Online Psychology Degree Programs in Hawaii

Future psychologists and mental health counselors searching for programs in Hawaii will find several public and private institutions that offer bachelor's, master's, and doctoral programs. Earning an online psychology degree in Hawaii introduces students to both the psychology field and issues specific to the Hawaiian people.

With school and career counseling jobs expected to increase by 11%, and the number of psychologists expected to increase by 14%, the country is experiencing remarkable growth in psychology professions all around. Projections Central predicts that Hawaii will see a 17.7% increase in clinical, counseling, and school psychologists. The projected increase in jobs and multiple state mental health initiatives means professionals may want to consider psychology programs in Hawaii.

Mental Health Initiatives in Hawaii

While SAMHSA's Behavioral Health Barometer for Hawaii notes that most of the state's mental health spending and reporting amounts are similar to that of the United States as a whole, several areas remain a concern. The number of individuals enrolled in substance abuse treatment has increased since 2011. Additionally, the use of mental health services among adults was lower than the national average.

In 2014, the Hawaii State Department of Education received a federal grant to help with youth mental health programs in Hawaii, which would supplement community resources. Community is a big part of Hawaii's initiatives, as many of the state's research centers, internships, and scholarships relate to the Native Hawaiian people. Many Native Hawaiians struggle with identity loss, which can lead to depression and other mental health issues. Mental health providers are working to address this underserved population through these programs and initiatives.

How Do I Become a Psychologist in Hawaii?

While psychologists, therapists, and counselors across the country must apply for state licensure in order to practice, requirements and fees differ between states. Licensure requirements can vary in terms of education, supervised clinical hours, and coursework, while cost can include application, licensing, and exam fees.

Choose the Path That's Right for You: The education needed to become a psychologist is dependent on the area of practice. For example, licensed psychologists in Hawaii must obtain a doctoral degree, but licensed clinical social workers can possess a master's degree or doctoral degree. For those who want to teach psychology in a college setting, a doctorate will probably be required. To enter a psychology Ph.D program in Hawaii, or a Psy.D, students need to earn a bachelor's and master's degree first.

Earn Your Degree: There are both traditional and online psychology degrees in Hawaii. With similar admission standards, requirements vary based on program levels. For example, a doctorate degree will usually require applicants to hold a regionally-accredited master's degree. Most graduate programs and state licenses also require clinical hours, which fellowships and internships may offer. The time needed to earn a degree varies based on the program, credits required, and whether a student is attending part time or full time.

Earn Your License: State licenses related to psychology, counseling, and therapy require students to pass an exam. The exams vary based on the field, but students should expect to spend several weeks or months preparing for the exam. Exams range from 170-225 questions, while exam costs vary from $195 to over $600. Licensure does not guarantee a job, but many jobs require applicants to be licensed.

Psychology Licensing in Hawaii

There are many different psychology-related licenses in Hawaii. State licenses apply to psychologists, social workers, marriage and family therapists, and mental health counselors. Many of these licenses require a minimum of a master's degree-which can be earned through a master's in psychology online Hawaii program-while board certification can be sought by any counseling professional. Several licenses are listed below with their requirements, career options, and related fees to help you choose which best suits your future goals.

Licensed Psychologist


  • $50 application fee.
  • Regionally or APA-accredited doctoral degree in psychology (Ph.D or Psy.D).
  • Minimum of six graduate hours in six different areas as specified, minimum of three graduate hours in four different areas as specified.
  • 1900 internship hours.
  • 1900 post-doctoral experience hours.
  • Pass $600 EPPP examination.

Careers Available With This License:

  • Clinical psychologist
  • Counseling psychologist
  • School psychologist
  • Counselor
  • Therapist

Total Fees: $650

Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW)


  • $60 application fee.
  • $195 license fee.
  • Master's degree accredited by CSWE or regionally-accredited doctoral degree.
  • Pass $230 ASWB exam.
  • Complete 3,000 hours of postgraduate supervised work.

Careers Available With This License:

  • Social worker
  • Intake assessor
  • School social worker
  • Child or family social worker
  • Substance abuse social worker
  • Geriatric social worker

Total Fees: $485

Marriage & Family Therapist (MFT)


  • $50 application fee.
  • $396 license fee.
  • Accredited master's or doctoral degree in marriage and family therapy or similar.
  • Nine graduate hours in three different areas, and three graduate hours in two different areas as specified.
  • One-year practicum with 300 complete hours.
  • 1,000 hours post-graduate supervised experience with 200 supervised clinical hours.
  • Pass $350 NMFT exam.

Careers Available With This License:

  • Marriage and family therapist
  • School therapist
  • Life coach
  • In-home therapist
  • Medical family therapy

Total Fees: $796

Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC)


  • $60 application fee.
  • $444 license fee.
  • Accredited master's or doctoral degree that required at least 48 semester hours and included at least three graduate hours earned in nine different areas.
  • Practicum with 300 supervised hours.
  • 3,000 post-graduate hours.
  • Pass $195 NCE exam.

Careers Available With This License:

  • Mental health counselor
  • Family therapist
  • Child therapist
  • Behavioral health counselor
  • Substance abuse counselor

Total Fees: $699

National Certified Counselor (NCC)


  • Accredited master's degree with at least 48 semester hours over nine different content areas.
  • Six semester hours of supervised experience.
  • 100 post-graduate supervised hours.
  • 3,000 hours of counseling work.
  • Pass $195 NCE or NCMHCE exam.

Careers Available With This License:

  • Clinical mental health counselor
  • School counselor
  • Addiction counselor
  • Career counselor

Total Fees: $195

Psychology Internships and Fellowships in Hawaii

While an internship and fellowship may seem similar, distinct differences separate the two. Internships can usually be completed by anyone with any level of education or experience. Often an internship counts toward work or educational credit. Some internships are also paid.

Fellowships are more academic in nature and usually involve research completed by graduate or doctoral students and recent graduates. Fellows often receive a stipend for their work. Below are internships and fellowships available to online psychology degree Hawaii students and graduates.

  • Hawaii Psychology Internship Consortium: This consortium between three state agencies prepares psychologists to work in Hawaii. Offering nine positions at seven different sites around the state, this internship is specifically for psychology doctoral students. There is an annual stipend, and applications are due November 3.
  • I Ola Lāhui Rural Hawai`i Behavioral Health Internship Program: This year-long, APA-accredited internship provides participants a stipend and health benefits. There are two positions available, and interns move through four clinical experiences at several different training locations. Applicants must submit a cover letter, three letters of recommendation, a curriculum vitae, and transcripts.
  • I Ola Lāhui Rural Hawai`i Behavioral Health Postdoctoral Fellowship: This fellowship gives preference to students interested in providing services to medically underserved populations, including Native Hawaiians. Students receive a stipend and must travel to O'ahu one day per week.

Psychology Careers in Hawaii

According to a 2013 Hawaii News Now story, mental health has been deemed a crisis in Hawaii, with the number of patients hospitalized for mental health reasons increasing by 20% compared to prior years. As a result of this crisis, Projections Central expects an increase of 17.7% in jobs for clinical, counseling, and school psychologists, with jobs for psychiatrists expected to increase by 6.9%.

While many of Hawaii's mental health issues are similar to that of the United States as a whole, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's (SAMHSA) Behavioral Health Barometer for Hawaii, 2013 indicate that Hawaii's adult rate of heavy alcohol use is higher than the national average, and substance abuse treatment enrollment has increased. For this reason, psychologists in Hawaii may consider pursuing counseling psychology. There are also many job listings in the state for clinical psychologists, who can provide general mental health treatment to these individuals.

How Much do Psychologists Make in Hawaii?

Psychologists in Hawaii earn just above the national hourly and annual mean wage. Psychologists' salaries vary based on experience, credentials, and the cost of living in their state of employment. With Hawaii's high cost of living, salaries are slightly higher than the national average. In addition to the statistics for psychologists listed below, the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates that there are 130 psychiatrists in Hawaii that earn an hourly mean wage of $75.06 and an annual mean wage of $154,040.

  Hourly Mean Wage Annual Mean Wage
Hawaii $41.88 $87,110
United States $38.77 $80,640

Source: BLS

Mental Health Service Providers in Hawaii

Psychology degree holders interested in counseling and mental health support services can start their job search with a variety of Hawaii's mental health service providers. These providers benefit children, adults, and adolescents with diverse levels of treatment options.

  • Hawaii Behavioral Health (HBH): HBH's five locations across the state focus on youth and families. Founded in 1993, this organization delivers educational, social, and behavioral health services. They offer assessments, individual and family therapy, foster care services, and parental training.
  • The Queen's Medical Center: Located in Honolulu, this hospital offers mental and behavioral health services. Inpatient and outpatient options are available, including counseling services, family treatment, psychiatric hospitalization, and day treatment services.
  • North Shore Mental Health: North Shore Mental Health, composed of mental and behavioral health professionals, serves the island of O'ahu. Services include individual therapy, family therapy, medication management, and substance abuse support services.
  • Helping Hands Hawaii: Founded in 1974, this organization's behavioral health programs include money management services for those with serious mental illness, case management services, and care coordination.
  • Kāhi Mōhala: This medical service provider focused on behavioral health is part of the Sutter Health network. Services for children, adolescents, and adults include residential programs for children and adolescents, partial hospitalization programs, electroconvulsive therapy, and a military treatment program.

Mental Health Research Centers in Hawaii

Graduates of online psychology degrees in Hawaii may be interested in working at mental health research centers. A large number of research centers can lead to more job opportunities or potential internships. Many of these centers work with the diverse population of the state, focusing on improving the lives of Native Hawaiians.

  • CHR- Hawaii: The Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research in Honolulu focuses on a healthcare system that serves an incredibly diverse population. Research covers mental health, substance abuse and tobacco control, and wellness and behavioral change.
  • National Center on Indigenous Hawaiian Behavioral Health: Part of the University of Hawaii at Manoa's Department of Psychiatry, this research center works to improve the mental health of its communities. The program was established through federal funding and research is led by Native Hawaiians.
  • I Ola Lāhui: Working to address rural Hawaii's behavioral health, this organization serves Native Hawaiians and other underserved populations. Current research includes cultural interventions for mental health and substance abuse.

Professional Organizations for Mental Health Professionals

Online psychology degree students in Hawaii can join professional organizations while still working toward their degree. Many of these organizations offer student rates and provide networking opportunities. Networking can lead to internships, employment, or possible mentorship. These associations can provide job boards and career service assistance for those seeking employment in the state. Professional licensure will often require a certain amount of continuing education work, which may be provided by a professional psychology association such as these listed below.

  • Hawaii Counselors Association (HCA): This professional organization for counselors in Hawaii is a state branch of the American Counseling Association. HCA is an approved continuing education provider and offers links to job sites.
  • Hawaii Psychological Association: HPA works to inform the public about psychology and be a resource for research and policy related to psychological health. Members receive referrals, access to professional development opportunities, and participate in training programs.
  • American Association for Marriage and Family Therapists (AAMFT) Hawaii: The Hawaii branch of the AAMFT represents over 380 professionals across the state. Members enjoy networking through peer groups, a quarterly newsletter, and workshops.

Scholarships for Online Psychology Programs in Hawaii

Dr. Hans and Clara Zimmerman Foundation Health Scholarships

Established by Dr. Hans Zimmerman, this scholarship awards a Hawaiian resident planning to study in a health-related field.

  • Eligibility Requirements: Candidate must be a college senior or graduate student with a 3.0 GPA. Must be a Hawaiian resident attending an accredited, four-year institution. Must demonstrate financial need and study in a health-related field such as clinical psychology.

Hokulani Hawaii Fund

Established by Estelle Kelley, this scholarship supports students with few financial resources. Preference is given to first-generation college students and students attending small liberal arts institutions.

  • Eligibility Requirements: Candidates must be Hawaiian residents who graduated from a high school in Hawaii within the past three years who demonstrate financial need, a GPA above 2.9, and are full-time students.

Ida M. Pope Memorial Scholarship

The Ida M. Pope Memorial Scholarship supports female students of Hawaiian ancestry studying mathematics, health (including counseling and social work), education, or science.

  • Eligibility Requirements: Applicants must provide evidence of Hawaiian ancestry, a minimum GPA of 3.5, pursue one of the fields listed above as a full-time student, and demonstrate financial need.

Blossom Kalama Evans Memorial Scholarship Fund

The Blossom Kalama Evans scholarship supports students of Hawaiian ancestry who are residents of Hawaii and attend a four-year, accredited Hawaiian institution.

  • Eligibility Requirements: Applicant must be a college junior, senior, or graduate student enrolled full-time with a GPA of 2.7 or above. Must demonstrate financial need and provide a statement on how their education will serve the Native Hawaiian people.

ʻImi Naʻauao Scholarship

This merit-based scholarship benefits graduate students with Hawaiian residency.

  • Scholarship Deadline: January 31
  • Eligibility Requirements: Candidate must be a Hawaiian resident with a minimum 3.0 GPA and a graduate from college or be graduating the spring following application. Applicant must be accepted to a graduate program and enrolled (or planning to enroll) full-time, and meet funding guidelines.

Nā Hoʻokama a Pauahi Scholarship

The NHAP scholarship is need-based and awarded to a Hawaiian resident who is an undergraduate or graduate student with at an accredited institution.

  • Amount Offered: $8,000
  • Scholarship Deadline: February 15
  • Eligibility Requirements: Applicants must be Hawaiian residents, enrolled full-time as a degree-seeking student at an accredited institution, demonstrate financial need, and meet funding guidelines. Recipients must complete 50 hours of community service per year.

2010 Legends' Scholarship

Administered by the Pauahi Foundation, this scholarship aids undergraduate student with an interest in Hawaiian culture, language, or history.

  • Amount Offered: $1,500
  • Scholarship Deadline: February 15
  • Eligibility Requirements: Candidates must be full-time undergraduate students with a minimum 2.7 GPA and demonstrate a commitment to community.

Anne H. Myers Scholarship

This scholarship is for a well-rounded undergraduate student. All scholarships administered by the Pauahi Foundation require that students be committed to their community and express an interest in Hawaiian history, culture, or language.

  • Amount Offered: $700
  • Scholarship Deadline: February 15
  • Eligibility Requirements: Applicant must be a Hawaiian resident with a well-rounded achievement record.

Eli D. Panee, Sr. and Aileen E. Panee I Mua Scholarship

This award benefits a student pursuing a degree in a healthcare field with demonstrated financial need. The Pauahi Foundation scholarships require a demonstrated commitment to community and Hawaiian culture.

  • Amount Offered: $2,000
  • Scholarship Deadline: February 15
  • Eligibility Requirements: Students must be pursuing a career in the healthcare field and maintain a minimum GPA of 2.5. Students must demonstrate financial need and provide their FAFSA report results.

Kalino Foundation, LLC Scholarship

These two scholarships, administered by the Pauahi Foundation, are awarded to students with an interest in medical, wellness, or health studies. Scholarship recipients must demonstrate commitment to community and Hawaiian culture.

  • Amount Offered: $2,100
  • Scholarship Deadline: February 15
  • Eligibility Requirements: Applicants must demonstrate interest in the health, medical, or wellness fields and be pursuing a bachelor of science degree.

Accreditation for Online Psychology Programs in Hawaii

Based in California, the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) is the regional accrediting body for colleges and universities in Hawaii. Regional accreditation oversees all of the institutions in one geographic region. Many colleges and graduate programs only accept transfer credits from a regionally-accredited college. Alternatively, institutions across the country, including those in Hawaii, may be nationally accredited if they focus on a specific career or trade overseen by a national accrediting body. Students at both types of accredited institutions are eligible for financial aid and both types of institutions may offer online programs.

Psychology programs can also hold programmatic accreditation, which applies to a specific school or department. This form of accreditation ensures a program maintains professional standards and remains current in their curriculum. Sometimes programmatic accreditation can be required for graduates to seek professional licensure. The American Psychological Association (APA) and the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards (ASPPB) both accredit doctoral programs, which may include psychology Ph.D programs in Hawaii.

Whatever program you pursue, confirm that it has accreditation related to future graduate programs, eligibility for financial aid, and any professional licensure.

Program Database of Online Psychology Programs in Hawaii

Now that you know whether you might want to pursue an online psychology degree in Hawaii, it's time to start investigating your options. A few things to consider might be program cost, on-campus requirements, and the number of credits needed to complete the degree. To get you started, the database below includes all accredited psychology programs offered online in the state.

Program Database

School Degree Levels State