30 Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

Written by Grad School Center Team We are a passionate team of experienced educators and advisors at, dedicated to guiding students through their graduate education journey. Our experts, with advanced degrees across various disciplines, offer personalized advice, up-to-date program information, and practical insights into application processes.

Reviewed by David Krug David Krug is a seasoned expert with 20 years in educational technology (EdTech). His career spans the pivotal years of technology integration in education, where he has played a key role in advancing student-centric learning solutions. David's expertise lies in marrying technological innovation with pedagogical effectiveness, making him a valuable asset in transforming educational experiences. As an advisor for enrollment startups, David provides strategic guidance, helping these companies navigate the complexities of the education sector. His insights are crucial in developing impactful and sustainable enrollment strategies.

Updated: February 28, 2024, Reading time: 21 minutes

Highest Paying Therapy Related Jobs - featured image

Find your perfect college degree

Grad School Center is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Various jobs in the country provide therapy or therapeutic services for the enhancement of mental, emotional, and physical well-being. These occupations aren’t just personally fulfilling but also financially rewarding.

Check out our list below for the top-paying jobs that provide therapeutic services.

Grad School Center is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.


Psychiatrist - Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

Psychiatrists are primary care physicians specializing in the diagnosis and treatment of mental health illnesses. They are trained in the fields of psychotherapy or personal counseling, as well as psychoanalysis.

Unlike psychologists, psychiatrists are also trained in the fields of medication and hospitalization, and thus, they’re qualified to prescribe medications to their patients to address mental illnesses that chemical imbalances may cause.

Clinical Psychologist

Clinical psychologists are mental health professionals specializing in the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of emotional and psychological issues. They are often employed in healthcare establishments, including offices of health practitioners and physicians, as well as in outpatient care centers.

Their scope of work generally includes:

Occupational Therapist

Occupational Therapist - Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

Occupational therapists assist individuals with disabilities, injuries, and illnesses in gaining the necessary skills that foster independence for daily living and vocational goals.

The highest-paying industry for these healthcare professionals is the “Management of Companies and Enterprises” sector. It generally includes holding companies and corporate offices that manage or oversee the operations of other organizations.

The roles and responsibilities of occupational therapists generally include:

Physical Therapist

Physical therapists are healthcare professionals who assist in managing pain and improving movement for individuals with injuries, illness, or other conditions that affect physical mobility and function. Most physical therapists work full-time and during normal business hours, with some of them working on weekends and evenings. 

Their scope of work generally includes:

Radiation Therapist

Radiation Therapist - Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

Radiation Therapists are healthcare specialists who administer radiation treatment to patients with cancer and other related diseases. Although outpatient care centers offer the highest pay, radiation therapists are mostly employed full-time in general medical and surgical hospitals as well as in physician offices.

Their scope of work generally includes:

Genetic Counselors

Genetic counselors are health practitioners who evaluate genetic information and assess medical/family histories to identify their clients’ hereditary risks. Their clients may include parents who want to assess their risk of bearing children with inherited conditions, as well as individuals who want to know their risks of developing cancer and other genetic syndromes or disorders.

The duties of genetic counselors mainly include the following:

Speech-Language Pathologists

Speech-Language Pathologists - Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

Speech-language pathologists are healthcare specialists who assess and treat patients with communication challenges. They are commonly employed in schools and offices of health practitioners (other than physicians) as full-time professionals. Part-time employment is also common for this occupation. In addition, they occasionally work in the realm of Special Education.

Their roles and responsibilities include:

Child Life Specialists

Child life specialists are healthcare professionals who provide support and advice to children and families during hospitalization, illness, disability, and other related scenarios. They are often employed in children’s hospitals to work with pediatric patients. They also work with children who have to be in the hospital while adult family members are being admitted.

The work of child life specialists generally includes:

Respiratory Therapists

Respiratory Therapists - Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

Respiratory therapists are healthcare specialists catering to the needs of patients with breathing problems, such as those with asthma or chronic conditions. While the minimum educational requirement to be a respiratory therapist is only an Associate’s degree, some employers prefer hiring those with a Bachelor’s degree.

The respiratory therapists’ scope of work generally includes:

Forensic Psychologist

Forensic psychologists generally apply psychological concepts and theories to criminal investigations to comprehend issues related to criminal behaviors. They work in all sectors of the civil and criminal justice system.

Aside from their many duties in every aspect of the criminal justice system, including providing expert testimony in courtroom trials and analyzing crime scene evidence, forensic psychologists also provide counseling and treatment of victims of crimes. They also deliver therapy services to individuals convicted of crimes.

Board Certified Behavior Analysts or ABA Therapist

Board Certified Behavior Analysts or ABA Therapist - Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

ABA (Applied Behavioral Analysts) therapists are healthcare professionals who apply the principles of behavior analysis to help their clients enhance their lives by addressing behavioral challenges. ABA therapists are also hired to help clients enhance their communication and language skills, as well as improve focus, academics, attention, and social skills, especially for children or students with special needs. Also, they often work with Autistic children.

Geriatric Counselors

Geriatric counselors, also called gerontological counselors, are healthcare professionals who work with older adults as they go through the challenging processes of aging, such as cognitive and physical changes, and deal with emotional and psychological consequences. 

The roles and responsibilities of geriatric counselors include:

Drama Therapist

Drama Therapist - Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

Drama therapists are specialists in the intentional use of theater processes with the goal of achieving therapeutic effects for their clients. The activities generally include allowing clients to achieve catharsis by telling stories, expressing feelings, solving problems and other drama-and-theater-related methodologies.

Registered drama therapists can find work in mental health clinics, hospitals, and other healthcare settings, as well as non-clinical settings such as correctional facilities, community centers, training organizations, and nursing homes.

Aquatic Therapist

Aquatic therapists are healthcare specialists who provide therapeutic services for fitness, relaxation, physical rehabilitation, and other benefits through exercises done in water. They apply the principles of physics and water to the development of therapeutic exercise plans to ensure the greatest patient outcomes.

Family and Marriage Therapist

Family and Marriage Therapist - Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

Family and marriage therapists specialize in helping individuals and couples manage and deal with issues involving family matters and other relationships. They are mental health professionals who generally work full-time, with many of them working in the evenings and weekends to suit the schedules of their clients.

Their scope of work generally includes:

Palliative Care Social Worker or Counselor

Palliative care social workers or counselors are clinical social workers who provide assistance and emotional support to patients and their families who are facing life-limiting or serious illnesses. 

The roles of palliative care social workers or counselors generally include:

Neurofeedback Therapist

Neurofeedback Therapist - Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

Neurofeedback therapists utilize neurofeedback or electroencephalogram (EEG) biofeedback to assess their patients’ brainwave activity for therapeutic intervention purposes. Clients will be able to see immediate feedback on their brain activities as they react to stimuli in real-time.

The therapists use the results to devise the appropriate treatment or intervention plan to address behavioral issues such as depression, addiction, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and anxiety. Patients also seek out neurofeedback therapy for conditions like migraines, insomnia, and ADHD. 

According to Data Bridge Market Research, the worldwide neurofeedback market may expand to $1,908.66 million by 2029 from $1,096.02 million in 2021 with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.18% between 2022 and 2029. The research also cited the increasing prevalence of anxiety and ADHD as market opportunities.

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Social Worker

Social workers specialize in substance abuse and mental health. They have a range of advocacy and clinical duties with the goal of assisting their clients to address addiction and enhance their mental well-being.

The roles and responsibilities of substance abuse and mental health social workers include the following:

Massage Therapist

Massage Therapist - Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

Massage therapists are healthcare specialists who treat patients by applying pressure to manipulate the body’s soft tissues in order to alleviate pain and promote relaxation. Many massage therapists are self-employed, while most of those employed are working in personal care services establishments and offices of health practitioners (other than primary care physicians).

Their scope of work generally includes:

Recreational Therapist

Recreational therapists are healthcare specialists who implement and coordinate recreation-based activities, such as arts and crafts, sports, games and music, as part of treatment programs for their patients. They can work in various healthcare and non-clinical settings, such as government parks and recreation departments.

Their scope of work generally includes:

Substance Abuse Counselor

Substance Abuse Counselor - Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

Substance abuse counselors, also referred to as behavioral disorder counselors or addiction counselors specialize in advising individuals or groups on issues involving addictions, alcoholism, and depression, among other related matters. They provide support to help prevent and recover from addiction, improve mental health, and modify undesirable behaviors. 

Mental Health Counselor

Mental health counselors advise and treat clients with psychological conditions like stress, grief, depression, and anxiety. They generally provide support and assistance with their client’s emotional health and relationship challenges.

Exercise Physiologist

Exercise Physiologist - Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

Exercise physiologists are healthcare professionals who employ fitness and physical activity programs to improve the patient’s overall well-being. They’re typically employed in healthcare establishments including general hospitals, as well as clinics of physicians and health practitioners.

Their responsibilities include:

Adventure Therapist

Adventure therapists are mental health professionals who leverage natural settings to provide therapeutic adventure experiences that will engage their clients on behavioral, cognitive, physical, and emotional levels. The locations for this type of therapy include a remote wilderness, a long-term residential camping or a treatment facility with infrastructures for various outdoor activities.

According to Zippia, North Dakota is the “Best State” to be employed as an adventure therapist.

Music Therapist

Music Therapist - Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

Music therapists are allied health professionals who utilize music in therapeutic programs in order to address the social, cognitive, physical, and psychological needs of their clients.

Aside from the traditional clinical settings, music therapists are now employed in other areas of healthcare services, such as oncology treatment centers, hospice care, and pain management clinics. They can also work in special educational settings either as consultants to special education teachers or music educators or as direct service providers to students with disabilities.

Horticultural Therapist

Horticultural therapists are specialists in the combined fields of plant science, horticultural therapy, and human science. They help their clients enhance their overall well-being by engaging in plant-related activities to achieve therapeutic objectives in rehabilitation, treatment, or vocational plans.

According to AHTA, a horticultural therapist must have completed 480 hours of horticultural therapy internship in addition to acquiring the minimum educational requirement of a Bachelor-level horticultural therapy degree or any Bachelor’s degree with relevant coursework.

According to The Career Expert Zipia, Washington is the “Best State” to be employed as a horticultural therapist.

Dance/Movement Therapist

Dance or Movement Therapist - Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

Dance/movement therapists utilize choreography activities and movement exercises for psychotherapeutic use to provide a holistic approach to the improvement of their clients’ cognitive, emotional, physical, and social health and well-being.

They are employed in a variety of industries in both clinical and non-clinical settings. Some also work as freelancers in local communities or set up their private practices.

Art Therapist

Art therapists are clinicians specializing in the integration of the creative process, visual arts, and the field of human development with psychotherapy and counseling. Art therapy is not just implemented for children but also for adult individuals and groups who need intervention or treatment for mental illness, emotional problems, social difficulties, personal traumas, and other related conditions.

Rehabilitation Counselor

Rehabilitation Counselor - Highest Paying Therapy-Related Jobs

Rehabilitation counselors are professionals who assist their clients to lead independent lives and overcome hindrances to daily living and employment. Their clients are individuals with physical, emotional, mental, or developmental disabilities.

The roles and responsibilities of rehabilitation counselors generally include:

Animal-Assisted Therapist

National Average: $36,027 per year or $17 per hour

Minimum Education: A master’s degree is required to practice psychotherapy

Licensing Requirements: Some states may require Animal-Assisted Therapy certification from a program accredited by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training or the American Association for Veterinary State Boards

Animal-assisted therapists are part of the growing recreational therapy field. They employ specially trained therapy animals to help patients and clients for several reasons, including alleviation of pain, depression, anxiety, and related conditions. This type of therapy is also used for improving coping skills and in dealing with difficult periods in patients’ lives.

Animal-assisted therapy isn’t just limited to the use of horses and dogs, as many other animals can also serve as therapy animals, including guinea pigs, cats, birds, and many others.

The roles and responsibilities of animal-assisted therapists include:

Highest Paying Therapy Related Jobs - fact

A career in therapy is a truly rewarding experience for individuals who are passionate about helping others. As a therapist, you have the opportunity to make a positive impact in the lives of your clients every day.

Whether you are helping them work through personal challenges, conquer mental health issues, or improve their relationships, therapy allows you to guide individuals toward healing and growth. The feeling of witnessing your clients overcome obstacles and achieve their goals is incredibly fulfilling and can bring a deep sense of satisfaction and purpose to your work.

Additionally, therapy also allows for constant learning and personal development as you continuously adapt to different clients’ needs and challenges. The satisfaction of helping others on their journey toward mental and emotional well-being is what makes a career in therapy truly rewarding.

We’re certain of one thing—your search for more information on picking the best graduate degree or school landed you here. Let our experts help guide your through the decision making process with thoughtful content written by experts.