Curriculum

Course of Study

The graduate program in School Psychology at UW-Whitewater is a three-year, full time course of classroom study and field practica and internship leading to certification by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction as a School Psychologist. Students first complete 30 graduate credits in psychology and education, then pass a comprehensive examination to complete the requirements for the master's degree (M.S.E. - School Psychology). This degree is necessary but not sufficient to become certified as a school psychologist.

Upon attainment of the Master's degree, students enter into the Educational Specialist Degree (Ed.S) sequence, consisting of additional credits of advanced course work, a 600- hour field practicum, and a 1200-hour paid internship. Successful completion of the internship allows the student to apply for certification as a fully licensed school psychologist.

The following courses are listed in the sequence in which they must be taken by all students. These courses are offered on a semester basis. All students are expected to earn both degrees.

  • Summer I

    READING 764 Foundations of Reading 3 cr

    EDFOUND 710 Education in a Pluralistic Society 3 cr

    Fall

    Psych. 620 Foundations of Professional School Psychology 3 cr

    Psych. 715 Research Design & Program Assessment 3 cr

    Psych. 740 Assessment I - Achievement and Progress Monitoring 3 cr

    Psych. 746 Psychopathology of Childhood and Adolescence 3 cr

    Psych. 792 Field Placement in School Psychology 1 cr

    Spring

    Psych. 724 Learning in Educational Contexts 3 cr

    Psych. 745 Assessment III - Intelligence and Adaptive Behavior 3 cr

    Psych. 770 Assessment II - Personality and Behavior 3 cr

    Psych. 785 Advanced Child Development 3 cr

    Psych. 792 Field Placement in School Psychology 1 cr

    ***Alternative directed elective:

    Psych. 799 Thesis Research 1 - 6

    Summer II

    Psych 768 Behavior Therapy in the School 3 cr

    Psych 680 School Violence and Crisis Management 3 cr

    Psych 762 Academic Interventions 3 cr

    Psych 790 Introductory Therapy Skills 3 cr

    Note: Master's degree awarded upon successful thesis defense or successful completion of a comprehensive examination.

  • Fall

    Psych. 793 Practicum in School Psychology including Seminar 6 cr

    Psych. 769 Consultation and Prevention 3 cr

    Psych 797 Specialist Project Research 1 cr

    College of Education Required Course 3 cr

    Spring

    Psych. 793 Practicum in School Psychology including Seminar: Cultural Issues in the School 6 cr

    Psych. 766 Cognitive Behavioral Therapy with Children and Adolescents 3 cr

    Psych. 787 Social Context and Diversity in the School Setting 3 cr

    *College of Education Required Courses

    READING 764 Foundations of Reading 3 cr

    SPECED 700 Theoretical Foundations.in Special Ed. 3 cr

    EDFOUND 710 Education in a Pluralistic Society 3 cr

Internship

Fall

Psych. 795 Internship in School Psychology 3 cr

Spring

Psych. 795 Internship in School Psychology 3 cr

Note: Upon completion of all Program requirements, including internship, portfolio review, Specialist Project, and the successful completion of the NTS Praxis-II in School Psychology, students receive the Education Specialist Degree and may apply for the Nationally Certified School Psychologist credential.

Field Experiences

In the School Psychology Program, students are provided with field experiences throughout the course of study. In the first semester, all students complete Foundations of Professional School Psychology (Psych 620) in which they shadow a practicing school psychologist. Additionally in the first semester, in accordance with the requirements of Assessment I - Achievement and Progress Monitoring, students cooperate with local school psychologists so that they may be provided with supervised opportunities to practice the use of curriculum-based assessment procedures with children in the school setting. This school-based cooperative arrangement follows through into the second semester of the first year as students complete required assessments for Intelligence and Adaptive Behavior (Psych 745) and Personality and Behavior (Psych 770).

Students engage in supportive relationships with high risk children in the local public school system through our Straight Talk Mentoring Program for no less than two years. The mentors meet with students weekly for 30-60 minutes to discuss their ongoing concerns, set positive goals, assist with school progress, and to provide a supportive adult relationship.

Students will support a faculty substitute in a local elementary school one Friday morning a month. Students will engage in professional and meaningful interactions with both the faculty substitute and the children in the classroom. 

Upon admission into the Education Specialist Degree (Ed.S.) sequence, students are assigned a practicum site. Arrangements are made with the supervising school psychologist and the Pupil Services Director for the student to make a pre-practicum site visitation. During this visitation, students are introduced to administrators and other appropriate personnel, provided with a tour of the facilities, and given an opportunity for informal conversation with the supervising school psychologist. Opportunities for observation and/or participation in end of the year activities are offered where possible or desirable.

The Practicum in School Psychology (793) is a local school district placement with an accompanying two and one-half hour seminar and on-campus supervision. This seminar is designed to address specific needs of the students. In the first semester, essential foundational skills, such as report writing, special education procedures and program criteria, and school organization are discussed. The second semester is dedicated to furthering understanding of diverse learners and cultures in the school setting.

This practicum occurs only following the attainment of the masters degree and the recommendation of the Coordinator, in consultation with the School Psychology Committee of the general psychology faculty. This experience is run in strict accordance with the standards outlined in the Standards for Training and Field Placement Programs in School Psychology (NASP, 2000). The Practicum (793) is a 600-hour, two semester, supervised field experience in the public schools which has the following objectives:

  1. Provide students with supervised training opportunities that reflect a logical extension of their university course work in the areas of assessment, direct intervention, consultation, prevention, and professional school psychology within the context of a close, mentor relationship with field and university supervisors;
  2. Provide students with an immersion into the organization and structural components of public school functioning, including administrative and faculty organization, pupil service design, and associated legal and legislative issues;
  3. Provide students with an understanding of and experience with the team assessment process associated with the Individuals with Disabilities Improvement in Education Act (IDIEA), including problem solving consultation, case management assessment, IEP team decision-making, parent and teacher feedback, and individualized program development;
  4. Provide experience for students with a wide diversity of pupil needs and characteristics, including those children with low incidence handicapping conditions and those pupils and families of diverse cultural, ethnic, and racial backgrounds.

The Practicum (793) is held for each student in any one of several local, cooperating school districts. Students are assigned to one school district only. This placement decision is arrived at in consideration of student preference, faculty assessment of student needs, and field supervisor availability. UW-Whitewater is especially proud of the diversity of practicum placement opportunities available for students. Students may select from the urban experience of Milwaukee or Madison, the working class communities such as Janesville and Beloit, the "bedroom" communities such as Oconomowoc and Kettle Moraine, to the very rural, farming communities such as Milton, and many others in between. This variety of training sites allows program faculty to match the practicum with the expressed needs and experiences of the practicum student.

The internship experience occurs following the completion of all course work and practica requirements for DPI certification as an Initial Educator - School Psychologist. Students enroll in Internship in School Psychology (Psych 795), a full-time, 6-credit, 1200-hour, paid field experience. This experience is run in strict accordance with the standards outlined in the Standards for Training and Field Placement Programs in School Psychology (NASP, 2000).

Internship sites are obtained through an application process. Each site is pre-approved by program faculty. The "Internship Planning Form" insures a wide-ranging experience for each intern. Interns are required to maintain up to date logs of their activities and submit them to university supervisors on a monthly basis. A structured evaluation component is required. The interns themselves are supported on-campus by a monthly Internship Seminar in which case consultation occurs and current topics relative to the practice of school psychology are discussed. Further information may be found in the Internship Handbook.

Additional Content


Contact Information

Program Coordinator:
Christine Neddenriep
Laurentide 1229
Phone: (262) 472-1850
Email: neddenrc@uww.edu