Psychologists working in Virginia enjoy lucrative financial returns. According to the information published by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the annual mean pay of Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists in Virginia was $88,880 in 2019, which was higher than the national average of $87,450.

If you have plans of joining this line of work, then you might want to take a look at this informative article. It will discuss how to become a psychologist in Virginia.

Should I Become a Psychologist in Virginia

If you are inquisitive, compassionate and a good listener, then a career in Psychology would suit you.

In order to join this emotionally rewarding profession, you will be required to meet some basic education and training requirements. These are discussed in the table below.

Education Required Doctoral degree.
Training Pre-/postdoctoral experience is required.
Licenses/Certifications Psychologists have to get licensed through their state’s licensing board.
Key Skills/Qualities Psychologists need to have sound observational, problem solving, communication and interpersonal skills. Other desired traits include patience and integrity.
Annual Mean Salary (2019) – National $87,450 (Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists)
Job Outlook (2018-28) 14%
Annual Mean Salary (2019) – Virginia $88,880 (Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists)

Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics

Career Outlook

BLS has reported that there will be bright employment prospects for psychologists in the future. Job outlook data shows that the employment opportunities for psychologists will jump by 14% from 2018 to 2028.

Steps to Become a Psychologist in Virginia

In order to get your license in Virginia, you will have to go through the following steps:

    1. Get a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology

The first step is to obtain a Bachelor of Science (B.S) or a Bachelor of Arts (B.A) in Psychology. These programs will help you understand scientific methods of inquiry and will give you an opportunity to explore the connection between the mind and human behavior. The four-year long program will introduce you to an array of topics such as History of Psychology, Human Biology and Experimental Methods. You will be required to complete around 120 credits to graduate.

    1. Obtain a Master’s Degree in Psychology

After graduating, you may want to pursue a Master of Science (M.S) or a Master of Arts (M.A) in Psychology. Obtaining the Master’s degree in not mandatory, but it is recommended as it will help you prepare for the advanced doctoral program. The 2-year long program will introduce you to a wide variety of modules such as Sensation and Perception, Advanced Social Psychology and Developmental Psychology. You will have to complete around 36 credit hours in order to graduate from the Master’s program.

    1. Earn a Doctoral Degree and Meet the Training Criteria

After completing the Master’s program, you can apply to the Doctor of Psychology (PsyD) program or the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Psychology program. The curriculum of these programs incorporates topics like Research Methods in Psychology, Empirically-Supported Therapies and Psychopathology. It can take up to five years to complete these programs. Moreover, you will also have to complete 1,500 hours of supervised work experience.

    1. Obtain a License
Once you have completed the professional work experience requirements and the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP), you will be eligible to get a license. In order to do it, you will have to send the Licensure by Examination Application form and the application fee to the Virginia Board of Psychology. You must ensure that all the supporting documentation, such as official transcripts and the internship verification form, is submitted to the Board.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Psychologist in Virginia?

The process of becoming a licensed psychologist in Virginia can be quite time-consuming. First, applicants have to complete four years of undergraduate coursework, followed by two years of Master’s coursework. Then, they have to complete a doctoral program, which can take around five years to complete. Moreover, candidates also have to pass the EPPP and have to complete the professional work experience requirements. Thus, it can easily take up to eleven years to join this line of work.

What Are the Requirements for Becoming a Psychologist in Virginia?

Aspiring psychologists are required to:

  • Obtain a doctoral degree from an accredited school.
  • Complete 1,500 hours of professional experience.
  • Take the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP).
  • Submit a licensure application along with the fee to the Virginia Board of Psychology.


How Much Do Psychologists Earn in Virginia?

Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists employed in Virginia made an annual mean pay wage of $88,880 in 2019.