Applying for Fellowship Status

The APA and the division have two avenues to fellowship, which is the recognition of outstanding contributions to psychology. Div. 31 members who are not already fellows of APA apply for initial fellowship through the division, and then their applications must also be approved by the APA Membership Committee and the APA Council of Representatives. For members who are already fellows of APA through another division, all it takes to be a Div. 31 fellow is a detailed letter of application indicating how you meet the Div. 31 criteria to the Div. 31 Fellows Committee; this committee makes the final decision for current fellows.

Annual Deadline: Nov. 15

Some years ago, the APA recognized that people forge distinguished careers in psychology in many different ways. The traditional fellowship criteria had been based on research and publications, but many psychologists had made outstanding contributions in other ways. In the case of Div. 31 particularly, our members were being disadvantaged by the old criteria. Now, each division creates its own criteria; its own standards for substantial and enduring contributions. The APA Membership Committee sets minimum standards, but then uses individual division criteria in its approval process.

Criteria for Fellowship Status

Fellowship in Div. 31 is intended for psychologists who are members of their State, Provincial or Territorial Psychological Association (SPTPA) and the division, and who also have made unusual and outstanding contributions in one or more of the following areas: development of exemplary programs; leadership in organized psychology; publication or dissemination of information; and national policy development or political action. Contributions in each of the following four areas are not necessary.

  1. Outstanding contributions through conceptual or practical development and/or implementation of exemplary SPTPA programs. The programs could have been developed at the SPTPA level but have served as a model for other SPTPAs or for the development of a national program through APA or other psychological organizations. Applicants could also have developed programs at the national level (e.g., through the Practice Directorate) which strongly impacted the organization or functioning of SPTPAs. Examples include models for continuing education, Pro Bono activities, legislative action, licensing, marketing, managed care, public relations, SPTPA organization and functioning, referral services, research support, mandated benefits, freedom of choice legislation, public interest activities, or other areas which promote psychology and/or human welfare.

  2. Outstanding contributions through leadership in organized psychology. This could include SPTPA leadership which had a national impact, either through direct involvement at the national level or at the state level in a way that has impacted the national level. Simply serving as an elected officer at the state or national level is not sufficient, in and of itself, to warrant fellowship. Such leadership positions might include the presidency or other office in an SPTPA, the presidency or other office in Div. 31, the presidency or other office in a division whose interests are adjudged to overlap those of Div. 31, an APA Board or Committee chairmanship, inter-organizational leadership, the steering committee of the state leadership conference, the chair of CESPPA, or other leadership that has significant impact on SPTPA functions.

  3. Outstanding contributions through publications or other means of information dissemination that have an influential impact on SPTPA affairs. This could include publication of data-based or conceptual articles, editorship or associate editorship of a relevant journal or newsletter, or regular reviews of articles relating to SPTPA affairs (e.g., for Professional Psychology: Research and Practice or the American Psychologist). Contributions could also come through regularly and frequently participating in professional meetings, including presenting papers, organizing symposia, chairing sessions, or giving invited presentations.

  4. Outstanding contributions to national policy development or political action effort. This might include appearing as an expert witness at congressional or agency hearings, effectively lobbying with key federal legislators or Cabinet officials, preparing influential position papers, or organizing effective political action around a significant issue. Such activities at a state or regional level would be considered if they had national impact.

  5. Membership Criteria. To be recommended for election as fellow of Div. 31 and of APA, an applicant must have been a Member of the division one year.  All endorsers must all be fellows of APA and two of the endorsers must be fellows of Div. 31.

The president, the board, and the Fellowship Committee are most desirous of recognizing deserving members of our division for fellow status and earnestly invite your application if you feel that you meet the criteria cited above. Application should be made no later than Nov. 15 annually to be reviewed by this committee and forwarded (if yours is an initial application for fellowship in APA) to the APA Membership Board.

For additional information, contact Donald McAleer, Div. 31 Fellowship Committee chair.