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    Counseling Psychology vs. Clinical Psychology

    Counseling Psychology vs. Clinical Psychology

    These two professions are not the same, so what’s the right choice if your goal is either treatment or career growth? 

    Though they may sound similar, these fields are quite distinct. This article will define and discuss the two fields to help you understand the differences between the two.

    Clinical Psychology

    This type of psychology is most often associated with mental disorders and psychotherapy. They work with individuals suffering from mental illnesses to help them solve problems related to their issues. 

    While they might not be able to cure any issues, they do have the ability to provide effective treatment and help relieve symptoms.

    Counseling Psychology

    Counseling psychologists are in charge of helping people with things such as depression or stress. While this can be a difficult task on its own, counseling psychologists also help people with personal growth (such as learning to build leadership skills). 

    This type of psychology aims to help people permanently change their lives for the better by providing them with various skills to help them succeed in life.

    What Is The Difference Between Clinical and Counseling Psychology?

    Difference in Treatment

    Counseling psychology is mostly concerned with the treatment of the symptoms of various issues. While they might help people learn new ways of dealing with their issues, counseling psychologists cannot change their pathology. 

    Many people turn to counsel psychology when searching for effective solutions to provide relief without causing long-term damage.

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    However, clinical psychology focuses more on treating the causes rather than just the symptoms. As such, clinical psychologists can help individuals with various mental disorders and potentially even change the person’s neurological makeup not to have to deal with symptoms for the rest of their lives.

    Difference in Focus

    While counseling psychology is mainly concerned with treating issues easier for people to handle, it is also responsible for helping people learn how to improve their lives from a more general perspective. 

    This is often a complicated task for people to achieve, but clinical psychologists can help with the process in various ways.

    With this type of information, you will be able to choose better which field best suits your goals and needs. In either case, you will probably need to get your undergraduate degree and a master’s degree to pursue these two types of psychology. 

    However, some people might not require such extensive training and will likely need a bachelor’s or master’s degree to advance their careers.

    Differing Goals

    While counseling psychology and clinical psychology are often cited as similar, one of the biggest differences between the two is that counseling psychology focuses on improving a person’s quality of life. 

    This is not to say that clinical psychology does not do this, but this is not their main goal. Instead, they are mainly concerned with treating various issues and helping people get rid of problems such as depression or schizophrenia.

    Different Training

    While both clinical psychology and counseling psychology have similar training requirements, many clinical psychologists will be more skilled in areas such as psychology, biology, and mathematics with masters in clinical psychology. This can result in increased specialization and help them with the type of treatment they are providing.

    On the other hand, Counseling psychologists may not have as much training in these fields. Instead, their training focuses on creating knowledge that helps people build effective skills and increase their abilities.

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    Ultimately, counseling psychology is still associated with clinical psychology, and many people will choose to switch from one field to another. However, it is important to consider the goals that you hope to achieve before choosing between the two.


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