Term of Award

Fall 2009

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Curriculum Studies (Ed.D.)

Document Type and Release Option

Dissertation (open access)

Department

Department of Curriculum, Foundations, and Reading

Committee Chair

Delores Liston

Committee Member 1

Meca Williams-Johnson

Committee Member 2

Lorraine Gilpin

Committee Member 3

Candy Schille

Abstract

The roles of school psychologists practicing within the public school systems are often defined quantitatively. The focus is often how many students are assessed, what assessment measures provide the most useful snapshots of the students and how the psychometric information will be used for educational planning. Moving away from the numerical aspects of the role, this study examines the narrative voices of the few among many. Reflecting upon the shifting demographics within the field of school psychology, as well as the low number of minority school psychologists within the field, I am examining how African American women within the field of school psychology mediate their intersecting identities. The primary research questions were twofold: (1) how do African American women within the field of school psychology mediate their intersecting identities? (2) How do African American female school psychologists perceive the concept of intersectionality and how their multiple identities impact the development of their professional practices? Through the lenses of critical race theory and black feminist thought, I am examining voice as a means of reclamation and redefinition. The stories that are reflected in the narrative voices of African American female school psychologists are those speaking about a professional life infused with the personal, inclusive of their own cultural experiences and textured by their positions within the margins.

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