Applied Educational Psychology: School Psychology (EdS)
The vision of this program is to prepare school psychologists who collaborate with teachers, parents, and school personnel to promote educationally and psychologically healthy school environments for all children and youth. This vision “is enhanced by [Webster University’s] international perspective that fosters dialogue, respect and understanding across boundaries and between peoples.”
The mission of the EdS in Applied Educational Psychology: School Psychology is to provide a specialist degree program that completes the academic preparation and professional training required for individuals to become school psychologists. The EdS offers the culminating experiences and coursework that give future school psychologists the knowledge and skills they need to promote well-being and resilience in children and youth, to research and analyze educational problems, and to find solutions that create learning environments that are supportive and engaging for all students and that prepare young people to grow up to become competent, caring adults.
The conceptual framework for this program comes from School Psychology: A Blueprint for Training and Practice III. This blueprint emphasizes the importance of problem-solving and scientific methodology in school psychology practice. The blueprint describes a vision of collaboration, education and social justice in which scientist-practitioners contribute to making this world worthy of its children.
The goals for this program originate from the International School Psychology Association. At the completion of their programs, EdS students are expected to demonstrate competency in achieving the following six goals:
- Goal 1 - Core knowledge in psychology and education
- Goal 2 - Professional practice preparation
- Goal 3 - Professional skills and abilities in assessment and intervention
- Goal 4 - Interpersonal skills
- Goal 5 - Research methods and statistical skills
- Goal 6 - Knowledge of ethics and establishment of professional values
The Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) and the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) have identified eleven domains for school psychologists. The Webster University program is directly aligned with these domains; competencies in each of these domains are assessed in the candidate’s School Psychology Portfolio. DESE and NASP describe these domains as:
- Data-Based Decision-Making
- Consultation & Collaboration
- Development of Cognitive / Academic Skills
- Interventions and Mental Health Services for Socialization & Development of Life Skills
- Student Diversity in Development and Learning
- School and Systems Organization and School-Wide Practices to Promote Learning
- Prevention, Crisis Intervention, and Mental Health (Preventative and Responsive Services)
- Home/ School/ Community Collaboration
- Research and Program Evaluation
- School Psychology Development and Ethical Practice
- Information Technology (this domain was deleted by NASP in 2010)
Dispositions are “the values, commitments, and professional ethics that influence behaviors toward students, families, colleagues, and communities and affect student learning, motivation, and development as well as the educator’s own professional growth” (NCATE, Professional Standards, p. 53). Students need to demonstrate competencies in the School of Education’s dispositions. Candidates who complete the program are prepared to be school psychologists who have the knowledge and ability to promote the success of all students by 1) understanding and respecting themselves, 2) understanding and respecting others, and 3) understanding and respecting professional communities.
“Effective interpersonal skills and the ability to work constructively and collaboratively with diverse individuals and agencies are indispensable for school psychologists” (Quote from page 15 of School Psychology: A Blueprint for Training and Practice III). Many of the courses and experiences in the program provide opportunities for intercultural understanding, collaboration, consultation, and the development of strong interpersonal skills.
School psychology candidates must have knowledge of professional ethics and follow the ethical guidelines of the National Association of School Psychologists, the American Psychological Association, and the International School Psychology Association.
The Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education requires that a student receive a minimum of sixty (60) semester hours of professional preparation at the graduate level in order to earn educator certification as a school psychologist. A student needs an appropriate master’s degree in order to become a school psychologist. Webster University’s post-master’s EdS degree in Applied Educational Psychology: School Psychology is 38 hours.
The EdS degree in Applied Educational Psychology: School Psychology is designed to accommodate three main categories of students:
- Students who have just completed the master’s degree in applied educational psychology at Webster University.
- Students who have completed a master’s degree from Webster University in a closely related field such as special education.
- Students who have completed a master’s degree from another university in applied educational psychology or in a closely related field such as educational psychology, clinical psychology, counseling psychology, school counseling, or special education.
The entire preparation for becoming a school psychologist includes a master’s degree in applied educational psychology or in a closely related field followed by 38 hours of post-master’s work in school psychology curriculum and professional experiences. Full-time EdS students may complete the first 28 - 34 of the 38 credit hours in two summers and the included academic year, and the final 4 -10 hours during the subsequent internship year.
Work from both the master’s degree and the Ed.S degree is included in the School Psychology Portfolio. The portfolio is aligned with DESE’s requirements for Missouri educator certification as a school psychologist and the International School Psychology Association’s (ISPA) goals, standards, and indicators identified in the ISPA Guidelines for the Preparation of School Psychologists. The portfolio can be developed in the course, Portfolio Based Analysis: School Psychology.
The portfolios are used for both formative and summative evaluations in school psychology. Students share and discuss their portfolios with their advisors and program faculty. More information on the portfolio and the portfolio’s scoring rubric can be found on the School of Education website.
Included within the EdS is an AGC in the Assessment of Learning and Cognitive Development. While earning this certificate, students acquire skills in the assessment of learning, cognitive abilities, and academic performance. In the state of Missouri a primary professional role for school psychologists is to use psychoeducational assessment as a way to understand children in order to make informed decisions. Accordingly, all students who are enrolled in the EdS in Applied Educational Psychology: School Psychology learn how to investigate children’s mental processes, memory, behavior, analytic reasoning, and problem-solving skills. They learn how to gather information and recommend interventions that will help children realize their academic potentials in a school setting.
School psychology preparation includes a planned program of field experiences, practicum courses, and a year-long internship. Each year of the program provides students with increasingly complex professional responsibilities. These experiences provide graduate students who are studying school psychology with opportunities to apply their knowledge of assessment models and methods, data collection, and data analysis to specific school-related concerns. Students gain experience with program evaluation, consultation, mental health promotion, and the full professional work of school psychologists.
The final hours of EdS courses are taken during the year-long internship in school psychology. This supervised internship is equivalent to one (1) academic year, or a minimum of 1,200 hours and is accompanied by the course, School Psychology Internship. In 2009 the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) adopted best practices guidelines for school psychology internships. In these guidelines “the internship is conceptualized as a culminating training experience in which the primary focus is on providing breadth and quality of training to the intern… School psychology interns should have opportunities to conduct varying types of assessment linked to intervention for academic, behavioral, and social/ emotional issues; consultation; behavior analysis and intervention; counseling; prevention at varying levels; research and program evaluation; and other activities consistent with NASP standards and deemed appropriate by the field site and university program” (Prus, 2009, p.1). Webster University is in agreement with these guidelines.
Many valuable professional learning experiences take place outside of the context of graduate courses. Students preparing to become school psychologists program are strongly encouraged to assume advocacy roles, to participate in professional organizations, and to contribute to professional conferences and publications. At a local level, students may wish to join the Missouri Association of School Psychologists; at a national level there is the National Association of School Psychologists. Appropriate international organizations include the International School Psychology Association and the Society for Cross-Cultural Research.
Students need to have taken the following graduate-level courses:
research or applied research, statistics, assessment, developmental psychology, counseling, educational psychology, behavioral consultation or meeting affective needs or behavior management, and a practicum appropriate for school or educational psychology. In addition, at least one of the following two courses is required: EPSY 5150 Resilience and Self-Concept Development or EPSY 5350 Intercultural Communications. Three courses from the prerequisite areas may be taken as EdS electives in the first year of the post-master’s program.
The goals and “learning outcomes” for this program originate from the International School Psychology Association and the school psychology coursework is organized around the six goals of ISPA. The 38-hour, post-masters EdS degree builds on the student’s masters degree and offers the culminating experiences and coursework needed for educator certification as a school psychologist.
Goal 1 Core Knowledge in Psychology and Education (9 - 12 hours)
With the assistance of an academic advisor, choose from the following courses to strengthen your knowledge in these areas: learning and instruction, social and adaptive skill development, individual differences, prevention, crisis intervention, and mental health promotion.
- EPSY 5918 Advanced Educational Psychology (3 hours)
- EPSY 5880 Psychology of Learning, Memory, and Problem Solving (3 hours)
- EPSY 5750 Child Development I, St. Louis Psychoanalytic Institute (3 hours)
- EPSY 5750 Child Development II, St. Louis Psychoanalytic Institute (3 hours)
- EPSY 5890 Psychology of Stress (3 hours)
- EPSY 5952 Children, Culture, and Violence (3 hours)
- EPSY 5971 Models and Strategies of Behavior Management (3 hours)
- SPED 5700 School-Based Prevention/ Intervention: RtI/PBIS (3 hours)
Goal 2 Professional Practice Preparation (10 hours)
- EPSY 6121 Portfolio Based Analysis: School Psychology (2)
- EPSY 6100: Practicum in Data-Based Decision-Making: Mental Health Services (2)
- EPSY 6100: Practicum in Data-Based Decision-Making: Advanced Psychoeducational Assessment and Intervention (2 hours)
- EPSY 6500 School Psychology Internship (4 hours)
Goal 3 Professional Skills and Abilities in Assessment and Interventions (4-7 hours)
- SPED 5360 Psychoeducational Assessment II (2 hours)
- EPSY 5930 Screening, Assessing, and Evaluating Gifted Students (2 hours)
- EPSY 5991 Issues in Assessment: Cultural and Linguistic Diversity (3 hours)
- SPED 5413 Assessment of Learning and Learning Problems (3 hours)
Goal 4 - Interpersonal Skills, Collaboration, and Consultation (3 hours)
Choose from EPSY 5150 Resilience and Self-Concept Development, EPSY 5350 Intercultural Communications, EPSY 5290 Family Counseling, EPSY 5370 Counseling or other counseling course.
Goal 5 - Research Methods and Statistical Skills (5 hours)
- EPSY 6100: Practicum in Data-Based Decision-Making: Consultation and Applied Field Research (1 hour)
- EPSY 6000 Advanced Graduate Certificate Project (3 hours)
- EPSY 6100: Practicum in Data-Based Decision-Making: Applied Statistics (1 hour)
Goal 6 Knowledge of Ethics and Establishment of Professional Values (4 hours)
- EPSY 6200: Seminar in School Psychology: Professional School Psychology (2 hours)
- EPSY 6200: Seminar in School Psychology: International and Multicultural School Psychology (2 hours)
Master’s degree in applied educational psychology or closely related field such as educational psychology, clinical psychology, counseling psychology, school counseling, or special education. (Preference is given to Webster University Applied Educational Psychology graduates).
Successful completion of these prerequisites:
Graduate level study of these areas: statistics, research, counseling, assessment, developmental psychology, behavior management, educational psychology, and practicum. Successful completion of at least one of the following: Intercultural Communications, Resilience and Self Concept Development
(Three courses of these prerequisite areas of graduate study may be taken as EdS electives in the first year of the post-master’s program).
- A Master of Arts in Applied Educational Psychology or a master’s degree in a closely related field.
- Official transcripts of previous undergraduate and graduate coursework.
- A cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher.
- Two essays (800-1200 words each); these essays may refer to the applicant’s resume and transcripts. In the essays please cite references using APA style.
- Submit an essay that reflects on your academic experiences and professional growth during your master’s degree program and how these will prepare you for becoming a school psychologist. What do you hope to gain from the EdS in Applied Educational Psychology: School Psychology?
- Submit an essay about student diversity in development and learning. Demonstrate that you have acquired an understanding of individual differences and the sensitivity and skills needed to work with individuals of diverse characteristics.
- A current resume.
- Three letters of recommendation from faculty and/or associates.
- The applicant must be able to provide evidence of superior academic ability.
- After all materials have been submitted, an entry interview will be scheduled for selected applicants.
Applicants may be provisionally accepted every term if they provide evidence of satisfactorily meeting these requirements: a Master of Arts in Applied Educational Psychology or a master’s degree in a closely related field; evidence of superior academic ability at the graduate level; official transcripts of previous undergraduate and graduate coursework; a current resume; professional knowledge, skills, and dispositions demonstrated in two admissions essays (800-1200 words each).
Applicants may be fully accepted to the EdS in Applied Educational Psychology: School Psychology by the EdS Admissions Committee once a year, every year on January 7. To be fully accepted students need to submit a complete application by December 1. Provisionally accepted applicants may need to meet these additional requirements: continuing evidence of superior academic ability at the graduate level; evidence of successful completion of prerequisites; three letters of recommendation from faculty and/or associates; an entry interview.
Send all required documents to the following address:
Webster University Office of Admission
Attn: EdS Admissions Committee
470 East Lockwood Avenue
St. Louis, MO 63119-3141
Notes: The student should consult the Academic Policies and Procedures section of the catalog for Webster University policies regarding course attendance; conduct; grades; academic warning, probation, and dismissal; transcripts; and diploma. Procedures for registration and drop, add, and withdrawal from a course are outlined in the Enrollment section of this catalog. EdS students are required to demonstrate graduate level writing skills.
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