AIHCP Certification Programs Article on Licensure vs Certification

In the world of academics and professional business there are academic and professional titles that associate with a person’s ability and knowledge.  Many times, these terms are misused or confused with each other and inter placed with each other.  This can cause some confusion in the business world and it is important to have a clear understanding what terms mean what and how they are applied to one’s resume or curriculum vitae.

Academic and professional titles can be confusing and terms can be inter placed with each other. Please also review AIHCP’s Certification Programs and see if they meet your academic and professional goals


The first academic accolade is a degree.  A degree is issued by a college or university that has regional approval under the umbrella of the Department of Education.  Regional accreditation means a school meets the standards to offer a degree program from a sanctioned authority.  It ensures the value of the degree and prevents one from receiving a false degree from a diploma mill.  One can earn an under-graduate degree or a bachelors degree from a certain school with a major in a certain study.  If one wishes to pursue higher academic goals, one can earn a graduate degree, known also as a Masters Degree, or if one wishes to proceed to the highest point of a particular study, one can earn a doctorate degree.

Those who teach can have a graduate degree or a doctorate degree.  One who has a doctorate at a university though is not a professor.  Professorship is a professional status granted to the highest members of a department.  Associate professor is a lower status behind professor.   Many teachers are sometimes mistakenly referred to as professor.

Certain degrees grant an individual access to state licensure in certain fields.  Counseling, law, medicine and teaching all require a college degrees in most cases.  Nursing does not require a degree but physicians, lawyers, counselors and teachers all must pass the state board exam to become licensed.  Licensure is regulated by the state and one cannot operate without a license from the particular state to operate in the particular field.

Certification is an additional status that becomes confused with licensure on a daily basis.  Certification is a professional status for those who are licensed, or have the appropriate education via degree or experience.  Certification does not fall under state regulation nor does it fall under accreditation.   Certification instead is conferred upon individuals through professional organizations.  Certification guidelines can vary from organization to organization.

Licensures for nurses are regulated by the state but specialty areas that are not licensed can be merely certifications. Please also review AIHCP’s Certification Programs


A certification is in a non regulated field and is completely voluntary by the professional.   The certification adds to the existing curriculum vitae of a professional with status and recognition of applied knowledge in a specialty field.  Many times employers require certifications in certain job positions.   Certifications are meant to orbit one’s existing career that is highlighted with one’s degree and license.  It can open doors by itself but is not considered a first step in the academic and professional process.  Hence those without degrees or experience or licensure usually do not earn professional certifications, but only those who are already established within a field and look to enhance their study and resume through membership with a professional organization.

A healthcare example for licensure and certification may look like this.  A licensed nurse may look to become licensed in other healthcare fields, such as legal nursing or case management.  These latter fields are not licensed fields by the state.  Hence licensed nurses can earn additional certifications to diversify their professional skills and be more valuable to their employer with their various skill sets.  This is the purpose of certifications for all fields.

AIHCP offers a variety of certifications for healthcare and mental healthcare professionals.  Programs for nurses to enhance their nursing career as well as mental health topics such as grief counseling and stress management are available for counselors and others in teaching or pastoral ministry.  In addition, AIHCP requires students to take continuing education courses to earn certification which in turn can be utilized as hours in some fields for re-licensure with their state.  Hence counselors can earn CE credit within the Grief Counseling Program and nurses can earn credit through the variety of nursing programs in case management and legal nurse consulting.

There are a variety of programs and certifications offered by AIHCP.  Please review AIHCP’s Certification Programs and see if they match your academic and professional goals.  The programs are online and independent study and open to qualified professionals.  The programs include for example, topics in Case Management, Legal Nurse Consulting, Forensic Nursing, Holistic Nursing, Nurse Patient Education, Health Management as well as Grief Counseling, Pet Loss Grief Counseling, Spiritual and Christian Counseling, Anger and Stress Management, Crisis Intervention, Clinical Hypnotherapy, EFT, Meditation Instructor, ADHD Consulting and Substance Abuse Counseling.   Please review to see if any of these programs meet your academic and professional goals.