Division Spotlight

Div. 2 honors a teaching legend

Div. 2 (Society for the Teaching of Psychology) presented psychologist Wilbert "Bill" J. McKeachie, PhD, with a presidential citation at APA's Annual Convention in Orlando, Fla., for his lifelong dedication to the teaching of psychology. The professor emeritus at the University of Michigan has championed the belief for more than 60 years that research has an important role in teaching and learning. His 2007 book "Teaching Tips" has influenced thousands of new and seasoned teachers of psychology, say division leaders.

"His professional and personal kindness and generosity have made him friend and mentor to many, and a model to many more," says Division President Norine Jalbert, PhD.

Register for Div. 14 sustainability conference in New Orleans

Div. 14 (Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology) is hosting its Eighth Annual Leading Edge Consortium, "Environmental Sustainability at Work: Advancing Research, Enhancing Practice," Oct. 19–20 in New Orleans. The meeting is devoted to advancing the research and practice of environmental sustainability in the workplace. Leaders from 3M, PepsiCo, Wal-Mart, Whole Foods and other companies will speak. Visit www.siop.org/lec for more information, including a list of speakers and presentations, speaker bios, hotel information, and related publications and articles.

Div. 31 revamps its website

Div. 31 (State, Provincial and Territorial Psychological Association Affairs) has made its website easier to use. The website includes advocacy updates, division news and blogs on student issues, health-care reform and early career concerns. Since the site's redesign, its traffic has increased tenfold and division membership has increased by 20 percent. Email for more information on joining Div. 31. Members can also follow Div. 31 news on Twitter at @APADivision31.

Div. 48 welcomes input on Haitian outreach effort

Div. 48 (Society for the Study of Peace, Conflict and Violence)encourages its members to offer feedback on the work of an international advisory team for Explorers Sans Frontières (ESF), a humanitarian aid organization that has been offering medical aid and mental health outreach to Haitians since the 2010 earthquake. Volunteers are fine-tuning their education and outreach strategies, which include mindfulness work for post-traumatic stress disorder, and welcome psychologists' input. The organization aims to continue providing weekly medical and mental health outreach through outpatient clinics led by Haitian staff and professionals. To comment on ESF's work or to join the effort, contact Steven E. Handwerker, PhD or Crystal Taylor.

Apply for Div. 52 book award

Div. 52 (International) seeks nominations for the Ursula Gielen Global Psychology Book Award, which recognizes an author or editor of a recent book that showcases psychology as an international discipline and addresses global concerns from a psychological standpoint.

Nominations may include authored or edited volumes in any language with a 2011 copyright. All submissions must be accompanied by a two-page letter written in English that details the book's contributions to global psychology. Nominations are due Oct. 1. The division invites the winner to present an address at APA's 2013 Annual Convention in Honolulu, July 31–Aug. 4, and funds part of the winner's trip to the meeting. Send nominations to Renee Goodstein, PhD, Psychology Department, St. Francis College, 180 Remsen St., Brooklyn, N.Y. 11201. For more information, contact Goodstein.

Interested in supporting a technology division?

A group of psychologists welcomes support for a petition to create a new APA division—the Society for Technology and Psychology—which would serve as a home for psychologists interested in new research and practice technologies, such as online therapy, mobile apps and electronic health records. To support the division, click "Like" on the group's Facebook page. Doctoral-level APA members can sign the petition at APA Divisions.

Qualitative researchers join Div. 5

Quantitative and qualitative psychology are now under one roof. Members of Div. 5 (Evaluation, Measurement and Statistics) voted to create a new section on qualitative inquiry. The division now has three sections: the Society for Qualitative Inquiry in Psychology, Assessment, and Evaluation, Measurement and Statistics.

The Society for Qualitative Inquirying Psychology began as an informal group in 2005. The society campaigned for four years to establish an APA division for qualitative researchers. Given the common focus on methodology, Div. 5 leadership proposed the society become a section of their division instead, a process that has taken three years.

The union, which was supported by two-thirds of Div. 5 members, was not without controversy. Opponents raised concern that embracing qualitative inquiry might harm the division's scientific integrity. But since the merger, most of the membership is more interested in how the division can grow, says Div. 5 President Marcy Andberg, PhD.

"Our background is strongly quantitative, but at the same time, most of the researchers in our division also use some qualitative methods to get there," says Andberg. "We are hoping to find common ground so that we can move forward and learn from each other. Both sides will become stronger."

The society has already been active in the division's convention programming and on its website, says Andberg. The division also revised its bylaws to give each section a vote and a voice on the division's executive committee.

Controversy aside, qualitative psychologists are ready to have a home within APA. Despite their role in psychology's history, including the work of noted developmental psychologist Jean Piaget, qualitative methods have tended to be undervalued by scholars of experimental psychology, says Kenneth Gergen, PhD, who, with Ruthellen Josselson, PhD, and Mark Freeman, PhD, led the effort to establish the section. "I think that's been a major loss for psychology, and to draw this area back into the mainstream of the field is a very good sign," Gergen says.

Another good sign: The qualitative inquiry section will soon have its own APA journal, Qualitative Psychology. The journal will debut in 2014.

—Jamie Chamberlin