Online Psychology Degree Programs in Idaho

| Staff Writers Modified on March 23, 2022

Are you ready to discover your college program?

Earning an online psychology degree in Idaho can pave the way to many rewarding professional opportunities in the field. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects the overall employment of psychologists to grow by 14% through 2028, a rate that outpaces the average for all U.S. occupations. Within Idaho, the demand for several psychology specializations reflects these national trends.

The BLS projects the employment rate for clinical, counseling, and school psychologists in the state to rise by more than 14% through 2026, and substance abuse and behavioral counselors by over 11%. This guide can help you to navigate each step in becoming a licensed psychologist, counselor, or therapist in Idaho by providing useful information about online degree programs, licensing prerequisites, and career prospects.

How Do Online Psychology Degree Programs in Idaho Work?

The popularity and acceptance of distance learning programs continues to expand. Online degree-seekers can earn the same diplomas as graduates from campus-based programs, and employers accept both types of degrees as equally legitimate.

Idaho's 20 accredited colleges and universities have developed several online psychology programs at the associate, undergraduate, and graduate levels. Currently, Idaho does not offer online doctorates in psychology, but distance learners can pursue these degrees at out-of-state schools. The available online psychology programs in the state each feature a distinctive curriculum, with some degrees delivered entirely online and others incorporating a hybrid format or required in-person residencies.

What Courses Are Part of an Online Psychology Degree Program in Idaho?

Online psychology degrees in Idaho typically feature courses in behavioral and clinical approaches, along with specialized perspectives in areas like neuroscience, organizational, and forensic psychology. This list describes some of the most commonly offered undergraduate courses.

General Psychology

This prerequisite for most upper-division courses in the major provides an overview of psychology, explores its roots in natural and social science, and introduces major theories, principles, and research methods. Enrollees can learn about psychological approaches to understanding, explaining, and predicting human thought processes and behavior, with an emphasis on the study of cognition, emotion, motivation, and personality.

Cognitive Psychology

In contrast to behavioral approaches, cognitive psychology focuses on mental states, examining how the brain processes and retains information. Undergraduates students in this course explore human thought processes, verbal and nonverbal communication, and reasoning. Course content focuses on cognitive development, memory, perception, pattern recognition, language acquisition, and schemas for knowledge representation.

Physiological Psychology

This field connects anatomy and physiology to current research in psychology by focusing on the biological basis of mental processes and human behavior. Students can explore the structural organization, physiology, and chemistry of the central and peripheral nervous systems to understand the genetic and neurological foundations of normal and abnormal human behavior.

Abnormal Psychology

The study of abnormal psychology addresses the etiology, symptoms, and treatment of human behaviors considered different from the norm, socially unacceptable, or maladaptive. A major component of the course introduces enrollees to the accepted criteria used in clinical practice for mental disorder classification. Degree-seekers can learn about the causes, identification, and treatment of psychopathological behaviors like anxiety; phobias; and mood, dissociative, and personality disorders.

Psychology of Addiction

This field of psychology addresses the physical, emotional, and social causes of addiction, current practices in assessing and classifying addictive disorders, and treatment applications. Learners can analyze the most common types of addiction, including alcohol and drug abuse, eating disorders, and internet gaming and gambling addictions. The course examines national policy and legislation related to addiction and surveys the availability of community services and resources.

Becoming a Psychologist in Idaho

The path to becoming a licensed psychologist begins with earning a bachelor's degree. Idaho, like many other states, requires advanced graduate training for licensure. Students interested in earning an online psychology degree in Idaho should learn as much as possible about specific degree requirements, types of specializations, and licensing regulations needed to pursue their particular career goals.

  • Specialize

    Degree-seekers should consider incorporating career-focused specializations in their plan of study as soon as they decide on their professional goals. The popular specialty area of clinical psychology prepares practitioners to offer direct services to clients in clinical practice. Clinical psychologists generally have completed advanced graduate studies and licensure, and school psychologists must obtain graduate degrees and specialized licenses to work with elementary and high school students.
  • Earn Your Degrees

    Idaho's colleges and universities offer several online undergraduate and graduate programs. A bachelor's, requiring 120 credits completed in two years of full-time study, opens the door to entry-level positions in social services, and, for many aspiring psychologists, provides the foundation for graduate studies and licensure. A master's degree serves as a prerequisite to practice in counseling and therapy specialties. Most psychology master's programs in Idaho take two years to complete, although accelerated formats enable students to finish in 18 months or less. Many of Idaho's online master's degrees in psychology allow students to take 1-2 courses per term on a part-time basis.

    Idaho requires each licensed psychologist to hold a doctorate but does not currently offer an online Psy.D. or Ph.D. in psychology. A student choosing to earn their doctorate elsewhere should expect to spend at least five years completing their degree, including dissertation requirements and several hours of internship.

  • Obtain Licensure

    Obtaining permission to practice as a licensed psychologist in Idaho consists of several steps and required fees. Each applicant must hold a doctorate from a program accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA) and complete 2,000 hours of supervised professional experience over two years. After meeting the educational requirement, you need to apply for licensure through the Idaho Board of Psychologist Examiners, which grants permission to take the mandatory examination for professional practice in psychology (EPPP).

    Applicants must submit $175 to the board for the application and examination processing fees, in addition to the EPPP registration fee of $688. Once you have completed all supervised experience hours and successfully passed the EPPP, you must submit an application to the Idaho Board seeking final approval to practice and pay an additional processing fee of $150.

Other Licenses and Certifications

This section describes other licensing opportunities in Idaho for specific careers. A master's in psychology serves as the prerequisite for specialties in marriage and family therapy and mental health counseling. Licensed social workers often enter the field after earning bachelor's degrees in psychology, followed by the required master's in social work.

Licensed Clinical Social Worker
A bachelor's degree-holder of psychology or a related field can pursue a master's degree in social work in preparation for careers in this field. LCSWs in Idaho must hold an accredited MSW and pass the Association of Social Work Boards examination for licensing.
Marriage and Family Therapist

MFT licensure in Idaho requires a master's approved by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy, or a master's degree in psychology or a related field that includes specific mental health, MFT, and ethics courses.

Licensed Professional Counselor
A licensed mental health counselor may practice in Idaho after earning a master's in a counseling-related field from an accredited college or university and completing 1,000 hours in a supervised internship.

Online Psychology Degree Programs

Figuring out where to apply? These top, accredited schools offer a variety of online degrees. Consider one of these accredited programs, and discover their value today.

Salaries and Job Outlook for Psychologists in Idaho

Idaho, home to over 1.7 million people, has experienced a steady climb in population over the last decade, but only 36% of its residents possess an associate or higher degree. Idaho boasts the third-highest projected state job growth rate in the nation. The continuing population growth and thriving economy contribute to a healthy employment outlook for licensed psychologists in public and private settings throughout the state.

Although salaries for psychologists working in Idaho rank below the national average, psychologists with clinical, counseling, and school specializations can expect to earn an annual salary of $62,270, well above the state's per capita income of $43,155. Mental health counselors earn an average yearly salary of $50,860.

The state's low unemployment rate, affordable property taxes, and favorable cost of living contribute to the positive employment outlook for psychologists, counselors, and therapists. These professionals can expect to earn the highest salaries in Idaho's major metropolitan areas.

Idaho at a Glance

Population: 1,754,208

Population Growth (2010-2018): 11.91%

Population Growth Rank: 10

Source: United States Census Bureau

 Mean Annual SalaryProjected Job Growth (2016-26)
National Average$95,61010.3

Source: BLS, Projections Central

 Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologist SalaryGeneral Unemployment RateEducation and Health Services 12-Month Employment Growth
Boise City$68,2502.8%4.5%
Idaho Falls$61,2802.2%2.9%
Coeur d'Alene$48,2503.0%3.6%

Source: BLS

Psychology Degrees and Careers in Idaho -- Frequently Asked Questions

Because online psychology degrees in Idaho differ by school and educational level, prospective students should always learn as much as possible about the discipline of psychology, the types of available degrees, and the options for distance learning.

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

As the first step for admittance to graduate school and then licensure, a bachelor's degree takes approximately four years of full-time study. An online master's in psychology in Idaho takes about two years to complete, although some schools offer part-time or accelerated options that can affect the time needed for degree completion. A student planning to practice as a licensed psychologist must earn a campus-based or online doctorate outside the state, requiring five or more years and several hundred hours of supervised internship.

Are Online Psychology Classes Hard?

Students should not expect online classes to be any easier than those taken at a campus location. Distance learning courses cover the same material as those conducted in person, and they may demand more self-discipline and motivation. Employers do not evaluate job applicants who hold online degrees any differently than those who graduated from traditional brick-and-mortar programs. Diplomas do not identify the degree earned as online or campus-based.

What Skills Are Needed to Be a Psychologist?

A bachelor's degree in psychology presents the theoretical foundations of the discipline, and graduate work strengthens this core knowledge by emphasizing competency in research methods, statistics, and computer analysis. Psychologists in all specializations must develop strong communication skills, demonstrate a sense of empathy, and adhere to a strong professional code of ethics. Professionals must develop a sense of responsibility and fairness, especially in clinical practice serving vulnerable groups in challenging environments.

What Schools Are Best for Psychology in Idaho?

Idaho's accredited colleges and universities offer quality online programs at the associate, bachelor's, and graduate levels. Distance learners may choose from several specializations in high demand fields like mental health counseling, industrial/organizational psychology, marriage and family therapy, and school psychology. Your academic interests and intended career path should guide you to choose the online psychology degree in Idaho that best fits your needs.

Is a BA or a BS in Psychology Better?

Beginning students should consult with their academic advisors to help them decide on a BA or BS degree. A BA features a liberal arts and sciences core, including a foreign language requirement. This degree prepares its graduates for entry-level employment, master's and doctoral studies in psychology, and other social sciences, education, and law. The BS, which emphasizes more math, natural science, and laboratory coursework, best serves the needs of students who intend to enter research-based graduate programs in psychology.

Accreditation for Online Psychology Programs in Idaho

Students should only obtain degrees from accredited institutions. These institutions have demonstrated a commitment to meeting high academic and professional standards, and the degrees they confer are universally recognized by employers and other American and international universities. For instance, an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution is a requirement for graduate-level studies at other colleges and universities.

Some Idaho colleges and universities have regional accreditation, while others receive national accreditation. National standing tends to apply to for-profit schools, and regional accreditation is bestowed upon publicly funded, degree-oriented, nonprofit educational institutions as a more rigorous standard.

In Idaho, regional accreditation is governed by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities. Students should look for this accreditation when applying to programs offering online psychology degrees in Idaho. The APA also offers programmatic accreditation to Idaho higher learning institutions.

Psychology Internships and Fellowships in Idaho

An internship is an exchange between a student and an employer or organization, allowing the former to gain firsthand experience of typical professional dynamics as a means of confirming their interest in and commitment to the chosen field. Fellowships are professional-level supplemental educational opportunities that allow students to gain practical experience, generally offered to graduate and post-graduate students. Another difference is that fellowships are always paid, while internships may not be.

As the state continues to direct more attention to the mental health care of its residents, several private facilities, public agencies, and schools have expanded opportunities for internships and fellowships, where students receive valuable hands-on clinical experience and research opportunities. Students can find placements in an assortment of fields directly related to their professional goals, including areas of counseling, crisis intervention, family support services, and rehabilitation.


Jointly operated by ACES Community Health Services and Pioneer Health Resources, Pathways provides many community-based and outpatient services, family support services, and peer support services.

Ability Health and Rehabilitation, LLC

This Boise-based private practice serves couples, families, children, and teens. It also offers targeted case management services and peer support and community-based rehabilitation services.

Human Supports of Idaho, Inc.

With offices in Boise and Caldwell, this private practice is among the state's most complete providers of mental health, crisis intervention, and counseling services.

NAMI Idaho

Idaho's chapter in the National Alliance on Mental Illness provides extensive resources to everyone affected by mental health issues through research, education, advocacy, and connections to support networks.

University of Idaho

The school is constantly engaged in psychological and mental health research initiatives. It also supports student research opportunities by forging matches with faculty members, based on the professor's research interests.

Professional Organizations for Psychologists and Mental Health Professionals

Joining a professional association in psychology can offer undergraduate and graduate students valuable resources and a competitive edge in the job market. Distance learners can benefit from the networking and professional development opportunities. Student memberships provide access to employment listings, along with information about internships, scholarships, and legislation that affect the profession.

  • Idaho Psychological Association The Idaho affiliate of the APA serves the professional development needs of psychology practitioners, researchers, educators, and students based in Idaho. IPA sponsors continuing education courses and mini-conferences and plays an active role in monitoring legislative actions that affect the profession. Students receive a discounted membership rate, giving them access to scholarship opportunities and job listings.
  • American Psychological Association Widely recognized as the most prominent professional organization for psychologists, APA promotes the application of psychological knowledge to enhance health and welfare and establishes academic standards for the professional training of psychologists. In addition to administering accreditation programs, the APA provides continuing education courses and maintains a large national job bank. Student members receive career guidance and information about scholarship and internship programs.
  • Idaho Counseling Association This state branch of the American Counseling Association serves the professional interests of counseling and human development professionals who work in education, healthcare, private practice, residential treatment, community agencies, government, and business settings in Idaho. ICA sponsors an annual conference, offers continuing education credits for license renewal, and monitors legislation that affects professional counselors in Idaho.
  • American Mental Health Counselors Association AMHCA promotes educational standards and training guidelines, administers professional licensure and practice, and establishes a code of professional ethics for clinical mental health counselors. The association sponsors continuing education credits for license renewal, including an annual conference and webinars. All members receive discounts on health and liability insurance and full access to the AMHCA employment postings.
  • Idaho Association of School Psychologists Established in 1975, ISPA serves the educational and mental health needs of children and youth by advancing the professional status of school psychologists employed in the state. This association establishes standards for training, service, and ethical conduct, and maintains discussion groups and blogs facilitating communication among school psychologists throughout Idaho.

Scholarships for Online Psychology Degree Programs in Idaho

Idaho Hispanic Scholarship Fund

These scholarships are designed for lower-income, college-bound Idaho students with Hispanic or Latin American ethnic backgrounds. Awards can be used for transportation, course materials, or tuition fees.

  • Amount Offered: $1,000
  • Scholarship Deadline: April 15
  • Eligibility Requirements: Idaho residents of Hispanic or Latin American racial origin with GPAs of 2.5 or higher may apply. Candidates must be high school seniors at the time of application.
Idaho Opportunity Scholarship

This scholarship is available to promising students planning to attend a qualified Idaho college on a full-time basis. It is designed to provide financial assistance to students in need who are enrolling in their first undergraduate degree program.

  • Amount Offered: $3,500 annually, renewable for up to four years
  • Scholarship Deadline: March 1
  • Eligibility Requirements: Open to Idaho high school seniors, GED diploma-holders, and undergraduate students with cumulative GPAs of at least 2.7. Applicants must be American citizens or permanent residents.
GEAR UP Idaho Scholarship

Offered by the Idaho State Board of Education, GEAR UP Idaho scholarships are open to students age 22 or younger who have participated in a GEAR UP program.

  • Amount Offered: Varies, based on available funding and the number of qualified applicants
  • Scholarship Deadline: March 1
  • Eligibility Requirements: High school graduates with open letters of acceptance to higher education institutions within Idaho's state boundaries may apply.
Horatio Alger Idaho Scholarship

The Horatio Alger Idaho Scholarship is available to high school seniors living in Idaho who have displayed integrity in overcoming significant adversity to pursue higher education opportunities.

  • Amount Offered: $10,000, paid in annual installments throughout the student's undergraduate study period
  • Scholarship Deadline: October 25
  • Eligibility Requirements: Applicants must be Idaho residents and high school seniors at the time of application. Preference is given to applicants with demonstrated involvement in community activities, and award recipients must commence college studies the autumn after receiving the scholarship.
University of Idaho

The University of Idaho offers scholarships to students in psychology courses, including four annual awards open specifically to psychology majors.

  • Amount Offered: Variable, depending on funding availability and the number of qualified applicants
  • Scholarship Deadline: Varies
  • Eligibility Requirements: Eligible students receive automatic consideration based on information supplied by the school's scholarship office.
Denise O'Donnell Day Scholarship

This scholarship, offered by Boise State University, is open to students planning to major in psychology through full-time enrollment in an undergraduate or graduate program.

  • Amount Offered: Variable
  • Scholarship Deadline: February 15
  • Eligibility Requirements: Full-time psychology majors with GPAs of at least 3.0 may apply.

Find Online Psychology Degree Programs in Idaho

This database lists all accredited psychology programs offered in Idaho that allow students to complete their degrees online. It can be used by Idaho's prospective students seeking online bachelor's or master's degrees in psychology and those looking to study at the Ph.D. level.

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Mental Health Initiatives in Idaho

Statistics provided by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services reveal that over half of the adults with mental illness in Idaho receive no treatment from either private providers or public facilities. The state ranks 49th in providing mental health services to its residents.

Given this dire need for treatment and services, Idaho has initiated several programs to expand and streamline coverage. Optum Idaho, the state's privatized Medicaid mental health and substance abuse service provider, has increased the number of patients receiving family and individual therapy. The Community Health Initiative Grants, a Medicaid-funded program, trains primary care providers to treat young patients exhibiting disruptive behavioral disorders under the guidance of mental health professionals.

Bonneville County participates in the Stepping Up Initiative, designed to expand mental health services to the prison population as a way to reduce recidivism. The state has pledged funding to expand other services, and, in 2015, opened mental health crisis centers in Idaho Falls and Coeur d'Alene.

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