Psychology in Iowa

Updated August 17, 2022

Considering a psychology career in Iowa? Learn about psychologist licensing in Iowa requirements, typical Iowa psychologist salaries, and how to get your license.

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In the heart of the Midwest, Iowa is a mix of rural and medium-sized cities. While Iowa is not experiencing the same unmet needs for mental health care as most other states, the demand for psychologists remains high, with many Iowans living in shortage areas.

In 2020, Iowa's number of opioid-related deaths increased by 35%, demonstrating an unmet need for mental and behavioral health treatment.

Psychologist Salaries in Iowa

Iowa psychologist salaries are relatively high, with the top 10% of clinical psychologists making $166,980 or more, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Psychologist Salaries in Iowa
Job Title Lowest 10% Median Annual Salary Highest 10%
Clinical and counseling psychologists $32,320 $88,340 $166,980
School psychologists $47,580 $63,570 $81,570
Psychologists, all other $62,350 $113,630 $129,040

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Psychologist Licensing in Iowa

Psychologist licensing requirements in Iowa include a doctoral degree, postdoctoral supervised experience, and a passing grade on the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP). The Iowa Board of Psychology handles psychologist licensing in Iowa processing.

Iowa offers some reciprocity for licensing, accepting a Certificate of Professional Qualification in Psychology (CPQ), plus five years of experience and no disciplinary issues. If you have an existing license but not the CPQ, the state will accept your EPPP results, proof of your doctoral degree, and documentation that you have met the postdoctoral supervised experience requirements.

License Requirements

The full Iowa psychologist license requirements include, but are not limited to:

  • A doctorate from a program accredited by either the American Psychology Association, the Canadian Psychological Association (CPA), or accepted by the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards (ASPPB) National Register Designation Project
  • A passing EPPP grade
  • Verification of 1,500 hours of supervised professional experience completed in no less than 10 months
  • A satisfactory criminal background check (note that not all criminal convictions lead to automatic rejection)

Demand for Psychology in Iowa

While Iowa has a much lower level of unmet mental health care needs than other states, it still is experiencing a shortage of psychologists. The opioid crisis continues to worsen, with a rapid increase in the number of cases of overdoses and deaths in the state. Other substances are taking a toll as well, with 20% more drug overdoses in 2020 than in 2019.

Over 40% of the population lives in an area with sufficient mental health care providers and this makes Iowa 11th in the nation for adequate supply. Still, almost 2 million people live in areas in demand for mental health care.

Approximately 4.1% of the population is Black and 6.3% is Hispanic, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. About 5.4% were born outside the U.S., so while the need for culturally competent care is not as high as in other states, this figure is still significant.

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