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Chapter 135-12 TESTING AND ASSESSMENT

Rule 135-12-.01 Testing and Assessment Instruments

(1) Persons licensed as Professional Counselors, Social Workers or Marriage and Family Therapists are not authorized to perform psychological testing, or represent their use of any testing or assessment instrument as psychological testing, unless he or she is also licensed to practice psychology under O.C.G.A. 43-39.
(2) Persons licensed as Professional Counselors may:
(a) Administer and interpret assessment instruments to evaluate emotional and mental problems and conditions, whether cognitive, behavioral or affective;
(b) Administer and interpret educational and vocational assessment instruments;
(c) Administer and interpret any other assessments or tests which he or she is qualified to employ by virtue of his or her education, training or experience.
(3) Persons licensed as Social Workers may:
(a) Administer and interpret assessment instruments to provide psychosocial evaluations;
(b) Administer and interpret assessment instruments to provide in-depth analyses and determinations of the nature and status of emotional, cognitive, mental, behavioral, and interpersonal problems or conditions.
(4) Persons licensed as Marriage and Family Therapists may:
(a) Administer and interpret assessment instruments to evaluate emotional and mental problems and conditions, whether cognitive, affective or behavioral;
(b) Administer and interpret assessment instruments that evaluate marital and family functioning.
(5) The use of these testing and assessment instruments:
(a) By persons licensed as Professional Counselors, Social Workers, or Marriage and Family Therapists may include, but is not limited to, administering and interpreting educational and vocational tests; functional assessments; interest inventories; tests that evaluate marital and family functioning; and mental health symptom screening and assessment instruments that evaluate emotional, mental, behavioral, and interpersonal problems or conditions including substance abuse, health, and disability, provided that the use of these assessment instruments does not include rendering a diagnosis of a mental and nervous disorder or illness, including but not limited to organic brain disorders, brain damage, or other neuropsychological functioning or conditions, and provided that the licensee has obtained university level graduate training or substantially equivalent supervised experience in the use of the test or assessment instrument.
(b) By persons licensed as Professional Counselors may also include other assessments or tests which the licensee is qualified to employ by virtue of his or her education, training, or experience, provided that the use of these assessment instruments does not include rendering a diagnosis of a mental or nervous disorder or illness, including but not limited to organic brain disorders, brain damage, or other neuropsychological functioning or conditions.

Rule 135-12-.02 Diagnosis

(1) Persons licensed under this chapter as a professional counselor, clinical social worker or marriage and family therapist who comply with this section shall be authorized to diagnose and treat mental, emotional and behavioral disorders through the use of current classification systems such as the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) and/or the International Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD).
(2) On or before January 1, 2018, any person licensed under O.C.G.A. 43-10A working with people with mental illness, developmental disabilities, or substance abuse shall complete a curriculum of education relating to diagnosing mental disorders, as reflected on an official transcript, to be submitted to the Board upon request. Existing licensees whose transcripts demonstrate completion of an acceptable three semester hours or five quarter hours (forty-five clock hours) graduate level course or an organized training program recognized by the Board shall be deemed to have met this requirement of training and education. A graduate level course, such as psychopathology, DSM or other course with similar content, by a regionally accredited university or an organized training program recognized and/or approved by the Board in mental disorders and diagnosing mental disorders consisting of a minimum of three semester hours or five quarter hours (forty-five clock hours) may satisfy this requirement. The Board recognizes courses may have a variety of names depending on the course provider; the Board may request additional information to determine course or program approval. The Board will recognize training programs that are approved by the Georgia chapters of the Licensed Professional Counselors Association (LPCA-GA), the National Association of Social Workers (NASW), Georgia Society of Clinical Social Work (GSCSW) and/or Georgia Marriage and Family Therapist Association (GAMFT).
(3) As of April 26, 2016, persons licensed under this chapter with at least ten years of experience as a professional counselor, clinical social worker, or marriage and family therapist working with people with mental illness, developmental disabilities, or substance abuse and in good standing with the Board are exempt from this requirement.
(4) Licensees who complete an acceptable graduate level course consisting of three semester hours or five quarter hours (forty-five clock hours), or an organized training program recognized by the Board, relating to diagnosing mental disorders as defined in (2) above, and which was completed between October 1, 2016 and January 1, 2018 will satisfy the required 35 continuing education hours for the renewal ending September 30, 2018.