The School Psychology Doctoral Program has three identified aims of training, linked to discipline-specific knowledge, profession-wide competencies, and learning/curriculum elements required by the profession (APA, 2015). The aims are aligned with the Program’s philosophy and training model and the substantive areas of professional psychology. The following outlines the Program’s aims and competencies.
Aim #1: Students will develop the professional knowledge, skills and dispositions to be ethical practicing school psychologists.
- Behave in ways that reflect the values and attitudes of psychology, including integrity, accountability, lifelong learning, collaboration, and concern for the welfare of others (Professional values, attitudes, and behaviors).
- Engage in reflective practice and actively seek and demonstrate openness to feedback for continuous improvement of professional behavior and skills (Professional values, attitudes, and behaviors).
- Exhibit awareness, sensitivity, knowledge, and skills to work professionally with individuals, groups, other professionals, and communities that represent diverse cultural and personal backgrounds and characteristics, defined broadly and consistent with relevant APA practice guidelines (Individual and cultural diversity).
- Abide by the current version of the APA Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct (Ethical and legal standards).
- Be knowledgeable about and adhere to the local, state, and federal laws governing practice (Ethical and legal standards).
- Relate effectively and professionally with clients, colleagues, and professionals from other disciplines and demonstrate competence in interprofessional collaborative practice, including the ability to manage difficult situations (Communications and interpersonal skills).
- Communicate clearly and appropriately in written and oral form with clients, colleagues, other health professionals, and the public (Communications and interpersonal skills).
Aim #2: Students will develop knowledge of the scientific foundations of psychology and education to be critical consumers and producers of research.
- Be able to critically evaluate relevant literature and apply that knowledge in practice (Research).
- Be knowledgeable about psychological research methods and techniques of data collection and analysis and apply that knowledge in practice (Research).
- Conduct and disseminate research that contributes to the scientific and professional knowledge base, with a particular emphasis on the use of behavioral research methods (Research).
- Use research skills for program development and evaluation as well as for quality improvement related to psychological services (Research).
Aim #3: Students will apply knowledge and skills for evidence-based, comprehensive, and data-based psychological service delivery, including both direct and indirect services across professional roles.
- Select, apply, and appropriately interpret assessments of psychological and behavioral components of physical and mental health to diagnose problems and assess strengths as a basis for planning prevention, treatment, or rehabilitation (Assessment).
- Provide assessments grounded in the science of measurement and psychometrics and the clinical research related to the assessment of health, behavior, and psychosocial aspects of physical conditions (Assessment).
- Develop and implement evidence-based psychological approaches in the prevention, treatment, and rehabilitation of common health, mental health, and developmental problems (Intervention).
- Evaluate outcomes in response to delivered interventions and modify as needed (Intervention).
- Provide consultative psychological services, including promotion and prevention education, to clients and their families, other health care professionals, and systems related to health and behavior (Consultation and interprofessional/interdisciplinary skills).
- Be knowledgeable about the core competencies for interprofessional practice and apply that knowledge in collaborative practice (Consultation and interprofessional/interdisciplinary skills).
- Demonstrate knowledge of supervision theories, models, and effective supervision practices (Supervision).