The North Dakota Psychological Association (NDPA) was formed June 11, 1954, and incorporated in 1958. The purpose of the organization was to “advance psychology as a science, as a profession, and as a means of promoting human welfare.” The NDPA initially met semi-annually in both the Spring and Fall, although in 1968 this was changed to only annual Fall meetings.
Over the years, the group has faced many issues. One involved the concern for ethical standards and certification of psychologists. The NDPA resolved this issue in 1958 by opting for self-certification rather than statutory certification, and appointed a Board of Examiners. In response to a 1969 state licensing law, a Professional Standards and Review Committee was appointed in 1974.
The organization has also been concerned with its recognition in the health field. Representation of the NDPA on the State Health Council in 1963 and on the Mental Health Board in 1972 were issues, besides representation on the American Psychological Association Council. There was discussion in 1971 regarding a possible licensure law for social workers as it effected bachelor psychology graduates. The question also was asked as to what job opportunities were available for these graduate and if they needed or should receive extra training.
In 1974, the Association formally sponsored a continuing education program, and in 1977 made it mandatory and tied continuing education to licensure. Various other issues arose, including utilization of the title "psychologist", dues, the ability to admit patients to a hospital, research, and the education of the public as to comparisons between psychology and psychiatry. A continual and overriding issue was the need for inclusion of reimbursement for psychologists' fees in health insurance plans.