Despite popular belief, the name “therapist” can be used by anyone because there is no professional license, governing body, or educational background needed to call oneself a “therapist.” However, licensed professionals who call themselves therapists have varying levels of training and backgrounds. Some therapists are trained in social work. Some therapists are trained in counseling. Most therapists have a masters degree and a professional license, although anyone can call themselves a “therapist”
Unlike other therapists, clinical psychologists have their doctorate degree and are licensed to practice psychology — that is, they have the training and board certification to diagnose and treat psychological problems, disorders, or abnormal behavior.
Some clinical psychologists are trained in conducting assessments and providing psychotherapy. Some clinical psychologists are trained to conduct research. I am a clinical psychologist does all three. In all cases, I use evidence-based, best practices according to the empirical (research) literature. In other words, I use methods that have been demonstrated to be effective for a given psychological problem, disorder, or abnormal behavior.