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School Psychology Overview

This program prepares graduates to work as school psychologists in elementary or secondary schools, and in other exempt agencies. School psychologists collaborate with teachers, parents, and school personnel to:

  • Create safe, healthy, and supportive learning environments for all students.
  • Address students’ learning and behavior problems.
  • Improve classroom management strategies or parenting skills.
  • Counter substance abuse.
  • Assess students with learning disabilities and gifted and talented students to help determine the best way to educate them.
  • Improve teaching, learning, and socialization strategies.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of academic programs, prevention programs, behavior management procedures, and other services provided in the school setting.

Students completing the 66-credit general program will be recommended for provisional certification as a school psychologist to the New York State Education Department. Qualified students may pursue the 72-credit Bilingual Extension program.


Career Opportunities

Students with a degree in School Psychology can pursue a career as a: school psychologist in elementary or secondary schools.

Mentorship and Career Development

Faculty are experienced School Psychologists, consultants, Educators, and are available as mentors.

$77,000+ Salary 

The Average Annual Pay 
for School Psychologists nationally is $77,430*

Outside The Classroom

Fieldwork and internship experiences allow graduates to gain field experience and hone their specialties.

What We Offer
The Mercy Advantage

  • No GRE Required
  • Full or Part-Time Enrollment
    • Scheduling is designed to support professionals with multiple responsibilities. 


Frequently Asked Questions

What is the job market for school psychologists?

"The outlook is very promising for school psychology nationwide as we are facing a personnel shortage, as is most of special education. Many people hired in the mid '70s are retiring and our training programs are not graduating enough people to fill all those positions! There will be variability from one area to another, of course, and some states are undergoing some budget problems that might eliminate a few positions for a while, but many opportunities will be open within the next few years. In fact, School Psychology was recently named one of the top ten "hot professions" for 2002 by US News and World Report!" ( Also see a 2009 Article from US news and World Report Stating School Psychology as one of 2009’s hot professions: Best Careers 2009: School Psychologist

What does a School Psychologist do?

"School psychologists work with students in elementary and secondary schools. They collaborate with teachers, parents, and school personnel to create safe, healthy, and supportive learning environments for all students; address students' learning and behavior problems; improve classroom management strategies or parenting skills; counter substance abuse; assess students with learning disabilities and gifted and talented students to help determine the best way to educate them; and improve teaching, learning, and socialization strategies. They also may evaluate the effectiveness of academic programs, prevention programs, behavior management procedures, and other services provided in the school setting." (Occupational Outlook Handbook 2006-2007) For more information on the occupation of school psychologist visit

What can I expect as a starting salary?

It varies. One example; For 2017 the NYC Department of Education Salary for a School Psychologist (for those with a Master’s degree) was $63,722.00 ***. The contract for the position of school psychologist in the NYC school system and most other districts is based on a ten month school year with July and August off. (***Psychologist and Social Workers Salary Schedule)

Program Details & Curriculum


66 credits total, or 72 credits with bilingual extension. Courses are divided into sections:

  • Psychological Foundation (21 credits)
  • Assessment (15 credits)
  • Intervention (15 credits)
  • Professional Practice (15 credits)
  • Bilingual Extension Education (6 credits)

For a full curriculum listing visit our catalog. 


Program Outcomes

By the end of this program, students should be able to: 

  • Demonstrate mastery of major concepts, theories and factual information related to the cognitive, academic, behavioral, social/emotional and adaptive development of school aged children from different backgrounds and cultures 
  • Identify the diverse learning and developmental characteristics of school-aged students and the factors (including biological, psychosocial and cultural) that shape the development of individual abilities and disabilities
  • Demonstrate the skills to assess the cognitive, academic and social/emotional development of school–aged children, develop goals based on assessment outcomes, design and implement multi-tiered evidence based interventions which address those goals and evaluate the effectiveness of the strategies employed
  • Demonstrate the oral and written communication skills to interact effectively with professional colleagues and articulate their understanding of school-aged children’s learning and developmental processes
  • Demonstrate understanding of the ecological relationship between the child and the school culture, and how this “child system” interaction impacts academic and affective development, imparts meaning and context to behavior, and with the support and advocacy of the school psychologist, catalyzes the system to accommodate the diverse needs of individual children and provide equal access to its educational resources
  • Acquire the skills to develop multi tiered, evidenced based intervention strategies which impact the child, classroom, school, district and community
  • Utilize data collection skills to evaluate programs, assess student outcomes and improve school services
  • Demonstrate the ability to critically evaluate relevant literature
  • Identify, support and engage in school psychology practice consistent with prevailing ethical statutes, and in compliance with Federal and State laws and regulations
  • Demonstrate a commitment to lifelong professional development and continuing enhancement of their knowledge base and professional skills

Program Application Requirements

  1. Baccalaureate transcript showing a major in psychology, sociology, behavioral science, or education. In special cases, other majors will be considered. Transcript review of individual course grades will also be conducted.
  2. Interview with the program director and completion of an on-site essay.
  3. Two letters of reference from instructors or appropriate professionals
  4. A current résumé.

Applicants should have completed undergraduate statistics with a grade of B or higher. Undergraduate Psychology majors must also have a grade of at least B in Experimental Psychology.