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Sep 26, 2022
Faculty and Staff
Specialist (Psy.S.) in School Psychology
Dr. Tania Thomas-Presswood, Program Coordinator
**no longer accepting students**
The Department of Psychology offers a specialist degree program in school psychology (Psy.S.) with a subspecialization in deafness. The program provides a comprehensive plan of studies that integrates respect for diversity, basic psychology, practitioner skills, and educational planning. The faculty is committed to developing competent school psychologists who serve diverse students, including specialization in the area of deafness. The program has a solid core of academic and applied courses supplemented by extensive practica and a one-year internship.
The school psychology program is approved by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) and is part of Gallaudet’s Educator Preparation Provider Unit which is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE); therefore, graduates of the Gallaudet program may receive certification as school psychologists in the many states that recognize NASP/NCATE accredited training programs. The program identifies six NCATE Transition Points that serve as benchmarks for monitoring progress through the program: Entrance Into the Program, Awarding the M.A. in Developmental Psychology, Advancement to Practicum II, Advancement to Internship, Awarding the Specialist Degree in School Psychology, and Alumni Status. In keeping with national accreditation practices, school psychology students participate in the university TK20 Assessment System which requires a one-time fee. The completion of the specified school psychology program satisfies the training requirements for school psychology certification in the District of Columbia Public Schools.
Applicants for the Psy.S. in School Psychology must complete the application procedures and meet the requirements for graduate study at Gallaudet University. Visit the Graduate Admissions website for more information and a checklist of application requirements.
Program Specific Requirements
Three Letters of Reference
Required Undergraduate Major
Psychology Major or Minor, or Related Field
Program of Study
The core curriculum consists of credit hour requirements in all professional areas required by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). The School Psychology Specialist Program is fully approved by NASP and as such maintains a core curriculum consistent with current NASP training standards.
The additional program objective of training students with an expertise in deafness is framed within the following five special competency areas:
Practicum and Internships
Supervised practicum and internship experiences are available at school and educational programs for deaf, hard of hearing, and hearing children in the metropolitan Washington area and across the United States. A background check is frequently a requirement of practicum and internship sites and will be the financial responsibility of the student before placement is made.
Typical Program of Study and Core Courses
The graduate program in school psychology requires the completion of 72 graduate hours including practicum and internship experiences. The program generally takes three years: two years of course study (including practicum experiences) and a one-year internship.
The first year of the program includes a 30-credit sequence of courses in psychology and related areas, additional sign communication courses, and successful completion of comprehensive examinations in two areas (cognition and behavior disorders). Successful completion of these requirements results in a master of arts degree in developmental psychology. The master’s degree is usually awarded at the end of the first year of study.
The second year includes an additional 30-credit sequence of courses emphasizing school psychological services, successful completion of a comprehensive examination case study and an extensive practicum experience.
The third program year is a full-time school psychology internship placement (12 credits), which may be served in a school or school/clinical setting anywhere in the United States. During the internship year, students must complete two comprehensive internship intervention case studies. Upon successful completion of the internship year the specialist degree in school psychology is awarded.
Summary of Requirements
Discussion of the theory and applications of inferential statistics, including sampling, estimation, confidence intervals, inferences, effect sizes and hypothesis testing as well as descriptive statistics, validity and reliability. Specific statistical techniques such as t tests, Chi Square, one way and factorial analyses of variance, correlations, simple and multiple regression as well as an introduction to trend analysis will be presented. Lab experiences in using SPSS or similar computer programs for analyzing data will be provided. Evaluations of statistical methods used in published research will be discussed.
A study of child behavior disorders and other psycho-pathologies of childhood, including types of disorders, etiology, and intervention and prevention strategies. Psychological, developmental, biological, cultural, and educational factors are included.
A survey of current psychological research on cognitive processes and development, including perceptual learning, concept learning, problem solving, and memory.
Plus Sign Language Courses (6 credits) or waivers
This course provides in-depth exploration of the complex interrelationships between the functioning of deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals and psychological, biological, and socio-cultural aspects within a human systems framework that incorporates multicultural perspectives. Psychological principles and theories related to the emotional, cognitive/linguistic, behavioral, and cultural development of deaf and hard -of-hearing individuals are considered. Also considered are factors including the influence of etiology/genetics, varying levels of hearing loss and age of onset, familial variables, linguistic and communication approaches, technology, educational settings, psychopathology, and cultural aspects.
An intensive course designed to provide the graduate student with an integrated foundation consisting of knowledge of theory, methods, and techniques, along with applied clinical skills, in the effective appraisal of individual intelligence. Course instruction focuses primarily upon skill development in test selection, administration, and scoring; analysis and interpretation of test results; preparation of reports on findings; and application of knowledge of assessment practices, including confidentiality considerations, within a framework provided by professional, ethical, and legal standards.
Under close supervision students gain experience in multi-dimensional assessment of individuals in various settings. Emphasis is on developing skills in administering, interpreting, and reporting the results of various measures of intelligence related to educational functioning.
Covers principles of research design in psychology from two-group comparisons to complex multiple treatment designs. Also includes guidelines and criteria for writing research reports and articles, questionnaire and survey research, case studies and other single-subject designs, correlational studies, naturalistic observation, and ethical considerations in research.
Addresses brain-behavior relationships with an emphasis upon school age children. Anatomy of the brain as well as neurodevelopmental and acquired neurophysiological disorders that affect children will be discussed. Students will be introduced to neuropsychological tests and test batteries used in the evaluation of this age group.
This course provides training with techniques and instruments used in social, emotional, and behavioral assessment. Projective and descriptive techniques are discussed in addition to the use of adaptive behavior instruments. The course describes evaluation techniques of emotional, social, and behavioral states consistent with the terminology in the Individuals with Disabilities Educational Improvement Act (IDEIA). It follows the best practice model that suggests that the assessment must consist of multiple sources of data. Best practices recommend a model of assessment based on five components: (a) interviews with parents, teachers, and students; (b) standardized rating scales administered to the parent and teacher; (c) standardized self-report measures administered to the student; (d) observations of the student in multiple settings; and (e) review of child's relevant background and history.
Course will include the conceptual basis and discuss the techniques used in delivering mental health services to non-identified populations in the school. Types of interventions studied will include the use of group techniques, social skill development procedures, enrichment programs, teaching of parenting skills, development of vocational or school transitional services and methods for delivering in-service to professional staff members. Particular emphasis will be given to the role of the psychologist on crisis intervention teams.
Under the close supervision of a certified or licensed psychologist, students work in a school or clinic setting providing psychological and educational assessments, preparing reports, counseling with clients, and developing and implementing intervention programs. In addition, students attend a weekly seminar emphasizing major issues in the professional practice of school psychology.
This seminar discusses topics and issues related to practices that permeates all aspects of service delivery; direct and indirect services for children, families; and schools, and foundations of school psychologists' service delivery. These topics include legal and ethical issues in professional practice, research and program evaluation, interventions (systems and individual levels), diversity, data-based decision making, and consultation. The course helps prepare students for national licensure or certification.
The course focuses upon the theoretical and applied use of interventions used with children exhibiting behavioral and/or emotional difficulties. Emphasis is placed upon the use of Applied Behavioral Analysis, functional analysis, behavior modification techniques and psycho-educational interventions used with individuals, small groups, and family constellations.
This course surveys the scope of school collaboration. The course will study methods of collaborating with teachers. Instructional Consultation Teams and Instructional Support Teams are included in this discussion. The course will also review collaboration with parents, including parent education. Furthermore, the course ill examine the nature of collaborating with administrators, including a discussion of organizational development consultation. Finally, in addition to a discussion of interagency collaboration, the course will examine some pragmatic issues regarding the implementation of collaborative problem solving teams in schools.
A supervised practicum in which the student is responsible for designing, implementing, and evaluating a psychological consultation experience in a school or educational program.
Field experience in an approved setting provides supervised experience in identification and description of school-related problems, formulation of diagnostic plans, selection and use of appropriate evaluation tools, referral to appropriate specialists, integration of findings, and recommendation of appropriate action and follow-up.
Field experience in an approved setting provides supervised experience in conferences with teachers to interpret results of child diagnostic study; conferences with parents to interpret plan of action for child or youth; short term and group counseling with students.
Field experience in an approved setting provides supervised experience at an advanced level in conferences with teachers, parents, administrators, and other specialists in the school and community concerning planning, referrals, and in-school interventions and experience in developing and implementing in-service programs for teachers, administrators, and staff.
Field experience in an approved setting provides supervised experience at an advanced level in conferences with teachers, parents, administrators, and other specialists to interpret the results of child diagnostic study; active participation in multidisciplinary staffings; and design and development of interventions for the remediation of student learning and behavior problems in the classroom.
Courses that must be taken at Gallaudet in the school psychology program:
A survey of research and theory on language structure, processing, and development including evaluation of instruments for assessing language development.
A seminar in which students critically evaluate research articles related to language development and intervention of special education populations such as mentally retarded, blind/low vision, autistic/emotionally disturbed, deaf or hard of hearing, and learning disabled children. This course is generally taken by students enrolled in PSY 771 and concurrently serving special education referral children.
A course in diversity and multicultural issues
A course in audiology, and
A course in Research Methods
The Benchmark for Advancement Table for Gallaudet University
The Psy.D. in School Psychology program is designed to meet the educational requirements of school counselor licensure in the District of Columbia as a school service provider. It is recognized by both the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation and the National Association of School Psychologists.
The employment of Clinical Psychologists is expected to grow by a 3% rate from 2019-2029, with an average annual salary of $82,180.
Learn more about career opportunities in psychology.
The employment of School and Career Counselors is expected to grow by a 8% rate from 2019-2029, with an average annual salary of $58,120.
Learn more about career opportunities as a school or career counselor.
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Professor/School Psychology Program Director
Gallaudet University, chartered in 1864, is a private university for deaf and hard of hearing students.
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