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Counseling & School Psychology

School Psychologists - Making a Difference!

Making a difference in the lives of children... in school, at home, and in life!!

Our Education Specialist (Ed.S.) program is approved by the Nebraska Department of Education (NDE), is one of only approximately 145 Ed.S. programs nationwide which has been fully accredited by the National Association of School Psychology (NASP), and is the first school psychology program in the world to be fully accredited by the International School Psychology Association. As such, you can be assured that your professional knowledge, skills, and dispositions will meet or exceed the standards set forth in the NASP Domains of School Psychology Training and Practice. This program enables you to meet the NDE certification requirements to practice in the state of Nebraska, and assures that you will meet the requirements for National Certification as a School Psychologist (NCSP). In fact, you will meet all NCSP requirements once you graduate and obtain a passing score on the NCSP Exam. Over 98% of our students pass the exam the first time they take it. More than 25 states recognize the NCSP credential, paving the way for employment opportunities across the country. In fact, our interns and graduates (100% of whom have been successfully employed upon graduation) have enjoyed employment opportunities across Nebraska as well as many other states.

The School Psychology program is a 72-hour Educational Specialist Degree program within the College of Education. Program completion takes approximately two to three years of coursework and one year of internship. In addition to coursework, 300 hours of continuing professional development are required to reach degree completion. The number of years of coursework may vary according to course availability and the individually-developed Program of Study. See your advisor about the length of time you will need to schedule in your classes.

  • Our Students - we attract outstanding graduate students.
  • Our Faculty:
    • Licensed and certified faculty with clinical experience in mental health agencies, private practice, in-patient, and out-patient mental health programs, schools, and college student affairs.
    • Nationally and internationally renowned faculty members offer a wide range of interests and expertise.
    • Commitment to professional and personal development of students.
    • Foster and mentor student involvement in professional associations, membership, leadership, presentations, and publications.
  • Field-based practitioner model of training that utilizes a collaborative approach.
  • Clinical, consultative, and cooperative skill development for graduates to work successfully in the profession.
  • Non-competitive environment in which students work together to make all students knowledgeable, successful, and professional.
  • Flexible course scheduling to accommodate students including evening, blended, on-line and video conferencing courses.
  • Active student-led association: Graduate Association of School Psychologists (GrASP).
  • Opportunity for experience in infant mental health.
  • Successful history of career placement of interns and graduates.
  • We support the Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity Policy developed by the National Association of School Psychologists.

Accreditation & Certifications

Our Education Specialist (Ed.S.) program is:

  • Approved by the Nebraska Department of Education (NDE)
  • Fully accredited by the National Association of School Psychology (NASP).
  • The first internationally accredited program in the world recognized by the International School Psychology Association (ISPA).
  • Prepares students to pass the NCSP Exam with a 98% pass rate.

More than 30 states recognize the NCSP credential, paving the way for employment opportunities across the country

The NASP, ISPA and NCATE accredited UNK School Psychology program prepares graduates for the following professional certifications:

  • National Certified School Psychologists
  • Nebraska School Psychologist Endorsement

* Graduates are eligible for these credentials after successfully passing the appropriate exams and completing required applications.


Developed By: College of Education, School Psychology Graduate Committee, Department of Counseling and School Psychology   

About the ICR Research Initiative

The International Collaborative (ICR) Initiative began in 2005 by the School Psychology Graduate Program and the Department of Counseling and School Psychology at the University of Nebraska at Kearney. Its mission is to coordinate/orchestrate the collaboration on research projects between the graduate students and faculty in the UNK College of Education and our international counterparts. This initiative supports the College of Education, Graduate College, and departmental missions and student outcome objectives related to scholarly inquiry and productivity. Moreover, the initiative has enabled us to expand and formalize research with international partners.

To accomplish the ICR Mission

Overall Goals
  • Promotion of student/faculty scholarly inquiry and productivity.
  • Identification/creation of student/faculty research projects and connection with international counterparts.
  • Dissemination of student/faculty products at national and international conferences.
  • Funding/continuation of the ICR.
Accomplishments Thus Far
  • An international professional online journal has been in publication since 2008:International Journal of Psychology: A Biopsychosocial Approach(Recently accepted into the PsychINFO database.
  • Six international online research symposia have been held for international counterparts to share research experiences.
  • Scholarly research has been presented at national and international conferences.
  • International counterparts have expanded to include: Vytautas Magnus University, Kaunas, Lithuania; Black Hills State University, Spearfish, South Dakota; Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand; Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland; and Pusan National University, South Korea.
  • Graduate student exchange between international counterparts.
  • Faculty exchange between international counterparts.
Future of International Collaborative Research
  • Studies will continue to be presented at national and international conferences.
  • Funding will be pursued to support ICR initiatives.
  • Advisory board will expand international counterparts.
  • International online journal will continue.
  • Online research symposiums with international counterparts will continue to be held.

International Counterparts

Vytautas Magnus University Kaunas, Lithuania
Black Hills State University Spearfish, South Dakota
Jagiellonian University Krakow, Poland

The ICR Advisory Committee

Max McFarland: Advisory Committee
Teara Archwamety: Research Assistant Faculty Mentor
Loreta Buksnyte: Head of Department of Theoretical Psychology, Vytautas Magnus University, Lithuania
James Flemming: Director of International Studies, Black Hills State University
Antanas Gostautas: Faculty Member, Vytautas Magnus University, Lithuania
Ed Scantling: Dean of College of Education
Kamonwan Tangdhanakanond: Faculty Member Chulalonfkorn University, Thailand
Tammi Ohmstede: Faculty Member

Graduate Student Assistants:
Jenna Rycek
Meghan McKeone

Field Based Experiences

Current Practicum Placements
Minden Public Schools
Lexington Public Schools
Kearney Public Schools
North Platte Public Schools
Aurora Public Schools
Columbus Public Schools
Educational Service Unit #10 (Kearney, NE)
Educational Service Unit #11 (Holdrege, NE)
Central Nebraska Support Services Program (Grand Island, NE)

Current Internship Placements
Central Nebraska Support Services Program (Grand Island, NE)
Educational Service Unit #1 (Wakefield, NE)
Educational Service Unit #2 (Fremont, NE)
Educational Service Unit #8 (Neligh, NE)
Kansas City Public Schools (Kansas City, KS)
SW Kansas Area Cooperative District 613 (Dodge City, KS)

Previous Internship Placement States

Partner Schools - Community Projects

Partner School/Community Projects

Service-Learning Projects
Early Childhood Assessments – Lexington Early Learning Academy
Academic Screening – Lexington Elementary Schools
Academic Benchmarking – Minden Public Schools, Amherst Public Schools
Research Projects
Impact of Dual Language Program on Academic Performance
Impact of Summer School Program on Academic Performance
Impact of Length of Time in District on Academic Performance
Efficacy of the “Middle School” Model
Early Childhood Screeners as Predictors of Future Academic Performance
Assessing Risk-Factors in Infants
Relationship between Demographic Variables (e.g. SES, ELL) and Academic Performance as Measured by the NE State Accountability Test