National Requirements Turkey
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- Psychology Education
The education of psychologists in Turkey follows a format of 4 years BA/BS + 2 years MA. The undergraduate education in psychology (BA) lasts for 4 years, as in the US, and is institutionalized on the basis of academic competence and scientific model, yet grounded on the ‘member of a profession’ definition. Many psychology departments consider the APA and EFPA standards together and have established master’s and doctoral programs in a number of sub-areas of psychology. In this regard, psychology departments focus on a specific practice and allow for six years of higher education including an internship with supervision. Considering the priorities and resources of undergraduate education in Turkey, the basic principles and achievement standards of the curriculum to be implemented and the qualifications that graduates should possess are extensively defined, and an accreditation process has been started. The Turkish Council of Higher Education used to authorize the TPA to accredit psychology departments and programs.
Recognition of university education programmes as meeting EuroPsy requirements is undertaken by a national accreditation authority (Higher Education Council & Turkish Psychological Association), of which the judgements are accepted by NAC. The Turkish Psychologists Association (TPA) has constituted an independent Accreditation Division (AD), for accreditation of undergraduate and graduate programs. Recently, AD applied to Higher Education Council for revalidation. The process is now in progress. TPA’s authority is still valid during the transitional period.
- Programmes that meet EuroPsy requirements
Recognised programmes exist at 11 universities in Turkey. These are listed below:
|Name of University||City||MA/MSc Degree Programmes|
|Ankara University||Ankara||Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Psych|
Doğu Akdeniz University
|İstanbul Bilgi University||İstanbul|
|Middle East Technical Univ.||Ankara|
- Supervised practice arrangements (for the EuroPsy Certificate)
The plans for implementing supervised practice for entry into the profession are covered in the accreditation regulations. As indicated above, the accreditation body within TPA has refined the regulations in such a way that both graduate and undergraduate programs will be congruent with EuroPsy. In the current regulations, supervision starts following the first year of the master’s program, conducted by a faculty member who has either a PhD in clinical psychology or a master’s degree and at least a total of 10 years of experience in the psychotherapy field. The supervision has to take place for at least one academic year and be conducted with only one student or with groups of two to three students, but must involve one hour per student each week. Students should have experience in various accepted contexts (the psychotherapy education laboratory or centers in the institution, in student health/counseling centers, hospitals and I/O settings etc.). The implementation will be evaluated via standard forms, being consistent with the EuroPsy supervision criteria. Students can also complete the supervised practice after graduation. However, details and duration of this practice as well as the quality of the supervisor are to be certified by the NAC.
Internship is compulsory for the doctorate programs in psychology, which provides PhD candidates with a substantial growth opportunity for the advanced level of supervised practice. There is an increasing awareness about the necessity of more advance levels of supervised practice in Turkey. Accordingly, our clinical psychologist members carry forward supervised practice after getting their PhD degree. Several international certification-training programs are being held regularly on mainstream approaches (e.g. Psychoanalysis, Gestalt, Cognitive Behavioural, Schema, Transactional, Dialectical Behavioural Therapies, Psychodrama etc.). There are also group-couple-family therapy based programs. These international certification programs are conducted by internationally certified psychotherapists, trainers and supervisors.
- Arrangements for training of supervisors
There are various arrangements:
i. Arrangements offered by universities:
A supervisor training program has been organized in conjunction with Adnan Menderes University Clinical Psychology program.
In METU Clinical Psychology Ph.D. program, “supervision” is a compulsory course which covers theoretical and practical issues about supervision and guidelines of how to supervise.
ii. Arrangements offered by TPA:
The NAC & S-NAC have evaluated supervisor candidates in line with the EFPA Regulations on EuroPsy. Up until now, 17 TPA members were approved as supervisors.
Guideline for supervision in psychotherapy practices have been publicized by the NAC and S-NAC.
A call for supervisor candidates is due to be publicized via direct e-mail, web and e-lists of TPA.
iii. The evaluation procedure for EuroPsy applicants
In case the supervisor of an EuroPsy applicant is not on the list, supervisors who are eligible in terms of their CVs are sent an e-mail for encouraging them to start their EuroPsy certification process and then, they are asked whether they want to be on the recognized and announced supervisor list. We think that this increases the number of approved supervisors.
- Recognition of Title
The title Psychologist is a legally recognized and protected title for some areas of practice
In Turkey, the title of clinical psychologist is regulated by Ministry of Health in the frame of “bag bill”. Accordingly, only clinical psychologists are entitled for psychotherapy practices.
In the related article of “bag bill”, the definition of Clinical Psychologist is regulated by three different formulas, as follows:
i) 4-year undergraduate program in Psychology + 2-year master’s program in Clinical Psychology;
ii) 4-year undergraduate program in Psychological Counseling + 2-year master’s program in Clinical Psychology;
iii) Non-psychology graduates: 4-year undergraduate program in a different area + 2-year master’s program in Clinical Psychology + 4-year PhD program in Clinical Psychology (totally 6-year education in Clinical Psychology)
Note: In the category of iii, completion of 1-year Preparatory period in an undergraduate program of psychology is generally mandatory. Accordingly, a total of 7 years of education in Psychology are completed by non-psychology graduates.
- License to practice
There is no license or entry in a register needed for practising psychology
- Continuing Professional Development (CPD)
There are no mandatory requirements for CPD.
There is no license to practise and therefore no revalidation.
CPD activities have been arranged by collaboration with Turkish Psychological Association (TPA). TPA biannually organizes national congresses and clinical psychology symposia and invites national and international specialists to hold workshops and conferences. Most of the universities also have grants to invite specialists and they use this opportunity in a fruitful way. Additionally, there are also training programs regularly held by TPA members who are internationally certified, e.g. psychoanalysis, Gestalt, CBT, Schema Therapy. In scope of those programs congresses and professional meetings, workshops are regularly organized. Besides, faculty and/or staff members of many graduate clinical psychology programmes organize informal meetings to further improve the supervision related competencies of their former graduates.