Career and Education Opportunities for School Psychologists in Anchorage, Alaska
If you want to be a school psychologist, the Anchorage, Alaska area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. About 110 people are currently employed as school psychologists in Alaska. By 2016, this is expected to grow 13% to about 130 people employed. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for school psychologists are expected to grow by about 11.1%. In general, school psychologists investigate processes of learning and teaching and develop psychological principles and techniques applicable to educational problems.
School psychologists earn approximately $29 per hour or $60,810 annually on average in Alaska. Nationally they average about $30 per hour or $64,140 annually. Incomes for school psychologists are not quite as good as in the overall category of Social Sciences in Alaska, and not quite as good as the overall Social Sciences category nationally. People working as school psychologists can fill a number of jobs, such as: behavioral specialist, guidance counselor, and child psychologist.
There are two schools within twenty-five miles of Anchorage where you can study to be a school psychologist, among four schools of higher education total in the Anchorage area. The most common level of education for school psychologists is a post-Master's certificate. You can expect to spend little over two years studying to be a school psychologist if you already have a Bachelor's degree, or a short time if you have a Master's degree.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: School Psychologist
In general, school psychologists investigate processes of learning and teaching and develop psychological principles and techniques applicable to educational problems.
School psychologists furnish consultation to parents and others on topics such as learning styles and behavior modification techniques. They also assess an individual child's needs and potential, using observation, review of school records, and consultation with parents and school personnel. Equally important, school psychologists have to compile and interpret students' test results, along with data from teachers and parents, to diagnose conditions, and to help assess eligibility for special services. They are often called upon to promote an understanding of child development and its relationship to learning and behavior. They are expected to refer students and their families to appropriate community agencies for medical or social services. Finally, school psychologists initiate and direct efforts to foster tolerance and appreciation of diversity in school communities.
Every day, school psychologists are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings. It is also important that they piece together evidence to, in some sense, diagnose what is going on in a situation.
It is important for school psychologists to layout classes and programs to meet the needs of special students. They are often called upon to attend workshops or professional meetings to remain informed of new developments in school psychology. They also conduct research to generate new knowledge that can be used to address learning and behavior issues. They are sometimes expected to report any pertinent data to the proper authorities in cases of child endangerment or abuse. Somewhat less frequently, school psychologists are also expected to refer students and their families to appropriate community agencies for medical or social services.
School psychologists sometimes are asked to maintain student records, including special education reports, confidential records, records of services provided, and behavioral data. They also have to be able to collect and analyze data to review the effectiveness of academic programs and other services and furnish educational programs on topics such as classroom management or parenting skills. And finally, they sometimes have to serve as a resource to help families and schools deal with crises.
Like many other jobs, school psychologists must believe in cooperation and coordination and have exceptional integrity.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Anchorage include:
- Economist. Conduct research, prepare reports, or formulate plans to aid in solution of economic problems arising from production and distribution of goods and services. May collect and process economic and statistical data using econometric and sampling techniques.
- Historian. Research, analyze, and interpret the past as recorded in sources, such as government and institutional records, newspapers and other periodicals, photographs, and unpublished manuscripts, such as personal diaries and letters.
- Industrial Psychologist. Apply principles of psychology to personnel, administration, and marketing problems. Activities may include policy planning; employee screening, training and development; and organizational development and analysis. May work with management to reorganize the work setting to improve worker productivity.
- Market Research Analyst. Research market conditions in local, regional, or national areas to determine potential sales of a product or service. May gather information on competitors, prices, and methods of marketing and distribution. May use survey results to create a marketing campaign based on regional preferences and buying habits.
- Market Survey Representative. Design or conduct surveys. May supervise interviewers who conduct the survey in person or over the telephone. May present survey results to client.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: School Psychologist Training
University of Alaska Anchorage - Anchorage, AK
University of Alaska Anchorage, 3211 Providence Drive, Anchorage, AK 99508. University of Alaska Anchorage is a large university located in Anchorage, Alaska. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 16,649 students and an admission rate of 68%. University of Alaska Anchorage has 2 areas of study related to School Psychologist. They are:
- Psychology, bachelor's degree which graduated 82 students in 2008.
- Clinical Psychology, master's degree which graduated 7 students in 2008.
Alaska Pacific University - Anchorage, AK
Alaska Pacific University, 4101 University Dr, Anchorage, AK 99508. Alaska Pacific University is a small university located in Anchorage, Alaska. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 795 students and an admission rate of 93%. Alaska Pacific University has 2 areas of study related to School Psychologist. They are:
- Psychology, bachelor's degree.
- Counseling Psychology, master's degree which graduated 25 students in 2008.
Certified Vocational Evaluation Specialist: The Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC) believes that individuals certified as vocational assessment professionals (CVE, CWA, and CCAA) must continue to expand their skills to enhance the quality of services they provide.
For more information, see the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification website.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Anchorage, Alaska
Anchorage is located in Anchorage Municipality County, Alaska. It has a population of over 279,243, which has grown by 7.3% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Anchorage, 89, is well below the national average.
The top three industries for women in Anchorage are health care, educational services, and public administration. For men, it is construction, public administration, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 20 minutes. More than 28.9% of Anchorage residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.2%, is higher than the state average.
Anchorage is home to the Chugach and the Black Bear Campground as well as Baxter Bog Park and Alaska Railroad Power Reserve. Visitors to Anchorage can choose from Courtyard Anchorage, Creekwood Inn and The Voyager Hotel for temporary stays in the area.