If you hope to work in any of the more common professional careers, you need to understand the common state licensing requirements used by most states. Teachers, lawyers, doctors and even psychologists must have a license in the state where they live and work. Many people find that they graduate from one state and move to another state for work that has different requirements in place. Finding out about some of the more common requirements can ensure that you know what to do before you go to work.
Criminal Background Check
Many of the top professions today require that license applicants pass a criminal background check, and some professions also require that you pass a credit check. A credit check is similar to those used by banks and other lenders. It looks at your history in terms of where you borrowed money from and if you were late on payments or paid your loans in full. A credit check will also look for foreclosures, bankruptcies and evictions. A criminal background check looks at felonies and less serious charges you faced and the outcome of those convictions. Professional licensing organizations want to validate your character and ensure that you won’t take advantage of your clients or those working under you.
As part of obtaining your license, you may also need to obtain professional certification before working in your given field. Every state uses a different system to provide licenses and certificates to psychology professionals. Many states offer a licensing examination that includes questions on the ethics of working with patients and clients, the laws of working as a psychologist and basic psychological methods and concepts. In addition to state specific licensing, the American Board of Professional Psychology offers national certifications for psychologists. Though the ABPP does not offer general psychology certificates, it does offer certification in one of 13 fields.
Continue Your Education
One of the more common state licensing requirements is a requirement that you agree to continue or further your education after you start working. Depending on the field that you enter, continuing your education may involve taking professional courses and completing training programs that will let you earn additional certificates that will help you go further. Continuing education is essential to ensure you are up-to-date with current trends, new research, and emerging applications in the field.
Do You Need to Pass a Test?
College students often want to know if they need to take any additional tests after finishing college. Whether you need to take an examination depends on your profession. Many of the professions in the field of psychology require the successful completion of licensing examinations. These typically tests an applicant’s knowledge of psychology content and professional ethics. Applicants can usually retake a test until receiving a passing score.
While some professions make it easy for you to get to work right after college, other professions want to ensure that you have the skills needed to work in that field. The common state licensing requirements you must pass vary, but those requirements can include passing a background check or a licensing exam, obtaining certification or continuing your education.