21 NCAC 54 .1802             PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSOCIATE

(a)  Licensure for the level of psychological associate requires a master's degree or specialist degree in psychology from an institution of higher education.  The degree program shall meet all of the following requirements:

(1)           The program shall be identified and labeled as a psychology program; such a program shall specify in institutional catalogues its intent to educate and train students to engage in the activities which constitute the practice of psychology as defined in G.S. 90-270.2(8).

(2)           The program shall maintain authority and primary responsibility for the core and specialty areas even if the program crosses administrative lines.

(3)           The program shall have an identifiable body of students in residence at the institution who are matriculated in that program for a degree.

(4)           There shall be an identifiable full-time psychology faculty in residence at the institution, sufficient in size and breadth to carry out its responsibilities, employed by and providing instruction at the home campus of the institution.

(5)           There shall be a psychologist responsible for the student's program either as the administrative head of the program, or as the advisor, major professor, or committee chair for the individual student's program.

(6)           The program shall be an integrated, organized sequence of study in psychology as demonstrated by an identifiable curriculum track or tracks wherein course sequences and course content are described in institutional catalogues, departmental handbooks, or other institutional publications.

(7)           The program shall encompass the equivalent of a minimum of one academic year of full-time graduate study in student residence at the institution from which the degree is granted.  Residence requires interaction with psychology faculty and other matriculated psychology students at the institution.  One year's residency is defined as 30 semester (45 quarter or 40 trimester) hours taken on a full-time or part-time basis at the institution.

(8)           The program shall include, as listed on the transcript, internship, externship, practicum, or other supervised field experience appropriate to the area of specialty and the practice of psychology, as defined in G.S. 90-270.2(8), which shall be referred to hereinafter as supervised training experience.  This supervised training experience shall meet all of the following criteria:

(A)          It shall be a planned and directed program of training for the practice of psychology, in contrast to on-the-job training, and shall provide the trainee with a planned and directed sequence of training that is integrated with the educational program in which the student is enrolled.  This supervised training experience shall be planned by the educational program faculty and training site staff, rather than by the student.

(B)          The supervised training experience shall have a written description detailing the program of training, or a written agreement, developed prior to the time of the training, between the student's educational program and the training site, detailing the responsibilities of the student and the training site.  Such an agreement shall be approved by the student's educational program prior to the beginning of the supervised training experience.

(C)          The supervised training experience site shall have a designated and appropriately licensed or certified psychologist or psychological associate responsible for the integrity and quality of the supervised training experience.

(D)          A student enrolled in a supervised training experience shall be designated as any of the following:  an "intern," "extern," or "practicum student," or shall hold a title which indicates training status for the practice of psychology.

(E)           The supervised training experience shall be a minimum of 12 weeks consisting of at least 500 hours of supervised training.  At least 400 hours of the training shall be in the practice in psychology as defined by G.S. 90-270.2(8).  Supervision for this training experience shall be provided as required by Parts (a)(8)(G) or (a)(8)(H) of this Rule.

(F)           The supervised training experience shall be completed within a period of 12 consecutive months at not more than two training sites.

(G)          Except as provided in Part (a)(8)(H) of this Rule, regularly scheduled individual face-to-face supervision with the specific intent of overseeing the practice of psychology shall be provided by a North Carolina licensed or certified psychologist or psychological associate or by a psychologist who is exempt from licensure, pursuant to G.S. 90-270.4(b), at a rate of not less than one hour per week during at least 12 separate weeks of the supervised training experience.  The supervisor shall establish and maintain a level of supervisory contact consistent with professional standards and shall be accessible to the student.

(H)          If completing a supervised training experience outside of North Carolina, the student shall be provided regularly scheduled individual face-to-face supervision with the specific intent of overseeing the practice of psychology by a licensed or certified psychologist or psychological associate or by an individual holding a master's, specialist, or doctoral degree in psychology, at a rate of not less than one hour per week during at least 12 separate weeks of the supervised training experience.  The supervisor shall establish and maintain a level of supervisory contact consistent with professional standards and shall be accessible to the student.  Proof of the supervisor's license or degree program, as applicable, may be required by the Board to establish the supervisor's training in psychology.

(9)           Except as provided in Paragraph (b) of this Rule, the program of study shall include a minimum of 45 semester (68 quarter or 60 trimester) hours of graduate study in standard psychology courses, including courses drawn from academic psychology (e.g., social, experimental, physiological, developmental, history and systems), statistics and research design, scientific and professional ethics and standards, and a specialty area.  Of the required 45 semester (68 quarter or 60 trimester) program hours, not more than 6 semester (9 quarter or 8 trimester) hours shall be credited for internship/practicum and not more than 6 semester (9 quarter or 8 trimester) hours shall be credited for thesis/dissertation.  No credit shall be allowed for audited courses or courses taken at an institution which does not meet the definition of an "institution of higher education" as defined by G.S. 90-270.2(5).

(b)  If an individual's degree program did not include a minimum of 45 semester (68 quarter or 60 trimester) hours of course content, as defined in Subparagraph (a)(9) of this Rule, but included a minimum of 39 semester (59 quarter or 52 trimester) hours of graduate study in standard psychology courses, as specified in Subparagraph (a)(9) of this Rule, allowing not more than 6 semester (9 quarter or 8 trimester) hours for practicum/internship and 6 semester (9 quarter or 8 trimester) hours for thesis/dissertation, the individual shall be allowed to take, and must pass with a grade of "B" or above, additional graduate level course work to meet the hourly requirement specified in Subparagraph (a)(9) of this Rule. The individual shall complete specified course content, as defined by Subparagraph (a)(9) of this Rule, to meet the minimum educational requirements to apply for licensure.  The aforementioned course work shall be completed at an institution of higher education, as defined by G.S. 90-270.2(5), in a graduate psychology program in the same specialty area as the degree program completed by the individual and shall be reported on an official transcript.  The institution of higher education which permits a student to take additional course work shall be construed as being responsible only for the specific course work taken at that institution and not for the student's entire course of study, unless the student's entire program was completed at that institution.  No credit shall be accepted by the Board for audited courses.  This additional graduate level course work shall not duplicate course work taken by the individual in his or her degree program or prior to admittance to his or her degree program and shall be completed in one or more of the following areas:

(1)           academic psychology (e.g., social, experimental, physiological, developmental, history and systems);

(2)           statistics and research design;

(3)           scientific and professional ethics and standards; or

(4)           electives offered in the course of study for the individual's specialty area (e.g., clinical psychology, counseling psychology, school psychology, or other specialty area in psychology).

(c)  If an individual's degree program did not include a minimum of 39 semester (59 quarter or 52 trimester) hours in standard psychology courses, as specified in Subparagraph (a)(9) of this Rule, allowing not more than 6 semester (9 quarter or 8 trimester) hours for practicum/internship and not more than 6 semester (9 quarter or 8 trimester) hours for thesis/dissertation, the individual shall not be allowed to obtain additional hours at a post-graduate level to meet the hourly requirements in Subparagraph (a)(9) of this Rule.

(d)  An individual shall not, under any circumstance following the completion of the individual's master's or specialist degree in psychology, be allowed to complete a practicum, internship, or other supervised training experience requiring the individual to practice psychology in order to meet the minimum educational requirement.

(e)  An applicant whose credentials have been approved by the Board for examination at the licensed psychologist level may be issued a license as a psychological associate if the applicant fails an examination at the licensed psychologist level but passes such at the psychological associate level.  To receive this license, the applicant shall make a written request to the Board for licensure at the psychological associate level within 30 days from the date on which the applicant is notified of his or her examination score

 

History Note:        Authority G.S. 90-270.9; 90-270.11(b);

Eff. September 1, 1982;

Amended Eff. August 1, 2006; July 1, 1997; October 1, 1991; August 1, 1984.