Texas Tech University

Stephen Fife, Ph.D., LMFT

Associate Professor, CMFT Doctoral Program Director
Couple, Marriage, and Family Therapy

Email: Stephen.Fife@ttu.edu

Phone: (806) 834-7580

Office: 166F

Stephen Fife, PhD., LMFT

Research Interests

My research efforts are directed toward improving treatment for couples and families by specifically investigating two important areas: (1) common factors and processes of therapeutic change, and (2) the treatment and healing of infidelity. My research and teaching also focus on enhancing the theoretical sophistication of research and practice in marriage, couple, and family therapy.

Areas of Expertise:

  • Common factors of therapeutic change
  • Change process
  • Treatment and healing of infidelity
  • Theory and philosophy of psychotherapy



Weeks, G. R., Fife, S. T., & Peterson, C. (Eds.). (2016). Techniques for the couple therapist: Essential interventions from the experts. New York: Routledge.

Weeks, G. R., & Fife, S. T. (2014). Couples in treatment: Techniques and approaches for effective practice (3rd Edition). New York: Routledge.


Fife, S. T., Stewart, C.*, Hawkins, L.* (2019). Family-of-origin, sexual attitudes, and perceptions of infidelity: A mediation analysis. American Journal of Family Therapy. doi: 10.1080/01926187.2019.1684218

Dansby Olufowote, R. A., Fife, S. T., Schleiden, C.*, & Whiting, J. (2019). How can I become more secure?: A grounded theory of earning secure attachment. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy. doi: 10.1111/jmft.12409

Fife, S. T., & Hawkins, L.* (2019). Doctor, Snitch, and Weasel: Narrative family therapy with a child suffering from eoncopresis and enuresis.Clinical Case Studies. doi: 10.1177/1534650119866917

Eggleston, D.*, Hawkins, L.*, Fife, S. T. (2019). As the lights fade: A grounded theory of male professional athletes' decision-making and adjustment to retirement. Journal of Applied Sport Psychology. doi: 10.1080/10413200.2019.1626514

Gardenhire, J.*, Mullet, N.*, & Fife, S. T. (2019). Living with Parkinson's: The process of finding optimism. Qualitative Health Research, 29(12), 1781-1793. doi: 10.1177/1049732319851485

Fife, S. T., D'Aniello, C., Scott, S.*, & Sullivan, E.* (2019). Marriage and family therapy students' experience with common factors training. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, 45(2), 191-205. doi: 10.1111/jmft.12333 (Published online 27 April 2018)

Jackson, L.*, & Fife, S. T. (2018). The impact of parental divorce: The relationship between social support and confidence levels in young adults. Journal of Divorce and Remarriage, 59(2), 123-140. doi: 10.1080/10502556.2017.1402652

Fife, S. T., & D'Aniello. C. (2017). Common factors' role in accredited MFT training programs. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, 43(4), 591-604. doi: 10.1111/jmft.12218

Morrison, S. C.*, Fife, S. T., & Hertlein, K. M. (2017). Mechanisms behind prolonged effects of parental divorce: A phenomenological study. Journal of Divorce and Remarriage, 58(1), 44-63.  doi: 10.1080/10502556.2016.1262652

Fife, S. T. (2015). Martin Buber's philosophy of dialogue and implications for qualitative family research. Journal of Family Theory and Review, 7(3), 208-224.

Fife, S. T.,+  Whiting, J. B., Bradford, K. & Davis, S. (2014). The therapeutic pyramid: A common factors synthesis of techniques, alliance, and way of being. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, 40(1), 20-33.

* Article co-authored with a graduate student

+ Winner of the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy Best Article of 2014 Award; nominated for the 2015 NCFR Reuben Hill award for an outstanding article contributing to family research and theory.