Psychologists and Psychological Associates study the behavior, emotions, and thinking processes of humans to better understand their behavior. They are trained to assess, diagnose, and treat mental disorders by using individual, child, family, and group therapies. A Psychologist must have a PhD while a Psychological Associate is licensed at a Master’s Level. Psychologists may teach, conduct research, or serve as consultants or therapists. They may also serve as administrators of behavioral health programs.
Psychologists may specialize in a particular area. For example, clinical psychologists and counseling psychologists may work with people who are experiencing emotional distress, medical and surgical patients, and chronically ill patients. Examples of other areas of specialization include community psychology, developmental psychology, experimental (i.e. animal and human research) and social psychology.
Psychologists may also work with students in schools to evaluate academic skills, learning aptitudes, social skills, self-help skills, personality and emotional development. School psychologists usually have a specific master’s degree in Education. They determine eligibility for special service programs and work directly with students or families to help solve conflicts and problems related to learning and adjustment.
In Alaska, psychologists work in hospitals, correctional institutions, mental health clinics, private practices, public schools and universities, non-profit organizations, government agencies and tribal health organizations.
Educational requirements vary depending upon the psychology subspeciality. School psychologists and psychological associates hold at least a master’s degree in psychology. A doctoral degree is required for clinical or counseling psychology. Passing both national and state exams, as well as two years of clinical supervision are necessary to be licensed by the State of Alaska as a Psychological Associate or a Psychologist. However, not all of the above described activities require licensing. (School psychologist licensing requires an institutional endorsement set up through the College of Education.) Educational steps include:
- Graduation from high school with a college preparatory background.
- Completion of a four year bachelor’s degree with a psychology major or other behavioral health major.
- Completion of a master’s degree in psychology to qualify for State of Alaska licensure as a Psychological Associate or School Psychologist.
- Completion of a doctoral degree in psychology to qualify for State of Alaska licensure as a Clinical Psychologist.
The University of Alaska Anchorage offers bachelor’s degrees in Psychology (BA or BS), a master’s degree in Clinical Psychology (MS), and a joint PhD program with UAF in Clinical/Community Psychology with a rural indigenous focus.
University of Alaska Anchorage
Psychology Department, SSB 352
3211 Providence Drive
Anchorage, Alaska 99508
Phone: (907) 786-1665
Web site: http://www.uaa.alaska.edu/psych/
The University of Alaska Fairbanks offers a bachelor’s degree (BA or BS) and a joint PhD program with University of Alaska Anchorage in Clinical/Community Psychology with a rural indigenous focus.
University of Alaska Fairbanks
PO Box 756480
Fairbanks, AK 99775-6480
Phone: (907) 474-7007
Alaska Pacific University offers a bachelor of arts (BA) degree in Counseling Psychology major and a master of science degree (MS) in Counseling Psychology and a Psy.D in Psychology. For more information contact:
Alaska Pacific University
Department of Counseling Psychology
4101 University Drive
Anchorage, Alaska 99508
Alaska Psychological Association AK-PA
P.O. Box 241292
Anchorage, AK 99524-1292
Phone: (907) 344-8878
Web site: http://www.ak-pa.org/
For State of Alaska licensing information, contact:
Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development
Division of Corporations, Business and Professional Licensing
Board of Psychologist and Psychological Associate Examiners
Phone: (907) 465-3811
American Psychological Association
750 First Street, NE
Washington, DC 20002-4242
Phone: (202) 336-5500
Toll free: (800) 374-2721
Web site: http://www.apa.org/
This page was last updated by Janice Troyer on October 14, 2015