Review section on your Learner site.
    Syllabus Effective Date: 7/1/2012
    Syllabus Details