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APA 2018 Presidential Election Candidate Q & A 

President Talya Bauer sent all candidates for APA President three questions that are directly related to SIOP interests. Four of the five candidates responded and their full answers appear below.

SIOP has formally endorsed Sandra (Sandy) Shullman for APA President.


Sandra L. Shullman

1. How will you ensure that you are receptive and responsive to the priorities of I-O psychology (and applied psychology more generally), given the strongly clinical presence and focus of APA?

As a long-standing member of SIOP and an applied psychologist, I see myself as uniquely well-suited to being receptive and responsive to the priorities of I-O psychology and applied psychology more generally.  I have demonstrated my commitment to the field of I-O and applied psychology for decades, both in my professional life and in my work within APA.

Since the mid-1970’s, I have contributed significantly to the science and practice of leadership education, coaching and organizational development through research, publications and executive education programs.  For the past decade, I have applied my knowledge and skills to best serve APA in a wide variety of roles, including the following:

    • Member, APA Board of Directors 2004-2006; 2015-2017
    • Member, APF Board of Directors 2007-2014
    • Chair, APA Board of Professional Affairs, 2002; Member, 2000-2002
    • Chair, Executive Coaching Work Group, 2000-2001
    • Chair, APA Good Governance Project (2010-203)
    • Chair, APA Leadership Institute for Women in Psychology (2014-Present)

In these roles and others, I have been a passionate advocate for I-O psychology and general applied psychologists.  Most recently, I have publicly advocated for an increased focus in APA on general applied psychology and have made it an important part of my platform.  In support of these efforts, I have received strong, sole endorsements from Division 13, where I am a Fellow (Society for Consulting Psychology), Division 14 (SIOP) and the General Applied Psychology/Psychologists Caucus of the APA Council of Representatives (for other endorsements, please see website www.SandyShullmanForAPAPresident.com)

As APA President, I will be committed to engaging, including, listening to, and advocating for the priorities of applied psychologists, including, of course, I-O psychologists.

2. A spate of articles and efforts have advised clinical psychologists to “enter the workplace” as a new practice domain.  As a result, many SIOP members are concerned about others entering this domain without appropriate training/retooling (e.g., in personnel assessment, executive coaching, team interventions).  What types of additional training should clinical psychologists receive before practicing in non-clinical areas within workplace settings?

It is critical to start with the foundational assumption that all psychologists work within their areas of expertise and competence.  The primary resources that support this assumption are the APA Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct (http://www.apa.org/ethics/code/ethics-code-2017.pdf) and for psychologists in practice, where applicable, state licensing laws and regulations. Further, in the past few years, SIOP developed guidelines for the education and training of those engaged in industrial and organizational psychology.  SIOP approved those guidelines in April 2016 (http://www.siop.org/ETguidelines.aspx).  APA reviewed and approved these guidelines in August 2017.

To me, this means that any psychologist who desires to practice industrial and organizational psychology should use these guidelines, as approved by both SIOP and APA, to determine their existing knowledge and experience in I-O psychology.  Like any other practice area, if I-O psychology is outside the scope of practice for the psychologist, they should make an appropriate referral to another psychologist who has the education, training, competence and experience needed to practice I-O psychology. Alternately, if a psychologist wants to enter practice in I-O psychology, they should obtain some combination of education, training, supervised experience, consultation, study, and professional experience needed to competently practice I-O psychology.   It is important for clinicians to understand the complexity of I-O work, so they do not underestimate the challenge of moving into this area.   From my perspective, they also need to have a fundamental basic respect for the setting, roles, functions and people who work in business and organizational settings to practice effectively.  Further, we need to encourage efforts to provide greater awareness among all psychologists about the  skills and training necessary to ethically and practically do I-O work.

As APA President, I will actively encourage all psychologists to practice within their scope of competence and to actively seek appropriate preparation to enter new areas of practice.  I will also do whatever I can, through both policy and leadership, to address these issues as they emerge.  We must actively find ways to help people responsibly expand their practice skills and maintain high quality standards of practice while doing so.

I also think that greater engagement of applied psychologists, including I-O psychologists, at the APA level will create opportunities to effectively explore, examine, reconceptualize and contribute to the full range of psychology practice.  Programs like APA’s Psychologically Healthy Workplace, various practice conferences, and integrated advocacy efforts could benefit and gain greater impact with direct input from applied psychologists, such as I-O psychologists.

3. Our recent SIOP member survey indicates concern, particularly among our academic members, regarding the status of I-O psychology in the field of psychology and in psychology departments.  Introductory textbooks provide little more than passing reference to our field; major psychology departments treat I-O psychology and applied fields as second-class despite their psychological strengths and impact on society; and so forth.  If elected, what will you do to assist SIOP in promoting I-O psychology to psychologists and psychology writ large?

As a colleague, I am passionate about the significance of I-O psychology in the field of psychology.  The role of work, the workplace, business and organizations in the lives of the public form one of the major pillars of our social structure and often constitute the roles and places where the public experiences much of its waking life.  We have unnecessarily narrowed our own and the public’s understanding of what psychological practice is about by overlooking the contributions of those psychologists who are not specifically working with individuals in healthcare or mental health as treating professionals.  Applied psychologists, like I-O psychologists, address and solve human behavioral challenges every day at virtually every level of human organization, with the potential for major systemic impact on the human condition and our daily lives.  When we ourselves at APA or in other spheres of organized psychology inadvertently overlook the contributions of the full range of those who apply psychological science to solve human problems and define ourselves too narrowly, we miss massive opportunities for impact by psychology in general.  The diversity of perspectives and approaches, brought by the full range of applied psychologists, is key to the future success of both our discipline and profession.

I do believe that there are current indications of positive movement about these issues at the APA level, as demonstrated by the establishment of regular dialogue between the new APA CEO and leadership of the applied divisions and the assignment of APA staff to specifically engage with applied divisions.  This is indeed a very good start, and I know we can and must do better in the future—that is why the recognition of the contributions of applied psychologists, like I-O psychologists, is front-and-center in my platform (www.SandyShullmanForAPAPresident.com ).

SIOP has, in fact, done a lot of great work over many years to educate about and promote I-O psychology and SIOP (e.g., brochures, webinars, social media platforms, government advocacy efforts).  As APA President, I want to build on that great work and to create a more centrally engaged role for SIOP and I-O psychology within APA, including active engagement and leadership in the APA Council of Representatives, in existing APA initiatives and in new efforts in transforming APA for the future.  I am particularly interested in both the workforce of the future and the psychology workforce of the future and I can think of no group in psychology better qualified to help with such efforts.  In conclusion, I am eager to support and work with SIOP to promote what I-O psychology can contribute to other psychologists/psychology, to APA, to our society, and to the world.


Armand R. Cerbone 

1. How will you ensure that you are receptive and responsive to the priorities of I-O psychology (and applied psychology more generally), given the strongly clinical presence and focus of APA?

My campaign platform to advance ALL of psychology for ALL people is meant to position me to address the critical interests raised in these questions.  In recent months since Council approved a plan to integrate its 501c(3) and 501c(6) organizations into one 501c(6) APA I have become aware of the concern this raised for SIOP. The move, according to one SIOP leader, provided nothing of value for SIOP and other applied divisions.  Once again it appears that SIOP is experiencing invisibility and marginalization.  My consulting with other applied psychology divisions has further sharpened my own concern and commitment to rectify both. 

SIOP’s invisibility and marginalization diminish all of psychology and cannot be tolerated.  The professional plight of SIOP parallels too closely the experience of minorities to be ignored.  I understand personally too well the hazards and perils of invisibility and marginalization not to address the SIOP experience with vigor.)  If APA is to be ONE APA, it must perforce promote the value and distinctiveness of I-O and applied psychology.   I would like Division 14 to know that as the new APA organization is implemented that I will work with the Division’s leadership to ensure that applied psychology and the mission of Division 14 are promoted equally with clinical practice.  The concerns raised seem to be systemic.  I thank the Division for pressing for it to be corrected.  It is in the interests of all of us.

Campaigning this year has convinced me that a number of divisions that share Division 14’s concerns for their visibility and APA’s relative unfamiliarity with their mission and contributions to the discipline.  They feel like neglected stepchildren.  I am grateful for the awakening to yours and their concerns.  As a presidential candidate, I commit myself to rectifying this.  For example, APA has determined that for the first year, APA will allocate 60% of dues revenues to advocacy for practice.  I will be alert to ensure that SIOP and other allied practitioners participate fairly and equally in the allotment of those advocy funds.

2. A spate of articles and efforts have advised clinical psychologists to “enter the workplace” as a new practice domain. As a result, many SIOP members are concerned about others entering this domain without appropriate training/retooling (e.g., in personal assessment, executive coaching, team interventions). What types of additional training should clinical psychologists receive before practicing in non-clinical areas within workplace settings?

As a young practitioner, I worked in several capacities to address “community” and “organizational” functioning.  While I did enjoy the work and, from reports, achieved some success, I realized that I approached the tasks as a clinical psychologist who applied clinical training and skills to groups in organizations.  The discomfort I often felt led me to move away from that work and seek positions that were more confortable.  With hindsight I can see that the issue was the limits of my competence and training.  The concerns this question raise resonate with my own professional experience.

Our Code of Ethics requires that psychologists operate only within areas of demonstrable competence.  Having a license that permits practicing in areas not specifically beyond legislated scope of practice may authorize clinical psychologists to “enter the workplace” in ways described here.  However, a license per se does not confer competence but assumes it.  Ethics do not assume competence but requires it.  

I fear that, because of the hazardous invisibility of I-O in curricula resulting from inadequate and inappropriate graduate training, rank-and-file clinical psychologists are not aware that I-O is a specialty demanding specific post-doctorate training.  They need to be apprized of the overlapping and distinct competencies involved.  Countering the negative effects of invisibility with an organized program of education may achieve two objectives: creating visibility and educating. 

What follows are suggestions I offer as a longtime activist within APA governance that I have seen effectively raise the visibility of legitimate concerns for the discipline and promote the profile of the promoters

Because I have seen the effects of lobbying COR, for instance, SIOP may find it helpful and propitious to propose resolutions to COR that recognize the contributions of I-O psychology and charge APA with advocating for the interests of I-O psychology, e.g. increasing the number of I-O faculty and promoting public awareness of I-O and applied psychologists.  The fact of engaging in the discussion/debate that a resolution requires can have surprisingly salubrious effects.  This has been my experience in moving an LGBT agenda forward as a concern for the profession as opposed to a concern for LGBT people.  There is further precedent for my suggesting this. Noreen Johnson successfully introduced a resolution to encourage psychologists always to use the word psychotherapy rather than the generic therapy.  The discussion on the floor heightened awareness of our being psychologists who provide psychotherapy.  In short, I would offer my support as president to SIOP to access whatever APA resources, e.g., the Offices of Membership and Membership Communications, in achieving  

Because I have learned that there is no substitute for seats at the table, I would support as president seating I-O and applied experts on APA boards and committees and in divisions beyond Division 14.  The presence of I-O experts ensures that I-O concerns are addressed, I-O interests are respected and protected, and recognition of I-O contributions boosted.  The input from an I-O psychologist on the Policy and Planning Board has not only broadened and shaped our agenda but also enhanced our capacity to fulfill our mission: to monitor, and make recommendations regarding policy development and implementation.   

Similarly, creating a presence in state associations can educate licensed clinical psychologists to the overlapping and distinct competencies required.  Inclusion on state associations boards and councils offers opportunities to shape scope of practice policies and initiatives favorably.  (I recognize that I-O psychologists may already be having an impact at the state level.)

3.Our recent SIOP member survey indicates concern, particularly among our academic members, regarding the status of I-O psychology in the field of psychology and in psychology departments.  Introductory textbooks provide little more than passing reference to our field; major psychology departments treat I-O psychology and applied fields as second-class despite their psychological strengths and impact on society; and so forth.  If elected, what will you do to assist SIOP in promoting I-O psychology to psychologists and psychology writ large?

In the short-term, I would want first to know from Division 14 to what extent I-O and other applied psychologists sit on accreditation committees that review curricula and then to make appropriate recommendations to seek I-O psychologists for the committees.  This is one place where the recommendation of a president may have some constructive influence.   Also, I would work with Division 14 to identify and promote I-O psychologists annually to APA Boards and Committees and leadership in other divisions.

In the long-term, I would work with Division 14 to develop long-range goals and strategies, e.g., a survey of psychology departments to gather data on faculty composition, on best and worst curricula.  How I-O psychology is represented in undergraduate psychology programs might reveal how much encouragement is given to students to consider I-O as a career option.

In both short- and long-term cases, I see my presidency as promoting the interests of Division 14 but only in collaboration with the Division’s leadership and recommendations.  I see the presidency as an instrument to mobilize the resources of APA, to better serve the interests of the Division.


Steve Hollon

1. How will you ensure that you are receptive and responsive to the priorities of I-O psychology (and applied psychology more generally), given the strongly clinical presence and focus of APA?

I am a research clinician who started his career at the University of Minnesota that has long had a strong I-O contingent. I am a devotee of using the best of empirical science to guide real world applications and in that regard likely have more in common with the typical I-O psychologist than with most practicing clinicians. I chaired the committee that advised the APA on how to set up clinical practice guidelines. This was not popular within APA but it was in the public interest and in the interest of the profession. No profession long survives that does not provide a service to the public and I can show my clinical colleagues how to best make the case for the services they provide. The bottom line for me is that I think that APA went off track about a quarter century ago when it was taken over by people who were dominated by clinical practice concerns and that both the public and the profession will be best served if we return to our roots as a scientific discipline. I do not know if that will be popular or not but I do know that I can do a better job of making the case that psychological services deserve to be reimbursed when that case is based on hard empirical evidence than when it relies upon wishful thinking on the part of practicing clinicians. My experience with my I-O colleagues back at Minnesota leads me to suspect that the way I approach the field is more in line with the SIOP than it is with most practicing clinicians. I welcome your input.

2. A spate of articles and efforts have advised clinical psychologists to “enter the workplace” as a new practice domain. As a result, many SIOP members are concerned about others entering this domain without appropriate training/retooling (e.g., in personnel assessment, executive coaching, team interventions). What types of additional training should clinical psychologists receive before practicing in non-clinical areas within workplace settings?

I do not know what kinds of additional training/retooling would be necessary but I would look to Division 14 for guidance. I am no fan of “entering the workplace” simply to earn extra income if that means engaging in practices for which someone is unprepared. I am quite skilled when it comes to treating patients who are depressed and suicidal but I would not presume to engage in activities for which I was not adequately trained. George Bernard Shaw once said that all professions are “conspiracies against the laity” and I take that to mean that professions thrive when they serve the public interest and not when the public serves the interest of the profession. For clinicians to claim expertise that they do not have is not only shortsighted but wholly unnecessary. There is no nonpsychotic disorder (the bulk of the people that seek treatment) for which psychotherapy is not at least as efficacious as medication treatment and longer lasting. There is simply no need for clinical psychologists to “enter other workplaces” for which they have not been trained when they can compete on more than even terms with other disciplines in domains for which they have been trained.

3. Our recent SIOP member survey indicates concern, particularly among our academic members, regarding the status of I-O psychology in the field of psychology and in psychology departments.  Introductory textbooks provide little more than passing reference to our field; major psychology departments treat I-O psychology and applied fields as second-class despite their psychological strengths and impact on society; and so forth.  If elected, what will you do to assist SIOP in promoting I-O psychology to psychologists and psychology writ large?

If you have the data I will sing your praises. Clinical psychology has gotten “soft” and as a consequence we have lost market share to medication treatment. In the United Kingdom where the National Institute for Health and Clinical Evaluation (NICE) generates clinical practice guidelines that base treatment recommendations on the best available empirical evidence the National Health Service has invested £700 million pounds in training psychotherapists to implement those interventions with the greatest empirical support. I assume that different contingencies drive the process with respect to I-O psychology but the one thing that I do know from my contacts with colleagues in the UK is that you do not so much have to persuade other members of your profession but rather make the case to those individuals who hire your services (at NIMH they say that “you cannot herd cats but you can move their food”). If I-O provides services of value to its clientele (and I assume that things have not changed since the time that I was at Minnesota) then your students will get jobs (when I was at Minnesota a typically new PhD could expect a starting salary from industry that was approximately twice what their advisors earned) and if your students can get jobs then you have leverage with the departments in which you are located. As a research clinician I am used to being considered to be a “second-class” scientist by my colleagues who do more basic research; I deal with that by doing hard-nosed empirical research that is as rigorous as anything my colleagues do and my students get jobs as a consequence. Happy to help in any way I can (we are kindred spirits) but if you have the data (as you did when I was back at Minnesota) then we have all we need to do the job.

Susan Krauss Whitbourne

1. How will you ensure that you are receptive and responsive to the priorities of I-O psychology (and applied psychology more generally), given the strongly clinical presence and focus of APA?

In my own teaching and writing, as well as my research on psychosocial development in adulthood, I have given strong emphasis to I-O psychology, as well as applied psychology more generally. Each of the editions of my adult development and aging textbooks, the encyclopedias and handbooks I have edited, and the studies of vocational development I have conducted within my longitudinal data set, have included extensive treatment of vocational development and retirement. Several of my own advisees have gone into I-O psychology, most recently a 2016 B.S. graduate from UMass Amherst who is now in a Ph.D. program at Colorado State, and through working with these students, I have also gained an appreciation of the coursework and requirements in I-O graduate programs.  I identify primarily as an academic, and although I maintain my clinical credentials, I will ensure that I-O psychology’s focus is maintained when I am President of APA.

2. A spate of articles and efforts have advised clinical psychologists to “enter the workplace” as a new practice domain. As a result, many SIOP members are concerned about others entering this domain without appropriate training/retooling (e.g., in personnel assessment, executive coaching, team interventions). What types of additional training should clinical psychologists receive before practicing in non-clinical areas within workplace settings?

Given I-O psychology’s specialized focus on such issues as assessment, management, career counseling, executive coaching/leadership, and vocational development, it is imperative that psychologists practicing in the workplace have appropriate types of training.  As APA President, I will be very eager to hear SIOP’s perspectives and open to implementing the type of retooling that the leaders in the field believe to be appropriate.

3. Our recent SIOP member survey indicates concern, particularly among our academic members, regarding the status of I-O psychology in the field of psychology and in psychology departments.  Introductory textbooks provide little more than passing reference to our field; major psychology departments treat I-O psychology and applied fields as second-class despite their psychological strengths and impact on society; and so forth.  If elected, what will you do to assist SIOP in promoting I-O psychology to psychologists and psychology writ large?

I completely agree with this concern. I mentioned above my own writing within the field in the context of adult development and aging and my emphasis on I-O psychology. It always courses, curricula, and texts. Having taught introductory psychology for 30 years, I had to invent my own material to add to my course to cover this area which not only do I believe to be important, but which I think can benefit our students whether they go on to an advanced degree or into work within industry or the public sector.  In my psychology of adult development and aging course, I direct students to O*NET and include their reactions in classroom discussions and paper assignments. It is amazing to me that none of the students in this upper-level course had ever been exposed to this very important material. It also bothered me that my own department at UMass Amherst only offered I-O psychology on an occasional basis rather than making it a regular course offering and component of the undergraduate major. Additionally, I write a popular blog for Psychology Today, and I often cover issues relevant to I-O psychology, basing my articles on recent publications in I-O journals. These have been some of my favorite blogs to write, because I become reacquainted with some of the latest research in the area and although the blogs are written for a popular audience, I think they carry some weight by virtue of having such a broad readership.  As APA President, I will turn to SIOP for advice on how to bring I-O psychology more squarely into the awareness of undergraduate departments, and to bring the methods of I-O psychology research both into courses and training of both undergraduate and graduate students.


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