How to Become a Psychologist in New York
The psychology industry in New York is not growing quite as quickly as most other states; however there are a lot of opportunities for a future psychologist. The New York Department of Labor estimates that psychologist jobs are expected to grow 4.6% through the year 2018. This creates openings in healthcare settings, research facilities, teaching facilities and more. Of course there is always the option of private practice for a psychologist as well.
A psychologist has the knowledge and experience to assess and diagnose mental illnesses that could be wreaking havoc on a person’s life. The psychologist can then help that individual create goals to overcome that illness, prescribe a treatment plan, and guide their client on the journey to illness management or recovery. This is a very serious responsibility to take on, so the state of New York wants to be sure licensed individuals are highly qualified to care for their patients, hence the strict requirements in place for future psychologists.
Education Requirements for Psychologist Licensing in New York
Those on the path to becoming a psychologist in the state of New York will need to obtain a doctoral degree in psychology from a program registered as “licensure qualifying” by the Department. The state also wants their psychologists to be able to identify child abuse and know the procedures for reporting it, so they’re required to complete training or coursework to satisfy the Child Abuse Identification Reporting requirement in the laws and statutes of New York. Research the various psychology degrees in New York.
The exception to the doctoral degree requirement is only for those who plan to become school psychologists. These individuals must only earn a Master’s Degree in school psychology and then complete 2 years of supervised experiencing before going after their license.
There are different types of doctoral programs available in the state of New York, and depending upon which one you choose, you could spend 3 to 7 years earning your degree. Some of those programs will include hands-on experience like internships and supervised residencies, which can count as part of your supervised experience requirement.
Supervised Professional Experience Requirements for a Psychologist
While you’re earning your degree and for some time after, you will be gaining experience that is required in order to obtain your license. You must accumulate at least 2 years’ worth of experience, defined as 1750 clock hours per year. One of these years can be completed while you’re earning your degree, provided it is one of the following:
- A university-approved doctoral level practicum, internship, field experience or applied research. The research must not be part of your dissertation or thesis requirement.
- Teaching psychology as a university or college faculty member may also be excepted if it meets all the state requirements.
The additional year must be earned after you’ve earned your degree, and must meet all the requirements in Section 601-A of the Education Law of New York.
Note: To learn more about how to earn a psychology license in the state of New York, please visit the New York Office of the Professions.
Examinations for the Psychologist License in New York
The only test required in the state of New York to become a psychologist is the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP), administered by the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards. This is the industry-standard test, and covers the following topics:
- Biological Bases of Behavior - 12%
- Cognitive-Effective Bases of Behavior - 13%
- Social and Cultural Bases of Behavior - 12%
- Growth and Lifespan Development - 12%
- Assessment and Diagnosis - 14%
- Treatment, Intervention, Prevention and Supervision - 14%
- Research Methods and Statistics - 8%
- Ethical/Legal/Professional Issues - 15%
Psychology Career Outlook in New York
The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that there are about 10,170 clinical, counseling and school psychologists in the state of New York and that those psychologists earn an annual median wage of $84,090 per year. The annual median wage is at the center, meaning that half of psychologists in the state of New York earn more than that amount while the other half earn less. On a national level, the lowest ten percent of psychologists earned lower than $39,060 while the top ten percent earned an annual median wage in excess of $110,410.