What Is the Difference Between a Medium and a Psychic?

While there is a difference between a psychic and a medium, both use extrasensory perception.

The terms psychic and medium are used by the general population somewhat interchangeably to describe individuals who are intuitive and who use divination practices or communications with otherworldly beings. However, there are clear differences between the two terms.

1 Mediums

A medium has the ability to communicate with the spirits of the dead. This may be accomplished by channeling, in which the medium acts as a go-between for the other side.

2 Psychics

A psychic works at an intuitive level. Individuals who are psychic claim to have the ability to perceive information hidden from the normal senses via a “sixth sense” or extrasensory perception.

3 Clairvoyance

A medium may have psychic abilities, but a psychic may not be a medium. Some mediums or psychics also claim to be clairvoyant, meaning they can see the spirits of the dead.

4 Altered State of Awareness

Psychics and mediums work in an altered state of awareness. Psychic abilities can be developed, while becoming a medium cannot--it is purported to be a gift an individual is born with.

5 Foretelling the Future

A psychic may be able to foretell the future in many areas--love, money, career, or travel--by using a variety of tools or spiritual channels.

6 Mediums are Rare

While it is believed that all people have some degree of psychic or intuitive ability, mediumship is very rare.

Robin Devereaux has been writing professionally for more than 25 years. She has written for "The Sowell Review, "Health and Healing Magazine" and has been a contributor to several local Eastern Michigan publications. Robin is a graduate of the Central Michigan University Arts Program.