North Dakota Psychology Licensure Requirements

If you’re working to become a practicing psychologist in the state of North Dakota, you might be just at the start of your journey (like studying an undergraduate course) or wrapping up your final requirements (like studying for the EPPP). Either way, you will find this guide to be a helpful step-by-step breakdown of the requirements you must fulfill to be considered for a license to practice psychology in North Dakota. Some of the important questions that aspiring psychologists have include:

» How do I become a Psychologist in North Dakota?
» I have earned a PhD or PsyD and I am ready to learn how to get a Psychologist License in North Dakota.
» Why does North Dakota require fingerprinting and criminal background checks to become a licensed Psychologist?
» What are North Dakota’s Supervised Professional Experience Rules and Regulations?
» What Psychology Exams are required in North Dakota?

Three Steps to Become a Psychologist in North Dakota

While becoming a psychologist in North Dakota can be a daunting process, with this guide from Psychology Degree 411 you won’t have to worry about what step is next. No matter where you are in your career we can help you take the next step to eventually become a licensed professional in North Dakota.

1. Earn a BS in Psychology and a Master’s Degree in Psychology.

The early years of your career should be focused on education. This will give you the opportunity to learn about the general field of psychology. Earning your BS and master’s degree in psychology will prepare you for the advanced studies to come.

2. Earn a PhD or PsyD in Psychology.

All licensed psychologists in North Dakota must have a PhD or PsyD in psychology in order to practice. Because the practice of psychology is a unique split between the medical world and social work, a doctorate degree is required. While earning your doctorate, you will be able to focus on an area of expertise while gaining the experience needed to help you succeed in an ever-competitive workforce.

Since attending the right doctoral program is such an important facet of your career, we’ve compiled a comprehensive list of PhD or PsyD programs offered in North Dakota.

3. Get Licensed to Practice Psychology in North Dakota.

Education is just the stepping-stone for you to launch a successful psychology career in North Dakota. Here’s what steps you’ll need to take next:

North Dakota Psychologist Licensing Process

1. Complete a Background Check and Fingerprint Procedures.

Psychologists play a critical role in the lives of their patients. From helping them improve the quality of life to dealing with mental hygiene, psychologists are some of the most involved professionals in the state. This is why the North Dakota State Board of Psychologist Examiners requires applicants and licensees alike to verify their criminal history – or lack thereof.

A basic background check is conducted to ensure that you can safely interact and work with patients. This check includes a fingerprinting procedure that you must complete yourself. We suggest reviewing the Education Standards and Practices Board website, which details exactly how you can get your fingerprint taken to complete the background check requirement for licensure.

2. Complete Supervised Professional Experience (SPE) Requirements.

As required by the North Dakota State Board of Psychological Examiners, applicants must complete two years of SPE.2 At least one of these years will occur predoctorally, composed of 1,500 hours, and the other half takes place after you earn your doctoral degree. Please note that in North Dakota, your supervisor must submit a form, defining your role before the SPE occurs, as well as verify it after completion.

To learn more about the SPE requirements, visit Article 66-02 on Psychologist Licensure.

Predoctoral Professional Experience Requirements

Your predoctoral SPE must include a minimum of 1,500 hours.2 This can include internship opportunities, teaching, research, or any professional work related to your field as long as it meets the guidelines set forth by the American Psychological Association.1 One or two years of predoctoral SPE may be accumulated, though only one year is required.

Just because an opportunity arises, it does not mean that it will count towards SPE. All experiences must meet the standards described by the American Psychological Association.1 If you’re not sure about whether or not an opportunity qualifies for SPE, discuss it with the Dean or Registrar of your school or review the North Dakota State Board of Psychological Examiners’ website.2

Postdoctoral Professional Experience Requirements

After you earn your Ph.D. or Psy.D. in psychology, it’s important to practice the theories and lessons that you’ve learned. By working under the mentorship of a supervisor, you will be able to gain real-life experience with real patients in a secure environment. This must constitute a minimum of 1,500 hours.2

Verification of Required Experience

The American Psychological Association is very clear about the requirements for documenting SPE.1 Not only must your supervisor complete and submit the proper paperwork, but you must also have the Dean or Registrar of the institution where you received your doctorate degree verify your SPE. This requirement is in place to ensure that you are appropriately credited for your SPE fulfillment. Find the form from the State Board of Psychologist Examiners’ website, and mail to:

North Dakota State Board of Psychologist Examiners
P.O. Box 7042
Bismarck, ND 58507-7042

3. Pass The North Dakota Psychology Licensing Exams.

In order to earn your license in North Dakota, you must prove to the state that you are qualified to practice psychology professionally. You can accomplish this by passing the Examination for the Professional Practice of Psychology. In order to pass, a weighted score of 500 or more is needed on this 225 multiple-choice test.

Test takers should first sign up for the EPPP practice exam. This will help with preparation for the types of questions that will be asked and will give you the experience of taking the exam in a timed environment.

4. Submit an Application for Psychologist Licensure in North Dakota.

After completing your education and experience requirements, and passing the EPPP, it’s finally time to fill out the Application for Psychologist Licensure in North Dakota. Please note that you must also submit a $450 processing fee with the application and mail it to:

North Dakota State Board of Psychologist Examiners
P.O. Box 7042
Bismarck, ND 58507-7042

Additional Requirements and Information

Beyond the guide presented here, more information can be found from the North Dakota State Board of Psychological Examiners’ website. The site presents a thorough overview of the licensing procedure and requirements, which include:

  • APA Accredited academic programs
  • How to renew and maintain your license
  • Requirements for coursework focusing on child abuse
  • Fees associated with licensure
  • Psychology law and general rules & regulations

1. American Psychological Association: http://www.apa.org/apags/resources/internships.aspx
2. State of North Dakota Board of Psychological Examiners: http://ndsbpe.org/index.html