Preferred Name

Kiersten Bell

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Educational Specialist (EdS)


Department of Graduate Psychology


Deborah Kipps-Vaughan

Tammy Gilligan

Tiffany Hornsby


Adolescence is the time when many individuals begin to use substances (alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs) in an exploratory manner. This exploration can have lasting impacts upon a student’s neurological development with wide ranging impacts. Adolescents who use substances may experience greater difficulty achieving academically, increased risk for criminality, and comorbid mental health disorders at an elevated rate. Schools are the location where the majority of students receive mental health support, and a location where substance use interventions can occur. School personnel can be trained to conduct Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) interventions to address adolescent substance use. Many different school professionals have been trained to conduct SBIRT interventions, but there continues to be a lack of service delivery. School psychologists can be trained to conduct SBIRT interventions as an expansion of the mental health role. Developmental models of this role expansion have been created for other professions, but no model currently exists for school psychologists. This study sought to understand the training needs of school psychologists in order to develop confidence and competence in conducting SBIRT interventions. School psychologists, at varying stages in their training, were surveyed to understand how their training experiences impacted their development in providing SBIRT interventions, as well as identifying supports and barriers that exist in the school around providing this kind of student support.



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