South Dakota

South Dakota Psychology Education Overview

Psychology Licensure in South Dakota

Once you have attained your license to practice Psychology in South Dakota, you will find you a tremendous array of career options have become available to you within the field of human services. There are a multitude of career options once you have your license, including: Working at a hospital in Sioux Falls or opening a private practice in Pierre. With has a population of just over 824,00 people, South Dakota is one of the least populated states, but still has need for licensed Psychologists in its wide open spaces. According to the BLS, a Psychologist in South Dakota can anticipate a mean yearly wage of $68,9001. If you have a degree concentration in Child Psychology or wish to work with children a great option might be to research employment with one of South Dakota’s 165+ School districts2. If you like the idea of working in a fast paced environment with other professionals, then you may wish to examine career options with one of South Dakota’s 70+ major hospitals3. Having a license to practice Psychology in South Dakota will open many doors of opportunity for you in the human services field. Below you will find our guide on how to navigate the process to become a licensed Psychologist in South Dakota.

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Required Educational Background

South Dakota is an excellent state to become a licensed Psychologist in. To get your license in South Dakota you will first need to have earned your Ph.D. in Psychology. This in turn means that you will need to have already earned your Bachelor and Master of Psychology as a pre-requisite to earning your doctorate.

One of the best aspects of earning your Bachelor of Psychology is that you will get to really understand your career potential in psychology. Even if you choose to stop your schooling after your Bachelor’s, you will find that a Bachelor of Psychology is an excellent degree to have in the human services sector.

South Dakota is a state that requires a doctorate in order to apply for licensure as a licensed psychologist. Due to this requirement, a Master’s degree is a critical step on your journey towards becoming a licensed psychologist. It will be comforting to know that having your Master’s degree is also valuable in and of itself. In the human services field few Master level degrees are more valued than a Master of Psychology.

Once you have earned your doctorate in psychology from a board approved school you will need to start accumulating your required hours of post-graduate field experience.

Field Experience

To begin gaining your required field experience for licensure, you will need to do the following:

  • You can be granted a provisional license while you complete the required post-doctoral field experience to earn your full license.
  • You must complete an internship of 1800 hours during a two year period.
  • After you have your doctorate you must gain a full year of supervised field experience.
  • You will need to apply for licensure, get approved and take your examinations as explained below.

You will want to familiarize yourself with the South Dakota specific rules and regulations for licensure. These laws change so it is good to make sure you have current information, which you can find here:


Once you have completed your field experience you can apply to take the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP).

  • Pass the EPPP earning a high enough score to meet the South Dakota minimum
  • Pass the South Dakota oral exam for psychologists

You can find some helpful information about your EPPP here: