APs observe assessments, attend EP consultations, talk through casework with the psychologist, complete structured observations and assessments under EP guidance, support and train school staff on areas EdPsychs have trained them on and work directly with students to implement EP recommendations, strategies, interventions and programmes and evaluate impact of their work.
Direct contact work with students takes up around 50-75% of an APs time depending on the school they are working in.
APs also train teaching assistants and gather informed consent, EP questionnaires and associated paperwork.
APs also work directly with the SENCo and Inclusion Manager of their host school on a daily basis, and SENCos and Inclusion Managers have been trained on how best to use and support an AP in their school.
Each Assistant Psychologist (AP) is under the direct supervision of an experienced educational psychologist for at least 20 days a year in term time.
In addition, APs receive additional supervision from:
Pre-induction all APs must:
APs will complete their initial induction training in both Highgate and Harley Street. On occasion, we may also complete some training sessions in other locations off site. Training sessions are run by a team of experienced educational psychologists, CBT practitioners, professional coaches and former doctoral course directors.
All AP and SAP training sessions are open to EPs and Trainee Educational Psychologists (TEPs) currently supporting schools with EdPsychs' contacts.
The AP induction programme is a professional training programme developed by a team of educational psychologists to allow APs to support EPs effectively in a school with an EdPsychs’ EP contract, rather than a programme of study.
APs are expected to develop personally and professionally during their time with EdPsychs (which has a one-year minimum commitment) and each AP must work in a way that protects the company, the profession, the school, our client group and the AP themselves.
This ongoing ethical, professional, compliance orientated 'safety first' approach runs through the entire functioning of a professional psychologist in private practice and APs are also expected to maintain these standards of professional conduct (at BPS level) in their own work.
The 2017-18 running order is presented below. Each day runs from 9am to 5pm with breaks and lunch built in.
It should be noted that EdPsychs run an interleaved problem based teaching approach where skills are taught, practised, embedded and developed over time.
Much of the additional ongoing training and support an AP receives is built into their daily work, and the following training package is the starting point of the training process rather than the training process itself. APs and SAPs will have an additional 20-40 days per year working alongside an experienced educational psychologist in their attached school, and additional supervision, training and learning opportunities will occur there also (and these experiences will be different for each AP and SAP as individual EPs and schools work differently).
The core AP and SAP training is outlined below.
TEP, SAPs and APs will all need to:
EdPsychs recruit for potential APs on an ongoing basis. Competition is intense as it is a coveted role. To be eligible to apply you must:
The interview process comprises three stages across three separate sessions:
If you are successful, we will introduce you to potential schools, and if you like each other we will offer you a contract of employment with EdPsychs Ltd.
Many potential APs ask about the doctoral application process in educational psychology.
EdPsychs do not train you to be an EP. This is the role of the doctoral programmes, and you will develop your own practice and thinking about the type of EP you would like to be across many years of working alongside different EPs on the doctoral programme, in local authorities and in your wider work as a professional psychologist.
The AP role with EdPsychs then is about learning to support an EP and SENCo in a school to better embed psychology within that school and to use evidence based psychological approaches to better support the whole school community.
However, most of our APs would like to be an EP at some point. The AP role with EdPsychs Ltd allows you to gain experience working with many different EPs and associated professionals on a day to day basis, and it will ensure that you are effectively applying robust psychological approaches in your work. We also ensure that APs work collaboratively together for the greater benefit of all. APs help each other to improve their expertise and professional practice, attend BPS events and immerse themselves in the world of professional applied psychology.
In 2015-16, five of our APs applied for the doctoral courses, all received interviews and three secured a place on a doctoral programme.
In 2016-17, ten of our APs applied for the doctoral courses, all bar one received interviews (they averaged almost two interviews apiece) and the doctoral interviews are still in process at time of writing.
Again, EdPsychs will not prepare you for the application process as this is not our role. However, APs seem to find the experience of working with EdPsychs and supporting educational psychologists in schools as a very valuable, challenging and rewarding experience, and we hope that you will too.