School Psychologists' Knowledge and Self-perceived Competency in Identifying, Assessing, and Treating Childhood Anxiety Disorders in the School Setting
Date of Submission
Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)
Robert A. DiTomasso, Ph.D., ABPP
Lisa Hain, Psy.D., Chairperson
Virginia Salzer, Ph.D.
Dr. Theresa Moloney
Anxiety disorders are highly prevalent in the school setting but highly under-recognized, compared with the more outward behavioral disorders. Because of the many negative consequences of anxiety going unnoticed in children, school psychologists should be able to identify, assess, and treat children with anxiety in the school setting. This study utilized survey research to explore whether or not school psychologists felt knowledgeable and competent in identifying, assessing, and treating anxiety disorders in the school setting. Specifically, it explored whether or not there was a relationship between years of experience and levels of degree on knowledge and competence with identifying, assessing, and treating anxiety disorders. Overall results found no main effect for years of practice on knowledge and competence in identifying, assessing, and treating anxiety, and no main effect for knowledge on levels of degree in identifying anxiety. However, there were main effects found for levels of degree on knowledge and competence in assessing and treating anxiety disorders, and with competence in identifying anxiety disorders. Consistently, those with Doctoral degrees felt more knowledgeable and competent in assessing and treating anxiety disorders, and more competent in identifying anxiety disorders than did those with Masters, Masters Plus, and
the Educational Specialist degree. School psychologists felt that their knowledge and competence was average, at best, in all areas. Implications for this study show that school psychologists would benefit from seeking further knowledge on anxiety disorders through workshops or through other means. Additionally, graduate training programs in school psychology need to focus on anxiety disorders in children because of their prevalence rate and because of the potential for negative outcomes. Ideas for futureresearch will also be discussed.
Moldovan, Jaime, "School Psychologists' Knowledge and Self-perceived Competency in Identifying, Assessing, and Treating Childhood Anxiety Disorders in the School Setting" (2011). PCOM Psychology Dissertations. 182.