This article provides an overview of the supervision requirements and limits for California LMFT Trainees & Interns.
Weekly Supervision Requirements
As an MFT Trainee, you must meet the mandatory minimum of one unit of weekly supervision at each work setting where you are claiming experience. In addition, you are required to receive an additional unit of supervision for every five hours of direct counseling experience claimed at each setting.
This requirement is a ratio of counseling experience to supervision hours across your experience at each setting and can be averaged across your experience. For example, if you log 10 counseling hours and 1 unit of supervision in a week you may still claim all 10 hours of experience as long as you make up the extra unit of supervision during one of your remaining weeks at the site.
As an MFT Intern, you must meet the mandatory minimum of one unit of weekly supervision in each work setting where you are claiming experience. In addition, you need to receive an additional unit of supervision in any week in which you claim more than ten client contact hours. This requirement applies to each week at each work setting and cannot be averaged. For example, if you logged 15 hours of direct counseling and only one unit of supervision in a week, you would only be able to claim 10 of the experience hours and would lose 5 hours.
Note that both Trainees and Interns must log at least one unit of supervision in each week that they claim experience. The only exceptions to this requirement are professional enrichment activities (workshops) and personal psychotherapy hours.
TrackYourHours will provide an alert if you fail to meet the weekly or ratio supervision requirements.
Definition of a Supervision Unit
A unit of supervision is defined as one hour of individual supervision or two hours of group supervision. Group supervision can be claimed in two, one-hour sessions or one, two-hour session. A group supervision session of less than one hour may not be claimed.
Weekly Supervision Limit
You are allowed to claim a maximum of five hours of supervision (individual + group) per week. This maximum applies to supervision hours logged across all settings each week. Although the excess supervision hours may not be counted by the BBS, you should continue to log all of your supervision hours in order to meet the weekly and ratio supervision requirements.
The BBS does not directly limit the total number of total supervision hours you can claim. However, both individual and group supervision count toward your non-counseling experience (NCE) category which has a limit of 1,000 hours. Once you reach this category maximum, additional supervision hours logged will not be counted when your hours are reviewed.
TrackYourHours will provide an alert if you exceed the weekly supervision limit or non-counseling experience category maximum.
Supervision Requirements for Professional Enrichment Activities (workshops)
Prior to September 29, 2012, trainees and interns were required to meet the minimum supervision requirement in any week where hours for professional enrichment activities (workshops, seminars, training sessions and conferences) were claimed. From September 29, 2012 forward professional enrichment activities may be claimed in the absence of weekly supervision. Although direct supervision is no longer required for professional enrichment activity hours of
experience, trainees and interns must still have their supervisor approve the workshops, seminars, trainings, and conferences they attend. In addition, the hours must be logged under one of your supervisors.
Qualifications for Supervisors
This article on the BBS website provides an overview of the qualifications for supervisors. http://www.bbs.ca.gov/licensees/imf_supervision.shtml