MFT California
Compare masters programs that meet the MFT licensure requirements in California.

California State University, Bakersfield

California State University, Bakersfield


M.S. in Counseling Psychology

Campus-Based Program

On-Campus Location:

California State University, Bakersfield
9001 Stockdale Highway
Bakersfield, CA 93311-1022

(661) 654-3941

M.S. Program Contact Person: Dr. Sarah Appleton

CSU Bakersfield M.S. in Counseling Psychology Program Page

Program details below are quoted from program websites, supplied here for informational purposes only, and subject to change at any time. Refer to the program website for current information, deadlines, complete admission requirements, etc. It is the responsibility of the prospective student to verify with program administrators program details and that the program still meets BBS requirements for licensure in the state of California.

Program Snapshot



Concentrations/Specializations Offered


Length of Program

3 years


All classes meet between the hours of 4 p.m. and 10 p.m., Monday through Thursday, allowing students to work while attending school. In the last year of the 3-year program, students must be available 20 hours per week during regular business hours (Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.) for their clinical field placements.

Program Start 


Estimated Total Program Tuition


Religious orientation


Entering Class Size


Fieldwork Hours Accrued during program


Personal Psychotherapy Requirement During Program


Comprehensive Exam/Culminating Project/Thesis/Etc:


Application Process

Application Deadline

Early deadline: Mid-February (will be reviewed/decided before standard deadline)
Standard deadline: Mid-April

We will consider complete applications after the standard deadline and applications with prerequisites pending only if space is available after early and standard applications have been reviewed.

Undergraduate GPA Requirement

A 3.2 GPA over the most recent 60 semester or 90 quarter units.

GRE Requirement


Prerequisite Courses

Completion of all prerequisite courses with a grade of at least a “B-” (grading scale 2.7/4.0):

  • Introductory statistics
  • Abnormal psychology
  • Child psychology, developmental psychology (infancy through adolescence), or human development/lifespan psychology (conception through senescence.)

Prerequisite courses must have been completed within five calendar years of intended admission date. A competency examination may be taken to demonstrate currency of knowledge if prerequisites were taken outside the time limit.

Application highlights

References Letters and Rating Forms
Required from three (or more) persons who can assess your (1) academic capability, (2) personal characteristics, (3) social skill, and (4) ethical standards. This information will be important in evaluating your application. At least two of these letters should be from college faculty or employers who know you well. Be sure that they understand the purposes of this reference (stated on the recommendation form). Letters that address the specific areas mentioned are more valuable than “generic” recommendations. 

Personal Statement
Along with this application please include a typed personal statement (two to four double-spaced pages). Your statement should describe the academic and personal reasons why we should offer you admission. The Counseling Psychology Admissions Committee will give your statement significant weighting. Please address the following points:

  • Goals and Objectives: Tell us about yourself, your background, and your reasons for wanting to be a marriage and family therapist or professional clinical counselor. What do you hope to be able to do as a result of getting this degree? With which populations do you want to work?
  • Experience: Describe past and present e x p e r i e n c e s directly related to counseling or helping professions (e.g., volunteer or paid mental health work, research or teaching experiences that have to do with interaction with others).
  • Special Skills or Knowledge: Describe any special talents, skills, or knowledge (such as specific clinical skills, language fluencies, cross-cultural knowledge) you have that are advantageous to being a counselor.
  • Personal Integrity: All field placements vet those seeking traineeship placement to protect vulnerable clientele. This can include a criminal history check and drug screening. If for any reason your background or activities are noteworthy in this regard you must explain in detail relevant information and how you will handle background checks.

(see program website for complete application requirements)

Interview Requirement

The CPFC reserves the option to request supplemental documentation and information, including a personal interview, to determine suitability and promise.

Graduate students gain valuable, hands-on experience, in CSUB’s state-of-the-art University Counselor Training Clinic that provides low-cost counseling for the community.
— California State University, Bakersfield

Program Summary

(Reprinted from program website.)

The CSUB Counseling Psychology program places a particular value on personal exploration in training and supervision. The curricular objectives of the Master of Science in Counseling Psychology therefore emphasize:

1. A foundation in the theory and research upon which clinical practice is based;

2. Development of self-awareness and relationship-building skills that contribute to strong therapeutic alliances with clients;

3. Experiential learning, through which students learn and practice relevant skills and come to trust their own experience in work with clients;

4. An understanding of and a sensitivity to the effects of diverse individual, familial, and cultural factors; and,

5. Development of skills needed for lifelong learning and continued professional growth.