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Psychology Programs in Utah

Utah has a variety of programs you can pursue in your quest to become a licensed and working psychologist. There are approximately 300 psychologists, psychology researchers, psychology graduate students, and high school teachers who are members of the Utah Psychological Association (UPA), according to the organization.

On this page, you’ll learn about the education and licensure requirements, different school programs, how to secure an internship, salary expectations, loan repayment options, and more.

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How to Become a Psychologist in Utah

To become a psychologist in Utah, you’ll need to complete many years of education, earn a doctoral degree, pass all necessary exams, and fulfill practice-hour and other licensing requirements. Psychology programs may be conducted in-person on a physical campus, online-only, or in a hybrid format, which is a combination of the two styles.

If you’re looking to go the distance in your psychology career and become a licensed psychologist, you’ll have to complete several steps. Here is an overview of how to become a psychologist in Utah:

  1. Associate degree (optional): If you choose to begin your education at a community college or other career-preparation school, you may want to consider earning an associate of arts (A.A.) or associate of science (A.S.) degree in psychology. An A.A. degree may focus on more liberal arts and communication curriculum, whereas an A.S. tends to require more math and science courses. This degree can usually be completed within two years.
  2. Bachelor’s degree: Traditionally, this is the first degree future psychologists earn on their education pathway. Students can pursue a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) or Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree, ideally in psychology. This degree can usually be completed within four years of full time schooling.
  3. Master’s degree: Graduates may choose to pursue a master’s degree or head straight into a doctoral degree program. If you are choosing a career in counseling, you need only a master’s degree to practice. You’ll want to major in psychology or a related discipline, and you’ll earn either a Master of Arts (M.A.) or Master of Science (M.S.) degree. This degree can usually be completed within two years.
  4. Doctoral degree: At this stage of your education, you can choose between pursuing a Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) or Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.). This degree can take up to a decade complete based on your schedule, type of dissertation or capstone, and general goals.
  5. Pass exams: It’s necessary that you pass any required examinations, which differ depending on which license you decide to pursue—more on that in the next section. For psychologists, these tests include the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP) and the Utah Psychologist Law and Ethics Examination.
  6. Get licensed: This requires that you complete your supervised training hours, meet all educational program requirements, pay any fees, and submit all essential material.

Utah Psychology Licensing and Exams

Like other states, Utah has its own licensing and examination requirements for hopeful practitioners.

According to the Utah Department of Commerce: Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing (DOPL), there are four licenses available in the field in the state: Psychologist, Certified Psychology Resident, Behavior Analyst, and Assistant Behavior Analyst.

Here are the details behind the requirements of each license:

  • Psychologist: Applicants must take the EPPP, which is developed by the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards (ASPPB). Before they can sit for the exam, applicants must meet the guidelines for eligibility. This includes fulfilling the education requirements (including notarized signatures on their license application stating as such), earning their degree, and completing the required supervised training hours. After submitting the application, DOPL will contact eligible candidates and give them instructions for taking the exam; the division will be notified when an applicant has passed the exam.
  • Certified Psychology Resident: Qualified applicants do not need to pass any exams before they apply for this license.
  • Behavior Analyst: Applicants must take the Board-Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) Examination, which is developed by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB).
  • Assistant Behavior Analyst: Applicants must take the BCBA developed by the BACB.

In addition, there are criminal history disclosure requirements, though those are in flux as of early 2020.

To apply for or renew your license, you can go to the DOPL website and go directly through the site. You will need to complete the application, submit school transcripts, send any requested supplemental material, and pay a fee. You can also visit the site to see which careers require which licensure and guidelines to practice.

Note: DOPL has discontinued paper licenses and will send license certificates via email. It’s essential that you have a valid email when completing the licensing, reinstatement, and renewal processes.

Job Growth and Psychologist Salaries in Utah

Psychologists in Utah can make a generous salary, and the field is growing. Utah offers high pay and even higher growth in many areas of psychology–for instance, Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychology job growth is estimated at 31% between 2016 and 2026.

While there are many career options for psychology majors in Utah, there are some particularly popular fields you may want to know more about:

Psychology Fields and Salaries in Utah

CareerUtah Mean SalaryAverage Salary Per Hour
Educational, Guidance, School, and Vocational Counselors$52,200$25.10
Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists$80,920$38.90
Psychologists—All Other$86,340$41.51
Licensed Clinical Social Worker$50,900$24.47
Marriage and Family Therapist$70.960$34.11
Behavioral Disorder, Substance Abuse, and Mental Health Counselor$66,330$31.89

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Recognized Psychology Specializations in Utah

In general, there are numerous careers within the field of psychology. Utah recognizes four umbrella specialties:

  • School psychology: Professionals in this field have specialized training in both psychology and education. School psychologists work with children, adolescents, teachers, and parents to help youth succeed academically, socially, behaviorally, and emotionally.
  • Developmental psychology: Mental-health professionals in this specialty work with people at different ages and stages of life. They study the way humans psychologically develop—physically, cognitively, and socially.
  • Social psychology: Professionals in this specialty focus on and study human interaction. They tend to work in one of three areas: research, teaching, or consulting.
  • Clinical psychology: These practitioners are licensed to provide direct services to their patients. They administer tests to diagnose mental disorders or assess cognitive abilities, develop treatment plans, conduct psychotherapy, and more.

Utah Psychology Spotlight Programs

When picking a school, you’ll need to evaluate what’s important to you. You’ll want to review your career goals, budget, schedule, whether you want to attend an in-person or online school, and more before choosing the right psychology program for you.

Here are five psychology programs worth considering in Utah. Note: Room and board, degree-specific costs and programs (undergraduate versus graduate), and various other charges may apply.

University of Utah

The University of Utah is located in Salt Lake City, Utah, and it proudly promotes its inclusivity of an international and diverse student body. The psychology department offers a few degree options: clinical Ph.D., social Ph.D., cognitive and neural science Ph.D., and developmental Ph.D. In-state tuition is $8,952/year, and out-of-state tuition runs $28,788/year, per 2019–2020 data.

Brigham Young University

Brigham Young University is located in Provo, Utah. The private university has sports teams, lots of student activities, and even an on-campus museum. BYU offers two degree options: psychology Ph.D. and clinical psychology Ph.D. Tuition is $28,154/year for Latter-Day Saint students and $35,444/year for Non–Latter Day Saint students, per 2019–2020 data.

Utah State University

Utah State University is located in Logan, Utah. UTU boasts Division 1 athletics and has the distinction of having the oldest residential campus in the state. The school offers a variety of graduate program specialties: behavior analysis, brain and cognition, combined clinical/counseling, neuroscience, professional school counselor, quantitative psychology, and school psychology. In-state tuition is $14,092/year, and out-of-state tuition is $28,630/year at the Logan campus, per 2019–2020 data.

Westminster College

Westminster College is located in Salt Lake City, Utah. The college is located in the Sugar House neighborhood of SLC and has 10 ski resorts within a 60-minute-drive. Westminster College offers concentrations in psychology and psychology with an emphasis in cognitive science. All undergraduate students are charged $36,700/year, per 2019–2020 data.

Utah Valley University

Utah Valley University is located in Orem, Utah. UVU is a teaching university located near the Wasatch Mountains. The school offers several degree programs: psychology (B.A. and B.S.), psychology minor, and behavioral science (B.A. and B.S.). In-state tuition is $5,530/year and out-of-state tuition is $15,900/year, per 2019–2020 data.

For your reference, the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) is in charge of providing master- and doctoral-level programs with accreditation.

Utah Psychology Scholarships

School tuition and associated costs can add up quickly. Thankfully, there are resources to help you pay for school regardless of whether you’re a current student or graduate.

There are psychology scholarships for a variety of states, education levels, and more. Individual schools may also have scholarships, and you should explore their financial aid websites.

Utah has a variety of scholarships unique to the state, including:

  • The Danielle Vacca Scholarship at the University of Utah awards $4,000 to one student (alternatively, it can also be split between two students). The memorial scholarship is given to a student who has experienced a loss due to a drunk or impaired driver. To qualify, candidates must be a junior or senior majoring in psychology, have a minimum 3.0 GPA, and be a full-time student. To be considered, applicants must submit a personal essay on the impact drunk driving had on them along with a department application in the spring term.
  • The Pamela C. Petuskey Scholarship at the University of Utah gives one award of up to $1,200 to a student studying in the instructional design and education technology (IDET) program within the Department of Educational Psychology. Students who are teachers looking to improve their skill set will be given preference. Eligible applicants must submit a transcript, resume or CV, and a personal statement sharing how the award will enhance their teaching career.
  • The Utah Psychiatric Association also has scholarship opportunities for student members.

Utah Internships and Fellowships

Internships and fellowships can be advantageous to your psychology career for many reasons.

Even if you aren’t required to have one an internship or fellowship, you should consider engaging in one to learn more about the industry and for networking purposes. They may be paid or unpaid, and it’s possible you could qualify for financial assistance while working at an internship or fellowship.

Though there are many fellowship and internship options for psychology majors in Utah, a few are:

Your university can be a good starting point to find a position. You can also search for internships and fellowships on job sites like LinkedIn and Indeed.

Utah Psychology Resources

Wherever you are in your psychology studies or career, there are resources within Utah to help you on your way.

  • The Utah Department of Commerce: Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing (DOPL): DOPL is a division within the state’s Department of Commerce. It primarily administers and enforces laws that deal with licensing and regulation in certain professions. The agency also provides psychologists with information on licensing, specialty committees, and proposed rule changes in the industry.
  • Utah Association of School Psychologists (UASP): UASP is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization for school psychologists. The organization focuses on the advancement of effective practice, research, and policy development to serve students and their mental health. It advocates for the profession and welfare of children and youth as well. Members can attend events and access industry-specific news and information.
  • Utah Psychological Association (UPA): This organization is a leader in advocating for the needs and interests of psychologists in the state. The UPA strives to protect patient safety, maintain high standards of practice, and educate the public on the profession. Members can take advantage of events and continuing education resources.