About School Psychology, M.S. & Psy.S.

School psychologists collaborate with teachers, school administrators, and other school professionals to conduct evaluations and design intervention plans for students who are struggling with a range of academic and behavior problems. 

Recent legislative and financial shifts in education are driving schools to make significant systemic changes.  Because of their training, school psychologists play crucial roles in transforming schools and evaluating outcomes for students, schools, and communities. Learn more about the role of the school psychologist below along with the distinct aspects of the program at GVSU. You can also get answers to Frequently Asked Questions about school psychology and the program at GVSU.

Role of a School Psychologist

A school psychologist has many roles in a school and their day might include:

  • teaching students to implement problem-solving skills
  • evaluating special education eligibility as part of multidisciplinary teams
  • designing and implementing progress monitoring systems
  • designing and evaluating academic and behavioral interventions
  • fostering individualized instruction strategies
  • implementing programs that support a positive school climate

School psychologists work directly with students, as well as with teachers, administrators, parents and other professionals to impact school buildings, classrooms, and student outcomes.

The GVSU Distinction

1. The coursework for the school psychology graduate program requires that students participate in coursework and experience that focuses on progressive practices, such as:

  • systems-wide prevention
  • problem solving
  • collaboration & consultation
  • data-based decision making
  • direct teaching experience

2. The program was developed with careful attention to current guidelines outlined by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) and includes skills that are considered important to school administrators:

  • data based decision-making
  • response to intervention
  • functional behavior assessment
  • school-wide positive behavior interventions & supports

3. The program provides students with all coursework requirements to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA). Students must also meet experience and exam requirements specified by the Behavior Analysis Certification Board (BACB).

4. The program offers the K-12 School Psychologist Certification and you receive both a master's in science (M.S.) and the psychology specialist (Psy.S.) degree.

Job Opportunities

There are many job opportunities in the field of school psychology. Based on salaries, job availability and a low unemployment rates in the profession among other factors. 

  • The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects faster than average job growth in the field of school psychology over the next decade
  • US News ranked school psychologist as 14th in a list of the 100 “best jobs.”

Additionally, school psychologist is on the critical shortage discipline list issued by the Michigan Department of Education, and there is a national need for school psychologists. 

Page last modified August 18, 2017