What does a School Psychologist do?

School psychologists are on the team of school-based interventionists meant to help children succeed despite learning, emotional or behavioral issues. These highly trained professionals screen students for disabilities, offer counseling and help teachers and families create Independent Education Plans (IEPs). As a school psychologist, you may also refer students to other resources such as counselors, social workers or psychiatric evaluations. School psychologists are needed for all ages' preschool through high school. They commonly work with school social workers, counselors, the principal and teachers.

School psychologists need to have their master's degree in School Psychology after completing a Bachelor's degree in a related field such as Psychology, Sociology or Education. To be a school psychologist, you must also hold state and/or national School Psychologist certification from the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). This certification requires the completion of a master's degree, passing the National School Psychology Exam and 1,200 hours of internship.

What responsibilities are common for School Psychologist jobs?
  • Screen students for potential psychological issues and make recommendations for treatment plans based on this screening
  • Network with teachers and families to create 504 plans and Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) that help ensure success for kids who have disabilities
  • Counsel students and parents while pointing them toward further resources when needed
  • Collaborate with the special education team to design and implement intervention strategies and programs
  • Administer therapy to children with developmental, learning or behavioral delays
  • Work with at-risk youth who are in need of educational intervention to help them achieve success
  • Analyze and treat school children using psychoanalytic and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) techniques
  • Maintain strict confidentiality regarding student health and academic records
What are the typical qualifications for School Psychologist jobs?
  • Active school psychology license from the state of employment
  • Experience working as a school interventionist or psychologist
  • Firm understanding of child and school psychology
  • Commitment to continuing education as a school psychologist throughout your career
  • Excellent communication skills with both children and adults
  • Ability to maintain and organize confidential records
  • Understanding and commitment to following all related laws and standards
  • Organizational, scheduling and planning skills to manage complex schedule, and the schedule of many kids
  • Ph.D. recommended as eventual education goal for school psychologists
Education--
Work/Life Balance
3.5 ★
Salary Range--
Career Opportunity
3.5 ★
Avg. Experience8+ years

School Psychologist Salaries

Average Base Pay

$79,259 /yr
Same as national average
Not including cash compensation
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Not enough salaries reported to show distribution
$52K
Median: $79K
$122K
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Glassdoor Estimated Salary

School Psychologist Career Path

Learn how to become a School Psychologist, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.

Average Years of Experience

0 - 1
18%
2 - 4
15%
5 - 7
3%
8+
64%
Not including years spent in education and/or training
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School Psychologist Insights

Read what School Psychologist professionals have to say about their job experiences and view top companies for this career.
EBS HealthcareEBS Healthcare
School Psychologist
May 27, 2022

“I just started telepractice this year and was not sure I could do it but the training was outstanding and it is in person”

BASSCBASSC
School Psychologist
Feb 19, 2021

“Good and pleasant place to work”

Valley Stream 13 Union Free School DistrictValley Stream 13 Union Free School District
School Psychologist
Feb 7, 2021

“Annual review season is overwhelming”

Gwinnett County Public SchoolsGwinnett County Public Schools
School Psychologist
Jul 19, 2021

“Best place to work and educate children”

KIPP MAKIPP MA
School Psychologist
Jun 20, 2022

“High but manageable caseload: 85+ evaluations per year.”

Santa Barbara Unified School DistrictSanta Barbara Unified School District
School Psychologist
May 11, 2021

“Nice place to work and live.”

Livingston Parish SchoolsLivingston Parish Schools
School Psychologist
Jan 3, 2021

“pay is not competitive”

Fayette County Public SchoolsFayette County Public Schools
School Psychologist
Mar 12, 2022

“Last pay raise before this was 15”

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School Psychologist Interviews

Frequently asked questions about the role and responsibilities of a School Psychologist

The most similar professions to School Psychologist are:
  • Psychologist
  • Clinical Psychologist
  • Professor of of Psychology
  • Dean

Related Careers

Psychologist
$108,172
No skills overlap
Clinical Psychologist
$113,759
No skills overlap
Professor of of Psychology
$163,832
No skills overlap
Dean
$180,563
No skills overlap

School Psychologist jobs