Maine State Licensing Requirements

licensing-maineMaine may be a great place for you to practice therapy, professional counseling, psychology or social work. But what degree will you need to practice here, and what are the requirements to get licensed in the different helping professions?

Licensure protects the public from unregulated practitioners. By requiring licensure, Maine sets high standards of education, training and experience for people seeking to engage in the helping professions and promotes high standards of professional practice.

If you want to get the education, training and skills to help people cope with life issues (such as depression, anxiety, seasonal affective disorder [SAD] and substance abuse), overcome mental-health problems, and generally improve the quality of their lives, keep reading to learn about getting licensed in Maine.

Licensure to Practice in Maine

Licensing is a required step before you can legally practice social work, psychology, therapy or professional counseling.

Once you’ve earned your degree, you’ll need to pass a state and/or national exam and meet other licensing requirements in your particular field. Here are some of the requirements to practice in the following fields, according to the Maine Department of Professional and Financial Regulation. Make sure to consult the appropriate regulatory entity to review the complete and most up-to-date requirements.

Psychologist

  • Get a doctoral degree in psychology from a program from a regionally accredited university or one accredited by the American or Canadian Psychological Association
  • A practicum of at least two semesters in duration, and a one-year pre-doctoral supervised internship
  • Post-Doctoral Supervision: 1,500 hours of actual work experience completed in between 48 and 104 weeks; at least 25% and not more than 60% of the time devoted to direct service per week, with the majority of work being in the intended area of practice. Supervised experience does not include work experience earned in connection with any practica for which academic credit has been awarded
  • A passing score on the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP)
  • A passing score on the jurisprudence exam on Maine laws and rules

Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC)

  • Master’s or doctoral degree in counseling from a program accredited by the Council for Accreditation of counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) or the Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE)
  • During graduate degree, a supervised practicum experience
  • Supervised graduate internship of 600 clock hours
  • A minimum of 2,000 hours of supervised counseling experience over a period of not less than two years after receiving graduate degree, with at least 1,000 hours of direct counseling with individuals, couples, families or groups, and a minimum of 67 hours of supervision with an approved supervisor (at least 34 hours shall consist of individual supervision)
  • Passing grade on the National Board for Certified Counselor’s National Counselor Examination (NCE)

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT)

  • Master’s degree or doctoral degree in marriage and family therapy from a regionally accredited institution (accredited by CACREP or COAMFTE)
  • Graduate degree must include a practicum, and a 900-hour internship with 360 hours of direct client contact
  • 3,000 hours of supervised clinical counseling experience after receiving graduate degree, at least 1,000 of which will be in direct contact with couples and families; 200 hours must be under supervision (and 100 hours under individual supervision)
  • A passing grade on the Association of Marital and Family Therapy Regulatory Boards (AMFTRB)

Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW)

  • Earn a master’s or doctoral degree in social work or social welfare from a college or university accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE)
  • Supervised Work Experience (Internship): For a clinical concentration, 96 hours of consultation concurrent with 3,200 hours of social work employment occurring within a period of not less than two years. At least 72 consultation hours must be individual, face-to-face consultation. The remaining 24 consultation hours may be completed in group or by videoconference but not by telephone or any other audio-only technology (NOTE: Non-clinical concentrations require more hours; check with the Department of Professional and Financial Regulation for more details)
  • Get a passing score on the national exam administered by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB)

Making the Most of Your Degree

Once you know which of these fields you want to pursue and you’ve begun your graduate studies, it might be helpful to look into professional associations that accept students. Membership in organizations such as the Maine Association for Marriage and Family Therapy offers great benefits:

  • Access to job databases and community resources
  • Forums for interacting with peers and experts in your field
  • Information about legislation that affects your work, and lobbying efforts to protect your professional interests
  • Consultation with advocates in your profession regarding legal and ethical issues

So which career is right for you: psychologist, counselor, therapist or social worker? Start early and research your licensure requirements and degree options to make sure that you’ll be efficient in your studies, won’t have any licensing problems, and can get into the right helping profession for you.

Source: www.maine.gov/pfr/professionallicensing/professions

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