What does a School Psychologist do?
School psychologists are on the team of school-based interventionists meant to help children succeed despite learning, emotional or behavioral issues. These highly trained professionals screen students for disabilities, offer counseling and help teachers and families create Independent Education Plans (IEPs). As a school psychologist, you may also refer students to other resources such as counselors, social workers or psychiatric evaluations. School psychologists are needed for all ages' preschool through high school. They commonly work with school social workers, counselors, the principal and teachers.
School psychologists need to have their master's degree in School Psychology after completing a Bachelor's degree in a related field such as Psychology, Sociology or Education. To be a school psychologist, you must also hold state and/or national School Psychologist certification from the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). This certification requires the completion of a master's degree, passing the National School Psychology Exam and 1,200 hours of internship.
- Screen students for potential psychological issues and make recommendations for treatment plans based on this screening
- Network with teachers and families to create 504 plans and Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) that help ensure success for kids who have disabilities
- Counsel students and parents while pointing them toward further resources when needed
- Collaborate with the special education team to design and implement intervention strategies and programs
- Administer therapy to children with developmental, learning or behavioral delays
- Work with at-risk youth who are in need of educational intervention to help them achieve success
- Analyze and treat school children using psychoanalytic and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) techniques
- Maintain strict confidentiality regarding student health and academic records
- Active school psychology license from the state of employment
- Experience working as a school interventionist or psychologist
- Firm understanding of child and school psychology
- Commitment to continuing education as a school psychologist throughout your career
- Excellent communication skills with both children and adults
- Ability to maintain and organize confidential records
- Understanding and commitment to following all related laws and standards
- Organizational, scheduling and planning skills to manage complex schedule, and the schedule of many kids
- Ph.D. recommended as eventual education goal for school psychologists
How much does a School Psychologist make?
School Psychologist Career Path
Learn how to become a School Psychologist, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.
Average Years of Experience
School Psychologist Insights
“I just started telepractice this year and was not sure I could do it but the training was outstanding and it is in person”
“Good and pleasant place to work”
“Annual review season is overwhelming”
“Best place to work and educate children”
“High but manageable caseload: 85+ evaluations per year.”
“Nice place to work and live.”
“pay is not competitive”
“Last pay raise before this was 15”
School Psychologist Interviews
Frequently asked questions about the roles and responsibilities of a School Psychologist
- Clinical Psychologist
- Professor of of Psychology