College of Letters & Sciences

School Psychology

Do you have a passion for working with children and youth? Are you interested in collaborating with parents, educators, and administrators? Would you like to make a difference in children’s lives? School psychologists do just that! School psychologists are qualified to understand, support, and improve school systems, effective teaching, and student learning. Thus, school psychologists are vital members of school communities whose work supports students’ ability to learn and teachers’ ability to teach.

 The School Psychology Program at UW-Whitewater is a three-year, full-time sequence of coursework and field experiences that prepares students with the knowledge, skills, and dispositions necessary to become school psychologists. Students in the program apply their knowledge of evidence-based and culturally responsive practices to address the educational inequities affecting children and youth in their communities. As such, our graduates are school leaders and advocates who help children and youth succeed academically, behaviorally, and socio-emotionally. 


The mission of the UWW School Psychology Program is to prepare school psychologists who apply the principles of empirical science and culturally responsive practice to the problem-solving process. We stress the need for school psychologists to operate through a social justice lens, addressing systemic inequities by advocating for all children in their work. With this understanding, school psychologists proactively foster collaboration between schools and families, using strength-based, empowering language to promote educational outcomes. We equip our graduates with the tools and training needed to support children’s academic skills, mental and behavioral health, and social-emotional learning. Continual efforts to be well-informed and responsive to an ever-changing educational climate ensure that our graduates remain adaptive and place the children’s educational, behavioral, and psychological well-being at the forefront of their work.

The program conforms to the professional scientist-practitioner training model, with a strong emphasis placed on the maintenance of scientific rigor in the applied setting. Students are educated to see themselves as applying both the principles of empirical science and the skills of clinical sensitivity and insight to the problem-solving process in the school setting. While the training essentially represents a "delivery of service" model, students are provided with the curricular background to produce as well as effectively consume research in the field.

Our Program follows a three-year, full-time course sequence leading to state licensure and national certification as a school psychologist with completion of all requirements. 

First Year: Masters Degree Sequence 

During the first year of the program, students participate in classroom instruction and select field experiences, completing 32 credits of graduate coursework in psychology and education. The coursework includes classes in assessment, psychopathology, child development, learning, research methods, and program evaluation. At the end of this year, students complete a comprehensive examination in the form of a portfolio to fulfill the requirements needed to obtain their Master’s degree (M.S.E. - School Psychology).

 

First-Year Coursework [Turn into purple tab]

Summer I

Reading 764: Foundations of Reading (3 Credits)

EdFound 710: Education in a Pluralistic Society (3 Credits)

Fall

Psych 620: Foundations of Professional School Psychology 3 (Credit)

Psych 715:  Research Design & Program Assessment (3 Credit)

Psych 740: Assessment I - Achievement and Progress Monitoring (3 Credit)

Psych 785: Advanced Child Development (3 Credit)

Psych 792: Field Placement in School Psychology (1 Credit)

Spring

Psych 724: Learning in Educational Contexts (3 Credit)

Psych 745: Assessment III - Intellectual Functioning (3 Credit)

Psych 746: Psychopathology of Childhood and Adolescence (3 Credit)

Psych 770: Assessment II - Personality and Behavior (3 Credit)

Psych 792: Field Placement in School Psychology (1 Credit)

Note: Master's degree awarded upon successful completion of the comprehensive examination.

Second Year: Practicum Experience 

Upon attaining their Master's degree, students begin the Education Specialist Degree (Ed.S) sequence, known as the practicum year. During this year, students complete a 600-hour (part-time) practicum under the supervision of a licensed school psychologist. Practicum allows students to apply what they have learned during their first year while they continue to learn about the field through additional graduate coursework. At the end of the year, students take the ETS Praxis-II Exam in School Psychology and obtain a paid-internship position for the following year. In addition, students produce a portfolio that details the coursework and practicum experiences they completed during their second year.

 

Second-Year Coursework [Turn into purple tab] 

Summer II

Psych 680: School Violence and Crisis Management (3 Credit)

Psych 755: Counseling Skills & Theory for School Psychology (3 Credit)

Psych 762: Academic Interventions (3 Credit)

Psych 768: Behavior Therapy in the School (3 Credit)

Fall

Psych 793: Practicum in School Psychology including Seminar (6 Credit)

Psych 769: Consultation and Prevention (3 Credit)

Psych 797: Specialist Project Research (1 Credit)

Speed 700: Theoretical Foundations in Special Ed. (3 Credit)

Spring

Psych 793: Practicum in School Psychology including Seminar: Cultural Issues in the Schools (6 Credit)

Psych 766: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy with Children and Adolescents (3 Credit)

Psych 787: Social Context and Diversity in the School Setting (3 Credit)

Psych 797: Specialist Project Research (1 Credit)

Third Year:  Internship 

The third year in the program is referred to as the internship year. At this point, students have completed all the graduate coursework and field experiences necessary to practice independently as school psychologists with minimal supervision. Students begin their first year of practice as school psychologists completing a 1200-hour (full-time) internship. Following the completion of their internship year, completion of a final portfolio review, and their specialist project, students obtain their Education Specialist Degree (Ed.S) and may apply for the Nationally Certified School Psychologist (NCSP) credential. 

 

Third-Year Coursework [Turn into purple tab] 

Fall

Psych 795: Internship in School Psychology (3 Credit)

Spring

Psych: 795 Internship in School Psychology (3 Credit)

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

In the School Psychology Program, students are provided with field experiences each year that support their learning in the classroom. Some of these experiences include shadowing practicing school psychologists in differing school districts to experience how the role of the school psychologist differs depending on the district and student needs. Students also participate in the Sidekicks for Success Student Mentoring Program mentoring a student in the local elementary schools. Students also have the opportunity to practice the use of curriculum-based assessment measures with children in the school setting, providing academic intervention support. Students in their second year complete a 600-hour supervised practicum in a school district. Students in the third year complete a 1200-hour, full-time internship in a school district.

Students engage in supportive relationships with children in need in the local public school system through our Sidekicks for Success Student 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 helping relationship.

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 visit. During this visit, 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 the school psychologist's role in practicing throught a social justice lens, addressing systemic inequities by advocating for all children in their work. 

This practicum occurs only following the attainment of the master's 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 Model for Comprehensive and Integrated School Psychological Services, also known as the NASP Practice Model (NASP, 2020). 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  the public school, 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 student needs and characteristics, including those children with low incidence disability conditions and those children and families of culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

For Practicum (793) students are placed 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 larger communities of Janesville and Beloit, the suburban communities such as Oconomowoc and Kettle Moraine, to the  more rural 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 Model for Comprehensive and Integrated School Psychological Services, also known as the NASP Practice Model (NASP, 2020) 

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.

NASP Accreditation

The National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) recognizes the critical role of professional preparation and accreditation as part of its commitment to serving the mental health and educational interests of all children and youth. NASP's Program Accreditation Board (PAB) has reviewed and accredited school psychology programs independently or as an accrediting member of National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), now Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation(CAEP) since 1978. In May, 2022, NASP obtained recognition from the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) as an accreditation organization. 

Learn more about our accreditation and student outcomes data» 

In addition to the Program’s full accreditation by the   National Association of School Psychologists (NASP), the Program has additional approval from the  Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI). If seeking licensure outside of the state of WI, please review the information on  license reciprocity. Upon completion of the internship, students may apply for the Nationally Certified School Psychologist (NCSP) credential. This credential is achieving growing recognition among state school psychology licensing boards and allows for reciprocal certification in selected states outside of Wisconsin.

Why School Psychology at UW-Whitewater?

small, close-knit cohorts

Small, close-knit cohorts

Training Successful School Pscyhologists since 1974

Training School Psychologists since 1974

Conveniently located in south central Wisconsin

Located in south eastern Wisconsin

Dedicated Faculty and Staff

Dedicated Faculty and Staff

Application Process: Step-by-Step

  1. Complete the UW-Whitewater Graduate School Application form and submit it along with the fee online. Have your undergraduate transcripts sent to the School of Graduate Studies electronically,  NOT to the School Psychology Program. Please see the address below.

  2. Complete the UW-Whitewater School Psychology Program Application online and submit it to the Program. Complete an "Autobiographical Statement." In two to three pages (double spaced), this statement should discuss relevant personal background information and an in-depth description of why you have chosen to pursue the field of school psychology. This statement should provide the Admissions Committee with a strong sample of your ability to express yourself in writing.

  3. Email the Autobiographical Statement to Dr. Christine Neddenriep at neddenrc@uww.edu

  4. Secure three letters of recommendation from appropriate individuals (e.g., former professors or work supervisors) who are familiar with your academic and personal qualifications for graduate study in school psychology. Have them write and send the letter as an email attachment or shared document directly to Dr. Christine Neddenriep at neddenrc@uww.edu. You may call 262-472-5413 to inquire about whether your letters have been received.

  5. If you are interested in applying for a graduate assistantship, complete the application form available from the office of the Graduate Studies. Application deadline is February 15th. For more information regarding graduate assistantships, please see Financial Assistance Opportunities.

  6. After your materials are submitted, they are reviewed by the Admissions Committee consisting of Program Faculty.

  7. If your application is subsequently passed forward by the Admissions Committee, you will be contacted via email for a personal interview near the deadline date. Please do not call the program to inquire if you will be asked for an interview; we will contact you. 

Due to the high volume of applications and the limited enrollment capacity, individuals are urged to begin the application procedure early. Applicant interviews take place in Laurentide Hall, which is located on the corner of North Prince Street and West Starin Road. The building is identified by the letters LT on this map.

The application deadline for all admission is January 15th.
The School Psychology Admissions Committee will review applicants as soon as they are received. Applicants will be informed by e-mail as to their status. The School Psychology Program admits students only in the spring of the year for classes beginning the following summer term. Interviews will begin in later January with applicants whose materials are complete.

Application Considerations

Prospective students should review the general graduate admission information for Graduate Academic Admission Requirements

All prospective students desiring admission into the School Psychology Program must simultaneously apply for admission to the School of Graduate Studies. This combined application form should be completed on-line at https://apply.wisconsin.edu/ . Please submit the application form, the fee, and an official copy of your undergraduate transcripts to the School of Graduate Studies. Graduate School policy dictates that only transcripts with a university seal, delivered in a sealed envelope from the university or one sent electronically directly from the university, can be considered an "official" transcript.

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Graduate students enrolled at Whitewater can seek financial assistance in the form of assistantships, employment, grants, and loans.

Graduate Assistantships

Graduate assistantships are offered to a limited number of full-time graduate students. Full- time assistantships require up to 20 hours of service per week and have paid, most recently, approximately $10,985 for an academic year and also health, dental, and life insurance as well as a remission of non-resident portion of tuition. The UW-Whitewater School Psychology Program is able to offer a limited number of full and part-time graduate assistantships to full-time first and second year students. A separate application for Graduate Assistantships is available from the Office of Graduate Studies. Please note that this application has a February 15th deadline. Graduate students can also seek other employment assistance by applying for Federal Work-Study Employment, Regular Student Payroll, or other opportunities as advertised on campus.

Advanced Opportunity Program

Advanced Opportunity Program Awards are available to members of underrepresented minoritized groups or non-minority/disadvantaged students. Nonresident Grants are available to out-of-state students who are enrolled full-time and exhibit both scholastic excellence and financial need. Contact the Academic Support Services Office for more information. Federal Perkins Loans are available to graduate students who are citizens or permanent residents of the United States and demonstrate financial need. Federal Stafford Loans (subsidized and unsubsidized) enable graduates to borrow directly from participating lenders. Contact the Financial Aid Office, (262) 472-1130, for further information.

Scholarships and Fellowships

The UW-Whitewater School Psychology Program has partial scholarships and fellowships available for both first and second year students, The Barbara Ann Hersko Scholarship, Fellowships and the Song Family Scholarship. Information about these opportunities are explained once a student has entered the program. Accepted students are also eligible for a variety of Wisconsin School Psychologists Association (WSPA) scholarships in the same monetary range.

Community Resources

A range of resources are available both on campus and off campus to support students’ needs. 

Christine Neddenriep Christine Neddenriep

Program Coordinator and Professor 

Departments: Psychology

neddenrc@uww.edu

Laurentide Hall 1229

(262) 472-1850

Barbara Beaver Barbara Beaver

Professor

Departments: Psychology

beaverb@uww.edu

Laurentide Hall 1233

(262) 472-5416

Amanda Kidwell Amanda Kidwell

Lecturer

Departments: Psychology

kidwellal28@uww.edu

Laurentide Hall 1205

(262) 472-1026

Amber Buxton Amber Buxton

Lecturer

Departments: Psychology

PaavolaAL13@uww.edu

Laurentide Hall 1223

(262) 472-1026

Anna Lindell Anna Lindell

Assistant Professor 

Departments: Psychology

lindella@uww.edu

Laurentide Hall 1224

(262) 472-1804

Carolyn Morgan Carolyn Morgan

Professor

Departments: Psychology

morganc@uww.edu

Laurentide Hall 1221

(262) 472-5410

James Larson

Professor Emeritus

Departments: Psychology

larsonj@uww.edu

Laurentide Hall

(262) 472-1026

Hannah Arcand

Graduate Assistant

Kaitlyn Disalvo

Graduate Assistant

Owen Gaber

Graduate Assistant

Jena Krueger

Graduate Assistant

Shearrydnise Rosa

Graduate Assistant

Greta Wollmer

Graduate Assistant

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