The practice of American Psychology has become increasingly complex and competitive. There has been a decided trend toward practice focused in delimited areas with a number of such areas emerging as specialties. The ABPP establishes and continually incorporates the current developments in the definition and requirements of specialties in professional psychology. Over the past decade 11 new specialties have joined 3 traditional specialties which have been in the field for the past 55 years. The new specialties have emerged through public needs and professional advancements.
The public is not expected to be knowledgeable about specialty requirements such as accredited doctoral programs, internships, or supervised post-doctoral training. The clearest and most responsible way for a psychologist to represent herself/himself to the public, third-parties, and the profession as a specialist is to be certified through an organized peer process as meeting the standards and demonstrating the competencies required in the specialty. ABPP is the only non-profit professional unitary organization with multiple specialty board quality controls recognized by the profession as certifying specialty practitioners in psychology.
To attain board certification in a specialty, an applicant must meet the general and the specialty eligibility requirements which include:
A doctoral degree from a program in professional psychology which at the time the degree was granted was accredited by the APA, CPA, or was listed in the publication Doctoral Psychology Programs Meeting Designation Criteria. Applicants credentialed in the most recent directory of the National Register of Health Service Providers in Psychology, the Canadian Register of Health Service Providers in Psychology, or the Certificate of Professional Qualification in Psychology (CPQ), (ASPPB) typically qualify as meeting the doctoral degree requirements.
Applicants must demonstrate Licensure or Certification at the independent practice level as a psychologist in the United States, Canada or a U.S. Territory.
Note: Limited exceptions exist for prior to 1983 doctoral preparation, degrees granted outside the U.S. or Canada, formal retraining, and substantial equivalents to accreditation requirements. Applicants requesting review due to exceptions are completed by ABPP Central Office and the ABPP Standards Committee.
Specialty preparation for practice characteristic of the specialty, including appropriate doctoral education as a foundation for the specialty and such post-doctoral preparation as necessary to meet the standards of the specialty.
Behavioral & Cognitive Psychology
Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology
Clinical Health Psychology
Couple & Family Psychology
Organizational & Business Consulting Psychology
Police & Public Safety Psychology
Psychoanalysis in Psychology