What is the difference between a Registered Social Worker and a Registered Psychotherapist?

To put simply, their education!

A Social Worker may have completed a Bachelors, Masters or Doctorate degree in Social Work. Registered Social Workers are regulated by the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers (OCSWSSW). Most employee benefit plans currently cover Registered Social Worker. When inquiring about your benefits, check to see if MSW, RSW counselling is covered.


A Psychotherapist may have completed a Masters in Education or a Masters in Counselling Psychology. Registered Psychotherapists are regulated by the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO). Many employee benefit plans are starting to cover Registered Psychotherapists. When inquiring about your benefits, check to see if RP counselling is covered.


In Ontario, both Registered Social Workers and Registered Psychotherapists do not have the ability to prescribe medication or make a clinical mental health diagnosis.