How to Become a Psychologist in Iowa
In order to become a licensed Psychologist in the state of Iowa, you must first gain a doctorate degree in psychology or a closely related subject such as educational psychology. Your degree must be from an approved or accredited school.
While becoming a psychologist in Iowa can be a fairly long endeavor, the profession can provide an amazing foundation for personal growth and career success.
Education Requirements for Psychologist Licensing in Iowa
In order to qualify for licensure in Iowa, you must obtain a degree at the doctorate level, either a Ph.D. or a PsyD. Your doctorate must be in Psychology or a closely related field such as educational psychology.
Studying for a Masters degree is a crucial part of becoming eligible for licensure as a psychologist. However, after attaining your masters, you will need to carry on studying and gain a doctorate degree. Learn more about the available IA psychology degrees and school options.
Supervised Experience and Examination Requirements for Psychologists in Iowa
Once you have completed your degree the Iowa Board of Psychology will then give you a ‘Psychology Associate’ title. This enables you to complete the required work experience to qualify for licensure in Iowa. You are required to gain 1500 hours of supervised professional experience and you must complete this within one year. While completing your work experience your supervisor must be qualified and approved by the Iowa board and they must also provide you with one hour of direct supervision a week, this is necessary in order to meet licensure requirements.
Provided you have attained the required total hours of supervised work experience you can then apply for licensure from the Iowa Board. Once the board and reviewed and accepted your application you are then able to sit the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP).
Once you have passed the EPPP you are then able to practice as a licensed Psychologist in Iowa.
Note: For detailed information about how to earn a psychology license in Iowa, please see the Iowa board of psychology overview of licensure as a psychologist.
What Can I Do with a PsyD vs a Ph.D. in Iowa?
Once you have graduated from a doctorate program you are almost at the stage where you can apply for licensure. It is now that you will really begin to notice the different career options that PsyD and Ph.D. graduates are presented with. The natural next step for a PsyD graduate is towards a highly clinical career which involves a large amount of patient contact. This career is also a possibility for a Ph.D. graduate, however, the Ph.D. graduate is also able to seek a career in research or education.
In Iowa, as in other states, there are well-established differences between a Ph.D. and a PsyD program. Both degrees adequately fulfill the state's licensure requirements however graduates from these two degrees will have focused on different aspects of psychology. A Ph.D. program focuses heavily on research and this emphasis carries on into the thesis as Ph.D. students are required to write a thesis that contains original research which then goes on to contribute to the field of psychology. A PsyD, on the other hand, doesn’t carry the same emphasis on research, which means a shorter thesis is typically required from its students. PsyD students will focus more time on clinical, patient based work.
Psychology Career Outlook in Iowa
The average annual salary for psychologists working in Iowa is about $80,120. While working in an entry-level position you can expect to earn around $48,480 which will then increase to around $120,850 when you move up to a senior position.