Program Description

The Master of Education/Education Specialist Program in School Psychology

This 68 credit-hour program combines coursework from both the Departments of Education and Psychology.  Students completing this program will acquire knowledge, dispositions, and professional skills to function in school settings as licensed School Psychologists, and will be trained within the Pragmatic Model of School Psychology (Fagan & Wise, 2000).  It is the goal of the VU school psychology program to provide school psychology training in accordance with standards established by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) and the Indiana Department of Education’s Division of Professional Standards. At the conclusion of this integrated sequence of study, students will have earned both the Master’s of Education in Education and Psychological Foundations and the Educational Specialist’s degrees. Graduates of this program will also qualify for licensure as School Psychologists in the State of Indiana.  

The VU School Psychology Program is designed for completion in three years of full-time study.  This includes two years of sequenced coursework, which includes summer months, plus the yearlong 1200 clock-hour internship that is completed under the supervision of a licensed or credentialed school psychologist. Field-training requirements are integrated throughout the entire sequence of the program, and must typically be completed during hours in which elementary and secondary schools are in session.

To ensure that individual candidates are meeting programmatic goals, data will be collected at set checkpoints and reviewed by a designated committee determined for each student at the initiation of the program.  Checkpoints are as follows: 1) Admission; 2) Completion of M.Ed. requirements (End of Year 1); 3) Pre-Internship Review (End of Year 2); 4) Pre-graduation/Pre-licensing Review (End of Year 3); and finally, 5) One-Year Graduate Follow-up (One year post-graduation). Students must pass the ETS Praxis II School Psychology Examination, with NASP’s certification cut-off score of 660, prior to graduating with the Ed.S. degree.  To continuously improve the quality of the VU School Psychology Program, all data collected among candidates is aggregated and shared with necessary stakeholders each academic year. 

Evaluations of candidates’ knowledge, skills, and dispositions will occur 1) through multiple methods of assessment (e.g., portfolios, scoring rubrics, field training evaluations, norm-referenced testing), 2) across settings (e.g., university classrooms and elementary/secondary settings), and finally, 3) from perceptions of different raters/evaluators.

Individuals who have already completed graduate work within the past five years may transfer up to 24 credit hours of applicable coursework toward meeting the degree requirements.  Typically, the maximum 24 credit hours are not accepted as transfer credit unless a student is requesting to transfer graduate credits from another NASP-approved or NASP-aligned school psychology program.  Furthermore, credits earned more than five years prior to admission shall not be accepted as transfer credit. 

Transfer credits must be congruent with Valparaiso University degree requirements.    Transfer of credits is approved on a course-by-course basis by the Coordinator of the School Psychology Program. Transferred coursework must closely align with NASP and IN standards as well as the assessment methods used by Valparaiso University in each of the individual courses.