Doctor of Psychology (PsyD) in School Psychology

Information about APA accreditation is available from the:
Commission on Accreditation:
American Psychological Association
Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation
750 First St., NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242
(202)-336-5979
http://www.apa.org/ed/accreditation

 

 

Student Admissions, Outcomes, and Other Data 

As required by the American Psychological Association, the following data are provided to prospective applicants about our program:

  • Time to completion
  • Program costs
  • Internship
  • Attrition
  • Licensure

Time to Completion


Outcome Year in which Degrees were Conferred
2009-2010 2010-2011 2011-2012 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015 2015- 2016 Total
Total number of students with doctoral degree conferred on transcript
 2

5

4

2

4

2 24
Mean number of years to complete the program  8
4.5
5.6
6.25

5.13 5.5 6.01
Median number of years to complete the program  8.5
4.5
5
7
5
5.25
5.5
5.15
Time to Degree Ranges N
%
N
%
N
%
N
%
N
%
N
%
N
%
N
%
Students in less than 5 years  0
 0
1
50
0
0 0
0
0
0
1
25
0
0
2
9
Students in 5 years 1
25
1
50
3
60
1
25
2
100
1
25
2
100
11
48
Students in 6 years
 0
0
0
1
20
2
50
0
0
1
25
0
0
4
17
Students in 7 years 0
0
0
0
1
20
1
25
0
0
1
25
0
0
3
13
Students in more than 7 years  3
75 
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
3
13

 

University policy allows the acceptance of up to 47 hours of transfer credit for the PsyD Program.  Policy on acceptance of transfer credit can be found at:

http://www.albany.edu/schoolpsych/doctor-of-psychology.php

Some students, particularly experienced practitioners, enter the PsyD degree with graduate credit earned at other institutions or other experience that may be applicable to the PsyD degree.  Each new student will review the Program with an advisor after being accepted.  Typically, certified school psychologists complete the PsyD in 3-4 years.


Program Costs


Description

2016-2017 1st-year Cohort Cost

 Tuition for full-time students (in-state)
 $10,870
 Tuition for full-time students (out-of-state)
 $22,210
 Tuition per credit hour for part-time students (if applicable enter amount; if not applicable enter "NA")
 $453 (in-state)
$925 (out-of-state)
 University/institution fees or costs
 $1,864
 Additional estimated fees or costs to students (e.g., books, travel, etc.)
 $3,000

Internship Placement – Table 1


Outcome
 Year Applied for Internship
2009-2010 2010-2011 2011-2012 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015 2015-2016
 N  % N
%
N
%
N
%
N
%
N
%
N
%
 Students who obtained APA/CPA-accredited interships
 0
 0
0
0
0
0
0
0
 0

 0
 0
0
0
 Students who obtained APPIC member internships that were not APA/CPA-accredited (if applicable)
0  0
0
0
0

0
0
0
0
 0
0
0
 Students who obtained other membership organization internships (e.g., CAPIC) that were not APA/CPA-accredited (if applicable)

 0


0





 0
0 0
0
 Students who obtained internships conforming to CDSPP guidelines that were not APA/CPA-accredited (if applicable)

100 
3
100
6
100
4
100
4
100
3
100
2
100
 Students who obtained other internships that were not APA/CPA-accredited (if applicable)

0 0
0
0
0
 0


 0
0

0
0
 Students who obtained any internship
4
 100
3
100 
6
100

100 

 100
 3
100 

100 
 Students who sought or applied for internships including those who withdrew from the application process

100 
3
100
6
100

100 

100
3
100

100 

 

Internship Placement – Table 2


Outcome Year Applied for Internship
2009-2010 2010-2011 2011-2012 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015 2015-2016
 N %
N
%
N
%
N
%
N
%
N
%
N
%
Students who sought or applied for internships including those who withdrew from the application process 4
100
3
100

100
4
100
4
100
3
100
2
100
Students who obtained paid internships
100 
3
100

100
4
100
4
100
3
100
2
100
Students who obtained half-time internships* (if applicable) 0
0
0
0
 0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0

Attrition


Variable Year of First Enrollment
2009-2010 2010-2011 2011-2012 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015 2015-2016
 N %
N
%
N
%
N
%
N
%
N
%
N
%
Students for whom this is the year of first enrollment (i.e., new students)  3

100 
4 100
5
100
4
100

100 

100

100 
Students whose doctoral degrees were conferred on their transcripts  2
 66
4
100
1
25
0
0
 0
0
 0

 0
 0
Students still enrolled in the program  1
 33
0


75
2
50

100

60
5
83
Students no longer enrolled for any reason other than conferral of doctoral degree 0 0 0 0 1 0 2 50 0 0 2 40 1 17

Licensure


Outcome
2006 to 2016
The total number of program graduates (doctoral degrees conferred on transcript) between 2 and 10 years ago 37
The number of these graduates (between 2 and 10 years ago) who became licensed psychologists in the past 10 years 17
Licensure percentage 48.6%

Most graduates have pursued careers for which licensure is not required (e.g., academia, practice as a school psychologist in public schools).

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Description

The mission of the PsyD Program is to prepare life-long learners who engage in the reflective practice of school psychology by integrating psychological theory, research, and practice to contribute to the development of human potential in children and families while respecting issues of cultural and individual diversity. We are committed to a practitioner-scientist model of training, to the use of evidence-based practices, and to the promotion of skillful and ethical behavior in the provision of psychological services to children, youth, and families.

The PsyD Program is integral to the missions of the University and the SOE. Specifically, the University has a broad mission of excellence in undergraduate and graduate education, research, and public service (The Mission Statement and Statement of Principles of the University at Albany, State University of New York). Consistent with this broad mission, the SOE fosters enhanced learning and human development for diverse individuals and groups across the lifespan in and out of the classroom. The SOE's contribution to the University's mission of excellence in graduate education is evidenced by its consistent ranking as one of the best in the U.S.

The philosophy of the PsyD Program at University at Albany is to prepare school psychologists to integrate psychological theory, research, and established methods of scientific inquiry into effective practice, and to engage in research and evaluation activities that contribute to the science and practice of psychology. Within this philosophy, preparation of professional psychologists is dependent on:

a) A solid foundation in psychological theory and research, established methods of scientific inquiry, educational theory, and skill-based training in psychological assessment and intervention methods
b) Opportunities for supervised application of theory, research, and methods of inquiry and practice
c) Opportunities to engage in research and evaluation of psychological practice

The following goals, objectives, and competencies have been identified for the PsyD Program:

GOAL #1--ASSESSMENT:
Graduates demonstrate the knowledge and skills to conduct evidence-supported, valid and reliable psychological assessments with individuals from diverse backgrounds.


 

Objective A: Students implement a problem-solving, hypothesis-generating process to identify individual strengths and needs using multiple methods.

 

Competency A1: The student demonstrates the ability to utilize a systematic approach to data gathering in order to inform clinical/professional decision-making.

 

Competency A2: The student demonstrates the knowledge and skill to select and implement a variety of evaluation techniques (e.g., norm-referenced, criterion-referenced, curriculum-based, interviews, records reviews) in ways that are responsive to and respectful of individuals, families, and groups of diverse backgrounds.

 

Objective B: Students demonstrate the ability to interpret assessment results, make inferences about assessment data, and communicate assessment results and recommendations effectively.

 

Competency B1: The student demonstrates the ability to integrate assessment data from different sources for diagnostic/identification purposes.

 

Competency B2: The student demonstrates the ability to integrate assessment results to develop appropriate academic, behavioral, and socio-emotional intervention recommendations.

 

Competency B3: The student demonstrates the ability to communicate assessment results to diverse audiences (e.g., other professionals, parents, children).

GOAL #2--CONSULTATION AND COLLABORATION:
To train practitioners to engage in culturally responsive consultation and collaborative problem solving with others to effectively enhance the mental health and learning competencies of children, adolescents, and their families.


 

Objective A: Students demonstrate appropriate communication and relationship skills when consulting with others (i.e., professionals, parents).

 

Competency A1: The student demonstrates the ability to establish and maintain rapport with consultees (e.g., teachers, parents).

 

Competency A2: The student communicates effectively with consultees (e.g., school personnel, parents).

 

Objective B: Students demonstrate knowledge of and ability to participate in consultation activities.

 

Competency B1: The student models collaborative behavior during consultation.

 

Competency B2: The student applies a systematic approach to problem-solving during consultation.

 

Objective C: Students consult with a variety of stakeholders (e.g., teachers, parents, and/or other professionals).

 

Competency C1: The student demonstrates knowledge of different consultation models (e.g., behavioral, mental health).

 

Competency C2: The student implements consultation and collaboration with consultees (e.g., families, schools, and service providers).

 

Competency C3: The student demonstrates knowledge of resources.

 

Competency C4: The student evaluates the effectiveness of consultation and collaboration with consultees (e.g., families, schools, and service providers).

GOAL #3--INTERVENTION AND PREVENTION:
Graduates display the knowledge and skills to implement evidence-based interventions that promote the academic, behavioral, and social competencies of children and adolescents.


 

Objective A: Students plan interventions based on available research literature and theory.

 

Competency A1: The student demonstrates knowledge of psychological intervention theory, and effectively utilizes research and practice to guide treatment.

 

Competency A2: The student demonstrates knowledge of the influence of ecological context (e.g., social, cultural, historical) and systems on individual behavior and intervention effectiveness.

 

Competency A3: The student demonstrates the ability to formulate and conceptualize interventions.

 

Competency A4: The student demonstrates the ability to plan and implement interventions that address a variety of issues (e.g., psychotherapy, psychoeducational, crisis management, prevention programs) at different levels (e.g., individual, group, systems level).

 

Objective B: Students evaluate interventions.

 

Competency B1: The studentdemonstrates on-going case formulation and treatment planning which attends to the whole person/group/system.

 

Competency B2: The student develops a decision-making plan that incorporates data.

 

Competency B3: The student demonstrates the ability to assess and monitor intervention progress and outcomes, and to make appropriate alterations as necessary.

 

Competency B4: The student demonstrates the ability to assess treatment integrity.

GOAL #4--PROFESSIONAL PRACTICE:
Students consistently engage in practice with diverse individuals that is grounded in ethical, legal, and professional standards.


 

Objective A: Students adhere to established ethical and legal standards of professional school psychological practice.

 

Competency A1: The student demonstrates knowledge of the major professional issues that influence the practice of school psychology.

 

Competency A2: The student demonstrates knowledge and the ability to apply ethical guidelines, legal standards, and professional principles in school psychological practice.

 

Competency A3: The student consistently exhibits professional dispositions and effective communication skills in professional practice.

 

Competency A4: The student demonstrates commitment to continuous learning and professional development.

 

Competency A5: The student responds to supervisory feedback to develop appropriate personal and professional skills.

 

Objective B: Students demonstrate knowledge of and sensitivity to issues of diversity in their professional practice.

 

Competency B1: The student demonstrates knowledge of, and sensitivity to, cultural diversity and individual differences, as well as recognizes his/her own biases and influences on behavior.

 

Competency B2: The student considers and incorporates dimensions of diversity in designing, implementing, and evaluating programs, products, and services that relate to school psychology practice and research.

 

Competency B3: The student demonstrates effective interpersonal skills when interacting with individuals from diverse backgrounds.

GOAL #5--RESEARCH AND EVALUATION:
To train professional school psychologists to be competent consumers, distributors, and producers of research.


 

Objective A: Students will demonstrate competence in aspects of research design and analysis, as well as competence in the critical review and evaluation of the psychological and educational research literature.

 

Competency A1: The student demonstrates knowledge of and competence in basic quantitative and qualitative methods, data analysis, data interpretation, research design, and psychological measurement.

 

Competency A2: The student demonstrates the ability to write a critical review of the literature in an area in psychology and education.

 

Objective B: Students generate original research and scholarship.

 

Competency B1: The student demonstrates the ability to conduct an independent research project.

 

Competency B2: The student demonstrates the use of research to inform the practice of psychology.

 

Competency B3: The student demonstrates the ability to communicate research.

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Program Requirements

The Program requires a minimum of 94 credits, reflecting both the scientific bases of psychology and professional school psychology. These include courses in general psychology, methods of inquiry, school psychology, educational foundations, and related areas, comprehensive exams, and field training. In addition, a dissertation is required. The dissertation, Advanced Field Experience, and Internship do not carry University credit, and are required beyond the minimum 94 hours of the program. All students participate in collaborative research with members of the Program faculty prior to planning and completing their dissertation. Depending on the student's need for prerequisites or the need for remediation, it is possible that more than 94 hours may be required.

Students who enter the PsyD Program without prior graduate degrees (a Master of Science degree and/or Certificate of Advanced Study [CAS]) initially work to complete a Master's in Educational Psychology and then the CAS in School Psychology. Required courses for each of these fulfill initial course work requirements in the PsyD Program.

Training competent professional school psychologists thus includes components in multiple domains; specifically, academic competence, research competence, clinical competence, and interpersonal and professional competence. Students must demonstrate appropriate performance in each area to earn the doctoral degree. To this end, the Program has identified comprehensive goals and competencies (as previously discussed) that are consistent with the substantive areas of professional psychology. Components of the curriculum address each area.

The academic component includes both theoretical and skills-based course work. Initially, students are exposed to basic scientific theories of psychology (e.g., biological aspects, learning, cognitive-affective bases) and education (e.g., educational foundations, special education), and develop initial skills in assessment. Concurrent with this, students are presented with the professional standards and ethics in school psychology. As students progress in the Program, they complete more advanced course work in research, statistics, and development, as well as electives in specific areas of interest. At the same time, they continue to develop, refine, and master more advanced professional skills in assessment and intervention.

Academic Components

The Program emphasizes three broad areas of academic course work: general psychology, professional school psychology, and educational foundations and related areas.

In the general psychology area, the curriculum is designed to ensure that students acquire substantial understanding and competence in the following areas:

(a) The breadth of scientific psychology, its history, and its research methods and applications (propositional and case knowledge). This is accomplished by exposure to the current body of knowledge in the following areas:

  1. Biological aspects of behavior (e.g., Biopsychology, Psychopharmacology, Neuropsychology)
  2. Cognitive-affective aspects of behavior (e.g., Theories of Learning, Human Memory, Cognitive Psychology)
  3. Social aspects of behavior (e.g., Social Psychology, Group Dynamics, Interpersonal Relations)
  4. History and systems of psychology (e.g., History of Psychology)
  5. Psychological measurement (e.g., Psychological Measurement, Psychometric Theory)
  6. Research methodology (e.g., Experimental Design, Research Methods in Psychology)
  7. Techniques of data analysis (e.g., Statistical Methods, Multivariate Analysis, Quantitative Analysis, Qualitative Analysis)

(b) The scientific, methodological, and theoretical foundations of practice in the substantive areas of professional psychology (propositional and case knowledge). This is accomplished by exposure to the current body of knowledge in the following areas:


1. Individual differences in behavior (e.g., Theories of Personality, Survey of Personality)

2. Human development (e.g., Advanced Developmental Psychology, Comparative Theories of Human Development)

3. Dysfunctional behavior or psychopathology (e.g., Psychopathology, Behavioral and Emotional Disturbances of Children and Adolescents, Behavior Disorders, Abnormal Psychology)

In professional school psychology, the curriculum is designed to ensure that students acquire substantial understanding and a high level of competence in the following:


1. Professional standards and ethics (e.g., Introduction to School Psychology)

2. Assessment and diagnosis of children, adolescents, and adults with learning, social, emotional, and behavioral problems (e.g., Assessment of Intelligence, Psychoeducational Assessment, Social-Emotional Behavioral Assessment)

3. Intervention

4. Consultation/Prevention

5. Academic Interventions

6. NYS Child Abuse Mandated Reporting

7. Project SAVE - Mandated Violence Prevention

8. Dignity for All Students Act Training

9. Diversity

In educational foundations and related areas, the curriculum is designed to ensure that students acquire understanding and competence in the following:


1. Educational Foundations (e.g., Philosophy of Education, History of Education, Sociology of Education)

2. Related Areas (e.g., Reading, Special Education)

3. Electives

As a measure of the ability to integrate theory, research, and methods of inquiry across the major areas of professional functioning, doctoral students in school psychology complete a 2-part comprehensive examination during their program. Part I is a standardized examination (The PRAXIS exam in SP) and Part II is a written examination.

Clinical Components

Students are required to complete field training in which they integrate applied experiences with the general psychology and professional school psychology course work. Theoretical knowledge is integrated with skills knowledge across multiple field training experiences. Specifically, the Program is designed to provide students with the equivalent of 22 months of supervised experience through a variety of placements (as per New York State regulations). All field-training experiences are supervised weekly, in face-to-face sessions with a credentialed psychologist.

General psychological theory, methods of inquiry, educational foundations, and professional school psychology (i.e., propositional, case, and strategic knowledge) are integrated across multiple field training experiences. In the PsyD Program, the field training component is viewed from a developmental perspective (Boylan, Malley, & Reilly, 2001). Following this model, the following principles are associated with field training:

1.
Movement is directional and hierarchical; early learning establishes a
foundation for later development.
2.
Differentiation occurs with new learning and practice; learning proceeds from more simplistic and elementary and toward the more complex and integrated.
3.
Separation/individuation are achieved; learning leads to progressively more independent and separate functioning by the student.

These principles are identified within the program structure, the learning processes, and the supervisory interactions encountered by the students. Students proceed through the field training component of their program in an orderly and sequentially planned progression. This sequence is as follows:


1. Pre-Practicum Activities

2. Practicum

3. Field Experience

4. Advanced Field Experience

5. Internship

Within this philosophy and structure, each component in this sequence varies regarding the required length of the placement, and the range of expected skills and competencies necessary before the student can move on to the next component in field training.

  • Pre-Practicum Activities

    During the first and second years of training, students participate in activities at the Pre-Practicum level of the continuum. This field training consists of direct instruction and controlled practice assignments related to specific classes (e.g., administering and interpreting tests of intelligence and achievement); basic skill development and ongoing feedback are emphasized.

  • Practicum (ESPY 790 Field Experience I)

    The practicum is a planned, structured, and programmed sequence of professionally supervised training experiences in comprehensive school psychological services including problem solving, intervention, and consultation to deal with educational, social, emotional, and behavioral problems of school-age children and youth. Practicum occurs during the student’s second year in the program, and involves the completion of 420 hours over the course of 2 semesters (2 days/week) on-site, as well as attendance at formally scheduled weekly group supervision and case conference meetings on campus.

  • Field Experience (ESPY 895 Field Experience II)

    At the field experience level students are placed in a public school district, and provide the broad range of psychological services. The duration of this placement is 3 days/week for 10 months. Duties in this experience encompass all areas of professional functioning (i.e., assessment, intervention, and consultation).

  • Advanced Field Experience (ESPY 896 Field Experience III)

    Further refinement of previously learned skills and development of more specialized skills occurs at the Advanced Field Experience level. This placement is completed in either a school district or agency, and entails a commitment of 3 days/week for 10-12 months (depending on students’ skills and availability).

  • Internship (ESPY 898 Internship)

    The internship placement involves the student in the full range of professional activities working toward more independent functioning under on-site and on-campus individual and group supervision. Students are encouraged to seek and apply for APA-accredited or APPIC-member internships. If students choose not to avail themselves of this option, they are placed in appropriate sites in the local area. In developing internship sites in this locale, a number of sources were consulted and used to specify internship criteria:

    1. Professional standards (APA [American Psychological Association, 1996] and NASP [National Association of School Psychologists, 1994])
    2. CDSPP (Council of Directors of School Psychology Programs) internship guidelines
    3. New York State regulations for psychology experience
    4. National Register of Health Service Providers in Psychology guidelines for internship

The internship is a culminating training experience of the student’s program, and is designed to enhance the development and reinforcement of competencies and professionalism.

The internship occurs on full-time basis over a period of 1 year, or on a half-time basis over a period of 2 consecutive years. Students must complete a minimum of 10 months.

Research Components

Based on a scientist practitioner model, PsyD students are involved in research experiences from the start of their program. In addition to specific course work, research activities include research assistantships, course work research projects, a master's research project, doctoral dissertation, and student-initiated research activities. Initially, students are assigned to work with faculty members on various research projects. These activities often lead to conference presentations and publications. Students then progress to conducting a research project for their master's degree.

Dissertations in the PsyD program might be broadly characterized as: (a) a substantive and original contribution to knowledge, grounded in the discipline of psychology, with application to School Psychology; and (b) applied research in School Psychology. As such, dissertations must be theoretically- or empirically-grounded in psychology, and use acceptable forms of scientific inquiry.

Interpersonal and Professional Components

Within the PsyD Program, there is an emphasis on developing interpersonal attributes and professional relations. That is, we focus on the development and application of critical, analytical, and creative thinking skills. In addition, we mentor students to be reflective practitioners who constantly strive to provide the highest possible level of services to children, families, and educators. It is equally important that our students develop and demonstrate effective interpersonal skills with student colleagues, faculty, field supervisors, and children with whom they interact.

Students' professional behavior is expected to conform to the ethical principles of psychologists and codes of conduct outlined by the American Psychological Association (APA, 2002; http://www.apa.org/ethics/) and the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP, 2000; http://www.nasponline.org/standards/2010standards.aspx). As delineated in the Program goals and competencies, this behavior has been conceptualized as interpersonal attributes and professional relations. The focus on and evaluation of these in professional graduate training marks a distinct difference from typical undergraduate study.

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Admissions

The PsyD Program in School Psychology will admit students at various levels of training. Some of those admitted to the Program will be beginning graduate students directly from undergraduate school; others will be advanced practicing school psychologists who wish to obtain doctoral training. Full time study will be typical of most students, and the Program is geared toward full time study. All students enrolled in this Program must meet a residency requirement for full-time study of at least 24 credits taken in two consecutive regular semesters and must complete an internship. The program is committed to promoting diversity. Individuals from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Policy on Acceptance of Transfer Credit

Some students, particularly experienced practitioners, enter the PsyD degree with graduate credit earned at other institutions or other experience that may be applicable to the PsyD degree. University policy allows the acceptance of up to 47 hours of transfer credit for the PsyD Program. Each new student will review the Program with an advisor after being accepted. In those instances when the student's transcript and prior experiences suggest the possibility of awarding transfer credit for didactic courses or practicum experience the following criteria will be followed:

A. When there is a question of accepting credit for didactic courses taken at other graduate institutions, students may be required to submit the course syllabus, a list of the texts used, qualifications of the course instructor, or other relevant material. When there is a question about the comparability of courses, the advisor may require the student to meet with the instructor at University at Albany who teaches the course. The instructor will indicate to the Division faculty whether the courses appear comparable. In those cases in which the instructor has a question about comparability the student will be required to take a proficiency exam. Proficiency exams will be taken only when the student has prior course work that she/he thinks meets the requirements of one of the courses at University at Albany.

Credit for previous coursework in Psychological Foundations and Research, Measurement, and Statistics areas will be considered only when based upon evidence that the psychology coursework was taught at the graduate level and was offered through a Department of Psychology, Department of Educational Psychology, or Department of Counseling Psychology.

B. When there is a question of accepting prior field experiences in lieu of field training requirements (i.e., Field Experiences I-II) the student will meet with his/her advisor to discuss whether prior experience is comparable to one or more of the two practicum/field experience components of this program. If the advisor agrees that the experiences appear to be comparable, he/she will inform the Division Director and provide a rationale for this assessment. To make the determination at this level the student must submit a validated description of the experience, including information as to:

    • activities engaged in
    • nature of placement(s)
    • duration(s)
    • nature and extent of supervision
    • qualifications of supervisor

If there are any questions with respect to certain skills (e.g., assessment, report writing, consultation, etc.) associated with the field training, the student will be required to demonstrate these skills to the program faculty.

Credit for experience can be granted only for experiences obtained prior to enrollment in the PsyD Program. Any experience engaged in during the time that the student is enrolled in the Program must be an approved field placement or internship meeting the requirements described above. Regardless of prior experience, all students enrolled in the PsyD Program are required to have participated in supervised practicum/field experience prior to internship. The following guidelines must be met in order to receive credit for prior experience:

1.
The experience must have been completed after a practicum that is equivalent to ESPY 790 and it must have been completed after obtaining a master’s degree in psychology or its equivalent.
2.
Supervision for prior experience must have been provided by an
appropriately credentialed psychologist as determined by the Division faculty in school psychology.
3.
The duties of prior experience must have been psychological in nature.
4.
Three years of prior experience are required to waive experience in this category unless the experience submitted is a credit bearing formal CAS level internship associated with an approved graduate program in school psychology.

C. Decisions concerning student requests to be granted credit for a course or field experience in the PsyD Program will be made soon after the student is enrolled. The one exception to this is when a student needs to demonstrate a particular skill or competency. Under these circumstances the decision will not be made until after the student demonstrates such competency.

Residence Requirements

Students in the PsyD Program in School Psychology complete a minimum of 4 years of academic study and 1 additional year of internship prior to the granting of the degree. Of the 94 minimum credit hours undertaken to complete the degree, 47 credits (equivalent to approximately 2 years) must be taken at the University at Albany. Division residency requirements stipulate a minimum of one academic year in full-time residence. Because admission to the PsyD Program is based on a general commitment to full-time study, students in the PsyD Program in School Psychology typically conduct their entire course of study on a full-time in residence basis.

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Financial Aid

The Program historically has provided graduate research assistantships/fellowships to almost all full-time doctoral students for the academic year during the first two years of study. In addition, students typically receive stipends for field placement experiences during the third and fourth year, and internship experiences during the fifth year. Student assistance has usually included tuition reimbursement at or near 100%.

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Credentials for Professional Practice with the PsyD Degree

The PsyD Program leads to certification as a school psychologist and eligibility for licensure as a psychologist in New York State. Students enrolled in the program are eligible to apply for certification as a school psychologist after completing the first 4 years of the program. They are eligible to take the examination towards licensure as a psychologist after receiving the PsyD; licensure is obtained after passing the national examination and completing one year of post-doctoral experience supervised by a licensed psychologist.

School Psychology Certification in New York State

School Psychology Certification from the Office of Teaching New York State Education Department is required to practice in the public schools as a school psychologist. A program including course work and field training is required to obtain certification, and these credits should generally be completed by students when they finish advanced field experience.

There is a national examination in school psychology that may facilitate efforts to obtain certification in other states. This national exam constitutes Part I of the comprehensive examination and is required for National Certification in School Psychology through NASP (http://www.nasponline.org/certification/index.html).

Fingerprinting

Effective July 1, 2001, the Schools Against Violence in Education (SAVE) requires the Commissioner of Education and the New York State Education Department (NYSED) to request a fingerprint supported criminal history background check for applicants for certification as well as for prospective employees of school districts, charter schools, and boards of cooperative educational services (BOCES). Each fingerprint packet distributed by the State Education Department (SED) will include one Department of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) fingerprint card and one Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) fingerprint card. Completed cards will be returned to SED and then forwarded to DCJS.

Psychology License in New York State

Although a license as a psychologist is not required to practice in the schools as a school psychologist, it is required in New York State for independent practice by psychologists (NYSED). In addition, some job settings, such as clinics and community mental health facilities, prefer or require that potential employees be licensed as psychologists. Graduates are automatically eligible to take the national examination for license as a psychologist after completion of the PsyD Program. Upon passing the examination, and completing one year of postdoctoral experience supervised by a licensed psychologist, graduates are licensed. It is necessary is to apply to the New York State Licensing Board to take the exam.

Certification and Licensure in Other States

Students should be aware that states differ in requirements for certification and licensure. The PsyD Program is designed so that graduates should be eligible for certification as a school psychologist and licensure as a psychologist in most other states. However, students considering moving to another state should check carefully the requirements of that particular state so that they can be sure that their course work and fieldwork training experiences meet the specific requirements of that state. There is a national examination in school psychology, which can facilitate efforts to obtain certification in other states, and is required for national certification. The national exam constitutes Part I of the comprehensive examination.

Acceptable Experience for Licensure

Internships require a minimum of two hours individual face-to-face supervision each week. On rare occasions students may complete half-time internships. Under those circumstances the minimum requirement is one hour of individual face-to-face supervision per week. In most cases students will be provided a variety of supervisory experiences that will require more than one hour per week.

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Frequently Asked Questions/PsyD

Q. How many students do you admit each year?

A. Out of approximately 50-60 applicants on average, we typically accept 5 students annually, although this number varies somewhat.

Q. What is the length of the PsyD program?

A. For those students entering with a baccalaureate degree, the PsyD program involves five years of full-time study; four years of coursework and one year of internship. Students who transfer in with graduate coursework completed in school psychology may be able to complete program requirements more quickly.

Q. Does this mean most students complete the PsyD program in five years?

A. No. In addition to four years of coursework and a predoctoral internship, PsyD students are required to complete a data-based dissertation. The typical time for program completion from start to finish is about 5.5 years (the national average is 7 years).

Q. What is the program’s policy on transfer credits?

A. Only graduate-level courses will be considered for possible transfer. Up to 45 credits may be transferred from other graduate programs. Decisions as to which courses will transfer are not made until after applicants are admitted into the PsyD program.

Q. What is the length of the PsyD program if I am already certified as a school psychologist?

A. The exact length varies, but generally students who enter the PsyD program who are already certified can complete their coursework, internship, and dissertation in 3-4 years.

Q. Do you have “rolling” admissions?

A. No. Applications to the PsyD program are due January 2. Interviews usually occur sometime in February. All students offered admission begin their program in the fall semester, which usually begins during the last week of August.

Q. What are the average GPAs and GREs of successful applicants?

A. During the past several years, the average undergraduate GPA has been about 3.65, and the average GRE Score (Verbal + Quantitative) has been about 311, with a 4.5 in Writing. These numbers often vary, however, depending on the particular applicant pool.

Q. How are decisions made about which applicants to make offers of admission?

A. The decision-making process involves the simultaneous examination of a number of variables, including the applicant’s grade point average (GPA), graduate record exam (GRE) results, letters of recommendation, personal statement, and evidence of commitment (e.g., experiences working with children and youth).

Q. What is the “cutoff” for GPAs and GREs?

A. We do not use a “cutoff” system. Rather, these scores as well as other variables (e.g., personal statement, letters of recommendations) are collectively considered in our admission process. We compare applicants in a given year to each other and select the most highly qualified students for interviews.

Q. Can I attend the PsyD program part-time?

No. The program is designed for full-time students only.

Q. When are classes offered?

A. Some classes are offered during the day, in either the morning or afternoon. Other classes are offered in the evening, usually from 4:15 to 7:05 PM.

Q. How often are classes taught?

A. Unlike most undergraduate colleges and universities, graduate classes are typically held once per week for approximately three hours. Occasionally, some classes are taught twice per week.

Q. Do I have to take summer classes?

A. Yes. PsyD students usually take two or three summer classes over the course of the program.

Q. How many students will I have in my classes?

A. The exact number varies by class, but in school psychology classes typical sizes are 5-15 students. Some classes outside of school psychology may have more students, but not many more.

Q. How many classes do PsyD students take each semester?

A. Students typically take four classes during the fall and spring semesters of their first two years, and fewer courses their third and fourth years. They also take a few additional classes during the summer.

Q. Can I work as well as attend the PsyD program?

A. The PsyD program is designed for full-time study, and it would not be possible to work full-time and still be a member of the program. Additionally, the university stipulates that all students receiving assistantships cannot work either part or full-time during fall or spring semesters. Violation of the rule may lead to revoking assistantships.

Q. What is the relationship between students in the CAS program and students in the PsyD program?

A. There is a high degree of overlap in courses taken by CAS and PsyD students during the first two years, and faculty do not make distinctions in their expectations for coursework or practica between CAS and PsyD students. There is mutual respect among students of both programs.

Q. Is funding available?

A. Funding, both in the form of a tuition waiver and a stipend, has historically been offered to almost all PsyD students for four years. The current stipend is $7500 per year, plus 18 credits of in-state tuition.

Q. What are the requirements to receive funding?

The program typically provides graduate research assistantships to all full-time doctoral students for the academic year during the first four years of study. In the first year, students serve as a research assistant to one or more faculty members, and in their second year students teach a section of an undergraduate course. During years three and four, students typically complete field placement experiences. Further, student assistance usually includes tuition remission at or near 100%. Finally, only internships that provide a stipend are completed by students in their fifth years. Most often, no funding is available for summer courses, and students are also responsible for purchasing books and any course or university fees. Although historically all full-time students have been funded at or near total costs, financial support cannot be guaranteed – a situation which is identical across other programs in the country.

Q. Are PsyD students certified as school psychologists following completion of the program?

A. Yes. All graduates of the PsyD program are provisionally certified as school psychologists in the state of New York. Permanent certification as a school psychologist can be obtained after two years of full-time employment as a school psychologist.

Q. Are PsyD students eligible to become licensed psychologists following completion of the program?

A. Yes. All graduates of the PsyD program are licensed-eligible as psychologists. Becoming licensed after completing the PsyD typically involves a year of post-doctoral supervised practice as well as a passing score on the national licensing exam.

Q. What if I complete the PsyD program, but want to live and work in another state?

A. Several of our previous graduates have successfully completed the PsyD program and later moved to another state with little or no problems. In addition to becoming certified as a school psychologist in New York, graduates of the PsyD program are also nationally certified by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). This does NOT mean students are nationally certified in any state; rather, it means they have met a national standard of quality. However, about 50% of U.S. states currently accept national certification for state certification. As such, students graduating from the PsyD program who desire to live and work in states other than New York have not had significant problems doing so.

Q. What percentage of students who begin the PsyD program eventually graduate from it?

A. Nearly all students admitted to the PsyD program successfully graduate from it.

Q. What is the job placement rate of graduates of the PsyD program?

A. All graduates of the PsyD program who have desired employment have full-time or part-time (if that is their choice) positions.

Q. Where do graduates of the PsyD program find employment?

A. Most of our graduates are employed as school psychologists in public or private schools. Others work in private practice, as college or university faculty, or in clinic/agency settings. Most of our graduates combine one or more of these options (e.g., work full-time as a school psychologist and part-time in private practice or as a college or university adjunct).

Q. What should I do if I apply for admission but do not receive an offer to interview?

A. Although disappointing, many students apply for admission to our PsyD program but are not invited to interview. Because of the large number of applicants for limited enrollment slots, this is inevitable and unavoidable. If you apply for admission but do not receive an interview, it is because it was determined by the faculty that other applicants were more qualified to receive an interview opportunity. If you do not receive an offer to interview, you are welcome to re-apply to the program the following year.

Q. What should I do if I receive an interview but do not receive an offer of admission?

A. Some students receive an opportunity to interview but do not ultimately receive an offer of admission. When this occurs, it is because the faculty determined that the student in question was not as qualified as other applicants, or because of a determination that the applicant would not be a good match for the program.

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