Psychology is the science of understanding our minds and behaviours. An Educational Psychologist (EP) can help with understanding a child’s learning, development and behaviour in relation to their education and well-being.

Hi, I'm Dr. Bethany Elms

I am an Educational Psychologist. In my work, I support children/young people with additional needs, and their families and schools. I received my doctorate in Educational Psychology from Cardiff University, after completing an undergraduate degree in Psychology at Royal Holloway University of London. I am passionate about facilitating positive change for children and young people, to help them reach their potential.

What is an
Educational Psychologist?

Psychology is the science of understanding our minds and behaviours. An Educational Psychologist (EP) can help with understanding a child’s learning, development and behaviour in relation to their education. This includes cognition (thinking); social, emotional, behavioural and mental health processes that are important for learning; language development; and physical and sensory needs.

An EP gathers information through assessments, observations, and consultations, then uses their knowledge of child development and psychological theories to interpret findings and identify reasons why a child may be having difficulty at school and/or home. Recommendations are then made for interventions, support, and approaches that can help the child make progress. The psychology of teaching and learning is central to the role of an EP.

Who do I work with?

  • Key adults – including parents and school staff
  • Professionals – this can be as part of a multi-disciplinary team (e.g. including paediatricians, speech and language therapists, occupational therapists, and clinical psychologists)
  • Children and young people – from early years through to early adulthood (0-25 years). This includes neuro-typical and neurodiverse individuals with a range of needs, outlined below

Cognition &
Learning

Literacy (dyslexia)

Numeracy (dyscalculia)

Executive functioning

Processing and memory

Revision skills

Exam access arrangements

Emotional &
Behavioural

Mental health (e.g. anxiety and low mood)

Anger difficulties

Low esteem and confidence

Behavioural needs

Attachment and relationship needs

Bereavement and grief

Body image

Children who are adopted and/or in foster care

Growth mindset

Resilience

Neurological &
Developmental

Autism spectrum disorder

Global developmental delay

Downs syndrome

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder

Chiari malformation

Cerebral palsy

Children with acquired brain injuries

Social &
Friendship

Social and interaction skills

Friendship difficulties

Bullying

Transition to primary and secondary school

What can I do?

The work of an Educational Psychologist has many aspects. We can work with individuals (children, parents, class teachers, etc.) and at a systemic level (small group interventions, whole class/year group level, whole school level).

Individual assessment of need (which is holistic)

  • Based on the four areas of need: cognition and learning; social, emotional, behavioural and mental health; language and communication; and physical and sensory needs
  • Cognitive and dynamic assessments- these can be used to identify children and young peoples’ areas of strengths and needs and then explore effective ways to support an individual’s learning
  • Classroom observations- to examine how a pupil engages as part of their class system

Individual therapeutic support

  • Therapeutic play
  • Therapeutic drawing and talking
  • One to one therapeutic support

Consultation

  • This is a time and space where joint problem solving takes place, which enables the identification of difficulties and appropriate next steps to facilitate positive change. This can involve parents, school staff, and older children/secondary school aged pupils

Supporting nursery/school/college staff using:

  • Supervision
  • Circle Solutions
  • Anonymous consultations

Staff training on topics such as:

  • Attachment needs
  • Literacy and numeracy interventions (e.g., Precision Monitoring)
  • Social and communication skills interventions (e.g., Lego Therapy)
  • Peer relationships and friendships (e.g., Circle of Friends)
  • Emotional regulation and mental health interventions (e.g., Emotional Literacy Support Assistants [ELSA], Zones of Regulation, Drawing and Talking)
  • Wellbeing and resilience
  • Mental health needs
  • Neuro developmental differences
  • Bereavement and grief
  • Behaviour management
  • Classroom support for children with additional needs

If you would like to receive training which is not listed above, please contact me to discuss if it is possible.

Parent workshops on topics such as:

  • Supporting the development of babies and toddler in the early years
  • Mental health and wellbeing needs
  • The effects of sedentary screen time on development.
  • Behaviour management
  • Attachment needs

If you would like a parent workshop on a topic which is not listed above, please contact me to discuss if it is possible

 

Supporting parents through:

  • Home visits
  • Parent consultations
  • Small group/whole class interventions (e.g., to support peer relations)
  • Whole school interventions (e.g., around bullying or creating mental health aware schools)
  • Critical incidents- providing support to a school community in the event of a death of a pupil, member of staff, or parent
  • Research (e.g., to explore the needs of pupils, staff, and parents)
  • Supporting schools with policy development

The Process

1

Make a referral

2

Initial consultation

3

Further assessment (if agreed/required)

4

Report is written and sent to key adults

Who can make a referral?

  • Parents
  • School staff and professionals (with parental consent)
  • Children and young people (with parental consent)
  • Please click the “Make a referral” link below
  • Please contact me for more information regarding prices

Give me more information about an initial consultation

  • This will take approximately 1-1.5 hours
  • This can include either just parents or parents and school staff
  • The purpose is to gather background information, discuss concerns and areas of strengths, then identify suitable next steps (this could include further educational psychology assessments, suitable interventions for schools/parents to put in place, and specific approaches to use with the focus child)

AFFILIATED ASSOCIATIONS