Master of Science in Psychology: Concentration in School Psychology

Program Coordinator: Diane Harris

This Master of Science in Psychology: Concentration in School Psychology leads to the Pupil Personnel Services Credential with authorization in School Psychology. Designed primarily for full-time SF State students, an M.S. is earned after successful completion of the fourth semester, and the Pupil Personnel Services Credential with an authorization in School Psychology is awarded after successful completion of the sixth semester in the program.

Graduate Programs in Psychology

Application to a graduate program is completed through the Cal State Apply application process.

The graduate admission application must be submitted by the deadline to be considered for admission. The department accepts applications for the fall semester only, with a deadline of February 1st. The Master in Science programs generally require an interview during the admissions process.

Some of the Psychology graduate programs require applicants to submit the results of the Graduate Record Examination — verbal, quantitative, and writing sections. Applicants should check the current application of the program they are applying for requirements.

Students who intend to work toward the M.A. or the M.S. in Psychology must meet the prerequisites outlined within each concentration. Required undergraduate coursework that an applicant may not have completed can be rectified as the graduate advisor deems fit without being included as units toward completion of the master's degree

To advance to candidacy (graduation), graduate students must meet all the general requirements for the specific program in which they are involved.

Written English Proficiency Requirement

Graduate students pursuing a Master of Science in Psychology: Concentration in School Psychology must meet both of the following proficiencies to advance to candidacy (graduation):

Level 1 - Satisfactory completion of both PSY721 Clinical Methods: Assessment of Intelligence and Perceptual-Motor Functioning; and PSY728 Conference to Accompany Psychology Practicum (fall semester).

Level 2 - Satisfactory completion of the Comprehensive Written Examination (PSY 896 or PSY 896EXM [0 units]) or PSY 898 Master’s Thesis.


Applicants to the Master of Science in Psychology: Concentration in School Psychology must have:

  1. Evidence of psychological experience with children and families in institutions such as schools and service-oriented settings.
  2. The capacity to make use of graduate-level academic work and professional training. These qualifications may be assessed by a record of previous academic accomplishments in psychology or other related fields that emphasize an understanding of children and their families and include clinical work experience.
  3. Completed upper-division courses in statistics and research, clinical, developmental, abnormal psychology, learning, personality, and cross-cultural psychology.

Program Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the Master of Science in Psychology: Concentration in School Psychology the student will be able to demonstrate:​

  1. An appreciation for valuing diversity and an ability to provide services that are culturally relevant. (CCTC 1; NASP 1)
  2. Knowledge of psychological and educational foundations in the standards of data-based decision making and accountability, consultation and collaboration, effective instruction and development of cognitive/academic skills, socialization and development of life skills, student diversity in development and learning, schools and system organizations, prevention, crisis intervention and mental health, home/school community collaboration, research and program evaluation, ethical and legal codes of conduct and information technology. (CCTC 2; NASP 1 & 2)
  3. Knowledge and skill to identify children who may reside in risk-inducing environments, to provide careful and appropriate assessment of children and their families, and to offer appropriate interventions for children and their families. (CCTC 7; NASP 2.7)
  4. Ability to plan, carry out, and evaluate clinical and educational interventions to promote school progress and academic success, both within the school and family, and within the larger community. (CCTC 7 & 8; NASP 2.7 & 2.8)
  5. Skills in methods of consultation and knowledge of the mandates and constraints in public education as well as the other services available to children and families in the community. (CCTC 2; NASP 2.2)
  6. Skills to perform data-based research for determining appropriate placements of children, and to evaluate the appropriateness of programs. (CCTC 1; NASP 2.1)
  7. Skills in making data-based decisions in each aspect of the profession for purposes of appropriate service to children in schools. (CCTC 5.1; NASP 2.1)

Psychology (M.S.): Concentration in School Psychology — Minimum 57 units

Core (54 units)

PSY 721Clinical Methods: Assessment of Intelligence and Perceptual-Motor Functioning3
PSY 722Clinical Methods: Personality Appraisal and Projective Techniques3
PSY 728Conference to Accompany Psychology Practicum (3 unit course taken twice)6
PSY 729Psychology Practicum (3 unit course taken twice)6
PSY 753Seminar in Therapeutic and Developmental Change I3
PSY 754Seminar in Therapeutic and Developmental Change II3
PSY 770Research Methods and Techniques3
PSY 829Advanced Psychology Practicum6
PSY 855Seminar in Professional School Psychology3
PSY 857Behavior Management3
PSY 891Seminar in Selected Problems3
SPED 763Transition Planning for Students with Disabilities3
SPED 772Assessment, Curriculum, and Instruction for Students with Mild/Moderate Support Needs3
SPED 788Law, Ethics, and Instructional Planning3
SPED 801Development, Diversity, and English Language Learners: Special Education3

Culminating Experience (3-6 units)

Select One:

PSY 896
Directed Reading
and Culminating Experience Examination
PSY 898Master's Thesis3