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Keeping Up With APA

8/30/2017-

by Georgia T. Chao, Deirdre Knapp, Gary Latham and Stephen Stark

SIOP Releases Newest APA Council Representative Report

By Georgia T. Chao, Deirdre Knapp, Gary Latham and Stephen Stark

The APA Council of Representatives met August 2 and 4 in Washington DC. All four Council representatives from Division 14 were present. This report highlights items that are most relevant for SIOP.

APA has been proactive in voicing opposition to recent Federal government initiatives, including the government’s hiring freeze, immigration bans, and proposals to repeal/replace the Affordable Care Act. Dr. Arthur Evans was introduced as the new CEO of APA. He has a PhD in clinical and community psychology from the University of Maryland, with academic and applied psychology experiences. His vision for APA includes:

  • increasing the visibility of psychology
  • building advocacy capacity
  • preparing psychology for the future
  • increasing visibility of psychological science
  • collaboration and partnerships with other organizations
  • engaging membership.

APA Bylaws Proposals

Two proposed changes to APA bylaws were supported by Council. The current $2.00 credit for membership in one division was proposed to be removed. The $2.00 credit was not deemed to be an effective incentive for members to join a division and it was believed that that money could help support other efforts to enhance membership. A separate motion to remove a dues-exempt category in the bylaws (i.e., to leave dues-exempt changes to Council actions) was also supported. These proposals require a membership vote before it is determined if the bylaws will be amended accordingly. Finally, a motion to require all Divisions to collaborate with APA’s Division Services Office when developing a position or policy statement on public policy matters was deferred for review by APA’s Policy and Planning Board. The bylaws proposals will be sent to all voting members for approval later this year.

APA Guidelines Approved

 Several guidelines were approved in the Consent Agenda, including the Guidelines for Education and Training in Industrial/Organizational Psychology. In addition, Council approved Multicultural Guidelines: An Ecological Approach to Context, Identity, and Intersectionality, with an expiration date of 2027. These guidelines are “umbrella” guidelines addressing broad issues relating to psychologists’ work with underserved and marginalized populations. The guidelines will be part of the Council Policy Manual and disseminated widely.

Council Discussions

One issue that may impact SIOP involved master’s-level training in psychology. APA does not have a position on master’s-level training and/or practice – historically, APA is an organization for professionals with doctoral degrees. However, in the past 10 years, the number of master’s degrees in psychology has increased significantly – particularly in counseling psychology. The Council on Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) is the largest accreditor of masters-level programs in counseling and oversees licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC). There is a concerted effort by CACREP to separate from psychology and advocate for more restrictive requirements for licensure as an LPC (e.g. core faculty are required to be graduated from a CACREP-accredited program). CACREP is also changing LPC eligibility to certain accredited programs that are typically housed in departments outside psychology (e.g., counseling education). This would effectively screen out most master’s degree holders from psychology. Although the current focus is on clinical and counseling psychology and health care providers, there may be some spillover effects on all other areas in psychology that offer terminal master’s degrees.

Other topics that were presented to Council included recommendations by the Ethics Committee and the Council Diversity Workgroup. These recommendations will be reviewed again at the next Council meeting in February 2018.

APA Presidential Election

Two of the five candidates for APA President made presentations to Council members in a plenary session. In addition, SIOP President Fred Oswald invited all candidates to respond to questions about their views on matters important to SIOP. The four Council members representing SIOP discussed the merits of all candidates and are unanimous in our conclusion that Rosie Bingham would be the best candidate who would work with SIOP and represent APA effectively as well. Voting will begin on September 15 and close on October 31. A separate email will be sent to SIOP/APA voting members with more information about the APA Presidential election around September 15 when the ballot opens. This information will also be available on SIOP’s website.