Accredited Child Psychology Graduate Programs in Kentucky [2024 Guide]

Last Updated: June 25, 2024

Kentucky is an ideal place to get a college education. There are eight public state universities and a system of 16 community and technical colleges spread across the Commonwealth, making access to education easy for students like you. Better still, many of these schools offer online courses and programs in child psychology  that enable you to get your undergraduate degree without having to attend on-campus classes.

There are many excellent graduate psychology programs to choose from. To complete your graduate studies in child psychology in Kentucky, you will need to study on campus or online. There are many programs in this field offer evening, weekend, online, or hybrid classes that give you more flexibility for completing your studies.

What’s more, many of Kentucky’s graduate child psychology programs allow you to complete an internship experience at an approved location of your choice. This enables you to get real-world experience closer to home if you so choose.

Accredited Child Psychology Graduate Programs in Kentucky

Child Psychology Graduate Programs in Kentucky

Listed below are some of the popular child psychology graduate programs in Kentucky:

  • University of Kentucky
  • Morehead State University
  • Murray State University
  • University of Louisville
  • Western Kentucky University
  • The Chicago School
  • Capella University
  • Southern New Hampshire University
  • Butler University

University of Kentucky

School Psychology Specialist Program

This professional psychology degree from the University of Kentucky is built on the foundation of the scientist-practitioner and whole child models. The scientist-practitioner model emphasizes both the scientific underpinnings of psychology and psychological research and the application of psychological knowledge in practice.

The whole child model espouses the view that children are highly complex individuals with an array of unique needs. With the proper training and experience, you can use your psychological knowledge and skills to address the holistic needs of students in your school.

This three-year program includes two years of coursework and a year-long internship in a school setting. Coursework covers a broad spectrum of psychology topics, which may include the following:

  • Psychological assessment
  • Developing psychological interventions
  • Psychological ethics
  • Developmental psychopathology
  • Psychological statistics

The year-long internship gives you a chance to put the skills you learn in these and other courses into practice while being supervised by an experienced school psychologist.

This program is approved by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). Upon graduation, you will be eligible for licensure as a school psychologist in Kentucky. Most graduates of this program go on to work in P-12 public school systems, but other opportunities for employment exist, such as working for an educational cooperative, educational agencies, or specialized educational settings.

You must submit your graduate application for admission before February 1 for consideration for fall enrollment. When applying, you must provide a curriculum vitae, a personal statement, and at least two letters of recommendation. GRE scores are optional.

Morehead State University

Master of Science in Clinical Psychology

The MS program in Clinical Psychology from Morehead State University is a good option if you want to have plenty of options after you graduate. On the one hand, upon completion of this degree, you will be eligible for licensure as a psychological associate or psychological practitioner in Kentucky. On the other hand, this program prepares you well for doctoral studies, should you want to become a licensed psychologist in Kentucky.

Though this isn’t a child psychology-specific program, the knowledge and skills you gain are applicable to working with clients of all ages, from children and adolescents to adults. In fact, among the 60 credits required to graduate are several child psychology courses, including Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy and the Assessment of Children. Other core courses include the following:

  • Learning Theory
  • Psychopathology
  • Marriage and Family Therapy
  • Intellectual Assessment
  • Psychotherapy

This program also requires you to complete practicum and internship experiences, both of which can be anywhere from two to twelve credits. Upon completion of the internship, you must participate in a comprehensive oral examination prior to the conferment of your degree.

To be considered for admission, you must have a baccalaureate degree with at least 18 semester credits in psychology, including at least one experimental psychology course and a statistics course. You must also have a 3.0 undergraduate GPA, though a 3.5 undergraduate GPA is preferred.

Additionally, you must provide the following when applying to the program:

  • A statement of purpose
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • GRE scores (minimum verbal reasoning of 151; minimum quantitative reasoning of 148)

You must also participate in a personal interview with the clinical psychology faculty.

Murray State University

Education Psychology Specialist Program

Murray State’s Ed.S. in School Psychology is a three-year, 60-credit professional degree program that leads to licensure as a school psychologist in Kentucky. The program is approved by the Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation and the NASP.

Like other Ed.S. programs, the one at Murray State blends classroom learning with experiential activities. Most classes are held on campus, but Murray State has also incorporated online and hybrid courses to give the program more flexibility for students like you.

Some of the courses you will take include the following:

  • Foundational Counseling Techniques
  • School-based Consultation
  • Learning Theories and Applications
  • Behavioral Assessment and Intervention
  • Human Development

You will also complete two practicum experiences during the program’s second year and a year-long internship that comprises the third year of the program.

Murray State also offers a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies in School Psychology for students that already have a master’s degree in a related field, such as clinical psychology. This one-year program might be a good alternative if you already have graduate-level training in this field.

To apply, you must fill out an online application. When applying, you must submit the following documentation:

  •  GRE general test scores
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • A resume or curriculum vitae
  • A personal goals statement

If selected, you will also participate in an in-person or virtual interview.

University of Louisville

Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology

Louisville’s Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology is a three-pronged program – you will participate in academic, research, and clinical training over the course of five or more years of study. It is a residential program that requires full-time attendance on campus in Louisville.

This is not a child psychology-specific program but it offers broad training in clinical psychology that you can use to work with children and adolescents if you so wish. The academic training includes a wide array of studies, including the following:

  • Advanced Social Psychology
  • Advanced Personality Theory
  • Advanced Statistics
  • Legal, Professional, and Ethical Issues
  • Advanced Clinical Psychopathology

The research component of this program begins as soon as you arrive on campus and continues throughout your tenure in the program. It is expected that you will conduct original research that you present at conferences and that is published in journals.

Clinical training similarly begins your first semester and continues until the internship year. Much of this training is done on campus at the Noble H. Kelley Psychological Services Center, where you will work with clients from the university and the community. Your internship placement will be off-campus, though.

The eligibility requirements for admission include having an undergraduate degree in psychology with a 3.0 GPA or higher. You must also have research experience. The following documents are required as part of your application:

  • Official transcripts from all colleges and universities you’ve attended
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • A curriculum vitae
  • A personal statement
  • A statement regarding your quantitative research and writing skills
  • A ranking of research mentors from the psychology department
  • GRE scores are optional

Western Kentucky University

Specialist in Education in School Psychology Program

At Western Kentucky University, you can prepare to become a school psychologist by completing the Ed.S. program. This 66-credit program takes about three years of full-time studies to complete.

During your time in the program, you will complete a comprehensive curriculum that explores the foundations of school psychology, advanced educational psychology, and psychological perspectives that explain classroom behavior. Moreover, you will supplement these general studies with specific coursework in the following:

  • Behavior Problems of Childhood and Adolescence
  • Clinical Child Psychology: Theory and Practice
  • Educational Statistics
  • Psychology of Learning
  • Theories of Psychotherapy

As is common for programs like this, you will get real-world experience during the program as a supplement to your training. Some practicum experiences take place in the psychology department’s clinic, while others are off-campus. The internship is a year-long 1200-hour placement that occurs during the program’s final year.

To apply, you must have a bachelor’s degree with 12 or more semester credits of psychology coursework and a 3.0 GPA or higher. When applying, you must submit the following:

  • Official transcripts showing that you have a bachelor’s degree
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • An affidavit affirming that you’ve never been convicted or charged with a felony

Child Psychology Work Opportunities in Kentucky

Perhaps the most popular child psychology-related job opportunity in Kentucky is school psychology. The advantage of getting a degree in school psychology is that there are many applications of school psychology from which to choose.

For example, you might be a school psychologist in a public elementary school where you primarily assess students and refer them for appropriate interventions and programs, like special education. Another option might be to work in a high school setting where you provide individual psychological services for severely mentally disturbed students.

But not all school psychologists work in a public school setting. Private schools, religious schools, and educational academies all employ school psychologists to provide assessments, interventions, and treatments for students with academic, social, emotional, and behavioral needs.

Yet other school psychologists work for local and state agencies, like the Kentucky Department of Education. If you choose this path, you might work in a consultant role, providing expert insights into child development, behavioral issues, intellectual capacity, and so forth.

There are many other options for working as a child psychologist in Kentucky. You might work in a community mental health setting where you provide clinical services to children and their families. Alternatively, you might work in an inpatient setting, such as a residential treatment facility for children with eating disorders.

Another option is establishing a private practice. The advantages of doing so are that you can set your rates, work schedule, and you can choose the type of clients you work with. Being in private practice is a lot of work, but it can be extremely rewarding for you both as a businessperson and a practitioner.

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