Program Philosophy

The philosophical foundation of the Program is grounded solidly in the viewpoint that the school psychologist is an educated mental health professional able to bring critical reflection, data-based decision-making, and applied skills to address complex problems which confront them as school practitioners. The Program stresses the need for school psychologists to understand the psychological, socio/cultural, environmental, political, and economic influences that shape the behavior and potentials of children, families, and school personnel. With this understanding, school psychologists can apply their training as an activist problem-solver within the school setting, taking a proactive stance in the best interests of children. The future school psychologist also needs to understand the vital influence that the teacher, the classroom milieu, and the educational philosophy of the school have on the child. Foundational courses in psychology and education, and their associated field practica and internship combine to provide the student with the opportunity to examine and understand this ecological perspective on human development and functioning.

Tracy Larson WSPA Presentation