Psychology Acronym Glossary

Updated August 17, 2022 · 2 Min Read

Mental health professionals use countless acronyms to communicate quickly with colleagues. Bookmark our glossary of the most important psychology acronyms you need to know. is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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During your academic studies and throughout your career in psychology, you will frequently use shorthand terms to communicate with your colleagues and clients. Our glossary of need-to-know psychology acronyms is organized into degrees, mental illnesses, therapies, job titles, and professional organizations.

Counseling and Psychology Degree Acronyms

BA: Bachelor of Arts

BS: Bachelor of Science

BSW: Bachelor of Social Work

DSW: Doctor of Social Work

MA: Master of Arts

MS: Master of Science

MSW: Master of Social Work

Ph.D.: Doctor of Philosophy

Psy.D.: Doctor of Psychology

Mental Illnesses Acronyms

ADHD: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

APD: Antisocial Personality Disorder

ASD: Autism Spectrum Disorder

BD: Bipolar Disorder

BED: Binge Eating Disorder

BDD: Body Dysmorphic Disorder

BPD: Borderline Personality Disorder

DMDD: Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder

ED: Emotional Disturbance or Eating Disorder

GAD: Generalized Anxiety Disorder

ID: Intellectual Disability

LD: Learning Disability

MDD: Major Depressive Disorder

OCD: Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

OUD: Opioid Use Disorder

PPD: Paranoid Personality Disorder

PTSD: Most Traumatic Stress Disorder

SAD: Seasonal Affective Disorder

TBI: Traumatic Brain Injury

Therapy Acronyms

ACT: Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

CAT: Cognitive Analytic Therapy

CBT: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

CET: Cognitive Enhancement Therapy

CFT: Compassion Focused Therapy

CMT: Concentrative Movement Therapy

CPT: Cognitive Processing Therapy

DBT: Dialectical Behavior Therapy

EFT: Emotionally Focused Therapy

EFT: Emotional Freedom Therapy

FAP: Functional Analytic Psychotherapy

IBP: Integrative Body Psychotherapy

ISTDP: Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy

MDT: Mode Deactivation Therapy

PCIT: Parent-Child Interaction Therapy

PCT: Person-Centered Therapy

PE: Prolonged Exposure Therapy

REBT: Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy

TFP: Transference Focused Psychotherapy

Counseling and Psychology Job Title Acronyms

CADC: Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor

CAC: Certified Addiction Counselor or Certified Alcoholism Counselor

CSAC: Certified Substance Abuse Counselor

LCMHC: Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor

LCPC: Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor

LCSW: Licensed Clinical Social Worker

LICDC: Licensed Independent Chemical Dependency Counselor

LMFT: Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist

LMHC: Licensed Mental Health Counselor

LMHP: Licensed Mental Health Practitioner

LPC: Licensed Professional Counselor

LPCC: Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor of Mental Health

LSSP: Licensed Specialist in School Psychology

MFCC: Marriage, Family, and Career Counselor

NCSP: Nationally Certified School Psychologist

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ABCFP: American Board of Couple and Family Psychology

ABPN: American Board of Professional Neuropsychology

ABPP: American Board of Professional Psychology

ACSW: Academy of Clinical Social Workers

AMA: American Medical Association

APA: American Psychological Association

NAMI: National Alliance on Mental Illness

NIMH: National Institute of Mental Health

Other Psychology Resources

Featured Image: Susan Frick / EyeEm / Getty Images

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