How can educational psychology help?
An educational psychologist works in schools, colleges and universities with children and young people 0 – 25 years old on a range of social, emotional, behavioural and learning issues and difficulties.
In schools they work with young people and their families hand in hand with special needs coordinators and teachers taking referrals perhaps with a view of initiating formal assessment for them and obtaining an EHCP (Education Health Care Plan). They work on a range of difficulties including:
- academic performance e.g learning difficulties, dyslexia, IQ testing
- physical e.g dyspraxia
- sensory difficulties
- social and mental health difficulties e.g. bullying
- behavioural difficulties e.g. ADHD, mutism
Educational psychologists have various tests and techniques at their disposal, which can be used appropriate to the individual young person’s needs and situation. These are curriculum based approaches, standardised tests including I.Q. and attainment tests e.g. for dyslexia. In addition to these there are dynamic assessment procedures which make it possible to address a young person’s learning style.
Individual assessment and therapy
Assessment of such problems may include having an assessment conversation or interview with the young person concerned and then a negotiated plan of a course of action which will address the difficulties. The treatment or interventions which can emerge after assessment, might be for example, a course of CBT or E.M.D.R., some sessions of parenting skills, a behavioural programme or contract, some sessions of mindfulness or relaxation.
Hat Rosenthal has worked as an education psychologist for over thirty years in a number of places and capacities: for two local authorities (Newcastle-Upon-Tyne and Leeds), further and higher colleges of education, and local organisations (Catholic Care).