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Student Professional Identification Statement

Rationale: To provide guidance to students on nomenclature that conveys appropriate titles related to their professional training and practice roles and activities.

The Office of Clinical Training (OCT) offers the following guidance to students regarding the appropriate use of titles while in training.

Titles should convey that a student is in training and that the nature of that training is psychological.  Some titles are colloquial and should never be used for official or public relations purposes. Such is the case for the acronym "ABD", which stands for the completion of “all but dissertation” in meeting doctoral requirements.

The chart below suggests best practices for training and work titles. This chart shows how to differentiate title usage based on training status and practice context. If you have questions, please discuss these issues with your advisor or members of the Clinical Training Committee. 

 

Training Level / Professional

Status

Titles Relating to Academic Standing

Titles Relating to Training Roles

Titles Used For  Unaffiliated Sites, Work Settings

Graduate Training:

Doctoral Internship

Best Practice:

Graduate Student or Year Level as a Graduate Student (i.e. 2nd year doctoral student).

 

Best Practice: “Psychology Trainee”

Job titles should not be used as professional titles. They may be used for internal documents or scholarly writings to include titles like “Clinician, Psychometrician, Provider, Therapist, etc.”  

The title “Psychology Assistant” may be used if your training credentials are approved for this title by the State Board of Psychology or the Ohio Department of Mental Health.

Best Practice:

Be sure to indicate that you are a student, or in clinical psychology training.

Use other titles such as Psychometrician, Provider, Clinician, or Therapist based on context of client and staff contact. You can also use these titles for internal documents or scholarly writings.

Psychology Assistant may be used if designated by the State Board of Psychology.

Graduate Training: Internship

Best Practice:

Graduate Student or Year Level as a Graduate Student, i.e. “5th year doctoral student”.

Other titles may be assumed based on duties and should be used within those contexts or in reports or scholarly writings to include:

“Teaching Assistant, Instructor, or Research Assistant”

Best Practice:

“Doctoral Psychology Intern” or “Psychology Intern”

Job titles should not be used as professional titles. They may be used for internal documents or scholarly writings to include titles like “Clinician, Psychometrician, Provider, Therapist, etc.”  

The title “Psychology Assistant” may be used if your training credentials are approved for this title by the State Board of Psychology or the Ohio Department of Mental Health.

Best Practice:

Be sure to indicate that you are a student, or in clinical psychology training.

Use other titles such as Psychometrician, Provider, Clinician, or Therapist based on context of client and staff contact. You can also use these titles for internal documents or scholarly writings.

Psychology Assistant may be used if designated by the State Board of Psychology.

Post Doctoral

Training

Best Practice:

“Postdoctoral Fellow”

Other titles may be used based on duties. They should be used within the academic context where appropriate for reports, scholarly writings, or teaching and research relationship to the School (i.e. Instructor, Lecturer, Research Associate, or Research Fellow, Clinical Fellow). 

Best Practice:

“Psychology  Fellow”

Administrative titles are also commonly used at this stage of professional training:

“Assistant Director, Coordinator, Program Director, or Project Manager” when describing work responsibilities.

Job or administrative titles should not be used as professional titles.

Best Practice:

Any of the titles used in the other columns per the context of the work that is being done.

Fellows should be appropriately registered with the Ohio State Board of Psychology.

Post Licensure

Best Practice:

Use the title of “Psychologist” or Clinical Psychologist” (a general license is given in the State of Ohio)

Academic Titles:

Lecturer, Instructor, Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, Full Professor

Administrative Titles: Varies by school and university (i.e. Director, Department Chair. Assistant Dean Associate Dean, Dean, Provost) 

Best Practice:

Use the title of “Psychologist” or Clinical Psychologist”

However it is common to reference one’s areas of focus or specialty in presenting to the public: “Generalist, Family Psychologist, Neuropsychologist, Pediatric or Child Psychologist, Etc.

Functional Roles are similar to job titles and may be used  on internal documents or reports to include the following:

Consulting Psychologist, Supervising Psychologist, Clinical Director, Chief Psychologist, etc.

Any combination of post licensure titles already listed may be used in ternal and external settings.