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| Please note: This page discusses the previous requirements for registration.
However, the Psychologists Registration Board of Victoria is considering changing the requirements for registration to a four year undergraduate degree plus either a (2 year) professional masters degree and a further year of work under supervision, or a (3 year) professional doctoral degree. Under this proposal, it would no longer be possible to gain registration without completing at least a professional masters degree in psychology.
It is possible that the registration boards in other states are considering similar changes, or have alredy implemented such changes.
This notice will be displayed until I have had a chance to check the current requirements for registration in each state of Australia. In the meantime, please confirm for yourself with the registration board of your state what the requirements for registration are currently. (March 2002)
The Registration Board and the APS
In order to register as a psychologist you need to complete a four year degree in psychology, followed by two years of practical experience under appropriate supervision. You can get your two years practical work by doing a coursework masters or doctoral degree, which involve a lot of practical placements; or you can find work in the area and pay someone to supervise you.
This sequence of four years study plus two years practicum allows you to register as a psychologist with your state or territory Registration Board. Registration enables you to practice as a psychologist, and it is not the same as joining the Australian Psychological Society (APS). The APS has an important role in providing a professional network and devoloping the practice of psychology, however it does not regulate who may or may not practice as a psychologist. Since around 1996 you have to complete at least a masters degree in psychology in order to join the APS, however it is possible to join the APS yet be unable to practice as a psychologist - for example by completing a PhD (thesis only) in psychology.
You can check this information on the APS website by going to: about the APS > registration > registration information and registration board, and by going to: about the APS > becoming a member > grades of membership.
You can find information about fourth year courses, postgraduate courses, and obtaining registration through supervision on this website, or on the APS website.
APS accredited courses
If you want to register as a psychologist, or join the APS, you will need to complete at least a four year course in psychology, and make sure that the course you are doing is approved by the APS. A list of accredited courses is available from the APS website, and is updated every three months. You should always check (just in case) that your planned course is approved.