Department of Psychology at Illinois State University


Graduate Programs in School Psychology

Welcome to the Graduate Programs in School Psychology at Illinois State University! We are very proud of our doctoral and specialist programs and our long history of educating school psychologists dating back to the 1950s. Our Graduate Programs were the first in Illinois to receive approval from the State Teacher Certification Board. We have over 600 alumni working throughout the United States.

Our Graduate Programs have all of the available accreditations and approvals suggested for higher quality training, comprehensive curricular content, and properly supervised field experiences. The doctoral program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of the American Psychological Association (750 First Street, NW, Washington, DC 20002-4242, 202/336-5979), and approved by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). Our specialist program is approved by NCATE and NASP. The doctoral and specialist programs are also approved by the Illinois State Board of Education.

American Psychological Association

National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education

National Association of School Psychologists

Illinois State Board of Education

School psychologists are identified as the best social services job by U.S. News and World Report (2012). According to U.S. News:

In the coming years, classrooms will swell and educate more students who have special needs, learning disabilities, and behavioral issues. Schools tending to their needs will increase demand for school psychologists. The Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS) expects employment growth of nearly 22 percent in the occupation by 2020. Best Social Services Jobs

May Graduation

Friday, May 9, 2014 at 7:00 p.m.
Redbird Arena

Advance Registration

Registration for summer 2014 will close on Monday, May 12.
summer 2014 psychology courses

Registration for fall 2014 will close on Friday, May 2.
fall 2014 psychology courses

Graduation Deadlines

If you are planning on graduating at the end of the spring or summer semester, be sure you satisfy all of the Graduate School's deadlines for filing a graduation application, thesis or dissertation right to defend deposit, and thesis or dissertation oral defense date. See the Graduate School's list of Deadlines.

Important Deadlines for May Graduation:
January 15, 2014 — Degree Audit
January 15, 2014 — Application for Completion of Degree
January 22, 2014 — Proposal Approval Form
March 17, 2014 — Dissertation Right to Defend
April 3, 2014 — Last day to defend dissertation
April 4, 2014 — Deposit dissertation in ProQuest (by 2:00 p.m.)
April 14, 2014 — Thesis Right to Defend
May 1, 2014 — Last day to defend thesis
May 2, 2014 — Deposit thesis in ProQuest (by 2:00 p.m.)

Find a Classmate

The Graduate Programs in School Psychology maintains a database of its alumni dating back to the 1960s. If you are interested in finding a classmate, contact Dr. Mark Swerdlik by email. If you are changing jobs or your home address, notify Dr. Swerdlik so we can update our alumni records.

Doctoral Program Data

The Doctoral Program Data is made available in compliance with the American Psychological Association disclosure policy IR C-20. Updated information is provided by October 1 of each year, if not sooner.


Ms. Brea Banks and Ms. Lynda Hernandez-Dempsey, both doctoral candidates, are the recipients of the University Club Scholarship Award ( 2013).

Ms. Christine LeFever, a doctoral candidate, is the recipient of the Ora Bretall Scholarship (2013), which is awarded for "dissertations that deal significantly with issues in educational theory."

Brea Banks, Emily Gnaedinger, and Thomas Mulderink, all doctoral candidates, received the Graduate School's Dissertation Award (2014-16).

Useful Links

Are you trying to decide what type of degree you might need for your career options? You may want to read "A Career in School Psychology: Selecting a Master's, Specialist, or Doctoral Degree Program that Meets Your Needs"(PDF) by the National Association of School Psychologist.