School Psychology - Frequently Asked Questions
For more information, please contact Dr. Tammy Gilligan, Program Director
What makes a strong applicant to your program?
Successful applicants have some prior experiences with children and schools/community groups and embrace a commitment to serving all children and adolescents. Strong applicants are academically prepared and show an eagerness and openness to new learning and personal growth. Take a look at a recent program newsletter to see how our students shine!
Do I need a specific GPA and/or GRE score to apply?
While the program does not use a pre-determined cut-off score for GPAs or GREs, successful applicants have demonstrated their academic potential in prior coursework. All components of the application are considered in the review process, not just GPA or GRE score.
I am not a psychology major. Can I still apply?
Yes, applicants with other closely related majors can still apply. All applicants should have 18 hours of related coursework (e.g., statistics and measurement, child development, psychopathology, family systems, education.) Discuss your specific situation with the Program Director.
I already have a Master’s degree. Can I apply directly into the Ed.S portion of the program?
Applicants with a Master’s degree in School Psychology, may be able to apply to the Ed.S portion of the program depending on specific courses already taken but should consult first with the Program Director. Applicants with Master’s Degrees in other areas, should apply to the MA portion of the program.
Is the on-campus interview required for all applicants?
All applications submitted by February 1 will be reviewed by our admissions committee. Invitations to our day-long on-campus interview will be extended to those selected applicants who appear to be an appropriate match for our program. The interview is required and an important piece of the review process. The invited applicant is given a choice between two dates for the interview.
What should I expect during the on-campus interview?
This is a day-long event where applicants will interact with current graduate students and the core school psychology faculty. You will have two group interviews, one with graduate students and one with two faculty members. You will participate in a guided tour of campus and our training clinic and lunch with graduate students. You will be asked to complete a writing sample in the afternoon and will have an individual interview with one faculty member. You will have multiple opportunities to ask questions throughout the day and to learn more about the program.
Are funding and Graduate Assistantships available for students?
Yes, many if not all of our graduate students have Graduate Assistantships or Teaching Assistantships (GAs and TAs). These positions require 20 hours of work per week and are located in various departments and divisions around campus. GA positions offer tuition reimbursement each semester and a stipend. Meet our current graduate students to learn about specific GA/TA positions they hold.
What makes the JMU School Psychology program unique?
There are many unique attributes of our program! Our Culturally Competent Practitioner Initiative , carefully sequenced practicum opportunities in local schools, emphasis on counseling and interventions, research opportunities, and accessible faculty all contribute to our unique learning community! Listen to student testimonials about the program!
Will I get hands-on experiences immediately?
Yes, students begin introductory practicum experiences including shadowing a school psychologist and classroom observations during the first semester of the program. The first summer includes a practicum at our campus clinic. Second year students are in engaged in practicum experiences one day per week in local school divisions. The third year of training includes a 1200 hour internship in a school division.
Are your graduates successful? Do they find jobs?
Graduates of our program are highly sought after by school divisions around the country. The program has had a 100% pass rate for the PRAXIS examination required for the NCSP for at least 10 years.