California Psychologist Licensing Guide
What’s in this guide?
- Education Requirements
- Supervised Professional Experience (SPE) Requirement
- Required Examinations
- Background Check
- California’s Psychologist License Application Process
- Continuing Education
- License Renewal
- Will My Out-of-State Psychology License Carry Over to California?
- What are California’s Board and Professional Organizations?
Supervised Professional Experience (SPE) Requirement
Another component of your license requirements is obtaining a certain number of supervised internship hours. For the state of California, candidates need to have 3,000 hours. While they’re still getting their doctorate, they can earn 1,500 hours, but the other 1,500 will need to be worked after they’ve completed their graduate education.
The future psychologist can start getting their post-doctoral hours before their graduation ceremony if they have evidence that they’ve successfully completed their coursework.
A major part of getting your 3,000 supervised internship hours is making sure you’re working at a location that’s accredited by the American Psychological Association. California also allows you to earn your hours through organizations that are a part of the California Psychology Internship Council or the Association of Psychology Postdoctoral and Internship Centers.
If you’re working at a nonexempt location and don’t have a waiver from the Department of Mental Health, you must have a state credential while you’re earning your 3,000 hours.
Have you already accrued hours from another state or U.S. territory? If your supervising psychologist is licensed, these work hours can count toward your grand total. And if you were completing internship hours in another country, these may roll into your California hours if you can prove they were of equitable quality as in-state work.