A sample of 127 members of the Association of Mormon Counselors and Psychotherapists (AMCAP) responded to a questionnaire regarding their beliefs, practices and training in premarital counseling (PMC). This study was a replication of a previous study of 226 clergy premarital counselors from four Protestant denominations by Jones, E.F., & Stahmann, R.F. (1994). The results of this study were compared with the results of the Jones & Stahmann study. Findings suggest that AMCAP members were less likely than Protestant clergy to believe that PMC should be required of all couples before marriage. AMCAP members and Protestant clergy both rated Enrichment, Testimony/Evangelism, and Education as the three most important topics/roles they focus on when providing PMC. No difference was found between AMCAP members and Protestant clergy in the number of first marriage couples seen for PMC during a 12 month period. AMCAP members saw an average of one couple more than Protestant clergy for PMC with remarriages during a 12 month period. AMCAP members reported the use of group formats and assigned reading materials more frequently than Protestant clergy. Protestant clergy reported the use of individual couple formats and tests or assessments more frequently than AMCAP members. There was no difference in the amount of training between AMCAP members and Protestant clergy with nearly 40% of both samples practicing PMC with no specific training in PMC.
College and Department
Family, Home, and Social Sciences; Family Life; Marriage and Family Therapy
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Ashton, Samuel L., "Beliefs, Practices, and Training in Marriage Preparation: A Comparison Between Members of the Association of Mormon Counselors and Psychotherapists (AMCAP) and Select Protestant Clergy" (2005). All Theses and Dissertations. 532.
Premarital counseling, AMCAP, Association of Mormon Counselors and Psychotherapists, Protestant clergy, Premarital work, Counselor beliefs, practices, training