Educational Therapy: A Career that Makes a Difference

Educational therapy is a rewarding career choice both professionally and personally.  Educational therapy’s encompassing view of the whole child encompasses academic, psycho-educational and socio-emotional aspects of a client’s life in an effort to improve the client’s learning experience.

Who do educational therapists work with?

Educational therapists often use an eclectic intervention model where varied intervention approaches and techniques are utilized in order to achieve the desired goals.  Educational therapists can choose to specialize in a variety of areas or work with diverse age or learning issues.  While some educational therapists are generalists, others may specialize in areas such as reading, writing, math, and/or executive functioning skills.  Educational therapists work with clients at different age levels with various learning issues including specific learning disabilities, Asperger’s syndrome, ADHD, etc.

Through case management, educational therapists also have the benefit of collaborating with allied professionals and all significant individuals involved with the client’s learning, which serves to create a carefully considered and comprehensive intervention plan.

Where do educational therapists work?

Educational therapists work in a variety of settings.  They might have their own office, share an office with another educational therapist, or share an office with a licensed professional such as a speech and language pathologist or a psychologist.  Some educational therapists have a travelling practice where see clients in the client’s home or school.  Not all educational therapists are in clinical practice; some work in schools, centers, or clinics with groups or with individuals.  Many who teach in schools or clinics also conduct a private practice after school. Educational therapists can establish a flexible schedule that suits his or her professional, financial, and personal needs.

Educational therapists in private practice manage their caseload, establish a network of professionals, and become familiar with the local services and programs in their community.  AET’s study groups and workshops are excellent resources for educational therapists developing their practice.

A Career Path in Educational Therapy

The pathway towards a Professional level of membership in the Association of Educational Therapist is a rewarding personal goal for students who are novices in the field.  Most students, but not all, arrive from the fields of special education since the education specialist credential courses offer the most solid background of required coursework. However, many students arrive from the related fields of education, speech and language, counseling, administration and psychology.  If one comes from a related field, prerequisite courses may be required before entering a program in educational therapy.  Educational therapy programs prepare individuals to fulfill AET’s academic requirements.  The academic requirements consist of ten courses necessary to be considered at the first level of membership for educational therapists, Associate Educational Therapist.  For a list of programs in educational therapy click here . The Student level of membership is not a pre-requisite for Associate level.

Once the required courses have been successfully completed, an individual at the Student level of membership is ready to be advanced to the Associate level of membership.  The Associate level of membership is a temporary level that enables the prospective educational therapist time to gather the direct service and supervisory hours that are required for Professional level of membership (ET/P).  The Professional level of membership is the goal of all educational therapists, however some individuals may wish to achieve a still higher level of training and expertise and become Board Certified Educational Therapists (BCETs), which enables a Professional Educational Therapist to become a leader in the field and mentor others who are pursuing training.  Educational therapy can provide individuals with a fulfilling career for a lifetime.