What do they do?

Care for individuals with mental or emotional conditions or disabilities, following the instructions of physicians or other health practitioners. Monitor patients' physical and emotional well-being and report to medical staff. May participate in rehabilitation and treatment programs, help with personal hygiene, and administer oral or injectable medications.

Also known as:

BHT (Behavioral Health Technician), Counselor, Health Care Technician (Health Care Tech), LPT (Licensed Psychiatric Technician), Mental Health Associate, Mental Health Specialist, Mental Health Technician (MHT), MHA (Mental Health Assistant), MHW (Mental Health Worker), Milieu Therapist, Patient Care Specialist, Psychiatric Assistant, Psychiatric Safety Tech (Psychiatric Safety Technician), Psychiatric Technician (PT), Psychology Associate, Rehabilitation Technician (Rehab Tech), Residential Aide (RA), Support Team Member (STM)

Typical Wages

Projected Growth Rate

Employment of Psychiatric Technicians is projected to grow 8 percent from 2020 to 2030, about as fast as average compared to all occupations.

Projected Employment in VA

No Data Available
  • 8.9%

    Change

    Ranks #39 in job growth rate
    330

    Job Openings

    Ranks #6 in net job growth

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Education Level

Percent of workers in this field with these degrees:

  • Doctorate or Professional Degree  (1%)
  • Master's degree  (10%)
  • Bachelor's degree  (36%)
  • Associate's degree  (13%)
  • Some college, no degree  (24%)
  • High school diploma equivalent  (15%)
  • Less than high school diploma  (1%)

Typical College Majors

Most Popular Majors that prepare Psychiatric Technicians

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People in this career often have these skills:

  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work-related documents.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.

People in this career often know a lot about:

  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Therapy and Counseling - Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Medicine and Dentistry - Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.

People in this career often have talent in:

  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing that there is a problem.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  • Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).

People in this career often do these activities:

  • Treat patients using psychological therapies.
  • Care for patients with mental illnesses.
  • Administer non-intravenous medications.
  • Administer intravenous medications.
  • Encourage patients or clients to develop life skills.
  • Position patients for treatment or examination.
  • Maintain medical facility records.
  • Maintain inventory of medical supplies or equipment.
  • Inform medical professionals regarding patient conditions and care.
  • Examine patients to assess general physical condition.
  • Operate diagnostic or therapeutic medical instruments or equipment.
  • Record patient medical histories.
  • Interact with patients to build rapport or provide emotional support.
  • Assist patients with hygiene or daily living activities.
  • Collaborate with healthcare professionals to plan or provide treatment.
  • Assist healthcare practitioners during examinations or treatments.
  • Collect medical information from patients, family members, or other medical professionals.
  • Teach health management classes.
  • Train medical providers.
  • Move patients to or from treatment areas.
  • Perform clerical work in medical settings.

This page includes data from:

O*NET OnLine Career data: O*NET 28.1 Database by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (“USDOL/ETA”). Used under the CC BY 4.0 license. O*NET® is a trademark of USDOL/ETA

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Logo Occupation statistics: USDOL U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment Statistics

careeronestop logo Videos: CareerOneStop, USDOL/ETA and the Minnesota Department of Employment & Economic Development

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