Frequently Asked Questions

How is a psychiatrist different from other types of psychotherapists? 

A psychiatrist is a physician (licensed medical doctor or M.D.) with four years of specialty training in psychiatry, including exposure to a very wide range of psychological and medical illnesses that impact mental health. Psychiatrists have additional training in neuroscience, neurology, and pharmacology, and are licensed to prescribe medication. Most are also trained in individual and group psychotherapy, though not all practice psychotherapy. Non-physician psychotherapists (licensed as M.F.T., Ph.D., L.C.S.W., or Psy.D.) may be extensively trained in psychotherapy, but generally have less exposure to a broad range of psychiatric conditions, and cannot prescribe medication. Many psychiatrists and other psychotherapists obtain additional training in psychotherapy and/or psychoanalysis after being licensed in their particular discipline. 

What’s the difference between “psychotherapy” and “analysis” or “psychoanalysis”?

All three are types of psychological therapies. Psychoanalysis is a term originally coined by Freud describing a type of treatment focused on unconscious factors that cause symptoms and character problems. Jung’s paradigm has been called Analytical Psychology, forming the basis for a treatment often referred to as “analysis” rather than “psychoanalysis”. In practice, most people use the term psychoanalysis broadly, to include Jungian, Freudian, and a diversity of other types of analytic treatments.  These different theoretical schools have influenced most forms of depth psychotherapy. In general psychoanalysis and psychotherapy are on a continuum, with the analytic traditions tending to involve longer treatments and meeting more frequently. “Depth-oriented” psychotherapies and analysis/psychoanalysis are particularly interested in the influence of the unconscious on psychological life, but there are forms of psychotherapy with much less emphasis on unconscious processes (such as Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy).

What is the difference between a Jungian psychotherapist and a Certified Jungian Analyst?

Any psychotherapist who is interested in Jungian psychology can call themselves a Jungian psychotherapist, at any level of experience, and without earning any particular credential. In contrast, a Certified Jungian Analyst is an experienced psychotherapist who has applied for competitive admission to an accredited Jungian training institute, has undergone extensive personal analysis themselves, completed many years of structured academic study and supervised clinical work, and has been examined and certified by a board of senior analysts. This results in a high level of academic training, personal development, and clinical experience.