Date of Award

Summer 2015

Document Type

Dissertation/Thesis

Degree Name

Educational Specialist (EdS)

Department

Department of Graduate Psychology

Advisor(s)

Patricia Warner

Abstract

Despite the lack of research on developmentally appropriate practices for school psychologists to use when informing students with specific learning disabilities, a literature review revealed possible barriers to school psychologists directly informing these students, such as IDEA regulations, parental objection, developmental concerns, and limited training. To better understand the current practices of school psychologists when informing younger students of their learning disability, training needs, and perceived barriers, the researcher surveyed 166 Virginia school psychologists. Results from the online survey indicated that if a student is informed, their special education teacher or parents are more likely to than the school psychologist. However, when in the role, school psychologists primarily rely on training from their job experience to provide developmentally appropriate informing services. Ultimately, a variety of recommendations for and barriers to informing younger students of their learning disability and helping them develop self-advocacy skills earlier in their academic careers were identified.

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