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School psychology -- still an in-demand field?

Discussion in 'Psychology [Psy.D. / Ph.D.]' started by priorities2, May 20, 2012.

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  1. priorities2

    priorities2

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    My college academic adviser told me that school psychology Ed.S. programs recruited at our campus up until a few years ago due to shortages in the field, but have not been doing so since 2009 or 2010. Also, I noticed a thread on a job searching message board (I think it was called 'indeed') in which a lot of specialists in school psychology complained that they couldn't find a job. Is school psychology a pretty saturated field now?

    However, I also noticed a post in another thread on this network stating that NYC public schools would pay 50k+/year for a school psychologist intern bilingual in a needed language. Would Spanish count as needed? Also, can anyone tell me if similar phenomena are happening in other parts of the country--if bilingual school psychologists are in demand in general?
  2. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty Moderator Emeritus

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    It depends where you live. Some markets are quite saturated, so you'll want to check out the job market before investing 3+ years to get trained.
  3. eudaimonPsyD

    eudaimonPsyD Clinical PsyD Student

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    Agreed. But for anecdotal's sake, I have noticed numerous, numerous job postings for school psychology interns in California. Not sure if they are paid or not, as obviously I don't qualify/look at them.
  4. aagman01

    aagman01

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    Yes, NYC especially hires for Spanish speakers. Being fully bilingual will certainly help in finding a position, especially in an urban area.
  5. paramour

    paramour

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    It could be geographical (as I had never heard of school "psychologists" or "specialists" prior to my doc program), but none of the numerous folks who have gone through the school psych program housed within our psych dept have difficulties finding employment immediately after graduation.
  6. Pragma

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    Intern does not equal FT job after graduation. Agree with others that being bilingual would make you competitive in urban areas (or really anywhere these days), but isn't a guarantee. I'd check on post-graduation outcomes of programs you are checking out and ask some people in the field.
  7. FadedC

    FadedC

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    In general it's an extremely high demand field when compared to other areas of psychology. You do have to watch out for states with oversaturation and budget cuts, but that's true in all areas of psychology. In a state that's highly saturated with psychologists your still often safer with school psych then another field. Certainly in NYC (the mecca of oversatuation), I have a much easier time finding field placements then my clinical/counseling colleagues.
  8. sabaijae

    sabaijae

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    Any idea where I can find which states are typically over-saturated and with horrible budgets? I've tried finding these stats through Google but havent been able to locate any relevant data ...
  9. FadedC

    FadedC

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    I'm afraid I don't. I know my own state is (NY) and I'd expect Cali to be as well. I still have plenty of colleagues who have found good school psych jobs in NYC despite all of that though, but it would definitely be a lot easier in a different state.

  10. sabaijae

    sabaijae

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    Right, thanks.
  11. TNS1991

    TNS1991

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    I think the only places that are saturated are California and possibly New York, and I think this is because there are so many schools that offer school psychology degrees when compared to other states. I live in the midwest and we definitely do not have an over saturation problem with school psychology, especially at the doctoral level. Also, I would be hesitant to read too much into people not finding jobs in school psychology. The impression that I get is that they are hesitant to move to other cities, states, etc. and expected to be able to find a job close to their hometown after graduation. If you graduate with an Ed.S you should be able to find a job, but you HAVE to be willing to relocate.
  12. FadedC

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    I don't think that's true in NY. There aren't all that many dedicated school psych programs here, and school psych students are generally in demand at practicums, especially outside of NYC, where many go unfilled. I think the oversaturation is just from people moving here after graduation.

    But to your other point, yeah a school psychologist who is geographically mobile is pretty much guaranteed a job after graduation.

  13. aagman01

    aagman01

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    You may soon in the midwest. The Chicago School (in Chicago) the other year started the first (to my knowledge) free standing school psych EDS program. From what I have heard, they have cohorts of 60+ students.
  14. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty Moderator Emeritus

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    Like we need MORE sub-par training....ugh. Thanks CSPP!! :rolleyes:
  15. TNS1991

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    That is true. But I still think the field is much better off than other master level psychology fields, especially if you are willing to move to another state and bilingual. Also, there still is a shortage of doctoral level school psychologists in the area... unless the Chicago School wants to screw that up too. :mad:
    Last edited: May 24, 2012
  16. aagman01

    aagman01

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  17. TNS1991

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    :eek: Well this is just great. I went into school psych. instead of clinical to avoid this, but alas here we are. But this is an Ed.D degree, not a PhD degree, yet they say you can become a licensed clinical psychologist after completion of the degree. I thought this was only available to PsyD/PhD grads. Unless it is because of their special "neuropsychology approach" :scared:
  18. FadedC

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    Odd. Normally you just become a licensed psychologist, and there isn't any seperate licensure for clinical psychologists. I wonder if that's an Illinois thing. I also wonder if they would be able to get licensed anywhere outside of Illinois (they are really specific about being licensed to practice in Illinois).

    Either way, with the increase of popularity of school psychology, it was only a matter of time before we saw something like that. Seeing how many people get churned out of clinical psychology professional schools, if the Chicago school is the worst we have to deal with in School Psych, then I'll be extremely happy.
  19. TNS1991

    TNS1991

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    I think it is something that may be unique to school psychology. If you graduate with a PhD you automatically become a licensed school psychologist. However, if you pass an examination and go to an APA accredited program and do an APA accredited internship you can become licensed as a clinical psychologist as well. Although this may just be in my surrounding states and not everywhere.

    And you are right, this is nothing compared to what clinical is going through right now.
  20. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty Moderator Emeritus

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    There is a (malignant) push for "school neuropsychologists" in some places. Non-doctoral school psychs who take a few online classes and one practica...and then they magically become "school neuropsychologists." I'm rooting for one to get dragged into court because the training is a joke.
  21. AcronymAllergy

    AcronymAllergy Neuropsychology Fellow Moderator

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    I've seen court transcriptions from one or two instances of this happening. And no, it wasn't particularly pretty.

    Heck, I believe there are transcriptions floating around of inadequately-trained doctoral-level psychologists getting somewhat skewered during cross; if not, I know I've at least heard of a handful of such occurrences.
  22. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty Moderator Emeritus

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    If anyone knows of a case that used a "school neuropsychologist", please forward it along as I'd like to read the exchanges.

    For those interested in learning more about the exciting world of "school neuropsychologists", check out this thread and read the in-depth description of the training requirements. A whopping THREE assessment cases are required to "graduate" from the CE training classes.

    You can find exceptions in every profession, but I'm not talking about the tails of a bell curve...I'm talking about the fat middle ground that accounts for 95% of the clinicians.
    Last edited: May 25, 2012
  23. psychtime101

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    My understanding and professors told us that by completing our PhDs in school psychology we were eligible for provisional certification as a school psychologist, and then with two years of work we could be certified school psychologists. I thought a psychology license came with a doctroate in clinical, counseling or school (and post doc hours, EPPP depending on state requirements). This would mean that requirements for a license and certifications are different.
  24. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty Moderator Emeritus

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    There is variance at the state level of who can do what in regard to scope and practice. Some states have very little if any difference in requirements for a clinical/counseling psychologist to work in the school system, while others have quite a few differences. I don't know how it goes the other way (school-->clinical/counseling), but I they really are two distinct areas of work...even if they don't get treated like that by everyone.
  25. FadedC

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    Generally it'smuch easier for school psychologists to work outside the school then it is for non school psychologist to work within the school, but that does depend on the state. There is one state where PhD school psychologists are never allowed to be licensed.

    In my state you definitely run into the occasional clinical psychologist working in the school, usually they only have a fraction of the school related training that a school psychologist does, but they do at least need to have a little bit.
  26. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty Moderator Emeritus

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    We often feel the same way about school psychologists in private practice who believe they are clinical psychologists and/or neuropsychologists....
  27. FadedC

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    No doubt. There's also traditionally a significant bias against school psychology trained people at non school based clinical sites. Although it's a lot more normal now then it was several years ago.

  28. futureapppsy2

    futureapppsy2 Ed Psych PhD student Moderator Gold Donor

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    To be fair, people can and do come out of some school psych doctoral (NOT EdS) programs with the skills and experience to practice in non-school settings. In my program, for example, we are all required to do two semesters of therapy prac in a CMHC second year, and people often choose to do fourth year pracs outside of schools (usually CMHC, hospital, or youth correctional facility) and take on additional pracs in non-school settings on top of the required third year school prac. We also offer a good number of therapy, non-school assessment, and other clinical courses, thanks to very close ties with clinical and counseling psych programs here.

    A minority of school psych PhD programs trend more to the child clinical side of training and have good records of placing people in APA accredited peds internships, etc. OTOH, there are many school psych PhD programs that are purely school-focused, and admittedly, it's not the most direct route and takes being in the right program and being very proactive about your training.
  29. FadedC

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    Oh absolutely, and even in my program, which is more traditional, it's not uncommon for doctoral students to graduate with extensive field experience in hospitals and other non school based setting. But there is still often some bias against school psych students in many non school settings, no matter how extensive their credentials are. It does depend on the facility though of course, places tend to be much more open to school psych doctorates when they've already had one or two work there. And of course, there are some more clinical positions which are excellently suited to school psych people, such as working for a hospital or organization which goes into the school.

  30. aagman01

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    My opinion: I think its (saying you become a clinical psychologist upon completing their program) a Chicago School thing, actually. They are "selling" their program to gain as many "customers" as they can.


    " Well this is just great. I went into school psych. instead of clinical to avoid this, but alas here we are. But this is an Ed.D degree, not a PhD degree, yet they say you can become a licensed clinical psychologist after completion of the degree. I thought this was only available to PsyD/PhD grads. Unless it is because of their special "neuropsychology approach"
  31. aagman01

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    I don't know about PP. But I'm completing my pre-doc internship this year in a clinical psych consortium and accepted a post-doc at an R-1 university/medical center (with a good deal of the work housed within the clinical psych department). And I come from a school psych program. So I'm not sure how much distinction there truly is between the sub-fields.

  32. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty Moderator Emeritus

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    Your path is not typical for school psychology training. The vast majority of school psychology students complete their training in a school setting and go into jobs within the school setting. There is a small subset of school psych students who match through the APPIC Match, and there is an even smaller subset that match to non-school focused sites.

    Per the 2011 APPIC Survey, 123 school psych students responded to the survey, with 95 matching. The majority of school psych respondents reported matching to "school district" sites. Only 19 of the 95 matched school psych students landed at consortium sites.

    Curtis et al. (2004) published, "The Changing Face of School Psychology: Trends in Data and Projections for the Future", which included some interesting data about employment settings.

    School psychologists work in a variety of employment settings with public schools being the dominant location (77.5%; Curtis et al., 2002). They also work in private schools (6.8%), universities (6.3%), private practice (4.3%), hospitals and other medical facilities (0.9%), and state departments of education (0.8%); 3.5% report working in settings other than those listed. Although only 4.3% report private practice as their primary employment setting, even fewer (1.5%) report working 32 hours or more each week in private practice (Curtis et al., 2002).
  33. FadedC

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    I remember that article being required reading in my very first semester. Those numbers, as well as being 10 years old, are also a bit misleading because they include all school psychologists, not just doctorally trained ones. Non doctorally trained school psychologists cannot work in hospitals or private practice.

    Given that only 30% of school psychologist were doctorally trained in 2002, we can calculate that about 17% of doctorally listed hospitals or private practice as their main source of income 10 years ago. I would assume that the numbers would be higher today.

    Regarding private practice, it's also worth noting that many doctorally trained school psychologists engage in private practice without it being their primary source of income. We get a huge amount of vacation time in the summer, and part time private practice work can provide an extremely nice boost to income.

    Last edited: May 27, 2012
  34. futureapppsy2

    futureapppsy2 Ed Psych PhD student Moderator Gold Donor

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    qft
  35. aagman01

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    Good point Therapist4Chnge. I think the others cited the problem with the Curtis article (that it includes 3/4 MA/EDS school psychs in the numbers cited. The new findings are being published in a two-part article this month (just came out) and next month - and the data should be interesting to see. ***an, Merrell, and others have published findings that 1/2 of phd school psychs work in traditional school settings and 1/2 practice outside (universities, PP, hospitals, etc.). So it is not unusual for school psych PHDs to have a varied scope of practice.


    Last edited: May 27, 2012
  36. FadedC

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    I'll be interested to see the new findings as well. Do you know the names of the authors who are publishing them?

  37. aagman01

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    Regarding the NASP professional practices survey, Curtis and a few colleagues are publishing the 2012 update. Part I was published in the May issue of the Communique, and part II will be in the June issue.
  38. FadedC

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    Looks like I need to be a member of NASP to view the article, and I don't think it's on EBSCOhost. Maybe it's a sign that I should finally consider becoming a student member.

  39. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty Moderator Emeritus

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    I would be interested in seeing that data.

    I poked around a bit more and found data from 2010 NASP Membership Study, which Curtis also did, and it also matches up with the Curtis et al. (2004) data I cited. The survey did not specifically carve out doctoral-level clinicians (that I could see at a quick glance), so that is a definite limiting factor:

  40. FadedC

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    Well we can still reverse engineer the data for doctoral school psychologists. 4.3% are in hospitals/PP, and we know they have to be doctors. 24.3% of the sample had doctorate in school psychology. 4.3/24.3=17.6%. No real difference from 10 years ago, which surprises me a little.

    The numbers seem pretty consistent with 50% of doctoral level school psycholoigsts working outside the schools. Looks like most who do that go for university positions. Not too surprising given that, at least not too long ago, there was a very high demand for school psychology professors.

  41. aagman01

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    The Curtis 2012 article I discussed is based upon the 2010 NASP membership survey that you cite. So findings from that article shouldn't be much different. Perhaps the article will compile & compute role/practice breakdowns by MA/EDS and PHD in the published article.....

  42. aagman01

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    I thought there was still a shortage of school psych faculty? I was thinking about that perhaps down the road....
  43. FadedC

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    I haven't heard anything to the contrary so most likely that's still true. But then I'm not all that tuned into the academic job market at the moment.

  44. TNS1991

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    I'm not too sure about that. Like many fields in academia a lot are now offering only non-tenure track or adjunct positions. Also, many programs will accept faculty from other psychology areas (child clinical, developmental, educational) because they have gotten used to having almost no school psych. phd candidates. This is at least what I have seen in my area. Somebody can feel free to correct me if this is not the case from what they have seen.
  45. madpsych78

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    Going back to the credentialing thing, I have worked as a school psych in Illinois and will be moving to TX for PhD school psych program. In Illinois you have to be certified to work as a school psych. Only doctorates can get licensure to work in private practice. I don't know much about The Chicago School other than that they offer a "licensure" and "non-licensure" option for their EdD School Psychology program...whatever that means. But you are not just automatically granted licensure in general in Illinois...nor are you automatically granted certification upon completing any type of school psychology program. There are two tests that students have to take to be eligible for certification in Illinois. One is a general basic skills test which I found to be pretty easy, actually, and I believe is required of all educators. The second test was specific to school psychology. I have a Type 73 School Service Personnel with endorsement in School Psychology. (I am also nationally certified.)

    I mentioned that I was moving to TX. Texas is the only state I believe where school psychologists are licensed, not certified. Even though I am technically not "licensed" per se in Illinois, it would not take much for me to become an LSSP in Texas. Paperwork, references, fees, for the most part. Probably more had I not had the NCSP. There isn't anything "magical" about the LSSP (licensed specialist in school psychology) compared to certification. The difference in terminology has to do with the credentialing body. Texas is the only state where school psychologists are credentialed by the Board of Psychology, rather than the state board of education.
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2012
  46. TNS1991

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    Now I'm even more confused. What is the point of getting a higher degree if you are not even licensed to do anything with it? Also, I'm still lost as to how on earth somebody with an EdD can be a clinical psychologist. I looked at the program and it specifically said that you would be prepared to do an internship in the school setting. Since I'm pretty sure that this program is not APA acred. then how can somebody call themselves a clinical psychologist after this without a PhD/PsyD degree and no APA internship? Unless I am totally missing something here.
  47. AcronymAllergy

    AcronymAllergy Neuropsychology Fellow Moderator

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    It's going to depend on individual state law, most likely. http://www.asppb.org/HandbookPublic/before.aspx is a great resource for checking into licensure laws for each state/jurisdiction.

    I just looked through a couple, and none listed the specific degree type required other than just saying "doctorate." Not sure if this is an actual reflection of state law or just an artifact of the way the site provides the information, though.
  48. TNS1991

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    I was just confused because I live in Illinois and one of my professors told me that you can only become licensed (for clinical work) with a PhD or PsyD. I thought EdD was for educational settings only and was limited to only those that wanted to work in a school setting. But he could be wrong, I've never researched the EdD degree because I'm not interested in it. Although I suspect the site is being deceptive with their wording.
  49. aagman01

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    Actually, esteemed programs used to award Ed.D degrees, including Rutgers University. You can call yourself a "licensed psychologist" when you become licensed by the state you are in as a psychologist. Your degree per se (PHD, PSYD, ED.D) nor the type of internship you complete (APA or non-APA) are not determinants of whether one becomes a licensed psychlogist, per se. Every state has different licensure regulations. A few (very few states) require an APA internship to become a licensed psychologist. Most states require either an APA internship, an APPIC internship, or an internship that 'conforms to APPIC standards' or something of that nature. At that point, the individual has to show equivalency, which can become difficult/dicey in certain situations.

    The program at the Chicago School does look rather, uh, shady. It basically appears to be a quick route for already certified school psychologists (at the MA/EDS level) to complete the doctorate and "perhaps" become licensed. Other reputable programs do also do this, although I believe they still require a dissertation and the like (the combined clinical/school psychology program at the University of Virginia is one that comes to mind- where they still award an EdD to such students). Many states will not allow a school internship to count towards licensure, whereas others will. So it can vary. The fact that the program is not APA accredited will also make it more difficult to gain licensure. Since the program is not APA accredited, you can defacto rule out many good positions (and you can completely rule out a VA or similar setting that requires APA accredited program + APA accredited internship.



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