In Your State: South Carolina

Psychology Degree Schools in South Carolina

Address: 1115 College Dr.
Gaffney, South Carolina 29340-3799
Type: 4-year, Private not-for-profit
Accreditation Agency: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges
Psychology Degrees Offered: Bachelor of Science in Psychology
Address: 9 Science Court
Columbia, South Carolina 29203
Type: 4-year, Private for-profit
Accreditation Agency: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges
Psychology Degrees Offered: Bachelor of Arts in Psychology

How to Become a Psychologist in South Carolina

How to Become a Psychologist in South Carolina

Educational Requirements

In general, licensed psychologists in South Carolina must have earned a doctoral degree in psychology from a regionally accredited higher education institution, according to the South Carolina Board of Examiners in Psychology. The psychology program must be accredited by either the American Psychological Association (APA) or the Canadian Psychological Association, or must be designated as a psychology program by certain reputable organizations specified by the Board. Becoming a clinical psychologist typically requires that students complete graduate course work that emphasizes the science of psychology, evidence-based practice, and research methodologies and statistics. Beyond a doctoral degree, licensed psychologists in South Carolina must meet examination and experience requirements.

School psychologists, however, do not necessarily have to earn a doctoral degree to work in K-12 schools. A master’s degree, coupled with completion of an advanced program in school psychology approved by the South Carolina State Board of Education, is all that is required to qualify for the School Psychologist I credential, provided you have earned a minimum score of 165 on the Praxis II, according to the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). With a specialist degree in school psychology, you may qualify for the School Psychologists II credential, while a doctoral degree in school psychology will qualify you for the School Psychologist III credential, the NASP explains. School psychologists with two years of experience who have graduated from a NASP- or APA-approved program may qualify to practice in the private sector as a Licensed Psycho-Educational Specialist, provided they maintain a Level II or Level III school psychologist credential, the NASP notes.

Continuing Education Requirements

Licensed psychologists in South Carolina are required to complete 24 credits of approved continuing education (CE) every two years in order to renew their license, according to the South Carolina Psychology Board. Psychology continuing education is broken down into “Category A” CE, which consists of more formal types of education, and “Category B” CE, which consists of more informal types of education. Half of your required CE must be Category A, the Board explains. Formal education may include completing graduate course work, attending conferences and workshops of the American Psychological Association or similar professional organizations, teaching a graduate course in psychology, publishing a scholarly work, and more. CE is a vital part of the licensure renewal process because it helps ensure that psychologists stay up-to-date on the latest developments in their ever-evolving field. School psychologists, on the other hand, must accrue at least 120 renewal credits every five years, according to the NASP.

Psychology Licensure in South Carolina

South Carolina only offers one primary type of licensure for professional psychologists. School psychologists are not licensed, and instead earn credentials in school psychology through South Carolina’s state board of education with differing requirements for education and testing. Experienced school psychologists may, however, earn licensure to practice outside of school settings provided they meet the necessary requirements. Here we’ve summed up the licensure requirements for professional psychologists who practice outside of public K-12 schools:

  • Licensed Psychologist
    • Education: Doctoral degree in psychology
    • Exam: Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP), Oral examination
    • Work Experience: Two years of supervised experience, one of which must be postdoctoral, for a total minimum of 3,000 hours; one of those two years (1,500) may be a predoctoral internship or residency
    • Other Prerequisites: Application and fee, predoctoral supervision form, supervision contract, supervisor’s report form, official EPPP exam scores, and three professional reference forms (two of which must be completed by psychologists); reference forms and official EPPP exam scores must be mailed directly from the references to the Board
  • Licensed Psycho-Educational Specialist
    • Education: NASP-approved or APA-approved specialist or doctoral program in school psychology
    • Exam: Praxis II (with a minimum passing score of 165)
    • Work Experience: Two years of experience as a school psychologist; at least one year must be supervised by a Licensed Psycho-Educational Specialist
    • Other Prerequisites: Level II or III school psychologist credential

Salaries for Psychologists in South Carolina

The average annual salary for clinical, counseling, and school psychologists in South Carolina was $59,240, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). As an alternative to private practice, some licensed psychologists opt to teach at the college level. Postsecondary psychology teachers reported average annual earnings of $62,430 that same year, the BLS noted. These salary figures are only averages, and should not be interpreted as guarantees of actual salaries in the field, which can differ greatly depending on factors like how much experience you have, the size of your employer, and whether you work in an urban or rural area.