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:
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.
(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.
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.
Physical Requirements: See VA Directive and Handbook 5019.
English Language Proficiency: Psychologists must be proficient in spoken and written English.
GS-13 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:
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.