I cannot help but grin when I see this old name plate/table sign bearing a title of a “Psychologist”. This was before the passage of RA 10029. This was given to me by a very special lady I worked with. She was amongst my “mommies” in a school I worked for where I developed a Guidance program for them. She has passed away due to cancer.

I also get a series of flashbacks rolling along memory lane. One particulary strong memory was a conversation with a mentor who has also sadly passed away. She was one prominent Clinical Psychologist who owns her own testing firm along EDSA, just beside Ramon Magsaysay High School in Cubao, Quezon City. She knew I wanted to be verse in assessment and be exposed in working with groups or family support; she helped me through the ropes. I remember sheepishly asking her if it was rightful to use the title, Psychologist. I remember telling her how far-fetch a PhD was for me at that time. Her remarkable response was, “Who’s going to complain or contest your title when the law has not been passed? By the time the law is out, you’re good to go.” How confident she was of me. And I was not.

As per RA10029, a “Psychologist” is a natural person who is duly registered and holds a valid certificate of registration and a valid professional identification card as professional psychologist, issued by the Professional Regulatory Board of Psychology and the Professional Regulation Commission pursuant to this Act for the purpose of delivering the different psychological services. The “Practice of Psychology” consists of the delivery of psychological services that involve application of psychological principles and procedures for the purpose of describing, understanding, predicting and influencing the behavior of individuals or groups, in order to assist in the attainment of optimal human growth and functioning. The delivery of psychological services includes, but is not limited to: (1) psychological interventions: psychological counseling, psychotherapy, psychosocial support, coaching, psychological debriefing, group processes and all other psychological interventions that involve the application of psychological principles to improve psychological functioning of individuals, families, groups and organizations; (2) psychological assessment: gathering and integration of psychology-related data for the purpose of making a psychological evaluation, accomplished through a variety of tools, including individual tests, projective tests, clinical interview and other psychological assessment tools, for the purpose of assessing diverse psychological functions including cognitive abilities, aptitudes, personality characteristics, attitudes, values, interests, emotions and motivations, among others, in support of psychological counseling, psychotherapy and other psychological interventions; and (3) psychological programs: development, planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of psychological treatment for individuals and/or groups.

Nowadays, that thought of being a Psychologist makes me shake my head. To become one, I must qualify the following:

(a) Is a Filipino citizen, a permanent resident or a citizen of a foreign state/country which extends reciprocity to the Philippines relative to the practice of the profession;

(b) Holds at least a master’s degree in psychology conferred by a university, college or school in the Philippines or abroad recognized/accredited by the CHED and has obtained sufficient credits for the subjects covered in the examinations;

(c) Has undergone a minimum of two hundred (200) hours of supervised practicum/internship/clinical experience related to services enumerated in paragraph (b) of Section 3 of this Act and under the auspices of a licensed psychologist or other licensed mental health professional;

(d) Is of good moral character; and

(e) Has not been convicted of an offense involving moral turpitude.

B and C does not seem to fit the picture now. The road led me somewhere else. Doing assessment, coaching and working with groups or family support is still calls me, though. These are the spine of my work now.

Read more about RA 10029