Open Call for Division 47 fellow applications

Achieving Fellow Status can be an arduous process; it requires recommendation by three endorsers who are Fellows of APA

Fellow status in the American Psychological Association is bestowed upon individuals who have made unusual and outstanding contributions to the field of psychology.

The minimum standards for Fellowship under the APA Bylaws are:

  1. The completion of a doctoral degree in psychology or related field from regionally accredited institution;

  2. Prior membership as an APA Member for at least one year and being a Member of the division;

  3. Active engagement at the time of nomination in the advancement of psychology in any of its aspects;

  4. Five years of acceptable professional experience subsequent to the granting of the doctoral degree;

  5. Evidence of unusual and outstanding contribution or performance in the field of psychology; and

  6. Nomination by one of the divisions in which member status is held.

In addition Division 47 requires:

  1. Membership in Division 47 for a minimum of three years;

  2. Substantial contribution to the field of sport and exercise psychology.

The most difficult judgement that must be made in connection with nominees for fellows status is to determine whether or not there has been “unusual and outstanding contribution or performance in the field of psychology.”

Examples of the criteria that have been found helpful to the divisions and to the APA Membership Committee are given below:

Number of publications, grade-level of an administrative position, academic rank or the number of public addresses or committee memberships, but are not automatic determiners. The contribution to the science or the profession of psychology should be original and, perhaps, also a contribution to society as a whole. What is most needed is information about the nominee’s contributions that will help the division and the APA Membership Committee, reach a fair and reasonable decision. Information offered by the endorser should explicate or expand upon information already available from other sources (e.g. a vitae), not simply repeat it. It is assumed that all evaluative statements will necessarily be positive.

These criteria are not intended to be exhaustive.

  • The existence of relevant publications is not enough – they must report impressive work, have an impact upon others and have been refereed appropriately;

  • The impact of innovations must be documented;

  • Citation of the nominee’s work by others may be an important indicator of the impact of a contribution;

  • Conducting and organizing workshops is not an automatic criterion, but frequent workshop leadership with positive evaluations and evidence of impact over time can be good evidence of contribution;

  • Offices held in psychological associations, political and legislative activity and the like, while relevant, are rarely enough in themselves to prove contribution – endorsers must show impact beyond the local level;

  • Accumulation of impact and performance over time must be demonstrated;

  • Evidence of steady and continuing competence does not in itself meet the criterion of “outstanding and unusual.”

Achieving Fellow Status is an arduous process. It requires recommendation by three endorsers who are Fellows of APA. It requires a positive recommendation by the Division 47 Fellow Review Committee and the fellows on the Executive Committee. Finally the successful nominees are forwarded to the APA Fellow Review Committee who makes recommendation to the Board of Directors with final approval coming from the Council of Representatives. If you think you have the qualifications or know of someone you would like to recommend, contact Fellow Committee Chair, Ed Acevedo, PhD.