The term "magician" (魔法使い mahōtsukai) is used synonymously. The phrase magical girl (魔法少女 mahō shōjo) is mentioned sparingly in the series itself (despite being a part of the titles), usually in Nanoha's monologues.
Nanoha has been called a "bombardment mage" (砲撃魔導師 hōgeki madōshi) and Yūno a "force field mage" (結界魔導師 kekkai madōshi), but apparently there is no formal classification according to a mage's specialties. A mage is ranked, however, according to the skill and magic power.
In the Ancient Belkan terminology, mages are called "knights" (騎士 kishi), implying that magic was associated with nobility in the antiquity. All Wolkenritter, as well as Zest Grangaitz, are considered Belkan knights. In A's epilogue, Hayate Yagami is referred as a "mage knight" (魔導騎士 madōkishi), thanks to inheriting both Midchildan and Belkan magics from Reinforce.
The only modern organization to use the term "knight" for its personnel is the Saint Church, which follows many of the Belkan traditions.
- See also mage rank.
TSAB assigns its mages to one of 11 "letter grades": in increasing order, F, E, D, C, B, A, AA, AAA, S, SS, SSS. Like similar grading systems, the grade may have a plus or minus. Typically, the TSAB armed forces are ranked D to C, while B is an unpassable wall for many Air/Ground mages at first, officers are ranked AA to S.