The Academic Catalog
The Chicago School of Professional Psychology (“The Chicago School”) acknowledges its ethical and statutory responsibility to afford equal treatment and equal opportunity to all persons, and thus complies with all applicable laws and directives which promulgate non-discrimination and equality of opportunity. In keeping with the spirit and letter of the law, The Chicago School prohibits discrimination against its employees, students, and applicants based on race, gender, religion, age, national ancestry of origin, sexual orientation, disability, marital status, sources of income, military discharge status, or other impermissible reason; sexual harassment is also prohibited. The Chicago School also bars retaliation against an employee, students, or applicant who files a complaint of discrimination against the administration and/or faculty members of The Chicago School.
The course offerings, policies, procedures and other matters contained herein were current as of the time of the publication. The Chicago School retains the right to, at any time, make modifications to its course offerings, policies, procedures and other matters. Such changes will be applicable to all students.
The Student Handbook is designed to orient and guide students through their educational experience at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. It contains information regarding the policies and procedures that govern both administrative and academic matters. Where appropriate, the student may be referred to another document or publication for further information.
Some policies in this handbook are program or campus specific and are so noted. In addition, each program may promulgate certain policies, rules, or procedures to which its students are subject. Students are responsible for adhering to all rules, policies, and procedures of The Chicago School found in this handbook and other institutional documents.
The Chicago School may amend, without prior notice, the policies or procedures as stated in this handbook and other documents. All changes will be duly published whether in electronic or other form. Changes to The Chicago School’s policies and procedures affect all students who have not yet graduated. The school reserves the right to modify its academic requirements, policies, and procedures at any time. Clarification of matters contained in this handbook can be obtained from the directors of the appropriate administrative departments and offices.
Statement of Vision
The Chicago School strives to be the premier school of professional psychology in the world and to realize its mission through innovation and quality.
Integrating theory, professional practice, and innovation, The Chicago School of Professional Psychology provides an excellent education for careers in psychology and related behavioral and health sciences. The school is committed to service and embraces the diverse communities of our society.
Statement of Values
Reflecting the systemic integration of our mission, our logo symbolizes our values:
Statement of Philosophy
The Chicago School educates professionals whose practices exemplify a commitment to understand and respect individual and cultural differences. The application of humane professional judgment is achieved through the integration of psychological theory, scientific research, and professional practice. The curriculum and training opportunities prepare graduates to deliver outstanding professional services emphasizing the need to understand diversity and the importance of working with underserved populations.
From this statement of purpose, we derive our institutional goals, which are attained through individual programs of study. Our consistent focus on student learning ensures that the institution provides excellent career preparation. Each program regularly identifies the learning expectations, determines the outcomes of these student-learning expectations across academic programs, and uses assessment results to improve student learning.
Our institutional learning goals for students completing our degree programs are:
Scholarship: Graduates will be able to use scientific research and theory to inform their practices and be able to prepare scholarly work broadly defined.
Diversity: Graduates will be able to apply theoretical and practical knowledge about ethnic, racial, gender, sexual, cultural and religious, age, and disability difference in their professional work.
Professional Behavior: Graduates will be able to function in a professional and ethical manner in classroom, off-site training, and work settings.
Professional Practice: Graduates will be able to conduct assessments, develop appropriate interventions, and implement interventions in their specialty area of professional psychology.
Statement of Student-Focused Learning
To ensure an effective and quality education experience, The Chicago School faculty systematically monitors student learning to inform future planning and to generate creative, responsive initiatives to improve the programs. Data is gathered, analyzed, and presented to the learning community for review. Based on these results, the program revises the student learning assessment plan, the curriculum, and the approach to learning in the classroom. Student learning assessment offers the school a critical opportunity to evaluate the effectiveness of its programs and to develop innovative, student-focused learning environments.
To optimize the learning environment offered by the programs, students are strongly encouraged to be active learners. Active student learners reflect on the conditions and activities that engage their learning style and work independently, with peers and with faculty, to enhance their learning in the classroom.
Statement of Commitment to Diversity
The Chicago School of Professional Psychology is committed to being the premier school of professional psychology by building an environment of mutual respect and inclusion where all individuals will be valued for who they are and what they can contribute, and in turn, are expected to be participatory members of an active learning community that promotes cultural awareness, competence, and understanding of diversity.
As such, all members of the learning community are asked to embrace the school’s “Diversity Affirmation":”
||As a member of The Chicago School Community, I hereby affirm to actively participate in this learning community by embracing its commitment to understand and respect individual and cultural differences. As such, I will seek to gain knowledge of human difference that I may increase my understanding of self and others. And, I will seek to build an environment of mutual respect and inclusion where all are valued.
Plan for Assessing Student Learning
The Chicago School of Professional Psychology is committed to student learning in all endeavors. To this end, all constituencies are actively involved in developing, implementing, and refining our approach to assess student academic achievement in order to identify opportunities to improve student learning, and to assessing institutional effectiveness in order to further our goal of providing an excellent education for careers in professional psychology and related behavioral fields.
The Plan for Assessing Student Learning is a competency-based model that supports student development in The Chicago School’s institutional academic goals of Scholarship, Diversity, Professional Behavior, and Professional Practice, as well as development in the competencies required for professional practice in each program field. The plan identifies the linkage between the institutional academic goals and the outcome competencies established for each program and it describes the relationship between these competencies and the program courses. For each program, the plan also establishes the capstone assessment instruments, the methods for evaluating student learning within each program competency, and the process for the evaluation of results. Each program has a Plan for Assessing Student Learning that is updated annually. The Dean of Academic Affairs may be contacted in order to obtain a copy of the plan.
Individual and Cultural Differences
The Chicago School is committed to preparing professionals for practice in a multicultural and diverse society. In keeping with this commitment, the content of all courses is informed, where appropriate, by knowledge of individual and cultural differences (e.g., age, ethnicity, gender, physical and mental disability, race, religion, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic status), so that students develop the skills that enable them to provide professional services to individuals of diverse backgrounds. The faculty conveys attitudes respectful of these individual and cultural differences.
The Chicago School of Professional Psychology is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association.
The Higher Learning Commission
230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
Chicago, Illinois 60604-1413
Phone: 800.621.7440 or 312.263.0456
The Chicago School of Professional Psychology is approved to operate and grant degrees in the State of Illinois by the Illinois Board of Higher Education.
The Chicago School of Professional Psychology is authorized to operate in the State of California in accordance with the regulations of the California Bureau of Private Postsecondary Education.
The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, Washington, D.C. campus, is licensed by the Education Licensure Commission of the District of Columbia.
The Clinical Psychology doctoral program at the Chicago Campus is accredited by the American Psychological Association (750 First Street, NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242; 202-336-5500)
The School Psychology Ed.S. program is approved and accredited by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE). (100 North First Street, S-306, Springfield, Illinois 62777-0001; 866.262.6663)
The Marital and Family Therapy program is approved by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences. (1625 North Market Boulevard, Suite S-200, Sacramento, CA 95834; 916.574.7830)
The School Psychology Ed.S. program has been granted National Recognition with conditions by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). (4340 East West Highway #402, Bethesda, MD 20814; 301.657.0270)
As an independent nonprofit school, final authority for all matters is vested in the Board of Trustees. Dr. Michele Nealon-Woods is the president and CEO of the school. The board delegates to the president responsibility for daily operations of the institution. The school's administrative team consists of the president of The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, the vice president of academic affairs, the vice president of finance and administration, the vice president of student affairs, and the vice president of admission. A list of the names of the governing board of The Chicago School can be found here. A list of faculty can be found here.
When used in this document:
- “The Chicago School”, “the school”, or “institution” refers to The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, including all campuses, educational sites, and delivery methods.
- “School premises” includes all buildings and/or grounds owned, leased, operated, controlled, or supervised by The Chicago School (including adjacent streets and sidewalks).
- “Student” includes all persons taking courses from The Chicago School, both fulltime and part-time. Persons who are not officially enrolled for a particular term (e.g. summer) but who have a continuing relationship with the school are considered “students” under this definition.
- “School Official” is any administrator, faculty member, staff member, or other authorized individuals of The Chicago School.
- "Policies" are defined as the written regulations of The Chicago School as found in, but not limited to, the Student Handbook, Academic Catalog(s), Program Guides, and official school websites.
- The “Campus Student Affairs Officer” can be found in the Office of Student Services/Affairs. Please refer to that department for contact.