a. Citizenship. Citizen of the United States.
(1) Have a doctoral degree in psychology from a graduate program in psychology accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA). The specialty area of the degree must be consistent with the assignment for which the applicant is to be employed. A degree in the Health Psychology/Behavioral Medicine is preferred.
(2) Have successfully completed a professional psychology internship training program that has been accredited by APA. Exceptions: (1) new VHA psychology internship programs that are in the process of applying for APA accreditation are acceptable in fulfillment of the internship requirement, provided that such programs were sanctioned by the VHA Central Office Program Director for Psychology and the VHA Central Office of Academic Affiliations at the time that the individual was an intern and (2) VHA facilities who offered full one-year pre-doctoral internships prior to PL 96-151 (pre-1979) are considered to be acceptable in fulfillment of the internship requirement.
c. Licensure. Hold a full, current, and unrestricted license to practice psychology at the doctoral level in a State, Territory, Commonwealth of the United States (e.g., Puerto Rico), or the District of Columbia.
Exception. The Secretary may waive the requirement of licensure for an individual
psychologist for a period not to exceed 2 years from the date of employment on the condition that such a psychologist provide care only under the supervision of a psychologist who is so licensed. Nonlicensed psychologists who otherwise meet the eligibility requirements may be given a temporary appointment as a graduate psychologist under the authority of 38 U.S.C. § 7405 (a) (1) (D). Failure to obtain licensure during that period is justification for termination of the temporary appointment. This may result in termination of employment.
d. Loss of Credential. An employee in this occupation who fails to obtain licensure/certification/registration within the required time frame, or who fails to maintain the required licensure/certification/registration must be removed from the occupation, which may also result in termination of employment. For occupations which require an active credential (licensure/certification/registration) at all grade levels, at the discretion of the appointing official, an employee may be reassigned to another occupation for which he/she qualifies if a placement opportunity exists. For occupations which require an active credential (licensure/certification/registration) in assignments above the full-performance level only, at the discretion of the appointing official, an employee may remain at an appropriate lower grade level in the occupation when both of the following apply: the credential is not a requirement and a placement opportunity exists.
e. Grandfathering Provision. The following is the standard grandfathering policy for all Title 38 Hybrid qualification standards. Some of these provisions may not apply to this occupation. Please carefully review the qualification standard to determine the specific education and/or licensure/certification/ registration requirements that apply to this occupation.
All persons employed in VHA in this occupation on the effective date of this qualification standard are considered to have met all qualification requirements for the title, series and grade held, including positive education and licensure/certification/registration that are part of the basic requirements of the occupation. For employees who do not meet all the basic requirements required in this standard, but who met the qualifications applicable to the position at the time they were appointed to it, the following provisions apply:
(1) Such employees in an occupation that does not require a licensure/certification/registration, may be reassigned, promoted, or demoted within the occupation.
(2) Such employees in an occupation that requires a licensure/certification/registration, may be reassigned, promoted up to and including the full performance (journey) level, or demoted within the occupation, but may not be promoted beyond the journey level or placed in supervisory or managerial positions.
(3) Such employees in an occupation that requires a licensure/certification/registration only at higher grade levels must meet the licensure/certification/registration requirement before they can be promoted to those higher grade levels.
Employees who are appointed on a temporary basis prior to the effective date of the qualification standard may not have their temporary appointment extended or be reappointed, on a temporary or permanent basis, until they fully meet the basic requirements of the standard.
Employees initially grandfathered into this occupation, who subsequently obtain additional education and/or licensure/certification/registration that meet all the basic requirements of this qualification standard must maintain the required credentials as a condition of employment in the occupation.
If an employee who was retained in an occupation listed in 38 U.S.C. § 7401(3) under this provision leaves that occupation, the employee loses protected status and must meet the full VA qualification standard requirements in effect at the time of reentry to the occupation.
f. Physical Requirements. See VA Directive and Handbook 5019.
g. English Language Proficiency: Psychologists must be proficient in spoken and written English in accordance with chapter 2, section D, paragraph 5a, this part.
GRADE DETERMINATIONS: In addition to the basic requirements for employment, the following criteria must be met when determining the grade of candidates:
(a) Experience. None beyond the basic requirements.
(b) Assignment. Staff psychologists at this level diagnose mental disorders, conduct psychological and/or neuropsychological assessments, treat mental disorders through a variety of modalities, and provide adjunctive interventions for treatment of medical disorders. They practice under the close supervision of a licensed psychologist.
(a) Experience. In addition to the basic requirements at the GS-11 level, at least 1 year of experience as a professional psychologist equivalent to the next lower grade level. Individuals assigned as GS-12 psychologists may be in the process of obtaining licensure at the independent practice level. If unlicensed, the individual must be supervised by a licensed psychologist and the experience and supervision must meet the standards for psychology licensure. In addition, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs:
(b) Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
1. Knowledge of, and ability to apply, a wide range of professional psychological theories and assessment methods to a variety of patient populations.
2. Ability to develop coherent treatment strategies.
3. Ability to incorporate new clinical procedures.
(c) Assignment. At the GS-12 level, unlicensed psychologists practice under the supervision of a
licensed psychologist, but with less need for consultation than at the GS-11 grade level. They may be assigned to any program area.
(a) Licensure. Hold a full, current, and unrestricted license to practice psychology at the doctoral level in a State, Territory, Commonwealth of the United States (e.g., Puerto Rico), or the District of Columbia.
(b) Experience. In addition to the experience requirements at the GS-12 level, at least 1 additional year of experience as a psychologist equivalent to the next lower grade level. In addition the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs:
(c) Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
1. Knowledge of, and ability to apply, advanced professional psychological theories and techniques to the full range of patient populations.
2. Ability to provide professional advice and consultation in areas related to professional psychology and behavioral health.
3. Knowledge of clinical research literature.
4. For supervisory assignments:
a. Ability to provide supervision in areas related to behavioral health and social services provision in order to accomplish the organizational goals and objectives.
b. Ability to provide fair, principled and decisive leadership for a work environment that promotes shared accountability.
(d) Assignments. This is the full performance level for staff psychologists. At this level psychologists are licensed at the doctoral level to practice independently in the provision of psychological services consulting with peers and supervisors as appropriate. They are assigned to any VHA program and setting, including inpatient or outpatient medicine, surgery, mental health, neurology, rehabilitation medicine, geriatrics, Vet Centers, and the VHA National Center for Organizational Development.
1. Staff Psychologists diagnose mental disorders, conduct psychological and/or neuropsychological assessments, treat mental disorders through a variety of modalities and provide adjunctive interventions for treatment of medical disorders. Among the modalities provided are individual, family, and group psychotherapies, and other interventions such as biofeedback, psychological hypnosis, and environmental interventions. They consult with medical center staff on a wide variety of patient care issues. Staff psychologists may be involved in program evaluation and/or research activities.
2. Supervisory Psychologists. At this level supervisory psychologists typically have collateral supervisory duties primarily for non-professional staff, although a small number of professional staff may be supervised as well (i.e., less than three). Supervisory psychologists at this level may be assigned to any program area and may be involved in program evaluation and/or research activities. At this level, supervisory psychologists independently provide psychological services at all levels of complexity and consult with peers and supervisors as appropriate.
IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE MAY NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE.
References: Qualification Standards Used: VA Handbook 5005, Part II, Appendix G18. This standard is available for review in the local HR Office. For the full text, see the Handbook on file in Human Resources Management Service.
APPLICANTS PLEASE NOTE: Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Applicants must, therefore, only report attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Applicants can verify accreditation at the following website: http://www.ed.gov/admins/finaid/accred/index.html. All education claimed by applicants will be verified by the appointing agency accordingly. *** If you are using foreign education to meet qualification requirements, you must send a Certificate of Foreign Equivalency with your transcript in order to receive credit for that education. ***
When applying for Federal Jobs, eligible Veterans should claim preference on their application or résumé. Applicants claiming preference based on service-connected disability, or based on being the spouse or mother of a disabled or deceased Veteran, must complete an SF 15, Application for 10-Point Veteran Preference. Veterans who are still in the service may be granted tentative preference on the basis of information contained in their applications, but they must produce a DD Form 214 or other proof prior to appointment to document entitlement to preference. For more information on Veterans' Preference, please visit http://www.fedshirevets.gov/job/veterans.aspx.
HOW YOU WILL BE EVALUATED:
Your application, résumé and/or supporting documentation will be verified. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect consideration for employment. You may also be evaluated based upon the question responses you provide during a structured interview. In responding to structured interview questions you should be sure to cite specific examples of experience, explain exactly what you did, and the outcome.