ACSW: Academy of Certified Social Workers. The social work practitioner with the ACSW license has a graduate academic degree and has completed two years of supervised clinical work experience and 20 hours of relevant continuing education. Licensed clinical social workers are approved providers in most insurance and managed-care plans.
LMFT: Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist has a graduate academic degree, clinical work experience, and has passed state-certified licensing exams. Along with a two- to three-year master’s program with a practicum and internship, LMFTs are required to complete clinical training in individual or family therapy. Some states require completion of 3000 hours of service and a minimum of 200 hours of direct supervision from AAMFT (American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists) Approved Supervisors. LMFTs specialize in treating marriage, and family problems while equipped to handle a wide variety of individual maladies.
LMSW: The Licensed Master Social Worker has advanced training, a graduate academic degree, has had supervised clinical work experience, and has passed a national- or state-certified licensing exam.
LPC: The Licensed Professional Counselor has advanced training, a graduate academic degree, clinical work experience, and has passed a state-certified licensing examination. Counselors treat all sorts of problems from alcoholism and eating disorders to relationship issues and depression.
MA: A Master of Arts is a postgraduate academic degree typically based in fine art, humanities, social science, theology, or other liberal arts areas of study. It usually requires two years of study along with a thesis. Many counselors and social workers hold a master’s degree, and many Ph.D. psychologists earn a master’s “en route” to earning their doctorate degree.
MDiv: The Master of Divinity is an advanced professional degree for those in the practice of ministry. The MDiv is a common academic degree in theological seminaries; this degree is a standard prerequisite for ordination to priesthood or pastorship or other such appointments.
MS: A Master of Science is an academic degree usually awarded after completion of two years of graduate study. Many MS programs also require a thesis. Many therapists hold a master’s degree, and many earn a master’s “en route” to earning their doctoral degree.
PhD: The Doctor of Philosophy is an academic degree earned in four to seven years. Many psychologists, therapists, counselors, and coaches hold a doctorate of philosophy. A PhD in psychology emphasizes theory as well as statistics and data gathering. Psychologists with a PhD are also fully trained in the assessment and treatment of all behavioral conditions. (American Psychological Association)