Educational diagnosticians are superheroes for schools and children with special needs. They are the expert in the room when it comes to learning disability, teaching methods, and academic testing requirements. Educational diagnosticians can help any school - and any student - to excel by diagnosing learning delays, finding strategies to customize educational plans for the students, monitoring the students’ progress to see if the plan is working, and finding relevant accommodations such as extra time on standardized tests allowed under the Americans with Disabilities Act. At ProCare Therapy, we help schools find qualified educational diagnosticians that are right for their work environment. We also help current and aspiring educational diagnosticians to find jobs and contracts that are perfect for them.
What is an Educational Diagnostician?
Educational diagnosticians are experts on learning disabilities, teaching methods, and academic testing. This combination of expertise allows them to help children to excel and get high scores, no matter what their learning style or delay.
Because they need to know so much, educational diagnostician jobs usually need a master’s degree. They usually have more experience and more professional certifications than ordinary teachers or special education teachers.
Educational diagnosticians truly are specialists who bring a high level of knowledge and experience to the job, and who may be able to obtain better results for students and schools as a result.
Main Responsibilities of an Educational Diagnostician
Educational diagnosticians must be prepared to be thorough in their assessment, interventions, and monitoring of students who are struggling to achieve in school. Job responsibilities can include:
- Performing formal assessments, such as written, oral, and hands-on problem-solving tests, with students who are struggling
- Observing students in a class to see their work style, behavior patterns, and reactions to teachers and other students
- Present their findings in IEP meetings. In these meetings, educational diagnosticians share their findings and plans for students with teachers, school administrators, and sometimes parents.
- Provide special education services if other specialists are not available, such as speech and language services and other adapted educational methods.
Educational Diagnostician vs. School Psychologist
In some cases, school psychologists can serve some of the functions of an educational diagnostician. School psychologists must also have knowledge of the many causes of learning disabilities and delays and behavioral problems.
However, school psychologists are more likely to help students with their emotional well-being and social behavior than with their academic performance. School psychologists may assess students for learning disabilities if an educational diagnostician is not available, but they are less likely to deliver special education services themselves.
If helping students with their emotional well-being and social behaviors sounds good to you, you may wish to check out our article on what a school psychologist does as well.
Education Diagnostician Salary
In ZipRecruiter.com’s analysis of education diagnostician salaries, they found that the highest-paid educational diagnosticians made $105,000 per year, while the lowest-paid made $22,500. Most made between $47,500 and $97,500.
The difference between high- and low-paid jobs involved the diagnostician’s level of experience, and their location. Diagnosticians made more money as they gained experience, and those living in cities with high costs of living got paid more than those with lower property values and living costs.
Remember that cost of living is a big factor when selecting a job salary. If you’re living in an area with sky-high costs of living, you may be taking home $100,000, but not keeping much more in the bank than you would be getting paid less while living in a more affordable area.
How to Become an Educational Diagnostician: Skills and Certification
If you are interested in becoming an educational diagnostician, then there are several things you must first possess and obtain. Advanced schooling and education are required and after you graduate with your diploma you must then receive your certification. On top of credentialing, many educational diagnosticians require a certain set of skills and personality traits.
Educational Diagnostician Certification
If you’re a student who’s just starting your educational journey, look for a Bachelor’s Degree program that’s approved by the Teacher Education Accreditation Council or the Council for the Accreditation of Educators Preparation. This bachelor’s degree will prepare you to become a teacher.
Next, look for a master’s degree in Special Education or Special Education Interventions. Just like with your undergraduate degree, make sure your graduate school is accredited. Some schools might offer classes in Special Education, but might not be accredited by professional teacher’s associations.
To become an educational diagnostician, you’ll also need to meet your state’s licensure requirements (these vary by state and may include a written exam, required educational credit hours, or required hours of teaching experience). Plan to get about three years of teaching experience before being hired as an educational diagnostician.
You will also need to be certified through the National Certification of Educational Diagnosticians.
Educational diagnosticians must have a combination of educational knowledge and people skills. Important skills include:
- Curiosity about learning and teaching
- A desire to help students with special needs
- The ability to guide and facilitate delicate conversations between students, parents, and school administrators
- Knowledge of diagnostic criteria for many different learning disabilities and delays
- Knowledge of many different teaching methods which may help different students
- Knowledge of academic testing, how to obtain accommodations such as extra time for students diagnosed with learning disabilities under the Americans with Disabilities Act
Interview Questions for Educational Diagnostician
Because educational diagnosticians must master so many skill sets, the interview questions on their resumes can be diverse. They may cover subjects such as:
- Your favorite and least favorite parts of your last teaching job.
- A time you’ve dealt with a particularly difficult student or parent.
- What diagnostic tests or teaching intervention you would use for a student with a specific disability.
- The moment in your career that you’re proudest of.
- A time you have failed to meet expectations.
Many of these questions are designed to determine how you handle conflict, discomfort, and failure in addition to determining your knowledge of the subject area. So practice responses that show off factors such as:
- How much you love the job.
- How you can accept and work through discomfort or failure.
- How you can handle delicate disagreements in a firm but sensitive manner.
- How you have learned from your mistakes, and are less likely to make mistakes in the future than someone who may not have made the same mistakes yet.
If you think you’re ready for the next step in your journey as an educational diagnostician, check out the educational diagnostician jobs listed on our ProCare Therapy website through the button below!Educational Diagnostician Jobs