Bridging Collaboration between Graduate School Psychology and Reading Specialist Candidates


Graduate education aims to instill the knowledge and skills to prepare students for their future careers. In this study, faculty in graduate programs in school psychology and reading instruction collaborated on a semester-long workshop series to foster students’ knowledge and interest in school-based collaborative consultation (SBCC). This study used a sequential explanatory mixed methods design to explore students’ knowledge, confidence, and experience with SBCC during the four workshop series. The sample consisted of 24 graduate school psychology students and 14 graduate reading specialist students at one large, urban, public university in Southern California during the Fall 2017 semester. Pre- and post-surveys were administered at the beginning and end of the course and one focus group interview was conducted at the end of the semester. Students also evaluated each of the workshops, which were presented by two faculty members in each other’s classes. Paired t-tests on pre and post-survey scores looked at knowledge, confidence, interest in SBCC. There was a significant difference between pre and post-survey scores in terms of knowledge [t(24) = -9.83, p = .000] and confidence [t(25) = -4.21, p = .000], but no significant difference in interest in learning more about SBCC [t(24) = 1.79, p > .05]. Comments from workshop evaluations and the focus group interview were coded for themes to confirm the survey results. Students reported that the workshops helped them to ‘think more broadly’ and to consider different perspectives, but they also complained about the time involved in implementing SBCC.


Graduate Education, Collaboration, Mixed Methods


Learning in Higher Education


Paper Presentation in a Themed Session


  • Dr. Joan Fingon
    • Professor, Reading and Education, California State University, Los Angeles, United States United States
    • Joan C. Fingon, Professor of Reading and Education at California State University, Los Angeles, teaches in the M.A. in Education, Option in Reading Program and the EdD Program in Educational Leadership. She serves as the university’s literacy faculty council representative for the California State University Center of Advancement for Reading and is President of Inter-Cities Literacy Association, a local council of California Reading Association affiliated with the International Reading Association. Her interests include classroom research in literacy and assessment and advocating for empowering teachers to promote literacy for all students. Dr. Fingon has authored many articles in scholarly journals and newsletters and this is her first co-edited book publication.
  • Dr. Sharon H. Ulanoff
    • Professor, Bilingual/Multicultural and Literacy Education, Curriculum and Instruction, California State University, Los Angeles, United States CA, United States
    • Dr. Ulanoff's research interests include biliteracy, second language writing acquisition, teacher research and inquiry based-instruction, with a focus on access and equity for English learners. She has published articles on a variety of topics, including vocabulary development for English learners and just completed a three year ethnographic study of effective second language literacy practices in an urban multi-age classroom. She is a frequent presenter at state, national and international conferences.
  • Elina Saeki
    • Assistant Professor, California State University