School Psychology Program Mission

The mission of th​e University of Washington’s School Psychology Program is to prepare scientist-practitioners whose practice of psychology is grounded in scientific knowledge and focused on enhancing the socio-emotional and educational competence of school age children.

What is a School Psychologist?

The role of a school psychologist is to assess, consult, and provide prevention and direct intervention services that focus on learning, behavior and mental health problems. The graduate program in School Psychology at the University of Washington stresses the expanded role of the school psychologist beyond testing for special education and offers formal course work and practica in assessment, consultation and intervention/counseling with an emphasis on school mental health. In addition, the program philosophy is grounded in the scientist practitioner model and offers a strong background in the scientific foundations for the practice of school psychology as well as training in applying current research knowledge and theory to educational services.

Educational Specialist in School Psychology Program Overview

The Educational Specialist in School Psychology (Ed.S.) program teaches students how to serve children and adolescents’ educational and social- emotional needs as school psychologists. School psychologists frequently work in school settings, providing assessment, intervention and consultation services to students, teachers and parents.

The educational specialist degree program is approved by National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). It also meets the requirements needed for certification as an Educational Staff Associate (the category for school psychologists in the state of Washington).

Our graduates go on to successful employment. In the past few years, 100 percent of our graduates have been hired as school psychologists shortly after completing their internships.

Course of Study

The educational specialist program is a three year, full-time program comprised of two years of coursework and practicum and a third year of an internship. Altogether students complete a total of 124  credits. In their first year students take courses in the scientific foundations of the practice of school psychology, including:

  • human learning
  • development during early childhood, middle childhood, and adolescence
  • personality theory
  • individual differences
  • multicultural issues
  • families
  • research methods
  • statistics.

In addition, students take courses that introduce them to the:

  • the field of school psychology
  • ethical, legal, and professional standards of practice
  • group and behavioral intervention
  • consultation (indirect service delivery) and interdisciplinary collaboration.

The second year is designed to be an integrated, on-site practicum experience at the University. Under the supervision of faculty, students provide direct and indirect services to children and adolescents ranging in age from infancy to 18. Students learn to:

  • administer and interpret intellectual, cognitive, academic, and neuropsychological tests
  • assess social and emotional functioning and adaptive behavior
  • interview parents, children, and teachers
  • observe children in the classroom
  • test clinical hypotheses
  • generate recommendations for interventions
  • write psychological reports
  • provide oral feedback and consultation
  • provide one-on-one counseling to children and their families in the School Psychology training clinic
  • implement individual and group interventions in schools

The entire third year is designed as a field-based internship in the schools. In this 1,200-hour experience, interns are supervised by certified school psychologists but they also receive additional supervision once a week at the UW.

Learn more about courses and program requirements»

Educational Specialist Program Tuition

The Educational Specialist in School Psychology program has a tuition structure that is based on program credits. The following rates apply for the respective academic years:  2018-19 academic years, $792 per course credit.  To estimate the full year tuition, multiply the cost per credit by the number of credits that year and add the corresponding fees.

Interested in Applying?

To apply to the Educational Specialist in School Psychology program, you must apply to the Graduate School by December 1.

Learn about admission requirements»

About the Educational Specialist in School Psychology Program

The Educational Specialist in School Psychology Program is a collaboration among the College of Education (UWCOE), UW Professional & Continuing Education (UWPCE) and the Graduate School (UWGS). Because the Educational Specialist in School Psychology program is fee-based, meaning it does not receive any funding from the state of Washington, its fiscal operations are managed through UWPCE. The relationship between UWPCE and the Educational Specialist in School Psychology program has no impact on your degree or on the certification you receive from the State of Washington.The educational specialist degree is conferred by the University of Washington’s College of Education.

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