Marriage and Family Therapy STudents' Exeperience of Anxiety During the CLinical Training Process

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Virginia Tech


In this study I explored marriage and family therapy student interns' experience of anxiety during the clinical training process. Participants discussed their anxiety levels during the beginning of their clinical work and 6-22 months into their clinical training process. Phenomenology guided the manner in which this study was conducted. Nine marriage and family therapy students from the Virginia Tech Marriage and Family Therapy program were interviewed. The last two of the nine interviews were conducted after the last two participants had read the first seven interview results. This allowed them to comment and expand upon the other participants' interviews. This study did not include post-masters students as these students have more clinical experience and may experience anxiety differently.

This study highlighted the importance of awareness and management of student intern anxiety levels. This study was conducted in an effort to help MFT programs and students understand anxiety in relation to the training experience of MFT students. The information presented here suggests that awareness and management of anxiety for trainees is important. The findings are both consistent with, and add to, the literature on anxiety and psychotherapy training.



anxiety, clinical, training, MFT