In This Issue

Division meeting highlights

Minutes from the Aug. 2012 Council of Representatives meeting.

By Carol A. Falender, PhD
Council Meeting, Aug. 1 and 3, 2012

The most recent Council Meeting included several important actions and resolutions, including a resolution on the recognition of psychotherapy effectiveness; approval of an Intern Stimulus Package to facilitate the creation of more than 500 clinical internship positions; a new opensource journal; and a task force report on educational disparities.

  • The Resolution on the Recognition of Psychotherapy Effectiveness was approved. The report includes effectiveness of psychotherapy for the wide range of psychotherapy services from childhood through adulthood. The report concludes that average effects of psychotherapy are greater than those of many medical interventions. Large multi-site and meta-analytic studies have demonstrated that psychotherapy reduces disability, morbidity and mortality; improves work functioning; and decreases psychiatric hospitalization. In addition, the resolution notes that psychotherapy teaches patients life skills that last beyond the course of treatment. View the full report

  • Intern Stimulus Package was approved—an expenditure of up to $3 million over a period of three years to provide seed funding working in collaboration with the Association of Psychology Postdoctoral Internship Centers (APPIC) to identify “shovel ready” programs and to “jump start” new programs. Funds will assist programs in the application process for APA accreditation. In addition to BEA’s established criteria, priority will be given to programs presenting a plan to sustain an accredited training program beyond the seed funding period. Only non-profit entities will be considered for funding. Priority will be accorded to expansion of the number of positions, serve historically underserved populations, and prepare psychologists for the 21st century health care system especially integrated primary care. The money will help offset program expenses in such areas as application and site visit fees, program consultation fees and intern stipends and benefits. The typical maximum grant to an individual program will not exceed $20,000. Funding will be available starting this fall through an application process. The funding is expected to help as many as 150 programs move from non-APA accredited to accredited status and create 520 new accredited internship positions over the next three years. Consider whether you are aware of any programs that might qualify for this funding.

  • Council approved funding for representatives of the four ethnic-minority psychological associations (EMPAs) to continue to attend APA council meetings as delegates/observers. In a related action, the council approved a bylaws amendment to create official council seats for the four EMPAs. The EMPAs are: the Asian American Psychological Association, the Association of Black Psychologists, the National Latina/o Psychological Association and the Society of Indian Psychologists. Please note that since this requires a bylaws amendment you will be voting on this in the fall! There was strong Council support. Watch for the ballot.

  • Approved funding for an APA task force that will study the trafficking of women and girls.

  • The Good Governance Project proceeded with different models of change for Council and the organization and the results were to move towards moderate to “clean-slate” change. Moving forward, it will be the task of the project and ultimately Council to identify new means of governance that are more nimble, more representative of the membership, and more in keeping with other professional organizations of our size.

  • Experiment to set up an open access journal called Archives of Scientific Psychology was approved.

  • A new journal on qualitative methods was approved for publication.

  • Presidential Task Force on Educational Disparities. (The report will be available on the APA website later in the year and will be an excellent resource for educators, policy developers, and students.) APA Past- President Melba Vasquez assembled this task force to address questions of what psychology has to say and offer about the impact of educational disparities, especially on poor and racial/ethnic minority students. As Dr. Cynthia Belar described it, all disparities go back to education. Education is a public health issue and psychology has much to contribute and to provide leadership.

Generally, Hispanic males have the highest high school dropout rate, at 23.7 percent, and are much less likely to graduate from high school than other demographic groups. Generally a pattern emerges in which African American, American Indian, Latino, and Southeast Asian youth underperform academically; racial disparities also exist in socioeconomic status and health outcomes and healthcare. Educational disparities originate in very early childhood and although Head Start and other early intervention programs have tried to close gaps, these are only open to children with family incomes below poverty level. Programs for working poor are generally of lower quality. The cascade of effects includes lower scores on tests of academic achievement, repeating a grade in school, higher drop-out and lower graduation rates, decreased admission to gifted programs and advancement to higher education, and higher rates of school discipline, suspension, and expulsion.

Another aspect is the accentuation of disparities for immigrants and English language learners. However, the reason for immigration mattered. For example, Asian American children who generally came from families that migrated to fill specific employment shortages in the U.S. and generally had higher education levels had different outcomes than Latino immigrants who often migrated for family reunification and had lower educational levels. These differences may manifest in socioeconomic status differences and result in differential resources to support academic achievement of their children.

Significant data from metaanalyses confirms that children educated in their native language have higher educational achievement. Quality bilingual programs can close the gap. Ethnic and racial minority children are underrepresented in gifted and talented programs.

The task force differentiates between technocratic and transactional reforms. They define technocratic as those that alter school procedures, regulatory practices, and structural factors that are organizational. Transactional reforms are described as specially within the purview of psychologists. They include reciprocal interactions between teachers and students becoming actively engaged in their schools, schoolwork and their education. Attention to the complexity of transactional analysis and how students and teachers learn and grow through interaction is a promising area for the future.

Attention was devoted to the role of psychological science more specifically in addressing bias expressed towards children and ethnic and racial identity and its impact on schooling and academic achievement, including development of an oppositional cultural orientation to school—i.e., doing well is “selling out.” Psychological science has defined identity as a complex construct in which acculturation, alienation, and racial pride are all factors. Exposing youth to idiographic narratives has shown promise.

The report also addresses the structure of schools and their roles in facilitating and enhancing student engagement. Recommendations include facilitating student elaboration to enhance understanding, promoting classroom discourse, enhanced teacher responsiveness, and generally addressing the macro and micro aspects of schools, leaderships, supports, partnerships, as well as specific recommendations including for advocacy.

Convention Board of Directors Meeting Minutes (Abridged) Aug. 2, 2012, Orlando

In attendance: Michael Roberts, Karen Budd, John Lochman, Bill Rae, Amy Damashek, Mary Haskett, Emily Kessler, Carol Falender, Amy Green, Sara Stromeyer, Matt Jarrett, Anita Thomas, Julie Cohen, Jen Kaminski (taking minutes).

Guests: Lauren Fasig (APA), Judy Jones and Bill Tucker (Springer)

Michael Roberts called the meeting to order at 5 p.m. with a welcome, an overview of the agenda and introductions. Lauren Fasig (the new Director of APA’s Office on Children, Youth and Families; CYF) joined us for the first part of the meeting. Lauren began with her own introduction, followed by a summary of the recent CYF activities of the APA Public Interest (APA PI) Directorate. She highlighted the APA President’s Task Force on Immigration, the Information Dissemination project, APA’s cosponsorship of the 18th National Conference on Child Abuse and Neglect in April and Head Start's 11th National Research Conference in June, and APA’s participation in Speak Up for Kids events. The full APA PI CYF activities report is available. Lauren closed by encouraging Div. 37 to support nominations to the CYF Committee (deadline of August 27, 2012).

Jen provided an update on the advocacy textbook being edited by Anne Culp and published by Springer, including chapter titles and authors and the editorial board. The board was enthusiastic about the potential reach and impact of the book, and noted that we need to be forward-thinking about the rollout. We anticipate that Springer will also assist with the rollout.

Michael announced that the Diane Willis Early Career Award fund is now endowed at APF, so that it can be awarded. We and APF will begin advertising and seeking nominations in the near future.

Michael gave an overview of the advocacy training to be held as a preconference event (Thursday, Oct. 18, 2012) to the National Conference on Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology. The workshop registration is free and separate from the conference. The Board previously voted to spend up to $1000 to support the event.

Mary reported that the Section on Child Maltreatment started an Early Career Psychologists Committee and already has a Student Board in place. Interested students and ECPs can contact Mary Haskett to get involved. The Section has a book contract with Springer for the product of the Task Force on Positive Parenting in the Context of Homelessness.

At the Midwinter Meeting, the Division Board voted not to develop our own new journal. Michael has been investigating a SpringerBriefs series as a publication venue for articles on child and family policy and practice. He reported that this series is a new publishing format, primarily electronic with ondemand hardcopy printing for a price. Members would have free electronic access (with the ability to print PDFs for free). The publication would have a Divisionappointed editor, and all articles would be peer reviewed. In the future, it might be possible to have an impact factor calculated. After discussion, the Board voted to approve the Springer Briefs series proposal. It was decided that the Publication Committee will suggest one or more series titles to the Board for a vote, and that the Section could be responsible for one (or more) issues per year if they would like. John Lochman volunteered to head the Editor Search Committee, which will also include Michael Roberts, Jen Kaminski, and an additional member not on the Board to be named. Emily Kessler will suggest a student member to be part of the search committee.

John next led discussion about the 2013 Midwinter Meeting. Jen will conduct cost comparisons of having the meeting in Tuscaloosa versus Atlanta, with the call for editor expectation of meeting sometime during the weekend of Jan. 18- 21, 2013.

Bill circulated a financial update. He reported recently consulting with an accountant to organize the accounts in a more logical manner. [Those services had been previously available to us from APA, but are now not available since we became a non-contract division.] Bill summarized by saying we have about $117,000 in the bank (in various forms). His recommendation is that although saving is good, we should not be afraid to spend if we and members get good value.

Next, Judy Jones and Bill Tucker from Springer joined the meeting to discuss details of the Springer Briefs contract. Judy clarified that if this publication progresses to a regular journal, we might be able to retain the title so we should keep that in mind when selecting one. Judy confirmed that Thomson-Reuters includes citations from other sources than articles that come out serially, so an impact factor is a possibility. She cautioned that impact factors are based on citations in the previous two years, so it would be some time before we could have an impact factor. Judy believes that we can apply to have our articles indexed in the various academic search engines.

The board next returned to discussion of finances. Bill requested $700 for this year to get all of the accounting and bookkeeping straightened out. A motion to approve that $700 for accounting purposes was seconded and passed (with Bill abstaining).

Michael passed along a request from the Interdivisional Task Force on Child and Adolescent Mental Health (IDTF) for $1000 for their second Summit (May 6, 2013 at the Bolger conference center in the DC area), which will be more focused on prevention. There was a motion to support the summit at the requested $1000 level, and potentially contribute the additional $400 we had previously earmarked for multicultural/diversity issues if we or they can identify a relevant use of those particular funds. The motion was seconded and approved.

The Board (without Michael) discussed the Administrative Officer contract with Karen Roberts to handle Division Affiliate and Section membership processing, which is no longer handled for us by APA. After discussion of the Division and Section needs and Karen’s performance, a motion to negotiate a second contract year with her was seconded and approved. There was also a motion to go forward with accepting credit card payments, which was seconded and approved. [Secretary’s note – progress on this for 2013 renewals may be held up by us being on the waiting list for APA to revamp the website.] The remaining question about how the Division and Section will split the costs of membership processing was tabled to the Finance Committee.

Julie brought the issue of publishing the Advocate via nxtbookmedia versus PDF. Nxtbook costs $650 per issue, but the PDF is free (Julie has someone with graphic design background formatting on a volunteer basis). Nxtbook also takes an additional 5 business days once the PDF is ready. Jen reported receiving only two or three emails regarding problems with the nxtbookmedia version, and no complaints about the PDF with this past issue. The board agreed that the PDF version would be fine and no vote is required as it is technically an Editor’s decision. Julie next offered the ideas of upcoming themed Advocate issues around state and local advocacy. Members interested in potentially writing about these issues should contact Julie Cohen.

Carol provided a brief update from the APA Council meeting. Her highlights included:

John reported meeting with Marc Atkins and Barb Fiese (incoming presidents for Div. 53 and 43). With those Div. and with 37 as the lead, John will apply for CODAPAR funding with a focus on dissemination and training of evidence-based programs (EBPs). The initiative would be to survey and conduct interviews with state and local government representatives to understand perceived needs for training for EBPs, and how to further disseminate EBPs. The initiative would also survey practitioners about needs and barriers they had for getting trained in EBPs.

Michael thanked everyone for their hard work during the year and at the meeting, and adjourned the meeting at 8 p.m.