2017-18 Catalogs

PsyD in School Psychology

USM’s programs prepare students for professional careers in school psychology. The core program of study in school psychology is designed to (a) facilitate students’ acquisition of knowledge about services that promote school-aged children’s academic, social, behavioral, and emotional success and (b) provide opportunities for students to demonstrate the application of evidence-based school psychology assessment, intervention, and consultation skills. The doctoral program of study goes beyond our specialist-level training (combined MS/CAS) by emphasizing advanced competencies in research and supervision.

The Psy.D. Program at USM integrates coursework, research, and field-based experiences. The program requires a total of 111 graduate credits, which include 600 hours of practica, an empirically-based dissertation, and a culminating 1,500 hour pre-doctoral internship.

Students admitted to the Psy.D. Program with a bachelor's degree are required to complete at least 111 credit hours in accordance with the program of study detailed below. Students admitted to the Psy.D. Program with a graduate degree may request a transcript review to determine if any prior courses can be transferred. Transfer credits will be applied to the Psy.D. program of study if approved.


Area of Competency

Course (semester hours)

Scientific and professional ethics and standards

SPY 609 (3): Professional Ethics in School Psychology

SPY 709 (3): History and Systems of Psychology (History, Systems, and the Profession of Psychology)*

Research design and methodology

EDU 600 (3): Research Methods and Techniques

SPY 602 (3): Clinical Research Methods (Single Case Research Methods)*

SPY 751 (3): Advanced Research Seminar

SPY 759 (3-6): Psy.D. Dissertation**


SPY 697 (3): Statistics I AND SPY 698 (3): Statistics II


PPM 601 (3): Quantitative Methods for Policy, Planning, and Management***

Psychometric theory

HCE 605 (3): Psychological Measurement and Evaluation

Biological bases of behavior

SPY 671 (3): Physical Bases of Behavior

Cognitive-affective bases of behavior

SPY 601 (3): Behavioral Principles of Learning

SPY 670 (3): Cognitive-Affective Bases of Behavior

Social bases of behavior

SPY 673 (3): Social Foundations of Behavior

Individual differences

HCE 620 (3): Fundamentals of Counseling Theories

HCE 668 (3): Human Development

SPY 674 (3): Psychopathology

SPY 679 (3): Diversity in the Science and Practice of Psychology

Applied (school) psychology

SPY 604 (3): Functional Behavioral Assessment

SPY 606 (3): Behavior Therapy (Principles and Procedures for Behavioral Intervention)*

SPY 607 (3): Consultation in School Psychology (Consultation and Collaborative Problem-Solving)*

SPY 672 (3): Assessment of Academic Achievement (Assessments and Interventions to Develop Academic Skills)*

SPY 675 (3): Indirect Behavioral Assessment

SPY 677 (3): Cognitive Assessment

HCE 681 Clinical Supervision


SPY 740 (3): Supervision in Psychology and Behavior Analysis***

SPY 727 (3): Advanced Academic Intervention Methods (Seminar in Academic Assessment and Intervention)*

SPY 729 (3): Advanced Intervention Methods for Individuals with Behavioral and/or Developmental Disabilities (Seminar in Behavioral Assessment and Intervention for Students with Developmental Disabilities)*

SPY 730 (3): Advanced Behavior Therapy (Seminar in Behavioral Assessment and Intervention for Students with Emotional and Behavioral Disorders)*

Educational foundations

SED 540 (3): Learners Who are Exceptional in General Education

SPY 605 (3): Applied Behavior Analysis (Principles and Procedures for Instructional Intervention)*


SPY 610 (3): Developing a School-Wide System of Behavior Support (Systems-Level Services to Promote Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Health)*

SED 682 (3): Special Education Regulations, Procedures, and the IEP Team

SPY 620 (3): Introduction to Multi-Tier Systems of Student Support for General and Special Education  (Multi-Tier Systems of Academic Support for General and Special Education)*

Supervised field placements

SPY 693 (3): Practicum I

SPY 694 (3): Practicum II

SPY 788 (9): Pre-Doctoral Internship

Recommended electives

SPY 605 (3): Applied Behavior Analysis (Principles and Procedures for Instructional Intervention)*

SPY 608 (3): Professional Ethics in Behavior Analysis

SPY 625 (3): Multi-Tier Instruction and Assessment for Mathematics

SPY 627 (3): Multi-Tier Instruction and Assessment for Reading

*Title change pending approval: Anticipated Fall 2017 implementation

**Credit increase pending approval: Anticipated Fall 2017 implementation

***Course substitution pending approval: Anticipated Fall 2017 implementation

****Course addition pending approval: Anticipated Fall 2017 implementation


Master's Along the Way

Students who enter the Psy.D. Program at the post-baccalaureate level may earn a Master’s of Science (MS) in Educational Psychology (Concentration in Applied Behavior Analysis) along the way to the  doctoral degree. Students who wish to obtain the M.S. in Educational Psychology "along the way" to the Psy.D. must:

  • Complete 1+ electives as required by the MS degree, and
  • Complete an Application for Degree Form and submit it to the Registrar's Office prior to the deadline for the desired degree date.

Students also must be aware that transcripts for courses counted toward the MS degree cannot be altered after the degree is issued.

Tk20 Subscription 

All undergraduate and graduate students who matriculate into an Educator Preparation program or pathway in USM summer 2013 or later and are accepted as a candidate for their internship year are required to subscribe to the Tk20 online data management system once being accepted as a teacher education candidate and prior to their internship year. The subscription allows students to use the system for assessment, advisement, field-experience, and career portfolio management. The subscription fee of $103 covers some of the expenses related to the administration and assessment of the program. For loan purposes, it will be eligible for consideration as part of costs. The subscription is a one-time payment and must be made by each student after they have past their candidacy process and before the first semester of their internship year. Subscription instructions are posted on the Office of Educator Preparation website:http://usm.maine.edu/educatorpreparation 

Please note Professional Education Council Policy:  In order for USM’s Education Preparation Unit program completers to be recommended by the institution to the state for certification or licensure, the candidate must provide evidence of meeting all certification requirements including proficiency on the standards relevant to his/her state approved professional program and this evidence must be compiled and assessed with in the context of the Unit’s data management system (i.e., Tk20).


December 1st, 2017 (Summer/Fall 2018 admission)

Admission Process

Complete application packets must be received by the admission deadline listed above. Applicants who meet the minimum requirements may be selected to participate in a formal, on-site interview. Applicants’ academic history, exam scores, writing samples, professional references, and interview performance will be considered in decision-making for admissions.

Minimum Requirements

In addition to meeting the minimum admission requirements of the University, applicants to the Psy.D. program must meet the following admission requirements:

  • An earned bachelor's degree from an institution of higher learning accredited (at the time the credits were earned) by a regional and/or national accrediting body and recognized as accredited by the U.S. Department of Education;
  • A cumulative grade point average of 2.75 (on a 4.0 scale) in a baccalaureate degree program; and
  • Qualifying Graduate Record Exam (GRE) scores (See “Testing Requirements” below for details)

Individuals also may apply to the Psy.D. program at the post-master's level. To be recognized by the University, earned graduate degrees must be from an institution of higher learning accredited (at the time the credits were earned) by a regional and/or national accrediting body and recognized as accredited by the U.S. Department of Education. Applicants also must have earned a cumulative grade point average of 3.25 (on a 4.0 scale) in the graduate degree program.

Application Materials

A complete application packet includes the following:

  • A submitted online graduate admission application
  • An application fee of $65.00
  • Official transcripts from all colleges or universities attended, excluding the seven campuses of the University of Maine system. A transcript is official when it comes directly from the institution. If an applicant is submitting an official transcript, it must be in a sealed envelope from the institution indicating that it is an official document. If the envelope has been opened prior to arriving at the Office of Graduate Admissions, it is no longer considered an official transcript.
  • Three letters of recommendation attesting to the applicant's ability to study at the graduate level. Recommendations are easily submitted using the online application form. Applicants will need to provide the name and email address for each recommender during the application process. After submitting the application, an email will be automatically generated to the recommenders directing them to fill out the electronic letter of recommendation.
  • Two essays (see below for details)
  • Certification of finances (international students only)
  • Official GRE test score (see below for details)
  • Official TOEFL or IELTS scores (if English is not first language)
  • Current resume or curriculum vitae
  • In addition to the above submitted materials, applicants must complete a free Tk20 Application in order for your application to be reviewed. The link to the instructions can be found here.

Special Essay Instructions

Psy.D. program applicants are required to submit two essays with the application packet. For Question 17 on the "Application for Admission to Graduate Study" applicants must respond to the following prompts in two separate essays: 

  • The USM School Psychology Program embraces a behaviorally-based model for assessment and intervention. Describe your understanding of behavioral theory and how comfortable you are working with that model.
  • Describe what is meant by the term "evidence-based practice." What role should evidence-based practice play in the delivery of school psychology services?

Testing Requirements

Applicants to the PsyD in School Psychology program must submit scores from the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) taken within five years of application. The minimum combined score for the Verbal and Quantitative tests is 300.

Applicants who scored below the minimum scores on the GRE must enclose a letter requesting special consideration. The letter should provide evidence of an ability to complete doctoral studies successfully. Without such a letter, applicants who fail to meet minimum testing requirements may be automatically denied.

For applicants who are English language learners, official scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) are required. The minimum TOEFL score is 79, and the minimum IELTS score is 6.5.

Application Submission Address

Candidates should submit all application materials to the Application Processing Center, University of Maine System, P.O. Box 412, Bangor, ME 04402-0412. Electronic transcripts and other application materials can be emailed to: edocs@maine.edu

Transfer Policies

Students admitted to the school psychology program may request permission to transfer up to 45 graduate credits toward the Psy.D. in School Psychology. For each graduate course the student wishes to have considered for transfer credit, the student must submit a course equivalency request (CER) form to the Program Coordinator. This request must include the following:

  • A brief (two- to three-sentence) rationale for why the course should be considered equivalent;
  • A transcript (copy is acceptable) documenting the student's grade for the course and the semester it was completed;
  • The prior graduate course number and title and the course number and title for the USM course that the student wishes to be considered as equivalent; and
  • The syllabus for the graduate course and relevant supporting documentation (e.g., list of required and suggested readings, reports, papers, tests, etc.).

In general, only courses completed within 6 years prior to entry in the Psy.D. program with a grade higher than a B- will be considered for transfer credit. However, the program may, at its discretion, consider coursework completed more than 6 years prior to entry for transfer credit when students: (a) developed initial competence in the professional practice area through coursework and (b) continued to update their competency through professional experience (which may include, but not be limited to relevant professional employment, supervision, and continuing education).

Course equivalency requests will be reviewed by the Program Coordinator and referred to the faculty designee who has expertise in the area of instruction. The Coordinator or faculty designee may ask for additional information from the student, including an official transcript, or consult with the previous instructor. The designee will then make a recommendation to the school psychology faculty, and the faculty will vote to determine whether the course is considered equivalent. The student will be informed about the faculty's decision by the Program Coordinator. The result of the request will be documented in the student’s local program file.

When transfer credits are approved, the program will notify the USM Registrar to enter the official transfer onto the student's record. Transferred credits will be noted on the student's USM transcript and counted toward the student's degree.

Additional considerations regarding transfer credits:

  • For students seeking certification as Board Certified Behavior Analyst, the applicable transfer course(s) must be transferred from a program that is approved by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board.
  • Graduate students in APA-accredited doctoral-level school psychology programs at other universities may transfer into the program if they take their final 45 hours, or two years full time, and not including the internship or dissertation requirement, in USM's School Psychology program.

Professional Licensure and Certification Notice

Students who are pursuing degrees leading to application for professional licensure or certification, and/or who will be participating in clinical placements, internships, or practica through their USM program should be aware that their host facility may require a criminal background check, finger printing, or drug screening. In such situations, each student is responsible for obtaining and paying for the background check or other screening process and for delivering required documentation to the facility. Although the University will make reasonable efforts to place admitted students in field experiences and internships, it will be up to the host facility to determine whether a student will be allowed to work at that facility. Students should further be aware that a criminal record may jeopardize licensure by the state certification body. Students may consult the certification body corresponding to their intended occupation for more details. Successful completion of a program of study at USM does not guarantee licensure, certification, or employment in the relevant occupation.