Psychological Associate Registration – FAQ's
Who can apply to be registered as a psychological associate?
How long can a psychological associate hold a registration?
Answer: A registration is limited to a cumulative total of six-years (72-months). [Title 16, California Code of Regulations (CCR) § 1391.1(b)]
PLEASE NOTE: Unless the registration is cancelled, the registration period will continue to count towards the 72-month limit.
How do I cancel my registration?
Answer: To cancel a registration, email the Board at BOPlicensing@dca.ca.gov with the following information:
- Name and registration number of Psychological Associate
- Effective date of cancellation
- Name and license number of primary supervisor(s)
Who is responsible for notifying the Board of an addition or deletion of a primary supervisor?
Answer: The Psychological Associate is responsible to complete and submit the "Notification to Add or Change Supervisor or Service Location for a Psychological Associate" form PSB 101 (rev. 07/22). The form must be completed and signed by both the psychological associate and new primary supervisor. There is no fee to add or change a supervisor.
PLEASE NOTE: It is considered unlicensed practice if the psychological associate begins providing services before receiving approval from the Board.
If the psychological associate is accruing supervised professional experience for psychology licensure, a new supervision agreement and plan must be completed and signed by the psychological associate and new primary supervisor prior to the commencement of the supervised professional experience.
Does the Board charge a fee to change a primary supervisor or service location?
What address should be listed with the Board as the Address of Record?
Answer: A psychological associate must provide a valid address as the Address of Record (AOR) to the Board for all correspondence (e.g., renewal applications, updates, etc.). The AOR is public information and is available to anyone who asks over the phone, in writing, or via the Board's website. If the AOR is a PO Box, or a mail drop location, the psychological associate is required to provide a confidential physical business or residential address which will not be made available to the public [16 CCR § 1380.5]. Any address change must be reported within 30 days to the Board.
Is an applicant required to provide an email address to the Board?
What is the fee for the psychological associate application?
Answer: The application fee for registration as a psychological associate is $75.00. [16 CCR §1392.1(a)]
Primary and Delegated Supervisors
Who can serve as the primary supervisor of a psychological associate?
Answer: Only licensed psychologists can serve as the primary supervisor of a psychological associate. [16 CCR § 1391.5(a)]
Must the primary supervisor complete a six-hour course in supervision?
Answer: A licensed psychologist must complete a six-hour course in supervision every two years to qualify to supervise a psychological associate. [16 CCR § 1387.1(b)]
Whose responsibility is it to notify patients, prior to the rendering of psychological services by a psychological associate that the assistant is unlicensed and is under the direction and supervision of a licensed psychologist?
Answer: The primary supervisor shall inform each client or patient, prior to the rendering of services by the psychological associate that the assistant is unlicensed and is under the direction and supervision of the supervisor. [16 CCR § 1391.6(b)]
Does the primary supervisor have to be employed in the same setting that the psychological associate is employed?
Answer: Yes. A psychological associate must be under the direction and supervision of a licensed psychologist who is employed in the same setting as the psychological associate. [16 CCR § 1391.5(a)]
What percentage of time must the supervisor be available when the psychological associate is rendering professional services?
Answer: The supervisor must be available to the assistant 100% of the time the assistant is rendering professional services. The availability can be in-person, by telephone, by pager or by other appropriate technology. [16 CCR § 1391.6(c)]
What is the maximum number of psychological associates that can be supervised by a licensed psychologist at any given time?
Answer: A licensed psychologist can supervise no more than three (3) psychological associates at any given time. [B&P section 2913(c)(2)]
Supervised Professional Experience (SPE)
Is a supervision agreement form required?
Answer: A supervision agreement form is required if it is the intention of the psychological associate to count the hours worked as a psychological associate as SPE toward the psychology licensure requirements. The Board also recommends that a supervision agreement form be completed even if the hours are not being accrued towards licensure. [16 CCR § 1387(b)(10)].
Is a psychological associate who is accruing hours of supervised professional experience required to keep a written log to document the hours of supervised experience?
Answer: Yes. All psychological associates must maintain a written, weekly log of all hours of supervised professional experience gained toward licensure that meets the requirements of 16 CCR § 1387.5.
How many hours of supervised professional experience can be credited toward the SPE required for licensure?
Answer: A maximum of forty four (44) hours per week can be credited toward meeting the supervised professional experience requirements. This includes the required 10% supervision. [16 CCR § 1387(b)(5)]
What is the minimum amount of direct, individual, face-to-face supervision that must be provided by the supervisor to a psychological associate?
Answer: The supervisor must provide a minimum of one (1) hour per week of direct, individual, face-to-face supervision to the psychological associate. However, the psychological associate must be provided with supervision for 10% of the total time worked each week in order for the hours to meet the licensing requirements. [16 CCR § 1387(b)(4) and 1391.5(b)]
Can a psychological associate be supervised by a family member or business associate?
Answer: No. Primary supervisors cannot have any familial, intimate, business or other relationship with the psychological associate. [16 CCR § 1387.1(j)
Law and Ethics
Answer: No. Psychological associates cannot rent, lease, sublease, or lease-purchase office space from the supervisor, employer or any entity for the purposes of functioning as a psychological associate. [16 CCR § 1391.8(c)]
Can a psychological associate provide psychological services prior to being registered by the Board?
Answer: No. The unlicensed/unregistered practice of psychology is prohibited. A registration is not valid until approved and issued by the Board [B&P section 2913]
Is it acceptable to supervise a psychological associate who is a current or former client?
Answer: No. A primary supervisor cannot supervise a psychological associate who is, or has been, a psychotherapy client of the supervisor. [16 CCR § 1387.1(k)]
Can a psychological associate pay a fee for supervision?
Answer: No. A psychological associate cannot pay a fee, monetary or otherwise, for supervision. [16 CCR § 1391.8(a)]
Can a psychological associate be required to supply provisions necessary to practice?
Answer: No. The supervisor must supply all provisions necessary to function as a psych assistant [16 CCR § 1391.8(a)]
Can a psychological associate advertise or have a website?
Answer: No. A psychological associate is not licensed to practice independently. The supervisor can list the psychological associate on advertisements and/or websites as long as it is clear that the person is registered as a psychological associate, provides the registration number, and the name and license number of the supervisor. [16 CCR § 1396.4and § 1397]
When does a psychological associate registration become delinquent?
Answer: If a registration is not renewed by the expiration date, it becomes delinquent the following day. [16 CCR § 1391.12(b)]
A registration that is not renewed within 60 days after its expiration date becomes cancelled and a new application for registration must be submitted. [16 CCR § 1391.12(e)]
PLEASE NOTE: Providing psychological services while the registration is delinquent or cancelled is unlicensed/unregistered practice of psychology. [B&P section 2913]
Can a psychological associate practice while his/her registration is expired or delinquent?
Answer: No. A registration that is not renewed by its expiration date is delinquent. Practicing with a delinquent or an expired registration is prohibited and considered the unlicensed practice of psychology. [16 CCR § 1391.12(c)]
What kind of information must be reported to the Board on an annual basis by the psychological associate's supervisor?
Answer: Every supervisor of a psychological associate must submit to the Board an update that is completed by the supervisor and signed by both the supervisor and the psychological associate.
The update must be submitted on or before the expiration of the registration for the preceding calendar year showing:
- Name and license number of all primary supervisors
- Address of all locations where psychological services are currently being provided
- The location, type, extent and amount of supervision
- An attestation from all current primary supervisors that the psychological associate has demonstrated an overall performance at or above the level of competence expected for his or her level of education, training and experience. This information is required to be reported on the registration renewal form. [16 CCR § 1391.10]