School Psychology

Master of Arts in Education/Educational Specialist

Looking to help students succeed in the classroom socially, behaviorally and emotionally? Turn to the School Psychology Program.  

We strive to train practitioners who will become leaders in the practice of school psychology and advocates for all children and families by effectively linking multi-method assessment to evidence-based interventions. This program prepares you to serve as a professional, ethical practitioner who: 

  • Understands social, political and policy contexts
  • Applies best practices derived from research and theory
  • Commits to continuous professional growth and critical examination of both practice and literature

Application deadline: December 15, 2022


Students showing their decorated mortarboards at graduation Students showing their decorated mortarboards at graduation

First-Year Employment

For more than 15+ years, meeting a continual statewide need


Hours of Practicum Experience

Hands-on experience every semester  

National Association of School Psychologists approved

NASP Approved 

Accreditation reflecting quality of Iowa's leading school psychology program 


Interested? Request information. 

Tell us more and we'll send information on how you can succeed with an MAE/EdS in school psychology from the University of Northern Iowa College of Education.

Contact us directly at:

School Psychology Program
525 SEC
Cedar Falls, IA 50614-0607

Phone: (319) 273-7649

My UNI professors genuinely cared about me and gave me feedback. They were passionate about the field of school psychology. The practicum experiences prepared me for my future assignments working preschool through 12th grade in a variety of different districts.

Kelsey Baker, Ed.S.
School Psychologist, Central Rivers AEA
Grow Your Own school psychology grant program
Grow Your Own school psychology grant program
Building mental health access

Grow Your Own

A new, primarily online "Grow Your Own" school psychology degree option offered in partnership with the Central Rivers, Northwest and Great Prairie AEAs gives you the opportunity to help address needs in rural Iowa school districts. 

Accepted students receive grant-funded reduced tuition and coverage for books, state and national association fees, national certification and initial Iowa licensing. The program is open to master's level practicing education professionals who, upon completion, can commit to three years serving one of the participating AEAs. Applications for the first cohort due April 15. 

Why School Psychology at UNI?

  • Approved by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) and the Iowa Department of Education.
  • 100 percent placement rate and students are actively recruited by Iowa’s area education agencies.
  • Learn from faculty who are licensed school psychologists with experience as practitioners and remain active in the schools.
  • Gain valuable experience in practicums every semester of the program in schools, except summer term.
  • Opportunity to present at NASP’s annual conference with support from the university.
  • Students who intern in Iowa are paid as first year school psychologists.
  • Program meets requirements for licensure in most states.

Courses and Careers


The School Psychology program is a full-time, three-year program that consists of two degrees which follow a scientist-practitioner model: 

  • Master of Arts in Education (MAE)
  • Educational Specialist (EdS)

You earn the MAE in educational psychology: context and techniques after your first full year of coursework (minimum 32 credits) and the successful completion of an MAE paper. The EdS in school psychology requires an additional 36 semester hours, including a full-time internship and written and oral comprehensive exams.

In total, you'll complete a series of coursework, four practica and an internship with research options across the three-year program.  ​


School psychologists are in great demand and often work in K-12 public schools. Other settings include:

  • Private and charter schools
  • Preschools and other early childhood settings
  • Area education agencies
  • School district administration offices
  • Colleges and universities
  • School-based health and mental health centers
  • Community-based day treatment or residential clinics and hospitals
  • Juvenile justice programs

The School Psychology Program is a NASP-approved full-time program which consists of two degrees: a Master of Arts in Education (MAE) and an Educational Specialist (EdS), both of which follow a scientist-practitioner model. 

The MAE in educational psychology: context and techniques of assessment is earned after the first full year of coursework, including one summer course between the first and second year, and the successful completion of a literature review for the MAE paper.

The EdS degree in school psychology is earned after completion of an additional 36 semester hours, including a full-time internship, typically two years after the MAE.

There is both a thesis and non-thesis option for the EdS program.

Individuals who have earned a master’s degree in a related field may be admitted to the EdS program. These individuals must complete all of the requirements of the School Psychology program to be granted the EdS.

To be considered for admission, all application materials must be submitted by December 15th for admission the following fall semester. The program only admits students for study beginning in the fall semester.

Application Checklist 
Apply Now

 If you have questions about the program or the application process, please contact Dr. Nicole Skaar at 319-273-7649 or

Frequently Asked Questions