15 School Psychology

Educational Psychology

  1. Maribeth Gettinger PhD,
  2. Erin Brodhagen,
  3. Michelyn Butler,
  4. Clarissa Schienebeck

Published Online: 26 SEP 2012

DOI: 10.1002/9781118133880.hop207015

Handbook of Psychology, Second Edition

Handbook of Psychology, Second Edition

How to Cite

Gettinger, M., Brodhagen, E., Butler, M. and Schienebeck, C. 2012. School Psychology. Handbook of Psychology, Second Edition. 7:15.

Author Information

  1. University of Wisconsin–Madison, Department of Educational Psychology, Madison, WI, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 26 SEP 2012


The early history of school psychology was linked to intelligence testing and identification of children with special education needs. Over the past two decades, the field has moved from a predominant focus on individual child testing and placement toward prevention and problem-solving, consultation within schools. Recent reform initiatives and legislative changes have created both challenges and opportunities for school psychology to move beyond a traditional testing role. The education of today's school psychologists prepares them to provide a range of intervention, prevention, health promotion, and program development and evaluation services. The emphasis in contemporary school psychology has shifted from the diagnosis of children who are referred for learning or behavior problems to prevention of school failure and promotion of academic success. This chapter traces the historical development and describes the current status of school psychology, highlighting legislative, policy, and professional initiatives that have contributed to the evolution of the field.


  • school psychology;
  • NASP;
  • Lightner Witmer;
  • scientist-practitioner;
  • IDEA