2022-2023 Cal Poly Humboldt Catalog 
    Oct 04, 2022  
2022-2023 Cal Poly Humboldt Catalog

School Psychology, M.A.

Master’s degree in School Psychology and a California Credential authorizing service as a school psychologist. At program completion, students are recommended to the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing for a Pupil Personnel Services Credential with an authorization to practice as a school psychologist. Students are eligible to sit for the national licensing exam to become a Nationally Certified School Psychologist (NCSP).

Program Coordinator
Francis De Matteo, Ed. D., NCSP

Graduates of this program enter careers as school psychologists in California public schools and assume positions as educational leaders in the area of pupil personnel services. Sequenced coursework and integrated field experience in school and community settings are integral aspects of the program. In addition to all course and fieldwork requirements, each candidate for the M.A. degree in school psychology is required to complete a comprehensive portfolio containing examples of work in all of the California domains of professional practice. 

Program Admission


Courses in: general psychology, research methods, developmental psychology, introductory statistics, personality theory or abnormal psychology, and psychological tests and measurement.

Program Admission Requirements

All students apply to the university through Cal State Apply. To be considered for admission to the program, applicants must:

  • submit three letters of recommendation demonstrating academic and professional potential. At least one from faculty, the others can come from employers or professionals.
  • submit a resume, a statement of intent and a prerequisite verification form

A CBEST Exam Verification must be completed by the end of the first semester.

Culminating Experience

Each candidate for the M.A. degree in School Psychology is required to complete a non-thesis Portfolio Project and a Comprehensive Exam for their culminating experience. The Portfolio Project is the presentation of candidates’ education, training, and development as a specialist level professional school psychologist that includes sections for describing and documenting education and training, as well as examples of work products, reflection papers, and evaluations of all aspects of training as a professional school psychologist. Portfolio submissions must demonstrate abilities that exemplify the goals for training established by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing Standards of Program Quality and Effectiveness (CTCC, 2020) and the Professional Standards of the National Association of School Psychologists Standards (NASP, 2020).

Candidates’ Portfolio Products are reviewed by their Portfolio Committee members and a public oral defense of their products serves as the Comprehensive Exam. Students must earn a minimum of 80% (Emerging Competence) in their comprehensive exam to be recommended to the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing for a Pupil Personnel Services Credential with an authorization to practice as a school psychologist.

Sample Schedule

Fifth Semester - Internship

Sixth Semester - Internship

Programs Leading to Licensure and Credentialing

Admission into programs leading to licensure and credentialing does not guarantee that students will obtain a license or credential. Licensure and credentialing requirements are set by agencies that are not controlled by or affiliated with the CSU and requirements can change at any time. For example, licensure or credentialing requirements can include evidence of the right to work in the United States (e.g., social security number or taxpayer identification number) or successfully passing a criminal background check. Students are responsible for determining whether they can meet licensure or credentialing requirements. The CSU will not refund tuition, fees or any associated costs to students who determine subsequent to admission that they cannot meet licensure or credentialing requirements. Information concerning licensure and credentialing requirements are available from the Office of Academic Affairs, Siemens Hall 216, 707-826-3722.

The California State University has not determined whether its programs meet other states’ educational or professional requirements for licensure and certification. Students enrolled in a California State University program who are planning to pursue licensure or certification in other states are responsible for determining whether they will meet their state’s requirements for licensure or certification. This disclosure is made pursuant to 34 CFR §668.43(a)(5)(v)(C).

Program Learning Outcomes

Students who complete this program will demonstrate:

  1. the ability to use knowledge of human development to assist parents and school personnel to understand typical and atypical development, the biology of normal human development as well as developmental psychopathology, and strategies for maximizing children’s learning and development.
  2. appropriate knowledge of historical, political and educational laws, policies, and procedures that affect public education.
  3. appropriate knowledge of legal, ethical, and professional policies, and practices.
  4. the ability to collect, analyze, interpret, and integrate multiple sources of information regarding the cognitive and scholastic development of pupils in order to assist parents and school personnel to make informed educational decisions regarding instructional needs.
  5. the ability to collect, analyze and interpret multiple sources of information regarding the social, emotional and behavioral development of pupils in order to assist parents and school personnel to make informed decisions regarding behavioral needs.
  6. the ability to use both problem-solving (client-centered) and process-focused (consultee-centered) models of consultation.
  7. knowledge about the full range of school-based mental health programs - from preventative “wellness” programs, to school-based counseling and behavioral intervention, to crisis assessment and effective intervention.
  8. the sensitivity and skills needed to work with individuals of diverse backgrounds and developmental abilities, and to implement strategies selected or adapted based on individual characteristics, strengths, and needs.
  9. the knowledge and ability to provide support and assistance for family members in order to help them become effective participants in all aspects of children’s schooling.
  10. the ability to use their knowledge of research, statistics, and evaluation methods to inform all areas of practice, from choosing appropriate methods for collecting information to making recommendations for interventions based on empirical evidence.