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Online · School of Behavioral Sciences · Community Care and Counseling

Marriage Coaching

  • CG
  • Section 8WK
  • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020
  • Modified 01/13/2020

Course Description

Marriage Coaching is a rapidly growing practice that involves mentoring or guiding a couple as they explore the requisite skills, knowledge, confidence, and goals that they will need to become proficient and successful in the area(s) in which they are being coached. This course will address some of the more advanced skills with which the Marriage Coach should become adept.





As a basis for their work, marriage coaches should have a thorough understanding of coaching models, theory, and application. This knowledge serves to heighten the coaches’ effectiveness in formulating effective coaching strategies an efficient and timely manner.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Examine and explain the contemporary issues addressed within the field of
  2. marriage coaching.

  3. Analyze the major theoretical models in marriage coaching and how they relate to
  4. the actual practice of coaching.

  5. Appraise marriage coaching and its applicability in the context of couples’ lives.
  6. Compare and contrast marriage coaching with counseling and social work.
  7. Construct a framework from which marriage coaching services can be delivered.
  8. Analyze the difference between secular and Christian models of marriage coaching.

Course Resources

Required Resource Purchases

Gottman, J., & Silver, N. (2015). The seven principles for making marriage work: A practical guide from the world’s foremost relationship expert (2nd rev. ed.). New York, NY: Harmony Books. ISBN: 9780553447712.

Liberty University Custom: Parrott, Les and Parrott, Leslie. SYMBIS Facilitator Certification. Seattle, WA: SYMBIS Assessment, 2016. (can be purchased through MBS Direct)

Williams, J. & Williams, J. (2011). Marriage coaching. Heart, hope, and skills for a great relationship. Springfield, OH: Grace and Truth Relationship Education. ISBN: 978-14680000801.

Disclaimer: The above resources provide information consistent with that required by state licensing boards in the class subject area. Liberty University does not necessarily endorse specific religious, philosophical, or political positions found in these resources.

Recommended Resource

American Psychological Association. Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (Current ed.). Washington, DC: Author.

Additional Materials for Learning 

  1. Computer with basic audio/video equipment
  2. Internet access (broadband recommended)
  3. Blackboard recommended browsers
  4. Microsoft Office

Course Assignments

Textbook readings and lecture presentations/notes

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Discussion Board Forums (5)

Discussion boards are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student is required to create a thread in response to the provided prompt for each forum. Each thread must be at least 250 words and demonstrate course-related knowledge. In addition to the thread, the student is required to reply to 1 other classmate’s thread. The reply must be at least 150 words. (MLO: A, B, C, D, E, F)

4MAT Reviews (2)

The student is expected to complete two 4-MAT reviews of 4-5 pages each during the course of his/her study. (MLO: A, B, C, D, E, F)

SYMBIS Assessment Certification

The student will complete the online SYMBIS Training Kit to obtain certification. Evidence of certification must be submitted via screenshot to show the instructor that the certification was successfully completed.

Coaching Sessions

The student is expected to conduct two 50 to 60- minute coaching sessions to explain the SYMBIS assessment report and to help the couple reach their goals. After each session, the student will complete a questionnaire about the information gathered during the coaching session. (MLO: A, B, C, D, E, F)

Course Grading

Course Requirements Checklist


Discussion Board Forums (5 at 50 points each)


Coaching Sessions (2 at 150 points each)


4MAT Reviews (2 at 150 points each)


SYMBIS Certification





Late Assignment Policy

Course Assignments, including discussion boards, exams, and other graded assignments, should be submitted on time.

If the student is unable to complete an assignment on time, then he or she must contact the instructor immediately by email.

Assignments that are submitted after the due date without prior approval from the instructor will receive the following deductions:

  1. Late assignments submitted within one week after the due date will receive up to a 10% deduction.
  2. Assignments submitted more than one week and less than 2 weeks late will receive up to a 20% deduction.
  3. Assignments submitted two weeks late or after the final date of the course will not be accepted outside of special circumstances (e.g. death in the family, significant personal health issues), which will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the instructor.
  4. Group projects, including group discussion board threads and/or replies, and assignments will not be accepted after the due date outside of special circumstances (e.g. death in the family, significant personal health issues), which will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the instructor.

Disability Assistance

Students with a disability and those with medical conditions associated with pregnancy may contact Liberty University’s Online Office of Disability Accommodation Support (ODAS) at [email protected] for accommodations.  Such accommodations require appropriate documentation of your condition.   For more information about ODAS and the accommodations process, including how to request an accommodation, please visit Requests for accommodations not related to disabilities or pregnancy must be directed to the Registrar’s Office, which generally handles medical needs support.

If you have a complaint related to disability discrimination or an accommodation that was not provided, you may contact ODAS or the Office of Equity and Compliance by phone at (434) 592-4999 or by email at [email protected].  Click to see a full copy of Liberty’s Discrimination, Harassment, and Sexual Misconduct Policy or the Student Disability Grievance Policy and Procedures.

Course Attendance

In an effort to comply with U.S. Department of Education policies, attendance is measured by physical class attendance or any submission of a required assignment within the enrollment dates of the course (such as examinations, written papers or projects, any discussion board posts, etc.) or initiating any communication with one’s professor regarding an academic subject. More information regarding the attendance policy can be found in the Academic Course Catalogs. Regular attendance in online courses is expected throughout the length of the term. Students who do not attend within the first week of a sub-term by submitting a required academic assignment (such as the Course Requirements Checklist, an examination, written paper or project, discussion board post, or other academic activity) will be dropped from the course. Students who wish to re-engage in the course are encouraged to contact Academic Advising to discuss their enrollment options. Students who begin an online course, but at some point in the semester cease attending, and do not provide official notification to withdraw, will be assigned a grade of “FN” (Failure for Non-Attendance). Students wishing to withdraw from courses after the official start date should familiarize themselves with the withdrawal policy.

Grading Scale

A- B+ B B- C+ C C- D+ D D- F
940-1010 920-939 900-919 860-899 840-859 820-839 780-819 760-779 740-759 700-739 680-699 679 and below

For courses with a Pass/NP final grade, please refer to the Course Grading section of this syllabus for the assignment requirements and/or point value required to earn a Passing final grade.

Add/Drop Policy

The full policy statement and procedures are published in the Policy Directory.

Honor Code

Liberty University comprises a network of students, Alumni, faculty, staff and supporters that together form a Christian community based upon the truth of the Bible. This truth defines our foundational principles, from our Doctrinal Statement to the Code of Honor. These principles irrevocably align Liberty University’s operational procedures with the long tradition of university culture, which remains distinctively Christian, designed to preserve and advance truth. Our desire is to create a safe, comfortable environment within our community of learning, and we extend our academic and spiritual resources to all of our students with the goal of fostering academic maturity, spiritual growth and character development.

Communities are predicated on shared values and goals. The Code of Honor, an expression of the values from which our Doctrinal Statement was born, defines the fundamental principles by which our community exists. At the core of this code lie two essential concepts: a belief in the significance of all individuals, and a reliance on the existence of objective truth.

While we acknowledge that some may disagree with various elements of the Code of Honor, we maintain the expectation that our students will commit to respect and uphold the Code while enrolled at Liberty University.

Adherence to the principles and concepts established within facilitates the success of our students and strengthens the Liberty community.

The Code of Honor can be viewed in its entirety at


LIFC 602

Textbooks: Gottman & Silver, The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work (2015).

Williams & Williams, Marriage Coaching (2011).


Reading & Study




Gottman & Silver: chs. 1–3

Williams & Williams: chs. 1–2

1 presentation

1 lecture notes

Course Requirements Checklist

Class Introductions DB




Gottman & Silver: chs. 4–7

Williams & Williams: chs. 3–4

1 presentation

1 lecture note

DB Forum 1

SYMBIS Certification




Gottman & Silver: chs. 8–10

1 presentation

1 lecture note

DB Forum 2



Gottman & Silver: chs. 11–12

1 presentation

1 lecture note

4MAT Review 1



Williams & Williams: chs. 5–7

2 presentations

2 lecture notes

DB Forum 3

Coaching Session 1




Williams & Williams: chs. 8–9

2 presentations

2 lecture notes

DB Forum 4

Coaching Session 2




Williams & Williams: chs.10–end of book

1 presentation

1 lecture note

4MAT Review 2



2 presentations

2 lecture notes

DB Forum 5






DB = Discussion Board

NOTE: Each course module/week begins on Monday morning at 12:00 a.m. (ET) and ends on Sunday night at 11:59 p.m. (ET). The final module/week ends at 11:59 p.m. (ET) on Friday.