Missouri: How to Earn a Psychology Doctorate Degree

The guide below provides information for students looking to pursue a PsyD degree in the state of Missouri. The guide will not only provide you with information about obtaining your degree but also requirements by the state to become licensed to practice in the field.

Quick Facts:

  • 13 schools in Missouri offer graduate or doctorate level programs in the field of psychology.
  • The state has three schools that ranked on Kiplinger’s Best Values in Public Colleges in 2017. They were Missouri University of Science and Technology, Truman State University, and University of Missouri.
  • The University of Missouri was the only public institution to be selected by the Association of American Universities.
  • The university with the lowest net price is the University of Missouri – St. Louis at $8,774.
  • The University of Missouri has performed more than 400 clinical trials at the Missouri University Hospital.

Top PsyD Degree Programs in Missouri

Below you will find a list of universities and colleges in Missouri that offer PsyD degree programs.

#1. Saint Louis University (St. Louis)

The Saint Louis University PsyD Program utilizes a diverse tone when exploring the complex matters of the brain and human behaviors. The program is designed to use broad topics such as practice and science and combine them with ethical considerations, theories, and conceptual foundations to prepare their students for practice in their chosen specialty. The scientist-practitioner model program has shown proven success with 96% of students who complete the program moving on to earn their license to practice. On average it will take students just over four years to successfully complete the program if they have achieved their Master’s degree and about five and a half years for those coming in with only a bachelors degree.

#2. University of Missouri (Columbia)

The University of Missouri -Columbia has a psychology program that provides focus on a variety of areas and fields including Clinical Psychology, Quantitative Psychology, Neuroscience, Developmental Psychology, and Personality Psychology. Doctorate programs available in the field of psychology from the university include P.h.D programs in Clinical Psychology and Counseling Psychology.

The Clinical Psychology Program takes a traditional approach and is heavily research-oriented. This program will provide broad training but will focus on more of the research aspect of psychology than the generalist psychology science. The Counseling Psychology program was ranked number 9 in the U.S. by the U.S. New & World Report and includes lectures, core curriculum, research, and service related projects.

#3. University of Missouri (St. Louis)

At the University of Missouri in St. Louis, the Department of Psychology is the largest program with 700 undergraduates students and 70 students seeking their doctoral degrees. The curriculum to obtain a doctorate in Clinical Psychology focuses on research by providing developmental laboratories where both faculty and student work alongside each other. The accredited program utilizes a scientist-practitioner training model and relies heavily on research and faculty members that are leaders in their respective fields. Graduates from this program are more likely to obtain non-service roles such as research, supervising, and teaching.

How to Become a Practicing Clinical Psychologist in Missouri

The path to becoming a licensed clinal psychologist in the state of Missouri starts with a bachelors degree. While most students get their BA or BS in psychology, any related field will be sufficient.

After obtaining their bachelor’s degree, students can choose to complete a Master’sdegreee before their doctorate which can consist of 30 to 40 credit hours and take up to two years to complete.

The final step in education to prepare you for the licensing process, is obtaining your PsyD or P.h.D. in Psychology. These programs will include multiple years of curriculum as well as at least one full year of professional experience, often through an internship program. The program you choose will have to be accredited by the APA or PCSAS or fully approved by the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards. Most programs will be completed between five and seven years.

After completing the education requirements, you will be required to take a few more steps to complete the licensing process.

  1. Completing a background check is a necessary requirement to continue on the path toward licensing. The faster method, which takes between seven to ten days, is getting your fingerprints taken electronically. First, you will need to complete a registration with the Missouri Automated Criminal History Site. Then you will be able to schedule your appointment with IdentoGO/Idemia to have your fingerprints taken. The other option is to have your fingerprints taken manually which can take up to eight weeks to process.
  2. The next step in the process is submitting your application to the Board for review. You will need to have the application notarized and sent along with the $150 processing fee. The application involves a number of questions, and you will need to include a Description of Course Work form with it as well. Official transcripts will also need to accompany the application, as well as the names or your supervisors for your field experience. These recommenders should also complete reference forms on your behalf. To speed up the process, you can also include your fingerprint submission and a Social Security Number Disclosure Notice.
  3. You will be required to complete at least 3,500 hours of supervised professional experience for the state of Missouri to consider you for licensing. At least 1,500 of the hours will need to be acquired from your doctoral work internship that will need to last between one and two years. The other 2,000 hours can be completed before, during, or after your doctorate program if you had completed a Master’s Degree. If not, the hours must be logged after your first year or doctorate work. Once the professional experience is completed an Attestation of Post-degree Professional Experience form must be submitted.
  4. Your final step to receive your license is to pass the Missouri psychology licensing exams. The first exam is a 100 questions on the rules and ethical conduct of practicing in the state. This jurisprudence exam will require a score of 70% or higher to be considered passing. After this exam, an oral exam will be required as well. The third and final exam is the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology. This test costs $687.50 and requires a score of 500 or higher to be considered passing.

Missouri Clinical Psychologist Salary and Job Outlook

The Bureau of Labor Statistics puts the median salary for a Clinical Psychologist at $77,000 in the United States. The average salary for a Clinical Psychologist in the state of Missouri is slightly less at $64,560. Salaries will typically start around $37,220 and increase up to around $100,420. Even though the average salary is less than the national average, the outlook in the state is good as the industry is expected to maintain and exceed its current growth.