Educational Psychology - School Psychology Track
The School Psychology Track of the Educational Psychology Ph.D. program at Texas Tech University prepares students for evidence-based practice, defined as the "conscientious, explicit, and judicious use of the best available research evidence to inform each stage of clinical decision making and service delivery" (Canadian Psychological Association Task Force, 2012, p. 7) and to critically evaluate and investigate these practices to not only ensure effective outcomes for their clients but to also disseminate meaningful contributions to the field. Because the Track's goal is to produce research which meaningfully benefits children, families, schools, teachers, and communities and that is ultimately viewed as credible by clinicians, students are mentored in the field to simultaneously engage in the provision of psychological services in educational settings and evaluate each stage of service delivery. This is accomplished through community and school-based experiences that accompany coursework at each year of study. These experiences are carefully and uniquely guided by university supported clinical staff, school-based and community-based practitioners/supervisors, and researchers who facilitate partnerships across area schools, especially those in rural communities without access to school psychological services.
The 92-hour doctoral degree requires four years of coursework and dissertation with a fifth year of internship.
Ph.D., offered as a face-to-face program, with coursework offered on weekends; in intensive, one-week summer sessions; and online to accommodate working educational professionals. Individuals with master's degrees in psychology, including the M.Ed. in Educational Psychology, who may wish to complete coursework to be eligible for licensure or certification as a school psychologist but are not interested in the Ph.D. should consider the 15-hour School Psychology Certificate.
What Is A School Psychologist?
According to the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP), "School psychologists help children and youth succeed academically, socially, behaviorally, and emotionally. They collaborate with educators, parents, and other professionals to create safe, healthy, and supportive learning environments that strengthen connections between home, school, and the community for all students."
Career Opportunities With This Degree
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of psychologists is expected to grow 22 percent from 2010 to 2020, faster than the average for all occupations, and job prospects should be best for those with a specialist or doctoral degree in school psychology. In fact, severe personnel shortages in school psychology practitioner and faculty positions have been identified nationwide.
How Do I Become A School Psychologist?
The Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists (TSBEP) licenses school psychologists in the State of Texas as Licensed Specialists in School Psychology (LSSP). The LSSP can be obtained with a graduate degree in psychology with the completion of at least 60 hours that include a practicum and internship. Information on licensing and credentialing requirements in other states can be found at NASP's website. Graduates of the School Psychology Track Ph.D. are also eligible to apply to NASP for the National Certified School Psychologist (NCSP) credential.
The Small and Rural Schools Network, through a grant from the Texas Education Agency, is continuing to make funding available for current school staff members to further their education to become a LSSP. Applicants that currently work in a small or rural LEA, and will pledge to continue working in one after becoming licensed, could receive reimbursement for tuition, books, and other costs associated with graduate school enrollment. Applications for students will be accepted by the Network April 1-19, 2021 and June 1-18, 2021. Applicants for tuition assistance must have already been admitted to a school psychology training program. Employees of eligible LEAs can be found here. Many LEAs list employment opportunities on their websites or through their regional education service center websites (ex: ESC 17). If you have additional questions, please contact Tammy Utter or Jam Page.
College Transcripts – Unofficial transcripts can be uploaded to the Graduate School application. Information on submitting official transcripts will be provided to you by the Graduate School. Grade reports or unofficial transcripts from university web portals will not be accepted. Please redact the Social Security Number anywhere it appears on your transcript. If documents are written in a language other than English, a copy of a complete and official English translation must be provided with the original language records.
Required Supplemental Application Materials
GRE Scores, Resume/CV, Three Professional Recommendations, Academic Writing Sample, Response to Applicant Statement Prompt. Download a comprehensive list of requirements.
Please visit the Graduate Application Process for more information on how to apply.
This program requires official GRE scores. Scores must no more than 5 years old at the time of application. Official GRE scores must be sent from Educational Testing Services (ETS) to the Texas Tech Graduate School. To register for the examination please visit the GRE Testing website. Texas Tech University's code is 6827.
- Due to the ongoing situation surrounding COVID-19, the Graduate School has temporarily changed its admission requirements regarding test scores. The GRE may optionally be submitted by applicants for the 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 academic years. International applicants may use certain alternate exams in place of the TOEFL. Please visit the Graduate Admissions COVID-19 FAQ page for more information.
Semester In Which The Program Can Be Started
Full admission to a Track cohort is awarded each fall and in some summer semesters. Students may begin in other semesters; however, certain courses may not be taken out of sequence, which may delay practicum enrollment.
Estimated Hours To Completion
92 credit hours: 78 hours of coursework, 12 hours of dissertation, and 2 hours of internship.
Allowable Transfer Hours
A maximum of 30 hours of coursework completed within the last 7 years with a grade of B or better. Coursework older than 7 years may be considered for students who have consistently maintained state licensure or national certification requiring formal continuing education.
To be considered for scholarships, assistantships, and fellowships, students should submit their applications on or before December 1.
Tuition & Fees
Use the Student Business Services Tuition Estimator to estimate your costs.
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- Delivery: Face-to-Face, with many classes offered online and on weekends
- Hours to Completion: 92
- Fall 2022 applications open in August/September 2021
- Maximum Transfer Hours: 30