Psychologist in Canada
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How to Become a Psychologist in Canada in 6 Steps

Without a doubt, you are on this page because you want to know how to become a psychologist in Canada- And yes, we’re here for you!

Psychology is the scientific study of the mind and behavior of humans. It is a profession that seeks to understand the cognitive and emotional behavior of humans. It is a highly rewarding career that involves you assisting people to achieve their full potential.

So, in this article, we will discuss what psychologists are, what they do, the skills needed to be a psychologist, how to become a psychologist in Canada, and the employment requirements for psychologists in different provinces in Canada.

What is a psychologist?

A psychologist is a professional that deals with diagnosing and treatment of emotional behavioral and cognitive disorders by applying hypotheses that relate to psychology. Although, you will have to complete advanced education, even up to the doctoral level to be successful as a psychologist in Canada.

What does a psychologist do?

Psychologists are important healthcare professionals that provide healthcare that is related to the mental concern. Basically, they access the cognitive abilities, emotional states, and psychological patterns of both adults and children. While giving a written report on the mental status of the patient.

Also, as a psychologist, you will interview the friends and family of the patients, to know more about them, and to know the best method of treatment. Here are some of the other responsibilities and duties of a psychiatrist in Canada.

  • Assess the behavior of patients, diagnosis, and treatment
  • Assist patients psychologically, by using the standard testing method.
  • Connect case history by reviewing the past medical history of the patient.
  • Carry out an interview with the patient.
  • Also, give writing reports on the assessment of a patient.
  • Provide consultation services.
  • Attend clinical conferences.
  • Apply the principle and theory of psychology to provide therapy to clients.
  • Counsel family members and patients on how to achieve personal social development.
  • Create hypotheses and design, research papers, and literature reviews in psychology.
  • Provide consultancy services and interpret test results.
  • Give medication to clients.
  • Deliver presentation and conducts research in workshops and conferences.

Skills needed to be a psychologist

Psychology is a sensitive career that requires a handful of skills to interact and treat patients accordingly. To become a psychologist in Canada, you must be vast in the following skills.

  • Good communication skills
  • Observational skills
  • A keen eye for detail
  • Good listening skills
  • Ability to comprehend
  • Problem-solving skills

#1. Good communication skills

Basically, a psychologist will deal with the emotional behavioral, and cognitive disorders of patients. Hence, the need to have good communication skills to get information from your patients so that you can offer the best treatment.

#2. Observational skills

Psychologists are very observant. While speaking with your patients or clients, you don’t just listen to their speech. You will also pay attention to their body expression, facial expressions, and reactions to their environment. Having good observational skills will make you become a successful psychologist in Canada.

#3. A keen eye for detail

Psychologists have an extra eye, i.e an eye for detail. They pay attention to spoken and unspoken words as well as check out for information on things that everyone else would have overlooked. They often find meaning in situations that seem meaningless.

#4. Good listening skills

The ability to listen without interrupting is one of the skills and traits of a psychologist. Most times, psychologists do more listening than talking, to get the information they need to solve a problem or treat a patient. So, you must be able to listen actively and know when to ask questions, this will make you actively engaged in your session with your client.

#5. Ability to comprehend

There are cases whereby your patience will communicate a lot of things within minutes. So, you need the ability to comprehend fast and give your patient the impression that you’re fully following.

#6. Problem-solving skills

Without a doubt, you will need to analyze and access the symptoms of your patients to provide the right treatment and diagnosis. To be able to solve problems requires that you remember information critically and quickly, for you to think about solutions.

How to become a psychologist in Canada in six steps

Becoming a psychologist in Canada will require a long deal of education. Starting from an undergraduate degree, master’s degree, and Ph.D. You will also have to obtain a practice license and professional certifications to be successful as a psychologist in Canada. Therefore, in a few steps, we will be discussing the steps on how to become a psychologist in Canada.

Step one: Carry out a research on the subfields of psychology

Basically, the first step to becoming a psychologist in Canada is to gain knowledge of the subfield that is present in psychology before you join College.

So, the various subfields of psychology in Canada include school psychology; forensic psychology; social psychology; industrial psychology; sports psychology; counseling psychology; neuropsychological research and experimental research; health psychology; developmental psychology; educational psychology; clinical psychology.

Step two: Get a bachelor’s degree in psychology

Bachelor’s degree is the start of your career in psychology. In your undergraduate studies, you will learn about the basics of methodology and psychological theories. In some cases, students can choose a related field of study. For instance, if a student is interested in pursuing forensic psychology, a degree in criminal justice will do. However, you may choose education-related study if you want to become a school psychologist.

Also, taking courses like science and social science programs with give you a knowledge of behavioral theory and scientific research methods that is important to pursuing psychology.

Step three: Complete post-graduate studies

If you want to become a successful psychologist in Canada, you shouldn’t stop at an undergraduate degree. You should obtain a master’s degree which can take between 1 to 3 years to complete. At this point, you will be prepared for doctoral studies after completing a rigorous literature review and research thesis to pursue a master’s degree.

Without a doubt, your master’s degree program we prepare you to work in different settings such as health care centers, schools, and mental health institutions. For instance, as a master’s graduate of psychology, you can work as an assessment psychologist, child welfare worker, or school counselor. Likewise, you may work as a consultancy service agency, research administration, or government institution.

Step four: Get entry-level jobs to gain work experience

The next step after completing postgraduate studies is to get a job to expose you to psychology work. This will help give you practical exposure to the subfields you’re specializing in. Having an understanding of the field will help you gather professional experience to secure future employment as well as get professional skills for your career.

Also, you will get to meet with professionals or mentors who can help assist you with your career aim.

Step five: Complete a supervised experience

The next step to becoming a psychologist in Canada is to consider completing the supervised experience. There are different clinical supervisor experiences you can gain depending on the jurisdiction you practice. You can visit the board of psychologists in your jurisdiction to know more about the hours you have to complete.

Step six: Pass the written and oral exams

Basically, as a qualified, chartered, or registered psychologist, providing psychological services in Canada varies depending on the territory or province you are in. In addition to obtaining your postgraduate education, you might have to complete and pass oral and written exams before you can get a license. And we will be talking about the requirements for psychologists in different areas in Canada below.

Employment requirements for different provinces in Canada

Depending on the cities and provinces in Canada, here are the employment requirements you need to have to become a psychologist.

  • In Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, and British Columbia, you need a doctoral degree to become a psychologist.
  • In Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Saskatchewan, Alberta, and the Northwest Territories, you need a master’s degree in psychology to become a psychologist.
  • However, in Ontario and Manitoba, you need a master’s degree in psychology to become a psychological associate.
  • Prince Edward Island– you need a doctoral degree to work in private agencies. However, if you have a master’s degree, you will be able to practice, but with limitations to practice in agencies and Institution.
  • You need to have supervised practical experience in most jurisdictions.
  • In most provinces you have to complete the written examination for professional practice in psychology, to become a psychologist.
  • Nunavut, northwest territories, and all provinces- you will have to register with the regulatory body to become a psychologist.
  • However, in Nunavut, the Northwest Territories, and all pronvices in Canada you need to have membership in the provincial Professional Association of psychologist.
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is it hard to become a psychiatrist in Canada?

Basically, every province in Canada has different requirements. However, having a doctorate will open new doors of opportunity to practice psychology.

Is a psychologist rich in Canada?

Basically, psychology is one of the highest-paying careers in Canada.

Are psychologists happy in their profession?

Basically, study revealed that about 93% of psychiatrists are happy and satisfied with their careers.

Are psychologists often stressed out in their careers?

Most times, they are stressed out because they will be dealing with people they are often stressed out.

Which subject is best for psychology?

To gain admission into a university you will need a good foundation in either physics, biology, maths, or chemistry.


Psychology, which is the study of human behavior has proven to be helpful for individuals over the years. It is a highly rewarding career because you’ll be helping people out of their various shells. We have provided you with the steps to becoming a successful psychologist in Canada, and the skills you need to be successful at it!.

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