Why Attend Psychology Colleges and Programs in Indiana?

By Ndidi Susan Emeagwali

While nonresidents do pay high out-of-state tuition at colleges in Indiana, online learners often bypass this impediment to affordable education by enrolling in virtual colleges that charge online learners the same tuition regardless of where they live.

Indiana offers aspiring psychologists some of the best psychology schools in the nation, according to U.S. News & World Report. This includes Indiana University Bloomington, Purdue University, and the University of Notre Dame, which rank 17th, 39th, and 60th, respectively. On a separate ranking of the best states to live, Indiana receives high marks for providing residents with the tools to succeed and for the state's short- and long-term fiscal health.

What to Expect in an Indiana Psychology College Program

A degree-seeker begins their psychology education with an undergraduate degree by earning a two-year associate or four-year bachelor's in psychology. Learners accelerate degree completion by transferring their associate degree or credits into a bachelor's program. If they enroll on a full-time basis, online learners typically complete their master's degree in two years. If an enrollee plans to eventually pursue licensure as a psychologist, they must complete a doctorate, which takes an additional five or more years of study, depending on whether they choose a Ph.D. or Psy.D.

Degree-seekers should also explore colleges for psychology in Indiana to pursue dual master's/doctoral programs, which potentially save learners time and tuition as they train for careers as psychologists. Degree-seekers should determine which subfield of psychology best interests them since this may affect their school options. Psychology departments' faculty members specialize in different psychology subfields and offer programs accordingly.

The American Psychological Association (APA) notes that in 2018, Indiana's doctoral psychology students chose clinical psychology as their top specialization at a rate of 37%, followed by general psychology (26%), counseling psychology (7%), and educational psychology (5%). The remaining students chose other research and psychology subfields. As students consider Indiana colleges for psychology, they should know that schools in the state conferred 1,664 psychology degrees in 2018 (all degree levels combined), ranking 11th in the nation.

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

Schools offer psychology courses that vary based on the degree level, specialization, and faculty areas of research expertise. This section lists five courses that students take at the best colleges in Indiana for psychology.

General Psychology

At the undergraduate level, students receive an introduction to the field, including a history of the scientific study of the human mind and behavior. Faculty members introduce students to psychology's major theories, principles, and research methodologies. This course lays the groundwork for more in-depth study in other courses.

Developmental Psychology

Often required at the undergraduate level, developmental psychology explores the biological, environmental, and early childhood experiences that contribute to abnormal behavior. Degree-seekers learn about personality disorders, psychopathy, substance abuse, and other disorders, and how psychologists diagnose and treat them.

Social Psychology

Undergraduates examine the social influences on behavior, along with how people and groups interact with one another. Faculty members explore how humans communicate, persuade each other, respond to social pressure, and react to people in distress, as seen in the bystander effect.

Clinical Psychological Assessment

Students pursuing doctoral degrees in clinical psychology examine theories and techniques used in the psychological assessment of adults. Topics include how to conduct an intake interview, perform cognitive and personality assessment, and develop reports based on findings.

Advanced Research Methodology

Psychology students must possess advanced skills in research methodology to succeed at the graduate level. Faculty members usually require master's- and doctoral-level students to take a series of courses that explore how researchers conduct psychological research and evaluation, apply experimental and non-experimental techniques, and review psychological research.

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Education Requirements to Become a Psychologist in Indiana

An aspiring psychologist must earn a doctorate in psychology from a college accredited by the APA or Canadian Psychological Association (CPA). The doctorate must encompass at least three academic years of graduate study and include instruction in research design, methodology, statistics, psychometrics, and standards for scientific and professional ethics.

Indiana requires at least 1,500 hours of internship experience under the supervision of two full-time psychologists.

Students must also demonstrate competence at the graduate level in biological bases of behavior, cognitive-affective bases of behavior, social bases of behavior, and individual differences. Students in clinical, counseling, or school psychology doctoral programs must complete practicums, internships, field experiences, or laboratory training. Indiana requires at least 1,500 hours of internship experience under the supervision of two full-time psychologists.

An enrollee must subsequently complete 1,600 post-internship supervised hours, with 900 hours spent delivering direct service. Participants engage in sequential experiences in supervised health service settings. Each student must complete a written dissertation as part of the doctorate, as well.

Indiana Licensing for Psychologists

All states require psychologists to complete specific educational and supervised training experiences to obtain licensure as psychologists. This ensures that psychologists meet high standards in delivering services to the public. The following section provides in-depth information about the licensure process in Indiana.

Why Get Licensed in Indiana?

An Indiana psychologist needs a license to perform the following tasks:

  • Diagnose and treat mental and behavioral disorders
  • Provide educational and vocational guidance, and render services regarding the selection of personnel and resolution of interpersonal conflicts
  • Teach psychology and conduct research

Indiana recognizes clinical, counseling, school psychology, or other applied health service areas of psychology. All specializations require the same licensure requirements.

Licensing Criteria for Indiana

The Indiana State Psychology Board regulates psychologist licensure in the state. Candidates must meet all of the board's requirements, including the completion of a Ph.D. or Psy.D. from an APA- or CPA-accredited institution. The board accepts degrees without accreditation from Indiana colleges for psychology from these organizations, as long as students can show that the curriculum meets coursework requirements for licensure.

A student in a clinical, counseling, and school psychology doctoral program must complete at least 1,500 hours of supervised internship experience as part of their doctorate. Participants must engage in 1,600 hours of post-internship supervised work experience. Each psychologist who provides supervision must complete a form verifying the trainee's activities during the post-internship experience. Students culminate their doctoral training with dissertations in psychology. The degree must include a one-year residency, fulfilled by the student attending classes and interacting with psychology faculty at the degree-granting institution.

How to Get Licensed in Indiana

Any person seeking licensure as a psychologist in Indiana must complete an application to the board and pay the $100 fee. The board reviews the application materials to deem candidates eligible to complete the jurisprudence examination. This exam covers topics like statutes and rules related to the practice of psychology in Indiana. After passing this exam, the board notifies the testing service about the applicant's eligibility to take the examination for the professional practice of psychology (EPPP).

The 225-multiple-choice-question EPPP covers eight areas, including biological bases of behavior, cognitive-affective bases of behavior, growth and lifespan development, and social and cultural bases of behavior. Applicants must sit for the EPPP within 60 days from the date of board authorization, and earn a passing score of at least 500 out of 800. Pearson VUE administers the EPPP for a $600 fee.

A candidate cannot independently work with clients in Indiana until they complete their supervised professional experience and obtain endorsement as a health service provider in psychology (HSPP). They must complete an application for HSPP endorsement and pay a $100 fee.

License Renewal in Indiana

Psychologists in Indiana must renew their licenses every two years. To qualify for renewal, a psychologist must complete 20 hours of continuing education per license period. The board requires 10 hours each of category 1 and 2 continuing education activities. Category 1 activities include workshops, seminars, symposia, and postdoctoral institutes, while category 2 encompasses case conference attendance, professional or scientific meetings, formal professional supervision, and approved audio and video instruction. The original HSPP endorsement receives automatic renewal when the practitioner renews the license.

Indiana Psychologist Salaries and Employment Trends

Degree-holders from the best colleges in Indiana for psychology can anticipate a 13.6% increase in the demand for psychologists in the state until 2026, according to Projections Central. This falls in line with the 14% job growth projected by the BLS for psychologists nationwide. Clinical, counseling, and school psychologists in Indiana enjoy an even better outlook, with a 15.4% projected job growth until 2026, topping the projected job growth for these specialized psychologists in states like Kentucky, Ohio, and Michigan.

Metropolitan areas provide the best employment prospects, such as the Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI area.

Psychologists in all categories made an annual mean wage of $88,470 in Indiana, according to May 2018 BLS data. Comparably, psychologists in Kentucky took home an annual mean wage of $91,120, with Ohio and Michigan earning $92,900 and $88,120, respectively. Specifically, clinical, counseling, and school psychologists in Indiana earn less money, with an annual mean wage of $73,350.

Metropolitan areas provide the best employment prospects, such as the Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI area, which employs 3,960 clinical, counseling, and school psychologists making an annual mean wage of $76,080. The Indianapolis-Carmel-Anderson metro area employs 450 clinical, counseling, and school psychologists, who earned an annual mean wage of $82,240.

Historical Mean Wage for Psychologists
  2016 2017
Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists in Indiana $64,770 $67,440
Psychologists, All Other in Indiana $86,790 $85,230
Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists Nationally $78,690 $81,330
Psychologists, All Other Nationally $94,650 $93,440

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Mean Wage For Psychologists In Indiana and Nearby States (2018)

  • Nationally

    Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists: $85,340

    Psychologists, All Other: $95,610

  • Indiana

    Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists: $73,350

    Psychologists, All Other: $88,470

  • Kentucky

    Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists: $64,330

    Psychologists, All Other: $91,020

  • Ohio

    Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists: $75,710

    Psychologists, All Other: $92,900

  • Michigan

    Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists: $83,210

    Psychologists, All Other: $88,120

  • Illinois

    Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists: $75,180

    Psychologists, All Other: $87,410

Source: BLS

Projected Job Growth for Psychologists (2016-2026)
  Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists Psychologists, All Other
Nationally 14.2% 10.3%
Indiana 15.4% 13.6%
Kentucky 12.1% 4.8%
Ohio 13.4% 8.7%
Michigan 13.5% 2.2%
Illinois 5.9% N/A

Source: Projections Central

Psychology Programs and Licensing in Indiana Frequently Asked Questions

Is Psychology a Good Major?

The psychology field offers a promising future, as state and federal data for psychologists and other mental health professionals show robust job growth that outpaces the national average for other jobs. Even psychology majors who do not need doctoral degrees to practice, such as substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors, can expect a 22% national job growth rate and a 22.9% increase in Indiana.

Should I Get a BA or BS in Psychology?

A BS provides an aspiring psychologist with hands-on research and lab experience that graduate schools consider favorably as part of the application process. The BA's focus on liberal arts education leaves less room for deeper scientific exploration.

What Is a Good Specialty for Psychology?

APA manages 54 divisions covering subdisciplines in psychology and various areas of interest. Indiana recognizes clinical, counseling, and school psychology, along with other applied health service areas in psychology.

What Is the Difference Between a Psy.D. and a Ph.D. in Psychology?

Indiana requires either degree to obtain licensure from the Indiana State Psychology Board. A degree-seeker interested in training as a scientist-practitioner should complete a Ph.D., which includes a greater emphasis on research. Those interested in clinical work with clients typically choose the Psy.D. for the doctorate's applied focus.

Are Indiana Psychology Licenses Valid in Other States?

Psychologists licensed in another state can apply for licensure by examination in Indiana. Applicants must demonstrate to the Indiana State Psychology Board that they maintain active licensure in another state, and therefore do not need to sit for the EPPP. Each psychologist must apply to take the state jurisprudence exam for $100.

Psychology Resources for Indiana

  • Indiana Psychological Association As the largest organization representing the interests of psychologists in Indiana, IPA promotes the field as a science and a means to advance public well-being. This association offers members access to mentorship, continuing education, and a free "Find a Psychologist" listing, along with the benefits of 24/7 advocacy and lobbying efforts.
  • American Psychological Association APA is the preeminent scientific organization representing psychologists in the United States. The organization's members include psychologists and psychology students at varying levels of education. Membership provides access to professional development, publications, a career center, and professional liability insurance.
  • Indiana Association of School Psychologists Established in 1987, IASP is the professional home of hundreds of school psychologists and graduate students in the state. Membership benefits include access to resources like rubrics, videos, and other materials; networking events; job postings; and scholarships for graduate students.
  • Indiana Counseling Association Licensed counselors join ICA regardless of their specialty. They receive access to National Board for Certified Counselors-approved continuing education opportunities, counseling events, and job postings.
  • Indiana State Psychology Board This board oversees psychologist licensure in Indiana and provides applicants with relevant information about obtaining and renewing their licenses. Resources include state statutes and rules, criminal background check information, and a fee schedule.