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What is an Educational Psychologist?

Updated: Feb 10, 2022

An Educational Psychologist works with a school aged child
An Educational Psychologist at work

An Educational Psychologist (EP) is a professional who works with schools, families, children and young people, to support those with learning difficulties such as dyslexia, dyspraxia, dyscalculia and a whole range of complex learning disabilities and needs.Their work also involves promoting the emotional and social wellbeing of children and young people.

Educational Psychologists are graduates who have completed a further three-year doctoral degree in educational psychology and are both psychologists and health care professionals. They must be registered with the Health and Care Professionals Council (HCPC) and many will also be members of the Association for Educational Psychologists. (AEP). They are often among the first professionals that parents and carers come into contact with because they are involved in assessing children and young people who are struggling in school, and in recommending strategies, interventions and accommodations to support them.

The work of Educational Psychologists is varied, and includes observations, interviews and assessments. They offer consultation, advice and support to teachers, parents and the wider community as well as to the children and young people concerned. Some Educational Psychologists research innovative ways to help vulnerable children and young people, and many are frequently involved in the training of teachers, learning support assistants and others working with children and young people. Until recently they were overwhelmingly drawn from the teaching profession, but this has changed and they now increasingly come from a wider range of backgrounds.

Importantly Educational Psychologists are the only professional whose input is legally required as part of the Education and Health Care Needs Assessment (EHCNA) process, and their report forms a critical part of a child or young person’s Education and Health Care Plan (EHCP).

At SEND Advocacy we can help you understand an Educational Psychologist's report and determine whether it fully and accurately reflects your child or young person’s needs and the support required to meet those needs. We can also advise on the steps that you should take if you are unhappy with the content of any Educational Psychologist's report. If you need someone in your corner to help you secure the education your child deserves, contact us today.

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