School Psychology Students Have 100% National Exam Pass Rate

Tuesday, August 25 2009

COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho – Receiving national certification in any field is par with achieving high standards of excellence. For Professor Steve Duvall’s psychology students, the standard of excellence is higher than the national average: Duvall’s students recently achieved a 100 percent pass rate on the National Licensure Exam (NLE).

"I am just as pleased as could be," said Duvall, who is a College of Education faculty member at the University of Idaho Coeur d’Alene. "The test is required for a nationally approved program, and this is the first time we hit 100 percent of our students passing the exam." One student has yet to take the exam.

Becoming a nationally certified school psychologist involves completing a specified number of graduate credit hours from a National Association of School Psychology-approved program such as the University of Idaho’s, a one-year internship in a school setting and achieving a passing score on the NLE. The national exam became a requirement about seven years ago. Although a student still may graduate without passing the exam, they cannot practice as a licensed school psychologist.

Duvall is ecstatic over his students’ performance, which he claims is a reflection of the curriculum that prepares them for success.

"This has never happened before," he said. "However, our curriculum is designed well enough to prepare the students to take the test."

The school psychology faculty has been working on the curriculum to make sure everything is current. Students typically take the test after they receive their master’s degree and are starting their one-year school internship. In addition to several interns placed in Coeur d'Alene schools, the College of Education currently has school psychology student interns in Alaska, Arizona, California, Washington and Wyoming.

"They choose where they want to intern, but we advise them about the type of field supervisor they might work best with," said Duvall.

School psychology is a three-year education specialist degree program at the University of Idaho that prepares compassionate and competent professionals who facilitate the educational, personal-emotional, social-relational, leisure-recreational, and vocational needs of a diverse clientele. This degree offers an option in rehabilitation counseling, which trains counselors to assist individuals who have disabilities in order to help them maximize their potential and their independence. To learn more about the program, contact Steven Duvall at (208) 292-2517 or  
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About the University of Idaho
Founded in 1889, the University of Idaho is the state’s flagship higher-education institution and its principal graduate education and research university, bringing insight and innovation to the state, the nation and the world. University researchers attract nearly $100 million in research grants and contracts each year; the University of Idaho is the only institution in the state to earn the prestigious Carnegie Foundation ranking for high research activity. The university’s student population includes first-generation college students and ethnically diverse scholars. Offering more than 130 degree options in 10 colleges, the university combines the strengths of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. For information, visit  

About the University of Idaho
The University of Idaho helps students to succeed and become leaders. Its land-grant mission furthers innovative scholarly and creative research to grow Idaho's economy and serve a statewide community. From its main campus in Moscow, Idaho, to 70 research and academic locations statewide, U-Idaho emphasizes real-world application as part of its student experience. U-Idaho combines the strength of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. It is home to the Vandals. For information, visit