Society Communications

Update on electronic newsletter, discussion board, announcements listserv, blog and website

Dear Members of APA Division 32:

We are pleased to bring you some good news. At the January meeting, the Division 32 executive committee had two extensive conversations about the future of communications within the Division and made a commitment to improving our technologies (see Minutes posted on Division Website). After further research, we discovered that we could greatly expand and diversify the communications options for our membership while retaining all of the functions and services of our current technologies. We believe the new forums will serve the needs of the 10% of our members currently utilizing the Division listserv while offering a wider range of options that will bring many more members into the Division's communication networks. Cutting edge technologies that engage and enhance communication among our members, flexibly serving diverse individual needs, are crucial to our attracting and retaining Division members.

This initiative was extensively discussed again, together with input from the membership, in the recent executive committee and business meetings at the APA Convention in Toronto. We unanimously reaffirmed our January commitment and resolved to offer the improved and expanded communication technologies as soon after the convention as possible. We apologize for the two week delay, during which we have been working daily with APA on technological solutions that will enable us to meet the various needs of our membership. In this message, we describe these new communication forums, offer instructions on accessing them, and invite your participation. These new communication forums will be reviewed again in the executive committee's next Midwinter Meeting with an eye toward making further improvements in these important membership services.

1. Division 32 Electronic Newsletter

Central to our communication is the new electronic Division 32 newsletter, which will serve as a portal to all of the Division's information technologies. The newsletter can be found online.

The Newsletter is now edited by Shawn Rubin and will include regular features by Mark Stern, Ed Mendelowitz, and other contributing members. Members will also be able to use the newsletter to link to a new Division 32 Discussion board, the new Division 32 blog, the Division 32 announcements listserv, and the main Division website. The newsletter is currently undergoing creative enhancement including new features and opportunities for members to make announcements and share their own activities, projects and news.

2. Division 32 Discussion Board

The new Division 32 Discussion Board will afford our members a broad, exciting range of previously unavailable options to engage in dialogue with one another. For those who currently enjoy receiving and replying to all the emails of the listserv, the Discussion Board will preserve this feature, with some additional improvements. For members who do not wish to receive all emails from the list, the Discussion Board will afford several options: They can receive a single email per day with a summary of all posts within the past 24 hours, or they can at any time read and respond to posts at the Discussion Board website. Importantly, this Discussion Board technology will permit the Division to create separate topics, each with its own email list, so that individual members can become selectively involved in as many or as few strands of Division communications as they choose, in accordance with their available time and interests. We believe this will facilitate greater member participation and satisfaction.

Members can log on to the Division 32 discussion board

Joining the new discussion board is easy. Simply click on "Sign In" at the top of the page, create your own username and password, and then, if you wish, subscribe to the emails for each topic of interest to you. If you need assistance, you may contact Brent Dean Robbins by email for help. Brent will be moderating the discussion board. This new technology will cost the Division a small annual fee, which the Board has factored into the annual budget.

Members should be aware that rules and regulations for posting as well as the procedures for exclusion from membership, as established for our current listserv, will be applicable to the discussion board. They will be posted prominently and will be updated periodically.

3. Division 32 Announcements Listserv

The function of the current listserv will be replaced by the new dscussion board, which again, will retain all functions with a much wider range of options that will meet the diverse needs of many other members. The Division will continue to offer a listserv, though with the sole purpose of disseminating to members important announcements of division business from the Executive Committee. The present communication is the first one issued through this new Division 32 announcements listserv, div32announce@lists.apa.org, which will be moderated by Keith Cooke of APA Division Services. In this way the Executive Committee will keep our members informed of relevant announcements. Because communication through this listserv will be of broad interest, all division members have initially been included on this list. Although procedures for members to remove themselves will be readily available, we encourage all members to remain on the listserv in order to receive the significant and infrequent communication from the Executive Committee. This service is an important new component of our divisional communication structure that supplements the website, newsletter, discussion board, and blog.

Please note that, according to APA Division Services, the archives of the former listserv, div32@lists.apa.org, have been made available on the new Division 32 announcements listserv, div32announce@lists.apa.org in order to continue to provide members access to that resource.

Please note that as an announcements listserv, this service has no capability for subscribers to reply to messages or to post messages on it. Division members who would like convey their own announcements, such as new books/publications, workshops, conferences, education programs, personal honors, job opportunities, and so on to the membership can request postings in the Division 32 electronic newsletter, edited by Shawn Rubin..

4. Division 32 Blog

The Division 32 blog is now in its second month of existence and is demonstrating its potential. One of the posts has already caught the attention of a Star Tribune journalist from Minneapolis (See story) and enabled the communication of Division members to reach out into the world beyond APA. The blog publishes 4-7 days per week with current topics of humanistic interest to both the Division 32 Membership and to the general public. Brent Dean Robbins is editor of the blog and invites members to help contribute regularly to the blog. If you are interested, please contact him by email.

Blog website

5. Division Website

The Division 32 website continues to operate as usual. We are continually in the process of improving and updating the website. For instance, the website will soon feature a new Awards page, including a section dedicated to Fellows of the Division. Another new feature of the site is a page dedicated to new books released that are of interest to humanistic psychologists. Members will be able to log on to the Newsletter and Division 32 Discussion Board from the website. The potential for expanding the Division website is great, and we are counting on its creative growth in response to members' needs.

Please join us in the process of improving our communication services.

Between now and December, the Executive Committee continue to work on communication services. Our strategy, policies and procedures to guide further development of our communications will be discussed at the Executive Committee's Midwinter Meeting, where additional improvements to our communications technologies will be considered. We welcome and encourage all members to provide input and suggestions. The Ad Hoc communications committee, which is a subcommittee of the Publications Committee, comprises Erik Craig (Chair), Brent Robbins, Shawn Rubin, David Lukoff, Maureen O'Hara, Thérèse Laferrière, Scott Churchill, and Sara Bridges .

Communications Committee members, along with the entire Division board, are deeply committed to enhancing member services and our communications networks in particular. Please share your experiences, needs and visions; join us in the continuing review and improvement of our communications technologies and services.

Thank you,

Division 32 Executive Committee
Sara Bridges, Maureen O'Hara, Frank Farley, Louise Sundararajan, Brent Robbins, Frederick Wertz, Erik Craig, Art Lyons, Krishna Kumar, Kathleen Wall, David Lukoff, Thérèse Laferrière, Louis Hoffman, Scott Churchill, Shawn Rubin, Christine Farber, Susan Gordon, Miraj Desai.