Program Director: Dr. Jeannie Montagano, PhD, NCSP, Licensed School Psychologist
Core Faculty Members: Prof. Shanter Alexander, Dr. Rudi Bailey, Dr. Ronald Coffen, Dr. Nadia Nosworthy, and Prof. Renette Prentice-Portecop
The Education Specialist in School Psychology (Ed.S.) degree program at Andrews University is a National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) approved training program that prepares future school psychologists as data based problem solvers. Particular attention throughout the program is placed upon interventions and educational outcomes within a cognitive-behavioral theoretical perspective. The program promotes a unique set of professional values through its emphasis on:
• Data-based decision making
• Educational and psychological treatment outcomes
• Multicultural diversity
• Program development and evaluation
• Facilitation of organization change
• A diverse cohort of students, including members of underrepresented groups in school psychology.
• Applicants who are prepared to engage in conversations around issues of race/ethnicity, class, culture, language, religion, gender, sexuality, and disability as they are represented in schools.
• Applicants who think critically and are willing to question themselves, asking “How do I need to change before I can become an effective professional working with all children?”
• Applicants with previous experience (volunteer or paid) working with children, adolescents, and/or families in educational or mental health settings, or in a research capacity. Academic prerequisites include undergraduate coursework in developmental psychology or theories of personality, abnormal psychology, and statistics.
The School Psychology program at Andrews University is designed to prepare professional school psychologists who are committed to excellence and service in the areas of consultation, diagnosis, intervention and prevention for school systems and students. Andrews’ graduates will work with teachers, students, parents, administrators, and other professionals to improve learning environments and enhance individual student potential. The program strives to augment the traditional assessment approach by contemporary research-based models of school psychology services and utilizes “Best Practices of School Psychology” as the guiding standards for training and practice. Training is provided in the context of a Christian worldview and philosophy that promotes a balanced development of an individual’s mental, physical, social, and spiritual facets.
Students entering the program are encouraged to engage in research beginning their first year. Complementing these research activities students take a course in Research Methodology within their first year of the program. Faculty serve as mentors to help students become adept at conducting scientific research by working closely with them on projects conducted in school systems and in areas relating to the practice of school psychology. The program considers school psychology to be a scientific discipline, and seeks to train life-long learners with a focus on research, practice, multicultural aspects of human behavior, and the science of the mind. Faculty/student research collaboration is supported through Independent Study-Research Project course options. Current faculty-led research projects can be found here. Students are encouraged to find projects which they can contribute to and become involved in. The Office of Research and Creative Scholarship provides resources to students interested in developing research projects or contributing to an existing one.
Assessment and counseling skills are integrated into a number of courses that students take in preparation for practicum and internship. The focus of these training experiences, and fieldwork hours, is to underscore the importance of accurate diagnosis, reliable and valid assessment, and empirically-supported interventions. All students must complete a one-semester practicum in a local school district with the clinical portion done at the Andrews Community Counseling Center. Students are also required to complete a one-year full-time school based internship prior to graduation.
Students wishing to transfer in credits from another university are required to complete a minimum of 80% of their credits in residence at Andrews University. Fieldwork experiences are not eligible for transfer. Classes being considered for transfer must meet equivalence guidelines.
Andrews University is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and is a member of the North Central Association. It is also accredited by the Seventh-day Adventist Churches accrediting association: The Accrediting Association of Seventh-day Adventist Schools, Colleges and Universities.
The School of Education which houses the School Psychology program is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).
The School Psychology program is accredited by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP).
All graduates from this program are eligible to apply for the National Certification in School Psychology (NCSP) credential. More information about this certification and its eligibility requirements can be found online at: http://www.nasponline.org/CERTIFICATION/becomeNCSP.aspx. Graduates are encouraged to apply right after they graduate.
The program also prepares students for the State of Michigan licensure as a school psychologist.
Preliminary Michigan School Psychology Certification is available for students who have earned an MA degree or equivalent. The Michigan Department of Education allows a school psychologist to work for three years with a Michigan Preliminary Certificate.
Full Michigan School Psychologist Certificate is available to students who have completed one year of work employed as a school psychologist in the Michigan public schools.
For more information regarding State of Michigan licensure please click here.
Andrews University Graduate Admissions
Program Coordinator: Dr. Jeannie Montagano