Educational Analysis and the Psychologist
Because education is such a demanding area for both students and teachers, an educational psychologist has the role of being somewhat like a mediator: someone who can take additional time to further investigate a situation, determine reasons for present outcomes, and recommend changes to facilitate improvement. An educational psychologist can work in many different situations and have various roles, but their importance cannot be denied. The demands currently placed on primary and secondary teachers who are responsible for thirty to 240 students daily exceed anyone’s natural limits, and educational psychologists are the ones who step in when further assistance and support are needed.
Educational Psychologist: The Job and Responsibilities
An educational psychologist does not focus only on a student’s mental state but is concerned with anything in the circumstances surrounding that student that could be affecting school performance and school behavior either positively or negatively. Some of the primary issues on which educational psychologists focus are specific student characteristics, the results of learning and instruction, and the way in which the student is taught—the instructional procedure. Basically, an educational psychologist provides a specific, individual analysis of all the factors involved with a student who, for whatever reason, is not performing or acting as he or she should in school.
One of the educational psychologist’s primary responsibilities is to research the situation and gather pertinent information relating to the academic performance and behavior. Because resolving a conflict often just depends on isolating the cause, this step is crucial. The psychologist will also determine the specific strengths and weaknesses of a student to help determine what course of action will be best for that particular student. Extensive interaction between the psychologist, parents, and teachers is essential because most of the recommended changes will need to be implemented consistently throughout all spheres of the student’s life.
In addition to acting as an outside agent that is focused on solving specific problems and working on singular cases, people trained in educational psychology can also work as school psychologists or counselors. They can serve as educational consultants, in a way, evaluating the effectiveness of the instructional and behavior management procedures and helping students learn to deal with change successfully. An educational psychologist actually has much freedom in determining exactly in which area he or she prefers to work. There are many students in school systems across the country that could benefit from working with an educational psychologist, and the school systems themselves could also learn and improve from in-depth analyses performed by the educational psychologists.
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