dcsimg

Psychiatric Technicians

Psychiatric technicians help people that are developmentally or emotionally disabled. They help people that are suffering from mental distress or mental illness including psychosis, depression and dementia. They are part of a professional services team. They work under the direction of psychiatrists, mental health nurses, registered nurses and other mental health workers. A psychiatric technician position is an entry-level role in a psychiatric facility.

A psychiatric technician monitors the progress of patients. They help patients participate in group activities. A psychiatric technician may administer oral medications and hypodermic injections and help with personal care and hygiene.

Depending on their employer and their level of certification some psychiatric technicians perform tasks such as admitting patients, record keeping and participating in treatment planning.

Some sample job titles are mental health assistant, health care technician, mental health worker and mental health technician.

Responsibilities

  • Develop and teach strategies in order to promote client wellness and independence
  • Assist and support patients treatment plans
  • Monitor patients using medications
  • Encourage patients to participate in recreational social and other therapeutic activities that improve interpersonal skills and develop social relationships
  • Consult and counsel clients about treatment options and medication therapies
  • Assist patients with personal care and hygiene
  • Take and record measures of a patient's physical condition
  • Research and stay current with new medications
  • Report any problems, issues or concerns regarding medication or changes in a patient's physical or mental health
  • Encourage patients to develop work skills

Job Characteristics

Psychiatric technicians usually work in an institutional setting. A psychiatric technician should be compassionate and have the desire to help people.

Employment Outlook

Good employment growth is expected for psychiatric technicians. Healthcare organizations are creating more jobs related to the role of psychiatric technician. In addition, the median annual earnings of psychiatric technicians in 2008 was $29,250.

Various psych tech certification levels let individuals enter the field with relatively little education. They may advance in their careers as they gain education and experience.

Education, Certification, and Licensing

Most healthcare organizations prefer candidates that have earned an associate degree in human service or a mental health field. Coursework for psychiatric technicians provide and introduction to the general psychology field and emphasizes application and theory in different clinical environments. The classes emphasize the principals that help psychiatric technicians understand the behavior of mentally ill patients. They also take pharmacology courses to learn about medications and how to safely administer them to patients.

In some states, psychiatric technicians have to be licensed, whereas other states allow individuals to enter the field as a psychiatric aide with just a high school diploma or an associate degree in mental health technology. Psychiatric aide training is primarily provided on the job.

In order to advance in their careers, psychiatric technicians typically need to complete college courses or earn a degree in a mental health or developmental disabilities related field. They also need to take examinations for different levels of certification.

Voluntary certification is provided by the American Association of Psychiatric Technicians and is available at four different levels. Level one requires a high school diploma and passing an exam. Level two requires 30 semester hours of college courses and one year of work experience in a developmental disabilities or mental health field. Level three requires a combination of 60 semester hours of college coursework and two years experience. Level four requires a combination of a bachelor's degree and three years of experience.

Resources

Major Employers

The top employers are psychiatric and substance abuse hospitals; residential mental retardation, mental health and substance abuse facilities; doctors' offices, outpatient care centers, individual and family services, and hospitals.

Schools for Psychiatric Technicians are listed in the Browse Schools Section.

Metro Areas Sorted by Total Employment for
Psychiatric Technicians

Listed below are the 10 largest metro areas based on the total number of people employed in Psychiatric Technicians jobs , as of 2016

     
Metro Area Total Employment Annual Mean Salary
Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach 3,490 $29,800
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim 1,440 $54,740
Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land 1,370 $32,330
Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale 1,290 $29,480
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario 1,140 $60,590
Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater 990 $25,320
Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford 910 $25,780
San Luis Obispo-Paso Robles-Arroyo Grande 890 $57,560
Port St. Lucie 820 $27,490
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington 820 $32,920

Compare Total Employment & Salaries for Psychiatric Technicians

Use our handy tool to see what employment and salary numbers look like for two different metro areas

Select State
Select Metro Area 1
Select Metro Area 2
Employment
Salary

Total employment and salary for professions similar to psychiatric technicians

Most Popular Industries for
Psychiatric Technicians

These industries represent at least 1% of the total number of people employed in this occupation.

Industry Total Employment Percent Annual Median Salary
Hospital 36,980 67% $30,620
Government 9,560 17% $27,970
Nursing And Residential Care 4,270 7% $23,590
Medical Office 2,330 4% $25,800
Social Service 830 1% $23,260
Click the Visit School Site buttons to go directly to a school's website and learn more about the school and programs it has to offer. School website will open in a new tab.
Click the Request Info buttons to request more information from a representative at the school.
 
Results:  10
Matching School Ads
Programs
  • Substance Abuse
  • A private, accredited distance learning college based in Norcross, Georgia founded in 1987.
  • Ensures that service members, their spouses and veterans can maximize their military education benefits.
  • Gives students the option to customize monthly payments to fit their budgets and lifestyle.
  • Offers all-inclusive tuition: textbooks, learning materials, and academic support are covered in the cost.
  • Allows alumni to enroll in any future program at a reduced rate.
Programs
  • Alcohol & Drug Counseling Studies
  • Online Alcohol & Drug Counseling Studies
  • Morning, afternoon, evening and weekend classes are available.
  • Offers lifetime career assistance services to graduates, including resume and cover letter assistance, employer networking, and one-on-one employment counseling.
  • Accredited by the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET).
  • 8 campuses located across California, with 3 additional campuses in New Hampshire and Maine and online options.
Programs
  • Master of Education in School Counseling
  • Offers students a variety of degrees & programs to help them explore their passion
  • Online programs & 3 campuses in San Antonio, Houston, & Rio Grande Valley, TX
  • A Catholic Education at OLLU is shaped by their unique belief in God’s Providence
  • #1 in San Antonio, Highest Percentage of Classes Under 20 by US News & World Report
  • 95% of 2016 incoming OLLU freshmen received scholarships or aid
Programs
  • M.S. in Psychology with an Emphasis in Forensic Psychology
  • Graduate Certificate of Completion in GeroPsychology
  • M.S. Psychology with an Emphasis in Geropsychology
  • Which career path will you take – Business, Nursing, Education, Psychology? Something else? GCU offers more than 100 majors to get you started!
  • Colangelo College of Business: Features more than 25 programs from the bachelor through the master's level, including several high-demand MBA programs and an accelerated accounting degree.
  • College of Nursing and Health Care Professions: Rich 25-year history providing outstanding health care and nursing degree programs, including an RN to BSN program & master's in nursing degrees.
  • College of Education: Whether you are looking to start or advance your career as a teacher or administrator, GCU offers bachelor’s and master’s in education degrees in key areas.
  • College of Humanities and Social Sciences: Provides a job focused education and features a variety of programs from counseling and psychology to justice studies, history and English literature.
  • Does something else interest you? GCU also offers programs in Doctoral Studies; Theology; Science, Engineering & Technology; and Fine Arts & Production. Speak with an enrollment counselor today!
Programs
  • Psychology (BA)
  • Online bachelor's programs include BBA, Criminal Justice, IT, Healthcare Management, Pscyhology & Public Health
  • Over 115 years of delivering quality education and personalized attention to students
Programs
  • Master of Science in Applied Psychology - Community Psychology
  • MSAP - General Track
  • Master of Science in Applied Psychology
  • SJU provides a rigorous, student-centered education rooted in the liberal arts
  • A Jesuit school with 8,415 students in all programs for 2016 grads &undergrads
  • Institutionally Accredited by the MSCHE and the AACSB (Haub School of Business)
  • 96% of 2016 graduates employed, pursuing graduate study or volunteering full time
  • Qualifying students can receive financial assistance with tuition costs
Programs
  • PhD in Psychology
  • Allows students to transfer credits from non-U.S. colleges and universities after evaluation.
  • Has students attend one class at a time to ensure easy access to faculty and a more hands-on education.
  • Its main campus is located in Fort Lauderdale, with campuses located throughout the State of Florida and internationally. 
  • Provides a Department of Student Services and Resources that assists students with résumé preparation, interviewing skills coaching, mock interviewing, professional development workshops, and more.
Programs
  • M.A. Clinical Psychology, Marital and Family Therapy Specialization
  • Psy.D. Clinical Psychology
  • Psy.D. Applied Clinical Psychology
  • Designated a 2015 Military Friendly School by Victory Media for the 4th consecutive year.
  • Listed on the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll in 2013, for the sixth consecutive year.
  • Links students to hundreds of training opportunities ( beyond their traditional internships and practicum) at their many “partner agencies” in each of their local communities. 
  • Accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).
camnpus icon
Los Angeles
Request Info
Programs
  • Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
  • Ranked among the 2015 Best National Universities by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Designated as a Military Friendly School every year since 2012 by Victory Media.
  • Offers credit for prior learning and experience through assessment tests.
  • Provides a short term Leadership Certification program in partnership with EQUIP®.
  • Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association (NCA).
Programs
  • Applied Behavior Analysis Certificate

Mason is committed to creating a more just, free and prosperous world. Located in one of the most important political, economic and intellectual hubs in the world, we accept our responsibility to serve others: to help our students succeed, enrich the life of our community, and contribute to solving some of the most complex global problems of our time.

We have some additional detailed pages at the state level for Psychiatric Technicians.

Numbers in parentheses are counts of relevant campus-based schools in the state; online schools may also be available.

Back to Top