Hawaii Psychology Licensure Requirements

Psychology licensure in Hawaii is overseen by the state government’s Board of Psychology. If you want to become a licensed psychologist in Hawaii, you must obtain a doctoral degree in psychology, submit an application to the Board, earn a certain number of supervised work hours, and pass a national exam. Because this is a complex process that requires a number of steps, we’ve created the following guide to help you navigate it. On this page, you’ll find detailed instructions for every step involved in becoming a psychologist in Hawaii. We’ve also included answers to questions you may have about psychology licensure, such as:

» How do I become a psychologist in Hawaii?
» I have earned a PhD or PsyD and I am ready to learn how to get a psychologist license in Hawaii.
» What are Hawaii’s supervised professional experience rules and regulations?
» What psychology exams are required in Hawaii?
» I am already a licensed psychologist in another state; how do I become licensed in Hawaii?
» How do I renew my psychology license in Hawaii?
» How much do psychologists in Hawaii make?

Three Steps to Becoming a Psychologist in Hawaii

To become a licensed psychologist in Hawaii, you must take three major steps. First, you will need to earn a bachelor’s degree (and may choose to earn an optional master’s degree after that). Next, you must earn a doctoral degree in psychology. You can earn your doctorate from one of the psychology programs in Hawaii or from a school in another state that meets Hawaii’s requirements. The third and final step is to submit an application to the Board and fulfill their requirements for licensure.

1. Earn a bachelor’s degree and (optionally) a master’s degree in psychology.

The first step to becoming a licensed psychologist in Hawaii is to earn a bachelor’s degree in any topic (a psychology major is not required). Bachelor’s degrees usually take four years—or about 120 credit hours—to finish. When you are done with your bachelor’s degree, you will earn either a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree, both of which will be accepted by graduate programs in psychology.

If you did not major in psychology as an undergraduate or want more experience before applying to doctoral programs (see Step 2), you can consider earning a stand-alone master’s degree in psychology after you have finished your bachelor’s degree. This is optional, however, as you will likely earn a master’s degree as part of your doctoral program. If you choose to pursue a master’s degree in psychology, you may need to meet educational prerequisites and take the Graduate Record Examination before being admitted. Master’s degrees in psychology usually take about two years—around 35-45 credit hours—and award either Master of Arts (MA) or Master of Science (MS) degrees.

2. Earn a PsyD or PhD in psychology.

The next step towards licensure is to apply for an and complete a doctoral program in psychology. These programs award either Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in psychology or Doctor of Psychology (PsyD) degrees; it can be helpful to understand the differences between them before you apply. It usually takes between four and seven years to complete a PsyD or PhD in psychology, depending on the specific program you attend.

To become licensed as a psychologist in Hawaii, you must attend a doctoral program in clinical, counseling, or school psychology (or a combination of these) that is accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA) or is housed in a regionally-accredited institution. Note that if you attend a program that is not APA-accredited, you will need to provide documentation during the application process that your program provided equivalent training, including a one-year predoctoral internship. For more information about schools to consider, please visit our Psychology Schools in Hawaii page.

3. Get licensed to practice psychology in Hawaii.

Once you have completed the educational prerequisites for a career as a psychologist, you can begin the process of becoming licensed. This involves submitting an application to the Board, completing two years of supervised experience, and passing a national psychology exam. Below are instructions for each of these steps, including links to application forms and other resources.

Hawaii Psychologist Licensing Process

1. Complete two years of supervised experience in your area of training.

Hawaii requires all new psychologists to complete two years (3,800 hours) of supervised experience before becoming licensed. The first year of this (1,900 hours) will be earned during your required predoctoral internship that you completed as part of your doctoral program. The remaining 1,900 hours must be earned from postdoctoral training (supervised postdoctoral experience or SPE) in a health service setting. During all of your supervised experience, you must receive supervision from a psychologist who is licensed, certified by the American Board of Professional Psychology, or registered with the National Register of Health Service Psychologists (if the supervisor’s degree was granted before 1970). Your supervisors will need to fill out forms documenting your supervised experience as part of your application to the Board.

2. Submit your application to the Board.

After you have completed 3,800 hours of supervised experience, you will need to complete the Board’s Application for Licensure – Psychologist form. The first two pages outline all of the information you will need to submit along with the application. Note that your internship and postdoctoral supervisors will need to complete the forms that verify your supervised experience hours. If you did not attend an APA-accredited program, you will need to provide specific information about your program’s training (e.g., specific courses taken). When the application is complete, submit it to the Board along with a $50 application fee.

3. Pass the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology.

Once the Board has reviewed and approved your application, you will be granted approval to take the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP), a national exam measuring broad knowledge of psychology. There are 225 multiple-choice items on the EPPP and you must earn a scaled score of 500 or higher to pass. Fees for the EPPP are $687.50, and your scores will automatically be sent to the Board when you have taken the exam.

4. Receive your license from the Board.

After the Board receives notification that you have passed the EPPP, they will notify you that you are eligible to receive your license. Before they will issue it, you will need to pay a licensing fee, which varies based on the date you are licensed. When you receive your license, you may begin practicing independently as a psychologist.

Transferring an Existing License to Hawaii

If you are licensed in another state but planning to move to Hawaii, you will need to obtain a psychology license in Hawaii before you can begin practicing there. Luckily, there are several different ways to apply for this if you hold a clean license (i.e., with no disciplinary actions) in another state:

To apply for licensure by examination waiver, diplomate, or senior psychologist, complete the pages on the Application for Licensure – Psychologist forms required for the type of licensure you are seeking. To apply for licensure by CPQ or NR, complete the Application for License – Psychologist (CPQ/NR) form. All applications must be accompanied by a $50 application fee. Once your application has been reviewed and approved, you will need to pay an additional licensing fee (amount varies based on date) to obtain your license.

Licensing Renewal and Continuing Professional Education Information

To keep your Hawaii psychology license active, you will need to renew it by June 30 of every even-numbered year. Before you can renew your license, you will need to complete 18 hours of continuing education (CE) activities during each two-year renewal period. To count towards this requirement, CE activities must be approved by the APA, the Hawaii Psychological Association (HPA), or other state psychology associations. Once you have completed your CE hours, you can renew your license online through MyPVL. You will need to pay a fee of $278 each time you renew your license.

Hawaii Psychology Jobs and Salary Information

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the average salary for psychologists in Hawaii (with the exception of postsecondary psychology teachers) is $93,625.1 Postsecondary psychology teachers in the state make an average of $72,500.1

If you are planning to look for a job as a counseling, clinical, or school psychologist in Hawaii, the outlook is very good. The number of these psychology jobs is expected to increase by 13.8% between 2016 and 2026, which is comparable to the projected nationwide growth in this field during the same time period (14.2%).2

OccupationNumber EmployedAverage Annual Salary
Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists470$95,500
Industrial-Organizational PsychologistsN/AN/A
Psychologists, All Other110$91,750
Psychology Teachers, PostsecondaryN/A$72,500

Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics as of May 2017.1 Statistics for your locale may vary within this state.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to become a psychologist in Hawaii?

Becoming a licensed psychologist in Hawaii takes about 10 years, though this can vary based on the requirements of the programs you attend and other factors. To become licensed, you will need to obtain a doctoral degree in psychology as well as a year of postdoctoral experience.

What degree do I need to be a licensed psychologist in Hawaii?

To earn a license to practice psychology in Hawaii, you must earn a PhD or PsyD degree in clinical, counseling, or school psychology (or a combined program in these areas). You must also earn your degree from an APA-accredited program or one that has equivalent training.

How much do psychologists in Hawaii make?

The average salary for a psychologist in Hawaii (excluding postsecondary psychology teachers) is $93,625.1 The amount of money a psychologist can make is based on a number of factors, including their location within the state and their specialty.

Additional Resources

1. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2017 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Hawaii: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_hi.htm
2. Long Term Occupational Projections (2016-2026): https://www.projectionscentral.org/projections/longterm