What attracted me to UC’s school psychology program was its emphasis on the ecological-behavioral model and social justice. Additionally, the faculty members are well-balanced across various areas within school psychology. Furthermore, many of the faculty serve on the boards of academic journals and frequently publish and are often recognized for their expertise within their areas of focus. The program is also connected to many former students which provides great support and ongoing supervision for current students.
I chose School Psychology at UC because of the behavioral and social-justice orientation. This program allows me to problem-solve through an ecological behavioral framework - focusing on changeable characteristics within the environment to then change behavior in the individual. Additionally, students and faculty interweave social-justice discussions and topics within coursework and practicum to ensure that our efforts are reaching students of varying cultures, experiences, and identities. Also, It is clear through coursework, faculty expertise, and practicum experiences that we are learning to serve children and their families with data-based decision making and best practices within the field. The focus of the program and the training that is offered will prepare me to work in multiple settings and will allow me to find what I am most passionate about in the field of school psychology.
One reason I selected UC School Psychology was my own interests and alignment with the research of the faculty. UC School Psychology focuses on applied research in community settings. Faculty have various interests but focused on effective interventions to meet diverse students behavioral and academic needs in educational settings. Another draw was the programs training focus through a wide variety of practicum experiences. Throughout your time at you UC you have experiences with a variety of age groups in a variety of settings, from tutoring elementary school students, to consultation with preschool teachers, to running high school counseling groups. Finally, the ecological behavioral framework was key for me in selecting a program. Understanding how the environment and context that a student is in impacts their behavior and academic performance, not just a student as an individual.
I chose the University of Cincinnati’s School Psychology program due to its behavioral-ecological framework and emphasis on social justice. The behavioral foundations of the program are innovative, with a strong focus on ethics and socially valid outcomes for individuals. Social justice is integrated in the philosophy of the program, and there are opportunities to get involved in research projects that work toward more equitable outcomes for diverse learners. I entered the program with a background in Special Education, with the goal of deepening my understanding of intervention, assessment, systems level change, and to gain the skills to make a more profound impact in school communities. The course sequence and practical experiences embedded in the EdS degree have made me feel prepared to enter the field as a competent and effective School Psychologist.