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It is important to note that clinical psychologists typically do not prescribe medication. By law, only psychiatrists who are physicians are able to prescribe psychiatric medication however, new legislation in a few US states is now allowing the prescribing of medication, which has sparked a heated debate. While psychologists and psychiatrists may both work in the mental health field, they perform very different roles.

A clinical psychologist's goal is to help their client identify their psychological, emotional or behavioural issues and then assist the client by defining goals and a plan of action to help them achieve personal, social, educational and vocational development. Clinical psychologists use the most up-to-date version of the DSM Diagnostic and Statistical Manual , which is published by the American Psychological Association APA to guide and confirm their diagnosis, as well as their treatment plans.

Clinical psychologists must tailor their treatment plans to each individual patient, as different people have different problems, and respond best to different forms of therapy. Even two people with the same issue may respond very differently to treatment and recovery plans. In order to develop valid and reliable ways to measure how well specific treatments and interventions are working, assessment research in clinical psychology is involved.

Therefore, a large part of a clinical psychologist's job involves assessments and the development of valid and reliable tests. Assessments can be done by interviewing individuals, looking at medical records, and conducting clinical observations.

Mental Disorders Medications and Clinical Social Work

Testing can be done in the form of intelligence and achievement tests, vocational tests, or other tests designed to measure aptitude and skill levels. By taking a such a comprehensive assessment approach, clinical psychologists are able to decide on the most effective and appropriate psychological treatments and interventions for their clients. Michael C. Roberts and Stephen S.

Hardi state in their article, Research Methodology and Clinical Psychology: An Overview, "Measurement of treatment procedures, treatment integrity, behavioral changes, functional performance, objective measurements, perceptions of change, and satisfaction from a variety of sources, follow-up assessment, etc. Clinical psychologists have distinct personalities. They are curious, methodical, rational, analytical, and logical. Does this sound like you? Take our free career test to find out if clinical psychologist is one of your top career matches.

Clinical psychologists find work in various mental health, medical, and social service settings. Many clinical psychologists are self-employed, working in their own private practice with clients. Others are partners with other mental health professionals in a practice.

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Still others work alongside other mental health professionals in a private practice. Some clinical psychologists choose to work in mental health hospitals or group homes, such as eating behavior residential programs. Others find employment through government or charity-sponsored programs serving the community, or through university programs that serve the students and staff of that particular school.


Some clinical psychologists choose to focus only on conducting research in an academic environment. Some examples of research topics are: the efficacy and effectiveness of therapies; common change processes in therapy; developing or evaluating prevention programs; validity of assessment methods; developmental psychopathology; and developmental epidemiology.

Psychology is a study of the human mind - of mental behaviours and psychological functions. Psychologists attempt to understand how the mind functions, how it responds to things, if it can be improved upon, and how it can be kept in a stable state. Psychologists study various concepts such as behaviour, emotion, relationships, human perception, cognition, personality, attention, and motivation.

Many people all over the world look to psychologists when it comes to understanding mental and emotional problems. Although clinical psychologists can also specialize in research if they prefer, clinical psychology as a whole is not just a scientific study. Clinical psychologists are able to take things a step further by being interactive and helping their clients with their mental health. This is done by way of consultations, assessments, psychological testings, and treatments. By using the scientific methods and principles of psychology, clinical psychologists are able to understand how to best treat those who are suffering from psychological issues or problems.

The goal of clinical psychologists is to offer the client a corrective course of action or a specific treatment that can improve their mental well-being. In regards to the difference in education between the two professions, a psychologist needs to complete a four year university-based psychology degree. To be a registered psychologist one needs to complete an undergraduate degree plus two years of supervised clinical experience.

A clinical psychologist , on the other hand, needs to complete an undergraduate degree in psychology, a two-year master's degree, and then another two years of supervised clinical training.

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Clinical psychologists also need to keep up with continuing education on an annual basis. Clinical psychologists who have completed a PhD, or a doctorate of clinical psychology, can use the title of 'doctor'. Clinical psychologists and psychiatrists often work in tandem to treat their patient's symptoms from both a behavioural and clinical standpoint.

They share a common goal - the desire to help people feel better. The fields of psychology and psychiatry are both essential in offering treatment for improving mental and emotional health. After seeing a family doctor for a referral, a patient might meet regularly with a clinical psychologist to address behavioural patterns. That clinical psychologist may refer the patient to a psychiatrist who is able to prescribe and monitor medication. Because clinical psychologists and psychiatrists often work together for the well-being of the client, their job descriptions may overlap somewhat.

While they both work in the mental health field, they perform very different roles particularly in the type of treatment they administer. Each profession also requires different educational paths. The Role Of A Clinical Psychologist Clinical psychologists conduct psychological tests, focus primarily on psychotherapy, and often treat both emotional and mental suffering with behavioural intervention behavioural intervention involves having patients replace problematic behaviours with more positive ones.

Who's who in mental health services - Better Health Channel

Clinical psychologists tailor their treatment plans to each individual patient, as different people have different problems, and respond best to different forms of therapy. Even two people with the same problem may respond very differently to treatment and recovery plans. Clinical psychologists do not typically prescribe medication. In terms of education, a clinical psychologist must complete four years of university, a two-year master's degree, and a further two years of supervised clinical training.

An official of the school Dean, Department Chair that awarded your graduate degree must provide a letter on university letterhead verifying that the supervised practicum, internship, or field experience was completed. Please review the specific requirements on the Education Worksheet for clinical social work. Review the Education Worksheet for clinical social work to determine if the coursework requirements for licensure have been satisfied.

The letter must include the course title and number of credit hours completed. These hours must be documented on the Verification of Clinical Experience Form or they will not count towards licensure. The supervision experience must have consisted of: At least hours of supervision in no less than weeks; 1, hours of face-to-face psychotherapy with clients; and, 1 hour of supervision every two weeks NOTE: Please see Rule 64B For information about the exam required, click here. The certificate of completion is retained with your records.

What does a clinical psychologist do?

Do not submit to the Board Office with your application. A license verification is required for all endorsement applicants. To see more information on applying by examination and by endorsement, select the Process tab located above. Provisional License This license is valid for 24 months and cannot be renewed. It allows you to practice under supervision while you meet any additional licensure requirements such as masters level coursework CSW applicants must have completed 15 semester or 22 quarter hours of coursework; MFT applicants must have completed 10 of the course content areas and 6 semester or 9 quarter hours must be in marriage and family systems, theories, or techniques, MHC applicants must have completed 7 of the course content areas one of which must be in psychopathology or abnormal psychology CE coursework or passing the national exam.

To request an application, please contact the Board Office. If you have a history of serious, chronic, or recent mental health problems or addiction to drugs, you must submit a current mental health status report. Mental health status reports must come from a licensed mental health professional, with which you have no personal or professional relationship.

What mental health social workers do

The report should include: a description and summary of the diagnosis, onset, course of treatment, medications, inpatient treatments, outpatient treatments, group settings, factors which have triggered setbacks, compliance with treatment, prognosis, and recommendations for continued treatment. Board Actions — Certified copies of document s relative to any disciplinary action taken against any license. The documents must come from the agency that took the disciplinary action and must be certified by that agency.

Self-Explanation — A detailed description of the circumstances surrounding your disciplinary action and a thorough description of the rehabilitative changes in your lifestyle since the time of the disciplinary action which would enable you to avoid future occurrences. It would be helpful to include factors in your life, which you feel may have contributed to your disciplinary action, what you have learned about yourself since that time, and the changes you have made that support your rehabilitation.

If the records are not available, you must have a letter on court letterhead sent from the clerk of the court attesting to their unavailability. Parole records for offenses can be obtained from the Department of Corrections or at the clerk of the court in the arresting jurisdiction. Self Explanation — Applicants who have listed offenses on the application must submit a letter in their own words describing the circumstances of the offense.

Include in your letter the date of the original offense, the charge, and the jurisdiction where it occurred. To review the conviction record guidelines adopted by the Board, click here. Effective July 1, , Section