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Counseling Psychologist  What They Do

Just the Facts


Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists Career Video



Assesses and evaluates individuals' problems through the use of case history, interview, and observation and provide individual or group counseling services to assist individuals in achieving more effective personal, social, educational, and vocational development and adjustment.

This career is part of the Human Services cluster Counseling and Mental Health Services pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Collects information about individuals or clients, using interviews, case histories, observational techniques, and other assessment methods.
  • Documents patient information including session notes, progress notes, recommendations, and treatment plans.
  • Counsels individuals, groups, or families to help them understand problems, deal with crisis situations, define goals, and develop realistic action plans.
  • Develops therapeutic and treatment plans based on clients' interests, abilities, and needs.
  • Supervises interns, clinicians in training, and other counselors.
  • Advises clients on how they could be helped by counseling.
  • Analyzes data such as interview notes, test results, and reference manuals to identify symptoms and to diagnose the nature of clients' problems.
  • Consults with other professionals, agencies, or universities to discuss therapies, treatments, counseling resources or techniques, and to share occupational information.
  • Evaluates the results of counseling methods to determine the reliability and validity of treatments.
  • Refers clients to specialists or to other institutions for noncounseling treatment of problems.

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would sit most of the time. There's some walking and standing. You may have to lift and carry things like books, papers or tools weighing 10 lbs. or less.
  • Exposed to hazardous situations involving possible injury such as cuts, bites, stings, and minor burns more than once a month
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves sitting more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Irregular hours
  • Weekend work

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Behavioral Analyst -- Utilizes original research and experimentation to identify factors in the environment or biology that lead to patterns in behavior.
  • Clinical Psychologist -- Diagnoses and evaluates mental and emotional disorders of individuals through observation, interview, and psychological tests.
  • Psychotherapist -- Works with individuals, couples, families and groups to help them overcome a range of psychological and emotional issues.
  • Child Custody Evaluator --
  • Family Psychologist --