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Becoming a School Psychologist

The training requirements to become a school psychologist are a minimum of 60 graduate semester hours including a year-long internship. Students often graduate with an Educational Specialist (Ed.S.) or Master's degree. This training emphasizes preparation in mental health, child development, school organization, learning, behavior and motivation. To work as a school psychologist, one must be certified and/or licensed by the state in which services are provided. School psychologists also may be nationally certified by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP).

Practicing School Psychology in Washington

To become a school psychologist in the state of Washington, individuals must:

  1. Complete a master's degree with a major in school psychology*
  2. Complete a state-approved program for certification in the School Psychologist role OR have a School Psychologist certificate from another state and have completed three years' experience under that certificate. (If the other state didn't require a certificate, must have three years' experience in that role.) OR hold a NCSP Certificate issued after December 31, 1991 by the National School Psychology Certification Board.
  3. The applicant must have successfully completed a comprehensive examination of the knowledge included in the course work for the required master's degree in school psychology OR the Praxis II specialty area test (code 5403) with a passing score of 155 (10/1/2022 to current), administered by the Educational Testing Service and used by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP - 

Previously accepted Praxis II codes and passing scores:

  • Praxis II specialty area test (code 5402) with a passing score of 147 (10/1/2014 to 9/30/2022)
  • Praxis II specialty area test (code 0401) with a passing score of 165 ( Prior to October 2014)
  • Praxis II specialty area test (code 10400) with a passing score of 600 ( Prior to September 2008)

Detailed information on certification can be found at

*It is not necessary for a candidate who holds a master's degree or doctorate in another field to obtain the specified master's degree if he or she has completed all course work requirements relevant to the required master's degree. Candidates who meet this criterion must submit verification of such from the head of the school counseling or school psychology department, or registrar's office of the college or university. The OSPI Certification Office is not authorized to perform transcript evaluations.

School Psychology Programs in Washington

There are currently five institutions that offer graduate programs in school psychology in the state of Washington:

 Institution Location Program Website
 Central Washington UniversityEllenburg, WA CWU Program Site
 Eastern Washington University (Residential)Cheney, WA EWU Program Site
 Eastern Washington University (Respecialization, Online)Online EWU Online Site
 Gonzaga University (Ed.S.)Spokane, WA Gonzaga Program Site
 Seattle University (Ed.S.)Seattle, WA Seattle U Program Site
 University of Washington (Ed.S., Ph.D.)Seattle, WA Ed.S Site, Ph.D. Site
 University of Washington - Tacoma (Ed.S.)Tacoma, WA UW Tacoma Program Site 

Looking for a job?

One of the many benefits of WSASP membership is open access to our open position clearninghouse. School districts and agencies in Washington post their positions with us for free and members are able to see most open school psychologist listings in one location instead of searching between school district webpages. We provide information about the position, application information and paid and unpaid internship opportunities.  Members can login and access our listing here: Available Positions

Do you have a position available?

Are you a district, institution or agency looking for a highly qualified school psychologist? Please post your positions with us for free! 

Post a position on WSASP

Washington State Association of School Psychologists
816 W. Francis Ave #214
Spokane, WA 99205

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