About the Program
The School Psychology program requires a minimum of 70 graduate credit hours to receive the Education Specialist degree. Our National Association of School Psychologists-approved program is grounded in a scientist-practitioner model of professional preparation and prepares students to become culturally responsive school psychologists ready to serve all children from ethnically and racially diverse backgrounds in various educational and mental health systems. This is accomplished by analyzing children's learning, behavior, and functioning from an ecological perspective to inform interventions that promote child and school success. School psychologists rely on scientific inquiry, data-based decision-making and social justice advocacy to solve problems encountered in professional practice and to evaluate the effectiveness of their professional services.
The program is committed to social justice by protecting the educational rights, opportunities and wellbeing of all children, especially those whose needs have been ignored or whose intersecting identities have been obscured. We are committed to recruiting and retaining a diverse student body to promote cultural diversity in the profession and to aid in the critical shortage of school psychologists locally and nationally.
Using a culturally responsive and problem-solving framework, students are trained in a variety of competencies, including:
- Assessment and Data-Based Decision Making. School psychologists use reliable and valid assessment data to determine students’ eligibility for services, to monitor student progress and outcomes, and to address students’ academic, social-emotional, and behavioral needs.
- Prevention and Intervention. School psychologists use evidence-based practices in providing educational and mental health supports for children, which include positive behavioral interventions, social-skills training, crisis counseling, and multi-tiered systems of support.
- Consultation and Collaboration. School psychologists use effective communication skills when collaborating with parents and teachers on improving student behavior and learning.
- Research and Evaluation. School psychologists use knowledge of single-case research design, measurement, applied behavioral analytic techniques, and other data collection methods to understand research and interpret data in applied settings.
- Diversity in Development and Learning. School psychologists use culturally responsive practices to promote effective functioning for individuals, families, and schools with diverse backgrounds, characteristics, and cultures.
- Legal and Ethical Professional Practice. School psychologists use ethical decision-making and apply professional work characteristics needed for effective service delivery, which include respect for human diversity, social justice, and advocacy.
- More than 80% of our graduate students come from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds
- Majority of courses are offered during the evenings to accommodate working professionals
- Students complete field practicum in the schools prior to completing a yearlong, 1200-hour internship
- Multicultural experiences working with children, families, and staff in urban school settings
- Our core faculty welcome students to engage in projects related to school mental health, infant/child development, applied behavior analysis, educational media apps, cultural responsiveness, etc.
- Full-time students have been competitive in receiving graduate assistantships and scholarships
- 100% passing rate on the FL Subject Area Exam in School Psychology on the first attempt (2011-2019)
- The School Psychology Student Association (SPSA) is a student-led organization that provides opportunities for leadership, fundraising, and mentorship.
- NASP-approved program, FL state-approved program, and FIU received full accreditation from CAEP (2018-2025)
Future Scholarship Opportunity for New Students
We have completed recruitment of our first cohort for Project SPECIAL. We will be recruiting our second cohort for Summer 2022 admission.
Project SPECIAL (School Psychologists and Educators: Collaborative Interventions for All Learners), funded by the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education Programs, partners future school psychologists and special education teachers planning to work with children with persistent and severe learning and behavioral challenges. Students commit to three years of training including shared coursework and fieldwork and a Summer Institute providing supports for children with disabilities. Learn more about Project SPECIAL or read about the project in FIU News.