M.Ed.: Master of Education with Specialization in Educational Diagnostician
The Educational Diagnostician program prepares students for professional certification by the State Board for Educator Certification. Educational Diagnosticians administer individual standardized test batteries, including intelligence, vocational, achievement, language, behavioral, and other tests to determine eligibility of students for areas of exceptionality. They prescribe diagnostic-prescriptive interventions for exceptional learners and use psychometric evaluations to develop Individual Education Plans.
Graduate students have the opportunity to get practical experience doing charitable testing and work for advocacy groups while at Houston Baptist University. Graduate students are provided with standardized assessments through the University. In addition to learning the statistical design of the tests, students are taught administration and interpretation of the instruments. Emphasis is also placed on computer scoring and computer literacy in writing reports and developing documents.
Advantages and Opportunities
Educational diagnosticians are in high demand in schools, hospitals, corporate settings, private practices, and state and federal entities. Graduate students are taught a functional curriculum that enables them to immediately enter the professional workplace prepared to meet the highest professional expectations and challenges.
Upon graduation from Houston Baptist University, the majority of educational diagnosticians are employed in special education departments in public schools. For those professionals interested in other work environments, diagnosticians are also employed in the assessment departments of psychiatric hospitals and agencies such as the Harris County Department of Education and Region IV Education Service Center. Because certification allows the diagnostician to work independently without supervision, some professionals also choose to go into private practice.
In order to enter this program the graduate student would need to either be a certified teacher or be working on their teacher certification. Upon successful completion of this 42-hour program, which includes comprehensive exams, students will have earned a master’s degree. They must meet the following requirements before applying for certification:
- Submit a service record documenting two years of full-time teaching in an accredited private or public school.
- Successfully complete the required state certification exam (TExES).
Graduate students are required to complete an internship within the public schools. During this internship, potential educational diagnosticians design appropriate test batteries, complete psycho- educational assessments, and write Individual Assessment Reports. In addition, interns summarize and present clinical findings at the Admission, Review, and Dismissal committee meetings and assist in the development of Individual Education Plans.
The Texas Education Agency requires that potential diagnosticians document a minimum of two years of teaching experience to be eligible for this professional certification.