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NOC 2021 Version 1.0


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41301 – Therapists in counselling and related specialized therapies

Therapists in counselling and related specialized therapies assist individuals and groups of clients to identify, understand and overcome personal problems and achieve personal objectives. They can be specialized to work on specific problems and they may practice psychotherapy. They are employed by counselling centres, social service agencies, group homes, government agencies, family therapy centres, and educational, health care and rehabilitation facilities, or they may work in private practice.


Example titles

  • Addictions counsellor
  • Art therapist
  • Bereavement counsellor
  • Child and youth counsellor
  • Drama therapist
  • Family counsellor
  • Marriage counsellor
  • Movement therapist
  • Music therapist
  • Psychotherapist
  • Registered clinical counsellor
  • Registered dance therapist
  • Registered marriage and family therapist
  • Sexologist
  • Behavioural consultant
  • Disability consultant
  • Play therapist
  • Psychoeducational consultant
  • Psychoeducator

Main duties

This group performs some or all of the following duties:
  • Interview clients, prepare case histories and assess problems
  • Develop and implement counselling and intervention programs to assist clients in determining goals and means of attaining them
  • Counsel clients, provide therapy and mediation services, and facilitate group sessions
  • Liaise with community agencies or partners, and identify additional or alternative services and provide referrals
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of counselling programs and interventions, and clients' progress in resolving identified problems and movement toward defined objectives
  • Follow up on results of counselling programs and clients' adjustments
  • Prepare assessment, progress, follow-up and court reports
  • May supervise other counsellors, social service staff and assistants
  • May provide public education and consultation to other professionals or groups regarding counselling services, issues and methods
  • May provide witness testimony in court proceedings
  • May conduct research, publish research papers, educational texts and articles and deliver presentations at conferences
  • May collaborate with employee assistance programs or with government organizations in health and safety or with victims of crime
  • May participate in fundraising activities.

Employment requirements

  • A bachelor's or a master's degree in the field of counselling, therapy, mental health, psychology or a related social service discipline is required and a period of supervised clinical work with clients may be required.
  • A master’s degree in the field of therapy is required for art therapist, music therapist, and dance therapists.
  • Membership with a provincial or federal association is usually required by employers.
  • Registration with a regulatory body is required in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick for counselling therapists.
  • To practise psychotherapy, a permit is required in Quebec and registration with the appropriate regulatory body is required in Ontario.
  • In Quebec, registration with a regulatory body is required for marriage and family therapists, psychoeducators and sexologists and criminologists.

Additional information

  • Counselling therapists usually become specialized in a particular area through continual training and experience.
  • Progression to social service management positions is possible with additional training and experience.


  • Educational counsellors (41320)
  • Career development practitioners and career counsellors (except education) (41321)
  • Kinesiologists and other professional occupations in therapy and assessment (31204)
  • Managers in social, community and correctional services (40030)
  • Social and community service workers (42201)
  • Social workers (41300)
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