The program provides five overarching goals with associated objectives and specific competencies which are sustained by personal and professional dispositions. Students' personal and professional actions are expected to conform to the ethical standards outlined by the American Psychological Association and the National Association of School Psychologists; and, in addition, students' professional activities are expected to be characterized by key professional dispositions, including:
A. A democratic attitude that respects the worth, uniqueness, and potential for growth and development of all individuals.
B. Personal stability, ethical behavior, and respect for the confidentiality of privileged information.
C. Maintaining a professional manner in which responsibilities are discharged in a cooperative and conscientious fashion.
D. Productive work habits that display motivation, competence, independence, and adaptability.
E. Appreciation and commitment to continuing professional growth to include involvement in professional associations for school psychologists.
Program Goals, Objectives and Competencies: The program maintains a set of five goals which are supported by appropriate objectives and competencies. These goals, objectives and competencies form the basis for professional practice in school psychology. Competencies are established and promoted through coursework, supervised practicum and internship experiences.
Goal 1: Assessment - Students will understand and apply foundational knowledge and clinical skill in the identification and diagnostic study of individual students in a non-biased, reliable and valid manner.
Goal 2: Intervention - Students will acquire knowledge and skill in evidence-based individual, group, and school level remediation strategies, interventions, and psychoeducational program planning.
Goal 3: Consultation - Students will demonstrate knowledge of consultation and supervision models and skills to effectively serve as consultants to teachers, parents and other educational personnel on matters related to the education and mental health of children and adolescents to insure the most appropriate education program.
Goal 4: Research and Inquiry - Students will be able to review, apply, conceptualize/design and carry out research that enhances the knowledge base and the professional practice of school psychology.
Goal 5: Ethical, Social and Professionally Responsible Practice - Students will demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of state, federal and setting-specific laws and policies; ethical and practice standards of APA and NASP; and use appropriate decision making strategies in training and professional contexts.
The doctoral program has a strong theoretical base in learning, individual differences, human development, research methods and statistics. This base is enhanced by the professional courses that emphasize and integrate familiarity with cultural, ethnic and human diversity, educational settings, and the development and application of measurement skills in cognitive, learning, and socio-emotional domains. In addition, students receive applied training during pre-practicum, practicum and internship experiences, which are integrated with didactic courses throughout the program. Within this framework, students develop professional expertise by consulting and collaborating with parents, teachers, supervising psychologists, school psychologists and other non-school based community professionals.
Program objectives are consistent with the scientist-practitioner model as specific applied areas of professional practice interact with, and draw from, a scientific knowledge base that is appropriate to the specialty area of school psychology. To achieve the scientist-practitioner orientation, specific program objectives ensure that students will be competent to perform a range of professional functions. Course work is integrated with practicum experiences, which begin the first year of training and lead to more advanced coursework and applied experiences.