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Career Issues (Why get the doctorate?)

I was just wondering what you can do with a doctorate in School Psychology. What positions would one be eligible for?

Many doctoral-level school psychologists work as school psychologists in the schools, usually providing a very broad range of services such as assessment, consultation, counseling, crisis intervention, and training. Others are in leadership positions in the schools, including supervisors of pupil services and other administrative posts. (Some are even superintendents.) Still others practice in special schools, clinics, and hospitals, especially those that have an educational component. For an increasing number of our students, university teaching is a popular career goal.

What type of doctoral degree does IUP offer? I want to be a researcher, not a practicing school psychologist. Do you recommend that I apply to IUP?

Students receive a D.Ed. degree after completion of the doctoral program in School Psychology at IUP. Although some of our graduates are college professors, most are practitioners and supervisors. We would be happy to receive your application if this course of study suits you. If you are not interested in certification as a school psychologist, you may be better served with a Ph.D. program in Educational Psychology at another institution.

Is IUP’s School Psychology program accredited? Does the program also lead to licensing as a psychologist in Pennsylvania or other states?

Our doctoral program is accredited by the National Association of School Psychologists, allowing you to obtain the Nationally Certified School Psychologist credentials. In regards to licensure for independent practice as a psychologist, our program is not currently approved by the American Psychological Association (APA). You would need to check with your state’s board of professional psychology to determine what the requirements are for taking the licensure examination in your state. Historically, a number of our graduates in other states have qualified for the licensing examination by documenting their coursework at IUP, but rules seem to be changing.

After graduating, can I go into private practice as well?

That will depend on your state’s requirements. Some require a doctorate from an APA-accredited institution. If not, your degree here plus the requisite number of years of post-doctoral supervised experience may allow you to be licensed. We don’t know of any states where you can go directly from the doctorate to licensure. With that said, the primary thrust of our doctoral program is to prepare school psychologists for leadership positions in the schools or for university teaching, rather than for private practice per se.

  • Educational and School Psychology Department
  • Stouffer Hall, Room 246
    1175 Maple Street
    Indiana, PA 15705-1087
  • Phone: 724-357-2316
  • Fax: 724-357-6946
  • Office Hours
  • Monday through Friday
  • 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
  • 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.