The members of the psychology discipline provide a number of psychological services such as assessment, psychotherapy, program evaluation and development, research, teaching, and consultation.
Direct work with clients usually involves either assessment or psychotherapy.
Psychological assessments can be undertaken to provide a better understanding of the personality, diagnosis, thinking abilities, achievement levels, preferences, etc., of an individual.
Psychotherapy involves the development of a relationship with a psychological service provider, and within that relationship working toward meaningful changes in thoughts, feelings, behaviors and interpersonal relationships. Many forms of psychotherapy will directly address diagnostic concerns, such as depression or anxiety; other forms will be concerned with relapse prevention and rehabilitation.
Psychotherapy can be undertaken from a variety of theoretical perspectives (e.g., psychoanalytic, psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioral, narrative, humanistic) and in a variety of modalities (individual, group, family, couple).
Psychology is a regulated profession, and psychological services can only be provided by, or under the supervision of, a member of the College of Psychologists of Ontario. There are useful websites that explain the distinctions among psychology service providers (e.g., psychologist, psychological associate, psychometrist), as well as what the various service providers do. These include the Ontario Psychological Association, the Canadian Psychological Association, and the Ontario Association of Psychological Associates. As well, the body that regulates psychologists and psychological associates, the College of Psychologists of Ontario, also has useful information. On these sites, look for a link to information for the public.