The University of Alabama School Psychology Program is designed to provide exemplary graduate training in research and its application in practice. The School Psychology Program admits candidates to the distance-learning only master’s (MA), on-campus OR distance-learning educational specialist (EdS), and on-campus only Ph.D. graduate degree programs. These degrees prepare candidates for direct school-based practice and, for Ph.D. candidates, for careers as faculty members, researchers, and practitioners. The degree programs in school psychology focus on the provision of school psychology services that are based on a strong foundation of research. The school psychology degree programs include an integrated and sequential program of study with comprehensive coursework and supervised field experiences. Candidates participate in courses and seminars in assessment and data collection, interventions and decision making, prevention and consultation, professional school psychology, sociocultural foundations, psychological foundations, human development, educational foundations, statistics and research, and other areas. Candidates are required to participate in an extensive practicum, internship, and research experiences.
Two options are available for the MA degree: an on-campus option and a distance-learning option. In the on-campus option, the MA degree is incorporated into program requirements for candidates in the EdS and Ph.D. degree programs. The MA degree is required and built into the program of study. Students admitted to the EdS or Ph.D. program receive the MA along the way. After about one-and-one-half years into their graduate programs of study, most EdS and Ph.D. candidates have completed the 33 graduate credits for the MA degree during the course of their EdS or Ph.D. programs. EdS and Ph.D. students may then go on to complete the additional coursework, practica, and internships for their EdS or Ph.D. degrees.
The distance learning option blends online classes with intensive campus weekends and is offered through the College of Continuing Studies. The distance learning program does not hold NASP approval. Currently, only applicants who hold a valid bachelor’s-level Professional Educator Certificate in a teaching field or a valid master’s-level Professional Educator Certificate in another area of instructional support will be considered for the distance program.