Psychology in North Carolina: Learn About Becoming a Psychologist in NC

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Updated November 4, 2022 · 1 Min Read

Explore our guide on psychologist licensing in North Carolina, average psychologist salaries in the state, and options on how to help North Carolina residents access psychological services.

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The annual mean North Carolina psychologist salary of $87,210 is below the national mean annual salary of $98,010, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS). However, the critical shortage of licensed psychologists in North Carolina creates ample professional opportunities and can drive salaries upward.

Keep reading for more on psychologist licensing in North Carolina, the demand for psychology professionals, and expected salary ranges.

Psychologist Salaries in North Carolina
Job Title Lowest 10% Median Annual Salary Highest 10%
Clinical and counseling psychologists $39,640 $81,700 $163,980
School psychologists $46,130 $62,760 $82,390
Psychologists, all other $46,890 $96,430 $119,770

Source: BLS

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Psychologist Licensing in North Carolina

Psychologist licensing in North Carolina is regulated by the North Carolina Psychology Board. Obtaining a psychologist license in North Carolina requires the completion of 3,000 supervisory hours and passing two exams.

License reciprocity refers to a state's recognition of other states' licensure benefits. North Carolina does not currently offer psychologist license reciprocity. However, the state allows for out-of-state licensed psychologists to apply for North Carolina licensure through a simplified process, provided that applicants meet specific standards.

Applicants must provide proof of a passing score on the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP), a clear background check, a passing score on North Carolina's state examination, and an application.

License Requirements

  • Present with sound moral character and a clear background check.
  • Graduate from an American Psychological Association-accredited or equivalent doctoral psychology program.
  • Complete 3,000 hours of supervised experience, half of which are postdoctoral.
  • Pass the EPPP and pay a $687.50 fee.
  • Pass North Carolina's state examination and pay a $200 fee.
  • Submit an application to the North Carolina Psychology Board and pay a $100 fee.

Demand for Psychology in North Carolina

North Carolina meets only 13.4% of its population's mental health needs, designating the state a health professional shortage area, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. The National Alliance on Mental Illness reported that, as of 2021, over 2.5 million North Carolina residents live in an area with a shortage of mental health professionals.

School-aged youth represent an underserved population in North Carolina. Even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, North Carolina faced a school psychologist shortage. In 2018, 12 North Carolina school districts maintained no licensed school psychologists on staff. In 2020, a North Carolina Department of Public Instruction report reflected a lack of qualified applicants for available school psychologist positions.

Additional licensed school psychologists in North Carolina are needed to fill the plentiful job vacancies and serve the state's vulnerable youth.