The demographics of our nation continue to change, and along with them life in our schools. These complex changes are not limited to urban and urban rim communities, but significantly impact suburban communities as well. Active engagement in the life of complex school systems, with the aim of confronting difficult social problems and promoting equity and fairness for all in the school community, presents many challenges to the practice of school psychology.
The School Psychology Program prepares students to be culturally responsive problem-solvers ready to serve all children from diverse backgrounds across a range of communities. This is accomplished by analyzing children's school-based challenges from multiple perspectives to inform interventions that promote school success.
Successful applicants are:
- Diverse, including underrepresented groups in school psychology. Over the past three years, we have averaged 33% of our incoming class representing these groups.
- Prepared to engage in conversations around issues of race, class, culture, language, gender, and sexuality as they are reproduced in our schools.
- Willing to question themselves, asking "How do I need to change myself before I can become an effective professional working with all children?"
- Experienced (volunteer or paid) working with children, adolescents, and/or families in educational or mental health settings, or in a research capacity.
Academic prerequisites include the following undergraduate coursework: Abnormal psychology; a course in child, adolescent, or lifespan development; and a course in statistics, research methods, or measurement in the social sciences. An undergraduate psychology major satisfies all prerequisite course requirements.
This program is designed to meet the Massachusetts state licensure requirements and for the Nationally Certified School Psychologist requirements (NCSP). The latter is done through the accreditation of the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). Candidates are not required to optain the NCSP credential, but are qualified to do so. NASP mantains a site that provides information about whether the NCSP is accepted and what, if any, other exams or requirements must be satisfied for every state. Information about the latter is available in the following link: https://www.nasponline.org/standards-and-certification/state-school-psychology-credentialing-requirements.
School psychologists have a vital responsibility in the nation's schools to promote mental health and secure quality education for all children.
- We are morally and ethically compelled to push graduate students to question the inequitable educational systems that give power and privilege to some children and families and oppress, marginalize, and disenfranchise others.
- We emphasize an expanded, problem solving role for school psychologists as informed by ecological and developmental perspectives, using multiple lenses to explore the challenges of contemporary schooling.
The School Psychology program is geared toward research informed, school based practice. It is approved by the state of Massachusetts and by the National Association of School Psychologists making graduates immediately eligible for both a state and national license as a School Psychologist.