Are you interested in promoting wellness and resilience among school-age students and helping children cope with family and life stressors? Can you envision yourself providing assessment, consultation, counseling, and mentoring for those struggling with social, academic, and behavioral problems?

The goal of the school psychology master's and certificate of advanced study program is to prepare highly qualified, entry-level school psychologists to work with children, families, and other professionals in public school settings. The school psychologist draws on multifaceted skills from both psychology and education for the purpose of promoting healthy academic, cognitive, social and emotional development. The program is developed following the scientist-practitioner model. Students are trained to be good consumers and producers of research.

Empirical knowledge serves as the basis for developing interventions and solving problems in practice. The curriculum exposes the student to theory, research and practice in school psychology, which are integrated through a planned sequence of course work, practice and internship. It is a three-year program requiring full-time attendance. Students are admitted with the understanding that they will pursue both degrees (MA and CAS) simultaneously. The program holds approval by the National Association of School Psychologists and the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction.

ECU Advantage

Our well-established program in school psychology at ECU is NASP-accredited and has a long history of producing highly trained professionals. Our program provides strong training in all core areas of school psychology, with a balanced approach to covering assessment, intervention, consultation, and prevention competencies. You would be part of a small cohort of fellow students with a good student-to-faculty ratio, using a scientist-practitioner training model.

Our dynamic faculty members have a variety of research and practice interests related to school psychology, unique experiences and backgrounds, and a strong commitment to training quality school psychologists. Our faculty will be sure that you are prepared to enter the profession with the most up-to-date information and skills to practice psychology within the public school setting.

What You Will Study

Program Coordinator: Christy Walcott (214 Rawl Building; 252-328-1378; walcottc@ecu.edu)

The graduate program in school psychology is a three-year program to train psychologists for practice in school and related settings and requires 69 s.h. credit. The program requires full-time attendance, and students must complete both the School Psychology, MA and the School Psychology, CAS programs. The first two years of the program provide classroom training and field experiences in assessment, consultation, and interventions for children, adolescents, families, and systems. The third year consists of a full-time paid internship in a public school setting. Both degrees may be earned en route to the Health Psychology, PhD in the pediatric school concentration. Program completion of both MA and CAS in school psychology meets the current requirements for licensure by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction as a school psychologist, for certification by the National School Psychology Certification Board, and satisfies the educational requirements for licensure by the North Carolina Psychology Board as a licensed psychological associate. The MA, CAS program is approved by the National Association of School Psychologists, the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education Programs, and the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction.

Minimum degree (MA) requirement is 33 s.h. as follows:

1. Assessment - 9 s.h.
  • PSYC 6333 - Applied Behavior Analysis
  • PSYC 6409 - School Assessment I
  • PSYC 6410 - School Assessment II
2. Consultation and intervention - 6 s.h.
  • PSYC 6402 - School Consultation
  • PSYC 6467 - Psychotherapeutic Interventions with Children and Families
3. Professional school psychology and ethics - 3 s.h.
  • PSYC 6404 - Ethics and Law in School Psychology
4. Psychological foundations - 6 s.h.
  • PSYC 6406 - Advanced Developmental Psychology
  • PSYC 6407 - Cultural Psychology
5. Research skills - 3 s.h.
  • PSYC 6430 - Statistics and Research Design
6. Applied research or thesis option - 6 s.h.
    Applied research option - 6 s.h.
    • PSYC 6519 - Directed Research I
    • PSYC 6520 - Directed Research II
    Thesis option - 6 s.h.
    • PSYC 7000 - Thesis (repeat once)
For more information about this degree visit the university's academic catalogs.

Careers With This Degree

Graduates with this degree are successful in many fields and careers, including the following:

  • Managers
  • Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists
  • Psychology Teachers, Postsecondary

Career Opportunities

ECU has developed resources to help you learn more about career opportunities and job market outlook. In addition, the websites below provide specific information on careers in the various majors from which students may choose:

NC Tower

This website provides graphs and tables of in-depth information on employment rates, wages and ongoing higher education enrollment of graduates from the North Carolina Community College System and from the University of North Carolina system schools. NC Tower includes data on former UNC students who are working in roughly 90% of all jobs in North Carolina. This database excludes information for graduates who are:

  • Self-employed;
  • Work for the federal government, including the military: or
  • Work outside of North Carolina.

US Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook

This website also provides in-depth information regarding pay, projected new jobs, required education, growth rate and on-the-job training information on various occupations.

Degree-specific internships

For information on internship information for specific majors, go to the home page of the department in which the major is located and, as available, find the link to the information on internships in that major.