In grad school, each step forward was fairly well-defined. In contrast, studying for the EPPP was an unknown. Thankfully, many of the same skills that helped lead to success in graduate school can be used to aid in EPPP preparation, leading to licensure as a psychologist. For any remaining gaps, support is available. Below are six preparation tips to help you get organized and get licensed. Best of luck!
You completed internship, found a post-doc or job, graduated, and passed the dreaded EPPP.
Congratulations! You can now do what you have spent the past four to seven years preparing for: apply for a license as an independent psychologist. While, yes, this is another step in a long process and it will take away some time and cost you some of that hard earned money, applying for licensure is easy if you are prepared and know what to expect.
When I was 16, I saw a psychologist who helped me find my way out of a depression that had developed as a result of my parents’ chaotic divorce. That experience had a profound impact on me; I hyper-focused on psychology as a career goal and never considered anything else. I didn’t stop to think about what it would take to become a psychologist. Back then in the ‘80s, to get information on a career you had to go talk to someone or visit the library rather than typing a few words into a computer and pressing return. If the information on “how to become a psychologist” had been so readily available, I probably would have turned tail and run knowing that there was a monstrous exam, the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP) hiding out on the distant horizon. But thankfully, as I pushed forward with my goal, I remained blissfully ignorant of most aspects of this test, even during graduate school. I simply acknowledged in the back of my mind that someday I would jump this hurdle. My life took many twists and turns, including having to take an alternate route to becoming a psychologist. I finally competed my doctorate; however, due to more obstacles, I wasn’t able to earn the required supervised postdoctoral hours required by my state board until more than ten... Continue Reading
Just when you think it’s all over, there is one more mountain to climb: passing the EPPP to become a licensed psychologist. My journey to this path was arduous, unpredictable, and a great learning experience. In fact, I believe failing the EPPP made me a better person. Why do I say this? Because it reminded me that I am just as smart, worthy, and deserving to become a licensed psychologist as anyone else. Even though I failed the test the first time I took it, I was not and will never be a failure. My failure reminded me that I am a conqueror who can overcome any obstacle I set my mind to. A Bigger Vision I worked as a school psychologist for five years before going back to graduate school to pursue a PhD in psychology. There was a 12-year gap between the time I completed my master’s degree and when I completed my doctoral studies. As a practicing school psychologist, even though I had used common psychological techniques I learned over my years of study, I forgot many of the specific theories that I learned in college, and in many ways, it was like starting over again. I decided to return to graduate school again because I wanted more. Don’t get me wrong, school psychology is a great field and being a school psychologist is not only rewarding mentally – in that every day I... Continue Reading
You did it! You’ve graduated with your doctorate in psychology and are only a few steps away from fulfilling your dream of becoming a licensed psychologist! Although the licensure process consists of several steps, preparing for and passing the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP) is definitely the biggest hurdle in becoming licensed.