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Who Can ProvidePsychotherapy?

By , black-rose-bielefeld.de Guide

Question: Who Can Provide Psychotherapy?
Answer: Providers of psychotherapy and other mental health services may hold a number of titles, credentials, or licensures. Job titles such as "Psychologist" and "Psychiatrist" require the individual to meet specific state and national requirements. Regulation of titles such as "Psychotherapist" and "Therapist" vary from state to state. For example, in the state of Oregon, use of the title "Psychotherapist" is restricted to individuals who are licensed by the Oregon Board of Psychological Examiners.

If you are interested in working in mental health or if you are seeking a therapist for treatment, it is important to understand the credentials, licensing requirements and certifications of therapy providers.


  • Qualifications include graduation from medical school followed by a resident program in psychiatric care.

  • Some psychiatrists are board-certified, indicating they have received additional training beyond medical school and psychiatric residency.

  • Psychiatrists can prescribe medication to clients.


  • Ph.D. psychologists have five years of graduate training in psychology.

  • Psy.D. psychologists have the same training as those with a Ph.D., but there is less emphasis on research and experimental methods.

  • Most states require one to two years of supervised experience after graduation for full licensure.


  • Licensed counselors typically have two to three years of graduate training in counseling methods.

  • Specialty areas include marriage and family counseling, school counseling, community counseling and substance about counseling.

  • Many states require counselors to be licensed by National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC), which can grant the title of National Certified Counselor.

Social Workers, LCSW

  • Licensed clinical social workers (LCSWs) have approximately two years of graduate training in therapy, as well as completion of an internship and supervised experience in the field.

  • Other social workers may have a Master's degree in social work as well as supervised clinical experience.

Advanced Psychiatric Nurses

  • Advanced psychiatric nurses hold a Master's degree or higher in psychiatric-mental health nursing.

  • These professionals are able to assess patients, diagnose disorders, provide psychotherapy, and prescribe medications in some states.

  • Advanced psychiatric nurses work as clinical nurse specialists or nurse practitioners and work in diverse settings including hospitals, private clinics, mental health settings, emergency psychiatric settings and substance abuse treatment centers.
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Kendra Cherry

Kendra Cherry
Psychology Guide

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