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Psychology in Albania

After the 1990s, a lot of things changed, including psychology, of course.

The First Department of Psychology was established in 1996, and the first psychologists graduated in clinical psychology, school psychology, and organizational psychology in 2000.

In 2016, 20 years later, the Law “On the Order of Psychologists in the Republic of Albania” was approved. The First Founding Assembly was held on January 28, 2017, and thus the OPA was officially established.

Throughout these years, OPA has worked hard to empower the role of the psychologist. The inclusion of all psychologists under one umbrella was a real challenge. Can you imagine how difficult it is to do that and to impose rules after 20 messy years in the exercise of the profession?

Currently, the number of psychologists is about 1800, with some committees subordinate to the Order and a large team of collaborators. OPA has worked hard during that time to define the fields of competence, strengthen the continuing education system, increase the number of employed psychologists, and improve service standards.

The order of the psychologist (OP) is the only professional entity in Albania, established by Law No. 40/2016 “On the order of the psychologist in the Republic of Albania”, which protects the interests of psychologists, it’s is responsible for maintaining the quality of service and professional standards, it licenses psychologists, it is responsible for the development of professional practice as a precondition for their licensing, as well as is responsible for accreditation of training programs and for the ongoing education of psychologists. Currently OPA has 1920 members.

First department of psychology was opened in 1996 opened. Albania emerged from a 45-year dictatorial regime in 1990 and psychology was a science not applied to the population. 

The institution was established after the election of its bodies by the founding Assembly of 28 January 2017.

During this time, OPA has worked with all line ministries to increase the number of employed psychologists and to further strengthen their role in these institutions. Public opinion in Albania has changed the approach toward psychological services and the role of psychologist, after the consolidation of the order of the psychologist.

Apart from its domestic endeavors, the OP also placed significant emphasis on gaining recognition on the global stage as part of its daily activities.

In 2019, after many correspondents and meetings with EFPA member countries, the formal application for membership was successfully completed. Thus, since 06.07.2019, the Order of Psychologists of Albania is the 38th member with full rights in this organization, thus marking the biggest professional event of the Order of Psychologists and the profession itself in Albania.

Since 2019 OPA is an active part of the Global Alliance of Psychologists. 

Getting the right to organize the EFPA’s semester for January-June 2024, is an assessment of the OPA’s accomplishment carried out during this time as well as it increases the responsibility for the future. The theme of the semester “Challenges of the Psychological Service, Examples of Successful Cases of a Good Application Practice” is particularly inspired by Albania’s historical development of psychological practice and its early applications.

Thanks to the historical progress we’ve made, we’ve transitioned from a closed individual mindset, and today, we find ourselves in a situation where psychology is extensively applied and holds a pivotal role in the advancement of our society.