BASIC QUALIFICATION REQUIREMENTS:
The basic requirements for employment as a VHA psychologist are prescribed by: Public Law 96-151 codified in Title 38, U.S.C. § 7402. To qualify for appointment, all applicants for the position of psychologist in VHA must meet the following:
a. Citizenship Citizen of the United States. (Non-citizens may be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified citizens)
b. Licensure Must 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. Note: This requirement may be waived for two years from the date of employment if under supervision of a licensed psychologist.
(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.
(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.
(1) Creditable Experience
(a) Current Professional Psychology Practice. To be creditable, the experience must be post-doctoral degree and must have required the use of knowledge, skills, abilities, and other characteristics associated with current professional psychology practice. This includes prior training and experience with empirically based practices (e.g., Motivational Interviewing, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy), particularly in the area of substance use disorder treatment. Creditable post-doctoral degree experience can be obtained through employment as a psychologist or through participating in a supervised post-doctoral psychology training program. This may be evidenced by one or both of the following:
1. Active professional practice. Active professional practice means paid/non-paid employment as a professional psychologist.
2. A full, current, and unrestricted license.
(b) Quality of Experience. Experience is only creditable if it is post-doctoral degree experience as a professional psychologist directly related to the duties to be performed. Qualifying experience must also be at a level comparable to professional psychology experience at the next lower level.
(c) Part-time Experience. Part-time experience is creditable according to its relationship to a full-time workweek. For example, a psychologist employed 20 hours per week, or on a ½ time basis, would receive 1 full-time workweek of credit for each 2 weeks of service.
(2) Post-Doctoral Degree Fellowships. Post-doctoral degree fellowships are training programs in an advanced area of clinical practice. Training as a fellow may substitute for creditable experience on a year-for-year basis.
GS-11: None beyond the basic requirements listed above.
GS-12: In addition to the basic requirements at the GS-11 level, at least one year of experience as a professional psychologist equivalent to the next lower grade level. Individuals assigned as a GS-12 psychologist 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:
- Knowledge of, and ability to apply, a wide range of professional psychological theories and assessment methods to a variety of patient populations.
- Ability to develop coherent treatment strategies.
- Ability to incorporate new clinical procedures.
(a) Licensure. hold a full, current, and unrestricted license to practice psychology at the doctoral level in a State, Territory, Commonwealth of the Unites States (e.g., Puerto Rico), or the District of Columbia..2 years of postdoctoral experience which included the ability to diagnose mental disorders, conduct psychological and assessments, treat mental disorders through a variety of modalities, and provide adjunctive interventions for treatment of medical disorders. In addition, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs:
(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:
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.
CONDITIONS OF EMPLOYMENT: (Failure to comply may be grounds for withdrawal of an offer of employment or dismissal after appointment)
- Applicants must be citizens of the United States.
- Applicants tentatively selected for certain designated positions may be subject to a random drug screening for illegal drug use. Applicants who refuse to be tested will be denied employment.
- New Appointees will be subject to a background investigation to determine suitability. Male applicants born after December 31, 1959, must certify at the time of appointment that they have registered with the Selective Service system or are exempt for having to do so under Selective Service law.
- Applicants must not be listed on the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Office of Inspector General Sanctions database.
- Applicants selected for positions through this announcement may be subject to a one or two year probationary period.
- 38 U.S.C. 7402(d) and 7407(d) requires that persons appointed to direct patient-care positions must possess the required basic proficiency in spoken and written English.
English Language Proficiency: If applicable, individuals appointed to direct patient care positions must be proficient in spoken and written English as required by Title 38, United States Code (38 U.S.C.).
You must successfully complete a pre-employment physical to include drug screening, suitability screening (background check) and credentialing prior to appointment. After appointment, there is a requirement for random testing for illegal drug use.
IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE MAY NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE.
References : VA Handbook 5005/15, Part II, Appendix G18, PSYCHOLOGIST QUALIFICATION STANDARD, dated March 17, 2006
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:
Once the application process is complete, a review of your application will be made to ensure you meet the job requirements. To determine if you are qualified for this job, your resume and supporting documentation will be compared against your responses to the occupational questionnaire. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect your eligibility.
INCOMPLETE APPLICATIONS will receive a rating of IFM (ineligible due to missing forms). Requests for reconsideration will not be considered for applicants who fail to submit a complete application package. We cannot be held responsible for incompatible software, fax transmissions, delays in mail service, etc.