Psychology Programs in Minnesota

A Green Line train leaving the University of Minnesota and heading towards downtown Minneapolis
A Green Line train leaving the University of Minnesota and heading towards downtown Minneapolis

With a heightened focus on the importance of mental health, psychology continues to be a growing field nationwide. A wide variety of career paths are possible within the field, making it a rewarding and worthwhile pursuit. A strong education system and a wide range of career opportunities make Minnesota a great state to pursue a career in psychology. Continue reading to learn what to expect when pursuing psychology in Minnesota, including school options, licensing requirements and job opportunities in the state.

Why Choose to Study Psychology in Minnesota?

Minnesota is ranked second on the US News and World Report list of Best States, featuring high opportunity, strong infrastructure and natural beauty. In addition, the state is ranked second in the country for its economic opportunity with a lower than the national average cost of living index, lower than average poverty rate and higher than average median household income.

Minnesota features a lot of promise for those looking to study psychology, presenting a wealth of job opportunities and several options for education in the field. From 2016 to 2020, the number of mental health providers in Minnesota increased 27%, and this growth is not expected to slow, meaning there is plenty of need.

Psychology Schools in Minnesota

There are 50 accredited schools that offer psychology programs in the state of Minnesota as well as many state-based financial aid awards, such as the Minnesota Academic Excellence Scholarship and any number of state grants.

There are several psychology schools in Minnesota offering bachelor, graduate and doctoral degrees in psychology. A large highlight is the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, ranked #8 on the list of Best Psychology Schools in the country by US News and World Report. The University of Minnesota offers two different graduate programs for psychology and three different doctoral programs, including clinical psychology, school psychology and counseling psychology.

However, the state features many other psychology program options as well, with 13 American Psychology Association (APA)-accredited schools offering graduate programs and three offering doctoral programs. There are also a few options for online undergraduate and graduate programs for those interested, including through Minnesota State and the University of Minnesota. Overall, there is a wealth of educational opportunities in the state.

If you are planning to attend college in Minnesota, you should also be aware of the Minnesota Academic Excellence Scholarship which may cover up to the full price of tuition and fees at public colleges in the state.

Where in Minnesota do You Want to Study?

Psychology Job Opportunities and Salary Expectations in Minnesota

Minnesota is one of the top 15 states in employment for clinical, counseling and school psychologists, employing 2,590 statewide. Additionally, the state is in the top 10 in the country for employment of all other psychologists, employing 520. Positions in demand in the state include licensed psychologists, clinical social workers, clinical counselors and marriage and family therapists. Altogether, Minnesota is a promising state to practice psychology due to its high employment of psychologists compared to other states and its higher ratio of psychologists per capita.

This trend is not expected to change either. Projections Central expects that the amount of clinical, counseling and school psychologist positions will rise 13.7% between 2018 and 2028, while all other psychologist roles will rise 6% in the same period.

According to May 2020 numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, clinical, counseling and school psychologists made a mean annual wage of $89,290 nationally. In Minnesota, clinical, counseling and school psychologists made just under that with a mean annual wage of $85,560. Nationally, psychologists in all other fields made a mean annual wage of $100,130 based on numbers from May 2020. In Minnesota, the mean annual wage was not far from the national numbers at a still very respectable $94,360.

Minnesota Licensing and Certification Requirements

You are required to have a license to practice psychology in Minnesota. To qualify to obtain a license, you must meet several requirements. All candidates for licensure must have a doctoral degree in psychology from an accredited institution and complete at least one full year of postdoctoral supervised employment in a psychology field, totaling 1,800 hours. Applicants with a license in another jurisdiction must not have any unresolved disciplinary action or outstanding complaints pending.

Doctoral degrees must be from an APA-accredited institution, or if not, the degree must satisfy all of the requirements put forth by the Minnesota Board. Degrees can be a doctor of philosophy in psychology or a doctor of psychology. A path toward a doctor of philosophy typically involves more research, while the latter will include more clinical experience.

Once meeting the above requirements, candidates must also pass the national Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP) and the state Professional Responsibility Examination (PRE). The EPPP features eight content areas of focus, including biological bases of behavior, growth and lifespan development, assessment and diagnosis and others. The PRE focuses on the ethics and rules of conduct for psychologists based on the Minnesota Psychology Practice Act. After obtaining a license, psychologists must complete 40 hours of continuing education and renew their license after two years.

Overall, with a wide range of job opportunities and educational options on top of a growing psychology field, Minnesota is a great state to pursue psychology and establish a flourishing career path.

Resources for Psychologists in Minnesota

  • Minnesota Board of Psychology: The Board of Psychology oversees licensing for psychology to promote proper education and ethics for psychologists. The Board will provide you all the information you need regarding licensing requirements and meeting the criteria to practice psychology in the state.
  • Minnesota Psychological Association (MPA): MPA is a network of mental health professionals committed to community, diversity and advocacy. MPA provides psychologists with opportunities to fulfill their continuing education credits by hosting speakers and leading conferences, workshops and support groups for members. MPA also engages in lobbying activities to advocate for psychologists and mental health in the state.
  • Minnesota School Psychologists Association (MSPA): MSPA is a community of school psychologists working to support school psychologists and advocate for proper qualifications for school psychologists to promote the effective provision of services. Members are provided with professional development opportunities and the ability to build connections and engage in networking opportunities throughout the state.
  • Minnesota Counseling Association (MnCA): MnCA is a branch of the American Counseling Association. The association works to provide information and resources about counseling while also supporting professional counselors through networking opportunities, education opportunities and legislative advocacy.

Degree Programs in Minnesota