Diplomas and certificates are awarded by accredited schools and colleges, to students who complete a course of study. These documents certify that the candidate has successfully completed the course, but they differ in a few aspects.
Certificates are issued by a school after attending an accredited course.
Diplomas provide more in-depth knowledge of the course you are studying and are of a longer duration than certificates. This normally entails completing case studies or reflective practice, attending an assessment etc.
When it comes to course fee, usually diploma fees are a little higher than certificate fees. That is because the diploma course takes longer and contains more admin i.e. marking, than a certificate course.
When it comes to employability, diplomas are more widely accepted than certificates. Sure, a certificate says you have some knowledge about a field, but diploma says you have an extensive knowledge about a field. Therefore, employers prefer diplomas to certificates.
However, the situation becomes confusing when some schools name their certification programs as diplomas. When faced with such a situation, it is important to make sure that your professional body and insurance recognise the course. Also, you can check for the duration, fees, and course work of the course to decide which path best suits you and your therapy portfolio.