Potential issue with obtaining licensure in California (please help).

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mind_over_matter277

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Hi everyone! I am in the process of pursuing licensure in the state of California and I have run into a bit of an obstacle.

I was in a postdoctoral fellowship program for the last 9 months and ended up leaving before the projected completion date. It’s a very long and complicated story. Feel free to message me for additional information pertinent to the situation.

My TD signed off on the supervised postdoc hours for licensure. However, the application form asks if “the trainee performed at or above the expected competency level.” The TD stated “no” and provided an addendum with vague information.

I am a bit concerned about this as I have a feeling that the board will reject my application on this basis. It’s upsetting because I know that I am competent as a clinician. The program was just not a good fit for me. I have invested so much time, money, and energy into this arduous process. I would hate for this door to close.

I know that California is arguably among the most difficult states to obtain licensure as a psychologist. What would be a good option for working around this issue?

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I had the same thing happen to me, in another state with another license. My supervisor was not vague and tore me to shreds in her note about how I didn’t have patient safety in mind, was lazy, and missed a lot of work (I did, for medical purposes…) She signed off on the hours but checked no for recommending me for licensure.

I ended finishing my hours at another site, with a better supervisor. The 2nd supervisor wrote her own addendum stating her experience of me that she did not find any of the aforementioned negative traits present in my work or character.

All my hours counted. Licensed without issue.
 
I had the same thing happen to me, in another state with another license. My supervisor was not vague and tore me to shreds in her note about how I didn’t have patient safety in mind, was lazy, and missed a lot of work (I did, for medical purposes…) She signed off on the hours but checked no for recommending me for licensure.

I ended finishing my hours at another site, with a better supervisor. The 2nd supervisor wrote her own addendum stating her experience of me that she did not find any of the aforementioned negative traits present in my work or character.

All my hours counted. Licensed without issue.
Wait…does that include the hours that the first supervisor signed off on? How long ago was this? I believe the board might have made changes to their policy for postdoc hours recently.
 
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I had the same thing happen to me, in another state with another license. My supervisor was not vague and tore me to shreds in her note about how I didn’t have patient safety in mind, was lazy, and missed a lot of work (I did, for medical purposes…) She signed off on the hours but checked no for recommending me for licensure.

I ended finishing my hours at another site, with a better supervisor. The 2nd supervisor wrote her own addendum stating her experience of me that she did not find any of the aforementioned negative traits present in my work or character.

All my hours counted. Licensed without issue.
Sorry, I misread. California seems to be more strict in comparison to other jurisdictions.
 
Leave CA, move to a state that does not require post-doc to be licensed. Get a job and see if you can find someone to supervise you and sign off on postdoc hours.

Or find a new post-doc CA and apply when that is over? Not sure about CA licensure law.
 
Leave CA, move to a state that does not require post-doc to be licensed. Get a job and see if you can find someone to supervise you and sign off on postdoc hours.

Or find a new post-doc CA and apply when that is over? Not sure about CA licensure law.
I’m not sure either. It’s super confusing.
 
You can work as a psych assistant in CA to earn hours for a job.

My point being, if your first supervisor was an ass and you believe their characterization of you is not accurate, find another one, knock it out of the park with your performance. Your recent performance will speak more. I'm not sure if you completed all your hours or not, but this might be a situation in which you want to accrue some more hours just for the purpose of getting a better recommendation.
 
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You can work as a psych assistant in CA to earn hours for a job.

My point being, if your first supervisor was an ass and you believe their characterization of you is not accurate, find another one, knock it out of the park with your performance. Your recent performance will speak more. I'm not sure if you completed all your hours or not, but this might be a situation in which you want to accrue some more hours just for the purpose of getting a better recommendation.
Yes, I had completed the minimum of 1,500 postdoc hours required for licensure in California. Although the TD did not directly supervise me, he based his impression on what my other supervisors said. It’s a very long and complicated story.

I’ve always wanted to get licensed in CA. I took all of those extra classes and invested so much money into the process.

The TD tried to be vague and was like “Why don’t you get licensed in another state?”
 
Yes, I had completed the minimum of 1,500 postdoc hours required for licensure in California. Although the TD did not directly supervise me, he based his impression on what my other supervisors said. It’s a very long and complicated story.
You said “supervisors”, plural. If multiple supervisors are saying the same thing about your performance, that may give the board pause. As opposed to one supervisor with a negative evaluation of your work while the others say otherwise.

I second moving to another state and redoing the post doc.
 
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You said “supervisors”, plural. If multiple supervisors are saying the same thing about your performance, that may give the board pause. As opposed to one supervisor with a negative evaluation of your work while the others say otherwise.

I second moving to another state and redoing the post doc.
It was 2 supervisors, who wreaked havoc on my life. One never liked me from the get-go. She was super controlling, manipulative, and emotionally abusive. She got the other supervisor to side with her. Also, it’s a very complicated story but suffice it to say that they disliked me from the get go to the extent that even performing at the best level possible was not enough to change their opinions of me. The TD just spoke on behalf of them on the application form.

Yeah, I got into this mess the moment that I accepted the fellowship position.
 
I don't think you need to speak to a psychologist on the board. You just need to speak to someone at the board. I have spoken to people there. It is possible.
Are you licensed in CA? Honestly, I think it’s a very elitist licensing board. Also, it seems to stand out in professional communities.
 
I am licensed in California and the board never once got back to me when I asked them questions about postdoc-level concerns before the license exam stage. They don’t bother answering questions from people prior to that stage, I think. It is very frustrating. That said, you could email them/call them daily so they get tons of emails from you. I didn’t try that route.

Do you have a case worker assigned to your file? That’s the stage when I got responses but I can’t remember at what point I was assigned someone. Might have been after SPE hours were accepted and I was getting notifications about the EPPP and CPLEE.

Are you unable to redo the hours at another site in CA? I don’t see anything in the regulations that says you can’t (regulations linked below). Do you belong to CPA or any other local psychology organizations? You might ask psychologists through those means.


 
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I am licensed in California and the board never once got back to me when I asked them questions about postdoc-level concerns before the license exam stage. They don’t bother answering questions from people prior to that stage, I think. It is very frustrating. That said, you could email them/call them daily so they get tons of emails from you. I didn’t try that route.

Do you have a case worker assigned to your file? That’s the stage when I got responses but I can’t remember at what point I was assigned someone. Might have been after SPE hours were accepted and I was getting notifications about the EPPP and CPLEE.

Are you unable to redo the hours at another site in CA? I don’t see anything in the regulations that says you can’t (regulations linked below). Do you belong to CPA or any other local psychology organizations? You might ask psychologists through those means.


I desperately want to get licensed in California. This dream is being ruined by a wicked training director and two supervisors.
 
There are bad fits, bad supervisors, bad training programs, and bad clinicians. Best advice -- move forward, forget those hours, and try another postdoc. If it goes well, use that new experience and supervisor to complete the paperwork and sign off on your competence. It will put you back 3/4 to 1 year but you have a path to your goal, if it is that is important to you.
 
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Where can I find another postdoc this late in the game? I’ve always been told that you have once chance to complete a formal postdoc and that’s it.
 
Where can I find another postdoc this late in the game? I’ve always been told that you have once chance to complete a formal postdoc and that’s it.
Is there a particular reason you aren’t looking into informal postdocs? That may be your best bet at this point if you have to redo postdoc altogether. The only specialty that requires a formal postdoc is neuropsych, to the best of my knowledge.
 
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