Plan of Study
The specialist program curriculum incorporates courses in psychological and educational foundations, and the development of skills in assessment, intervention, preventative mental health services, collaborative consultation, and research. Courses are carefully integrated with over 1800 hours of field-based experiences that include first year fieldwork, a practicum, and an internship in order to meet the training objectives of the program. The field experiences represent a central component of the professional training our specialist trainees receive, which allow trainees to apply acquired knowledge and professional skills in field-based settings. The sequence of field experiences is designed for the implementation of the collaborative scientific problem-solver model throughout the training. Field sites provide a key arena where the training core and the scientific method interface to produce a developing knowledge base in school psychology. Given the comprehensive nature of the specialist program and the level of training provided, graduate students are referred to as specialist trainees.
Applicants admitted to the specialist program may later request admission to the doctoral program. If admission to the doctoral program is approved, trainees should anticipate a course of study similar in length to that of the doctoral program. Trainees should anticipate at least two years of doctoral curriculum and completing the the doctoral internship and dissertation.
- PSY 111 Introduction to Psychology
- PSY 231 Research Methods in Psychology
- PSY 340 Statistics for the Social Sciences
- MAT 119 College Algebra
- or MAT 120 Finite Mathematics
- or MAT 144 Precalculus (can be taken as pass/fail, or satisfied by passing a competency examination administered by the Department of Mathematics or by completing an approved correspondence course)
- Mathematics requirement will be waived if trainees received at least a B in a college-level statistics course or at least a score of 144 on the Quantitative Reasoning section of the Graduate Record Examination General Test.
Trainees are also encouraged to complete a child/adolescent development course and a theories of personality course prior to admission in the specialist program. Prerequisite courses, usually taken as an undergraduate student, cannot be taken for graduate credit.
Suggested 3-Year Schedule
All program requirements are at the graduate level and a minimum of 60 credits is required. All courses are for three credit hours unless otherwise noted.
Trainees enroll in PSY 498A05 First Year Fieldwork in School Psychology for four credits: for field work in Head Start and public school placements, practica (PSY 436A04 and 463A05) for a total of 12 credits for both practica (six credits during each semester), and PSY 498A90 Professional Practice in School Psychology (one credit for each of the final two semesters of the program). Specialist trainees are required to complete a nine-month, full-time supervised internship (PSY 498A90) for a minimum of 1200 hours in an approved school setting consistent with the NASP Standards for Graduate Preparation of School Psychologists (2010).
A suggested three-year course sequence follows. The order of course enrollment may vary based on the availability of instructors and course scheduling.
- PSY 402 Applied Research Experience in School Psychology (2 credits) (if not completing PSY 499)
- PSY 421 Advanced Behavior Modification
- PSY 432 Theory and Practice of Cognitive Assessment
- PSY 440 Statistics: Data Analysis and Methodology
- PSY 472 Legal, Ethical, and Professional Issues in School Psychology
- PSY 498A05 First Year Fieldwork in School Psychology (2 credits)
- PSY 402 Applied Research Experience in School Psychology (2 credits) or PSY 499 Mater’s Thesis (1 credit)
- PSY 433 Social Emotional and Behavioral Assessment and Intervention
- PSY 435 Academic Assessment and Intervention
- PSY 474 Theory and Practice of Mental Health Consultation in the Schools
- PSY 498A05 First Year Fieldwork in School Psychology (2 credits)
- PSY 473 Theories and Techniques of Counseling: Children and Adolescents
- PSY 499 Master’s Thesis (1 credit) (if not completing PSY 402)
- PSY 547 Advanced Child Psychopathology
- PSY 436A04 Practicum: Psychoeducational Assessment and Intervention
- PSY 436A05 Practicum: Psychosocial Assessment and Intervention
- PSY 452 Seminar in Developmental Psychology
- PSY 499 Master’s Thesis (1 credit)
- SED 422 Teaching Diverse Learners
- PSY 436A04 Practicum: Psychoeducational Assessment and Intervention
- PSY 436A05 Practicum: Psychosocial Assessment and Intervention
- PSY 463 Brain and Behavior Relationships
- PSY 499 Master’s Thesis (1 credit)
- SED 593A03 Computer Applications in Special Education (1 credit)
- PSY 477 School Prevention and Intervention Services
- PSY 499 Master’s Thesis (1 credit)
- TCH 407 Learning in Educational Settings
FALL and SPRING
- PSY 498A90 Professional Practice in School Psychology (Internship) (1 credit each for fall and spring semesters)
The Graduate Programs in School Psychology have long-standing relationships with Unit 5 (McLean County) and District 87 (Bloomington) public schools and member schools of the Woodford County Special Education District, Tri-County Special Education District, and Livingston County Special Services. School psychology trainees are assigned to elementary schools during their first year of graduate study. Trainees also have an opportunity to work in elementary, junior high, and high schools as fieldwork and practicum settings.
Trainees are assigned to a local Head Start classroom for the first year of graduate study.
The Graduate Programs in School Psychology utilizes Illinois State’s laboratory schools (Thomas Metcalf School and University High School) for training purposes. The laboratory schools enroll children as young as three years of age through grade 12. Trainees have an opportunity to observe effective teaching practices, conduct psychoeducational evaluations, consult with teachers, provide counseling services to students and parents, and develop preventative mental health programs and classroom-based interventions (e.g., social skills training groups for all children at a particular grade level).
The department provides autism services through The Autism Place (TAP), which is funded by grants, donations, and the University. Autism services include parent and teacher consultation, individualized intervention services in both clinic and home settings for children with autism spectrum disorder, social skills groups, and specialized services for early childhood-age children. Trainees are assigned to The Autism Place for two hours per week during their first year. Trainees also receive supervised experiences at The Autism Place during their second-year psychosocial practicum.
Psychological Services Center
The Psychological Services Center (PSC) is operated by the Department of Psychology for training, research, and services. The PSC is located on the fourth floor of Fairchild Hall. This space consists of a suite of rooms including five interviewing and/or testing rooms, a large well-equipped playroom, a conference room with reference materials, and a library of tests and testing equipment. PSC services are available to the public at a lower cost than in the private sector. PSC clients represent a range of educational, social, and emotional problems of children and their families. Services include psychological assessments, individual, family and group therapy, home intervention programs, and consultations with educational, medical, and other agencies involved with children. The PSC services are:
The Academic Intervention Connotation Services (AICS) provides academic assessment and intervention services for students who demonstrate difficulty with basic academic skills such as reading, mathematics, spelling, and writing. AICS also provides consultation services to parents and teachers of students who are struggling academically. Consultations and workshops to schools and school districts on various topics are also available.
Two types of child and adolescent intervention services are offered: clinic-based and classroom-based intervention. Clinic-based intervention involves individual counseling for students with troubling behaviors or concerns. These students are referred for treatment by a parent, school representative, physician, social service agency, or as a result of an evaluation by the PSC. Classroom-based intervention involves addressing a focal concern within a classroom group. Typically, topics covered are social/communication skills with classmates or compliance with teacher directions. Occasionally, there is a tragedy such as a sudden death that impacts a large number of students and is best addressed in a group setting. All classroom-based interventions are delivered either by a school psychology trainee clinician, a teacher together with a PSC graduate clinician, or a teacher in consultation with a PSC graduate clinician.
The Child and Adolescent Assessment Service provides psychological assessment for children and adolescents who are experiencing learning and/or adjustment problems. Also, assessment and parent/school consultation services are provided for children and adolescents gifted with advanced development. Diagnostic assessment/testing determines current functioning levels in the areas of cognitive-intellectual skills, academic achievement, learning processes or how the student learns best, and social-emotional adjustment. Assessment results are interpreted to the parents and to the student, if age-appropriate, at a private conference with the psychology trainee clinician and his or her faculty supervisor.
The College Learning Assessment Service offers standardized testing for college students with a history of learning disabilities and students who have concerns about have learning disabilities. The value of testing is that results often clarify for students exactly what, if any, diagnosable learning disabilities they might have. Plans can then be made to adjust the student’s learning techniques and, if indicated, to seek assistance in the learning process.
The Multidisciplinary Psychoeducational Assessment Service (MPAS) provides diagnostic psychoeducational assessments for children and adolescents who are exhibiting more than one functional area of concern. For example, a student may have any combination of difficulties in learning, motor, speech, hearing and/or other areas. Performance in one area is often affected by difficulties in another. Therefore, completing a comprehensive evaluation can be most helpful in gaining an integrated understanding of how multiple variables may be impacting a student’s performance. Treatment plans and goals can then be specially tailored.
The MPAS is a consortium of disciplines that individually assess clients and shares information. Typically, a psychoeducational assessment e is a part of all comprehensive evaluations. In addition, certain other disciplines such as Special Education, Speech, Audiology, Nursing, and/or Social Work will also conduct specialized evaluations, as indicated according to the combination of concerns a student exhibits.
Specialist Program trainees must complete either PSY 402 Applied Research Experience in School Psychology or a master’s thesis in order to satisfy graduation requirements for a master’s degree. Trainees must complete all of the degree requirements, including the thesis, in six years beginning with the first semester of enrollment. Trainees should review the Applied Research Experience or Master’s Thesis section of the Specialist Program’s Policies and Procedures for more information about completing these degree options. The Specialist Program’s Policies and Procedures are available on the Specialist Forms & Agreements website.
If the thesis option is selected, trainees are responsible for reviewing and complying with the department’s Thesis Procedures, which are explained below. Trainees should also review the Thesis section in the Graduate Catalog and the Graduate School’s Student Support (Thesis Assistance) website for additional information about the University’s thesis policies, continuous enrollment, graduation deadlines, etc. A thesis:
- Should have a theoretical framework as its conceptual base
- May represent a test or prediction derived from a theory, or an extension of an existing group of studies
- May replicate an existing study, provided it attempts to repeat the study with some meaningful variation
- May be reports of surveys related to themes of professional interest (see American Psychologist)
- May have as a goal the development or improvement of instrumentation (see Behavior Research Methods)
- May be ethological or statistical in nature, originating a new design, improving an existing design, or reapplying a quantitative statistical technique (see Journal of Mathematical Psychology and Educational and Psychological Measurement)
- May be theoretical in nature providing an exposition of constructs, assumptions, interactions among constructs, translation into empirical variables, or illustrations of applications (see Psychological Bulletin and Psychological Review)
- Must investigate a real problem (i.e., if the answer is obvious based on existing literature, the thesis poses a non-problem). However, research may be conducted to solve a practical problem, provided the solution can be generalized.
A thesis should be written in the professional style of a journal article, except for the rare thesis that is non-empirical in nature. The thesis chapters are usually identified as: Introduction, Method, Results, and Discussion. Trainees are required to comply with the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th edition 2010 and with the University’s thesis policies, which are available on the Graduate School’s Student Support (Thesis Assistance) website.
The Graduate School’s thesis policies covers the administrative aspects and appearance of a thesis. The APA’s Publication Manual governs the professional format and style of a thesis. There are subtle differences between the Graduate School’s thesis policies and the department’s Thesis Procedures. Trainees are expected to comply with the department’s Thesis Procedures to successfully complete their theses. Trainees must also follow the standards of the APA’s Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct when conducting research.
Trainees are encouraged to review the Dates and Deadlines on the Graduate School’s Graduation and Commencement website for specific deadlines related thesis procedures including the last day for: submitting a Proposal Approval Form, submitting a Right to Defend request, and for a thesis defense. If these deadlines are not met, graduation will be postponed until the following semester.
During the first semester of graduate study, trainees should review the Faculty Research Interests website as a resource for potential research topics. Trainees should talk to faculty members who are knowledgeable or who are willing to become familiar in the area in which trainees would like to complete their thesis research. Trainees need to solicit faculty members to serve as the thesis committee chair and on the thesis committee.
By the middle of the second semester of their first year, trainees should solicit one faculty member to serve as the thesis committee chair. Graduate School thesis policies require the committee chair be a full member of the Graduate Faculty. An associate member of the Graduate Faculty may serve as a committee co-chair, along with a full member of the Graduate Faculty.
When a faculty member agrees to serve as a committee chair (or two faculty members as co-chairs), trainees must complete the DEPARTMENT APPROVAL OF THESIS COMMITTEE CHAIR form. The Committee Chair form also includes an override request for PSY 499 Master’s Thesis. The Committee Chair form should be signed by the trainee, committee chair, and the program graduate coordinator. The signed Committee Chair form should be submitted to the Graduate Programs Office. Trainees cannot register for PSY 499 until the signed Committee Chair form has been received by the Graduate Programs Office and the override request has been processed. Trainees will be notified by the Graduate Programs Office when they can register for PSY 499.
In consultation with their thesis committee chair, trainees should solicit a second faculty member for the committee. After the second faculty member agrees to serve on the committee, trainees must complete the DEPARTMENT APPROVAL OF THESIS COMMITTEE form. The Committee form should be signed by the trainee, committee chair, and faculty member. The signed Committee form must be submitted to the Graduate Programs Office for approval by the department chair. If there are committee co-chairs, trainees and their co-chairs may decide not to solicit another faculty member for the thesis committee, provided both co-chairs are full member’s of the Graduate Faculty. Graduate School thesis policies require the majority of the thesis committee (i.e., chair and members) to be full members of the Graduate Faculty. If one co-chair is an associate member of the Graduate Faculty, another faculty member, who is a full member of the Graduate Faculty, must be solicited for the thesis committee.
If a committee member is unable to complete his or her service or is willing to yield his or her position on the committee, trainees should consult with their thesis committee chair about soliciting a new faculty member for the committee. Trainees must complete the CHANGE OF THESIS COMMITTEE and/or TOPIC form. The Change form should be signed by the trainee, committee chair(s), current committee member, and new faculty member. The signed Change form must be submitted to the Graduate Programs Office for approval by the department chair. Trainees will be notified if the faculty member has been approved as the new thesis committee member. If the thesis has been proposed and approved by the thesis committee, trainees must also complete the Graduate School’s COMMITTEE CHANGE FORM, which is available on the Graduate School’s Student Support (Forms) website.
Trainees must write a proposal that will be evaluated by their thesis committee. Trainees should discuss the contents of the proposal with their committee chair. The committee chair determines how much guidance will be provided to trainees in the development of the hypothesis, research project, and proposal. There should be a clear understanding between trainees and their committee chair of what is expected from each party.
The proposal should include a brief synopsis of the thesis topic and hypothesis, and the details of the research project. A thesis usually involves data collection; however, other data-based approaches are acceptable (e.g., meta-analyses, archival data sets, etc.). The proposal should address the use of human participants or animals in the research, if applicable. The proposal should also identify any ethical issues with the use of human participants or animals. Trainees should be diligent in the completeness of their thesis topic and research project. The committee chair should approve a draft of the proposal before it is submitted to the thesis committee.
Trainees should review the information on the department’s Tools and Links for Researchers website in preparation for their thesis research. Before conducting any research involving human participants, the trainee’s research project must be approved by Illinois State’s Institutional Review Board (IRB). The proposal must include, in its method section, a detailed explanation of how the ethical issues will be addressed (e.g., possible risks to human participants, how such risks will be minimized, confidentiality procedures, informed consent, debriefing procedures, etc.). Trainees must also comply with the department’s Ethical Guidelines and Procedures for Research Using Human Participants. If trainees anticipate using human participants from external sources (outside the University), the proposal must include a statement of the ethical procedures of the external source, and how the research project will conform to those requirements. The department recommends trainees obtain a signed agreement or memorandum of understanding, from the external source, that identifies the specific data trainees have permission to collect and use for their research project.
Before conducting any research involving the use of animals, the trainee’s research project must be approved by Illinois State’s Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC). The proposal must include, in its method section, a detailed explanation of how the ethical requirements for the care and use of animals will comply with the IACUC procedures.
Trainees must propose their thesis in a public forum. Before presenting a proposal, trainees must determine if the proposal contains any copyrighted material. Trainees should review and complete page 2 of the Graduate School’s PROPOSAL APPROVAL FORM, which is available on the Graduate School’s Student Support (Forms) website. If any box under section (5) Copyright Checklist is checked for copyrighted material, trainees must consult with the Copyright Officer (currently Sarah Dick) and obtain the Copyright Officer’s signature on the Proposal Approval Form.
After consulting with the committee chair about proposing the thesis, trainees must contact the Graduate Programs Office to request a reader. The reader, who is a psychology faculty member, is appointed by the department. The reader represents the department and ensures that trainees and their thesis committees comply with the department’s procedures and the University’s requirements. The Graduate Programs Office will notify trainees when a reader has been assigned.
The proposal must be presented at a time that is mutually agreeable to the trainee, thesis committee, and reader. The proposal must be presented between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, while classes are in session (i.e., excluding University holidays, final exams week, or semester breaks). When an acceptable time has been determined, trainees should contact the Graduate Programs Office to reserve a room. The Graduate Programs Office will notify the trainee when a room has been reserved.
When the proposal date has been determined, trainees must complete the information on page 3 of the Proposal Approval Form. Only the thesis committee should be identified on the Proposal Approval Form, along with their department/school and Graduate Faculty status. Trainees should contact the Graduate Programs Office at firstname.lastname@example.org to determine the Graduate Faculty status of the thesis committee. The reader is not identified on the Proposal Approval Form. If the thesis committee does not satisfy the Graduate School’s thesis committee requirements (described on page 1 of the Proposal Approval Form), the exception section on page 3, under section (6) Graduate Committee Information, must be completed. A brief rationale must be provided for the exception. If a committee member is not an Illinois State faculty member, trainees must also include the committee member’s curriculum vitae, with the Proposal Approval Form, to satisfy the exception requirement.
At least one week before the scheduled proposal date, trainees must submit, by 12:00 p.m. (Noon), the Proposal Approval Form and a printed copy of their proposal to the Graduate Programs Office. Trainees must also provide a copy of the proposal to the thesis committee and reader; the copy may be printed or sent electronically, depending on the preferences of the committee members or reader. The Graduate Programs Office will announce the scheduled proposal on the department’s graduate student and faculty email listserv, and will post the information on the University Events website and on the bulletin board across from the department’s office.
The department encourages psychology graduate students to attend thesis proposals in order to observe the process. The proposal is also open to the University academic community. Trainees should consult with their thesis committee chair if trainees would like to invite non-academic parties (i.e., family and friends) to the proposal. Individuals observing the proposal may ask the trainee questions and provide comments about the presentation. However, participation by such individuals should not monopolize the presentation. Since the proposal is a formal evaluation of the trainee, the thesis committee chair has the discretion of whether or not to recognize individuals for questions or comments during the presentation. The department prohibits any refreshments at a thesis proposal.
At the proposal, trainees should discuss their thesis and any relevant literature, and explain their research project. When the presentation has ended and there are no more questions, everyone should leave the room except for the thesis committee, reader, and any other psychology faculty members. The committee will discuss the proposal. Psychology faculty who have an opinion about the proposal are encouraged to present their remarks for consideration by the thesis committee. The decision to approve or withhold approval of the thesis proposal is the responsibility of the thesis committee. The committee must reach a consensus about the status of the proposal. When a consensus is reached, the trainee will be asked to return to the room and will be informed of the committee’s decision.
If the proposal is approved, the thesis committee and the trainee should sign the Proposal Approval Form. If the committee determines that changes are required in the thesis, the committee should discuss the changes with the trainee. The committee chair should give the trainee a written list of the required changes. Trainees are responsible for incorporating the changes in the thesis and must provide the thesis committee and reader with an updated proposal. When the thesis committee is satisfied with the revised thesis proposal, the thesis committee and trainee should sign the Proposal Approval Form. The trainee must submit the signed Proposal Approval Form to the Graduate Programs Office, for approval by the department chair.
The Graduate School must also approve the Proposal Approval Form. The Graduate Programs Office will submit the signed Proposal Approval Form to the Graduate School. The Graduate School will send trainees the approved Proposal Approval Form by email. The approved Proposal Approval Form should be retained by the trainee; the information on the Proposal Approval Form will be required by the Graduate School when the trainee is ready to defend the thesis.
If the thesis committee does not approve the proposal, trainees have two options:
- Trainees may choose, with the agreement of their committee, to rewrite the proposal. The thesis committee and trainee should discuss the problems with the current proposal. The second proposal must address and correct the identified problems. Trainees must schedule a second proposal presentation. This option requires trainees retain the same thesis committee.
- Trainees may chose to develop a new thesis topic. If this option is selected, trainees may retain their thesis committee, if the committee members agree to stay with the thesis committee, or solicit other faculty members for a new committee. The department’s thesis procedures must be repeated, including the forms for a new committee, if applicable, and proposal presentation.
Establishing a ProQuest Account
The University uses a national electronic database, ProQuest, for submission of all theses. The department recommends trainees establish a ProQuest account after their proposal has been approved. Trainees can access the ProQuest website on the Graduate School’s Student Support Thesis Assistance (Plan Your Defense) website. The approved proposal should be uploaded to ProQuest. If the ProQuest account is not established after the thesis proposal is approved, it must be established before trainees submit the Right to Defend form to the Graduate School.
Continuous Enrollment in PSY 499
Trainees should review Continuous Registration requirements in the Thesis section of the Graduate Catalog. After the proposal is approved and all degree coursework has been completed, trainees must enroll for at least one credit of PSY 499 every fall and spring semester until the thesis is successfully defended. Registration for PSY 499 in the summer is required only when a trainee expects to defend the thesis and complete the degree by the end of the summer semester. Trainees should contact the Graduate Programs Office at email@example.com to request an override for PSY 499.
Conducting Thesis Research
After the proposal is approved, trainees should begin conducting their thesis research. While it is appropriate to consult with faculty members, trainees are expected to conceptually understand the statistics and data analysis that is presented in the thesis. Any significant changes to the research project, after the proposal has been approved, may require additional IRB or IACUC review and approval, if applicable. Trainees should consult with their thesis committee chair before making any changes to their approved proposal or research project.
Trainees must defend their thesis in a public forum. Before scheduling a defense, trainees must have a current thesis uploaded in ProQuest. Although the thesis does not have to be fully formatted, it should contain all of the required thesis chapters. The thesis must comply with the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association and the Graduate School’s thesis policies, which are available on the Graduate School’s Student Support (Thesis Assistance) website. Trainees must complete and submit the RIGHT TO DEFEND FORM, which is available on the Graduate School’s Student Support (Forms) website. The completed Defend Form should be submitted to the Graduate School. The Graduate School will review the thesis in ProQuest. If the thesis is acceptable, the Graduate School will notify trainees by email that they may schedule their thesis defense. If the Graduate Programs Office is not copied on this email, trainees must forward the Graduate School’s email to the Graduate Programs Office. The Right to Defend email must be on file in the Graduate Programs Office before trainees can schedule their thesis defense.
The thesis should be defended at a time that is mutually agreeable to the trainee, thesis committee, and reader. The thesis must be defended between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, while classes are in session (i.e., excluding University holidays, final exams week, or semester breaks). When an acceptable time has been determined, trainees should contact the Graduate Programs Office to reserve a room. The Graduate Programs Office will notify the trainee when a room has been reserved.
At least one week before the scheduled defense, trainees must submit to the Graduate Programs Office by 12:00 p.m. (Noon) a printed copy of the thesis. Trainees must also provide a copy of the thesis to their thesis committee and reader; the copy may be printed or sent electronically, depending on the preferences of the committee members and reader. The Graduate Programs Office will announce the scheduled defense to the department’s graduate students and faculty members. The thesis defense will also be posted on the University Events website and on the bulletin board across from the department’s office. Trainees must also complete the Graduate School’s OUTCOME OF DEFENSE FORM, which is available on the Graduate School’s Stident Support (Forms) website. Trainees should take the Outcome of Defense Form to their thesis defense.
The department encourages psychology graduate students to attend a thesis defense in order to observe the process. The defense is also open to the University academic community. Trainees should consult with their thesis committee chair if trainees would like to invite non-academic parties (i.e., family and friends) to their defense. Individuals observing the defense may ask the trainee questions and provide comments about the presentation. However, participation by such individuals should not monopolize the presentation. Since the defense is a formal evaluation of the trainee, the thesis committee chair has the discretion of whether or not to recognize individuals for questions or comments during the presentation. The department prohibits any refreshments at a thesis defense.
At the defense, trainees should discuss the importance of the thesis topic, their research and the methods employed, analysis of the data, and their conclusion. When the defense has ended and there are no more questions, everyone should leave the room except for the thesis committee, reader, and any other psychology faculty members. The committee will discuss the quality of the thesis and defense, taking into account the consistency between the thesis proposal and defense, and the incorporation of required changes identified at the thesis proposal, if applicable. Psychology faculty who have an opinion about the thesis are encouraged to present their remarks for consideration by the thesis committee. The decision to approve or withhold approval of the thesis defense is the responsibility of the committee. The committee must reach a consensus about the status of the defense. When a consensus has been reached, the trainee will be asked to return to the room and will be informed of the committee’s decision.
The thesis committee can reach one of three decisions about the thesis: approved, a provisional approval with required changes, or not approved. If the committee approves the thesis, the committee members should sign the Outcome of Defense Form. If the decision is a provisional approval, the committee should discuss the changes required in the thesis with the trainee. The committee chair should provide the trainee with a written list of the required changes. Trainees are responsible for incorporating the changes before the thesis committee will approve the thesis. After the changes have been made and the thesis is approved, the thesis committee should sign the Outcome of Defense Form. Trainees must submit a copy of the signed Outcome of Defense Form to the Graduate Programs Office. If the thesis is not approved, the trainee should discuss any viable options with the thesis committee.
Trainees must upload the approved thesis to ProQuest. Trainees must also complete the FINAL DEPOSIT CHECKLIST, which is available on the Graduate School’s Student Support (Forms) website. Trainees must submit the signed Outcome of Defense Form and the Final Deposit Checklist, and any copyright permissions, if applicable, to the Graduate School. The Graduate School will examine the thesis in ProQuest to determine if the thesis complies with the University’s thesis policies. If the Graduate School notifies trainees of required changes, those changes must be made and the revised thesis must be uploaded to ProQuest before the University will accept the thesis as meeting degree requirements for graduation. If the required changes are not completed before the thesis final deposit filing deadline, graduation will be postponed until the following semester.
Publication of Data
If the thesis is published or if a paper is presented at a professional convention, authorship should follow the provisions of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. An agreement between trainees and their thesis committee should govern whether committee members are identified as co-authors.
Forms and Agreements
The links below are forms and agreements for the specialist program. The department forms are interactive Microsoft Word documents or Qualtrics. Click on the link to download or access the form. Microsoft Word forms should be completed on a computer. The spaces on the form will expand as needed. If the form does not download or cannot be completed on a computer, contact the Graduate Programs Office by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Items identified as Qualtrics are either online forms or are provided to the evaluator by the graduate coordinator Dr. Mark Swerdlik.
Illinois School Psychology Internship Manual (2014; Illinois Directors of University School Psychology Programs)
NASP Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity Policy (February 2012)
- PSY 436A04 Psychoeducational Practicum Problem Solving/RtI School Placement Agreement (sample agreement; due September 1)
- PSY 498A05 First Year Fieldwork/Practicum Head Start Placement Agreement (sample agreement, due September 1)
- PSY 498A05 First Year Fieldwork/Practicum Public School Placement Agreement (sample agreement, due September 1)
- PSY 498A05 First Year Fieldwork/Practicum TAP Placement Agreement (sample agreement, due September 1)
- Specialist Internship Agreement (sample agreement, due September 1)
- Course Exemption Request
- Critical Skill Development Plan (review PDF)
- [Discussion of Employment
- First Year Trainee Mid-Year Evaluation by Faculty (review PDF)
- Graduate Assistant Performance Evaluation (review PDF)
- Mid-Year Feedback Conference Summary (review PDF)
- Program Log (Excel spreadsheet for fieldwork, practica, and internship)
- PSY 402 Applied Research Experiences in School Psychology (due September 1)
- PSY 498A05 Classroom Observation Guide
- PSY 498A05 First Year Fieldwork/Practicum Weekly Reflection Log
- PSY 498A05 Head Start Site Supervisor Evaluation (review PDF)
- School Psychology Program Practicum Evaluation (for PSY 498A05, 436A04, 436A05) (review PDF)
- Site/Intern Supervisor Feedback (Available at a later date)
- Specialist Internship Descriptions of Required Case Studies with Scoring Rubrics (review PDF)
- Specialist Internship Plan and Evaluation (due December 1 and May 1)
- Specialist Trainee Annual Progress Report (due April 15)
- Specialist Trainee Internship Site Evaluation (due May 1)