What is a School Psychologist?
School psychologists help children and youth succeed academically, socially, behaviorally, and emotionally. They collaborate with educators, parents, and other professionals to create safe, healthy, and supportive learning environments that strengthen connections between home, school, and the community for all students.
School psychologists are highly trained in both psychology and education, completing a minimum of a specialist-level degree program (at least 60 graduate semester hours) that includes a year-long supervised internship. This training emphasizes preparation in mental health and educational interventions, child development, learning, behavior, motivation, curriculum and instruction, assessment, consultation, collaboration, school law, and systems. School psychologists must be certified and/or licensed by the state in which they work. They also may be nationally certified by the National School Psychology Certification Board (NSPCB). The National Association of School Psychologists sets ethical and training standards for practice and service delivery.
WHAT DO SCHOOL PSYCHOLOGISTS DO?
School Psychologists Work With Students To:
School Psychologists Work With Students and Their Families To:
School Psychologists Work With Teachers To:
School Psychologists Work With Administrators To:
School Psychologists Work With Community Providers To:
WHERE SCHOOL PSYCHOLOGISTS WORK
The majority of school psychologists work in schools. However, they can practice in a variety of settings including:
HOW DO SCHOOL PSYCHOLOGISTS MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN SCHOOLS?
All children and adolescents face problems from time to time. They may:
School psychologists help children, parents, teachers, and members of the community understand and resolve these concerns. Following are examples of how school psychologists make a difference.
Helping Students With Learning Problems
Helping Students Cope With Family and Life Stressors
The teacher noticed that Carla, an able student, had stopped participating in class discussions and had difficulty paying attention. The school psychologist was asked to explore why Carla's behavior had changed so much. After discovering that Carla's parents were divorcing, the school psychologist provided counseling for Carla and gave her parents suggestions for this difficult time. Carla's behavior and emotional wellbeing improved, and she felt more secure about her relationship with her parents.
Helping Students With Behavior Problems Learn New Ways to Respond
NASP represents and supports school psychology through leadership to enhance the mental health and educational competence of all children.
The National Association of School Psychologists: