Career Definition Of The Behavioral Therapist
A behavioral therapists works with patients establishing alternative responses to maladaptive behaviors that are distressing them and causing avoidable, fixable problems in their lives. Behavioral therapists are capable of working in solo or group practices. Behavioral therapists will also be found working in hospitals, social services centers and schools. Behavioral therapists will often work with patients who are dealing with anger management issues, anxiety disorders, mood disorders, depression, numerous physical and psychological addictions and phobias.
A behavioral therapists will ordinarily have a doctoral degree, Ph.D. or Psy.D., and a specified amount of field related work experience before he or she seeks a certification in a behavioral therapy field. These professional therapists will be assisting patients in overcoming the negative behavioral issues that are impacting and disrupting their quality of life. Careers related to behavioral therapy include social workers, counselors, psychologists and psychiatrists and cognitive behavioral therapists.
Education And Skills Required For A Career In Behavioral Therapy
Candidates for certification as behavioral therapists will already be educated in a similar related field such as psychology or psychiatry and will hold a higher learning degree in said field. An amount of practical experience, usually several years at a minimum, is required before one can be certified as a behavioral therapist. The National Association of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapists will certify individuals as one of two types of behavioral therapists; as either Certified Cognitive-Behavioral Therapists or Diplomates in Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy. Behavioral therapists study the theory and principles of behavioral therapy and learn how to apply those principles to the treatment of a specific range of disorders encountered in the general population.
As a behavioral therapists, one should have exceptional interpersonal skills, including oral and written communication, as well as leadership skill. In the behavioral therapists line of work, discretion is paramount. Patients will discuss things with their therapist with the understanding that their conversations and revelations will be completely and utterly confidential. Any breach of this trust, except where specified by the law, is considered morally wrong and unethical. Behavioral therapists should also possess excellent business management skills if it is their intention to run their own practices. A behavioral therapist should have outstanding written and organizational skills in order to maintain proper patient files and histories. Being able to take detailed notes during patient therapy sessions is also a necessity.
The career and economic outlook of the behavioral therapist as defined by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics forecasts that psychology related jobs, including those such as behavioral therapists, should see a future increase at a better than average rate. Behavioral therapists, being part of the general psychology field, can look forward to BLS reported median annual wages for psychologists. As of May 2009, salaries are around $58,000 a year for those therapists practicing individual, family or outpatient care services. Now is a good time to get into the behavioral therapy field of work. Contact your local higher learning institution for more information on becoming a behavioral therapist.