From the Science Directorate

Popular Capitol Hill Science Exhibit Highlights Math and Science Education

Popular Capitol Hill Science Exhibit Highlights Math and Science Education

by Heather Kelly

APA co-sponsored an exhibit with the American Educational Research Association (AERA) for the annual Coalition for National Science Funding (CNSF) Capitol Hill Exhibit and Reception on June 7th. Marcia Linn, University of California-Berkeley Chancellor’s Professor and a Fellow of APA Divisions 15 and 35, presented her National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded research on the use of technology in teaching middle- and high-school math and science.

Linn studies math and science education from both the learner and teacher perspectives. She is director of the Technology Enhanced Learning in Science (TELS) Center at Berkeley, where scientists design and test learning environments that incorporate educational software and simulations of scientific phenomena to help students master complex scientific concepts and methods for inquiry. The TELS Center, one of the NSF-funded Centers for Teaching and Learning, has developed partnerships with seven universities and seven school districts, bringing together researchers with middle and high school educators. The research Linn presented involves the use of technology to teach middle and high school students scientific concepts in a more exciting and effective way than is used traditionally.

The evening event aims to highlight stellar research supported by NSF for Members of Congress and their staff. Given recent congressional threats to the NSF behavioral science portfolio, this was an important year to emphasize the critical roles psychological science plays in addressing national challenges such as science and math education. Linn discussed the results of her center’s research with Members of Congress including Reps. Bob Etheridge (D-NC), Howard Coble (R-NC) and Vern Ehlers (R-MI), as well Arden Bement, Director of NSF, and his Deputy Director, Kathie Olsen.

2006 APA Meritorious Research Service Commendations Awarded

by Suzanne Wandersman
Three psychologists were selected to receive the Meritorious Research Service Commendation for 2006. This award, developed by the Board of Scientific Affairs (BSA), recognizes outstanding psychologists who help foster the discipline through their programmatic activities in support of psychological science at funding agencies. BSA members developed this award to provide a clear mechanism for recognizing the important ways that programmatic contributions can advance the discipline.

Psychologists in funding agencies can play a crucial role in the development of the discipline -- in running the programs that fund psychological scientists, in identifying new opportunities and directions, in working with the science community to chart needs and challenges, in serving as a catalyst for promoting cutting edge opportunities, and in shepherding behavioral research within their institutions.

Nominations were solicited during the winter of 2005 and 2006 and the recipients are:

Vivian B. Faden [National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)]
Dr. Faden is Deputy Director in the Division of Epidemiology and Prevention Research at the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. She is being recognized for her role in shaping the priorities of the federal alcohol research effort and her strong and articulate advocacy for the importance of social and behavioral research on alcohol abuse and related problems.

Fred Stollnitz [National Science Foundation (NSF)]
Dr. Stollnitz is Program Director for Cross-Directorate Activities at the National Science Foundation (NSF). He is being recognized for an exceptional record of over 30 years of service as Program Director at the National Science Foundation. Dr. Stollnitz influenced the shape of research on animal behavior and nurtured research on the biological basis of behavior. He has been a tireless mentor to young scientists and an advocate for the expansion of training opportunities.

Betty Tai [National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)]
Dr. Tai is Director of the Center for the Clinical Trials Network at the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). She is being recognized for her leadership of the NIDA Clinical Trials Network and her instrumental role in defining future research issues and identifying new avenues for collaboration within the Network.

The recipients of the 2006 commendations will be honored at the December 2006 APA Science Leadership Conference.

Past recipients of the Meritorious Research Service Commendation are:

Susan F. Chipman (Office of Naval Research)
Mary Ellen Oliveri (National Institute of Mental Health, NIH)
Cora Lee Wetherington (National Institute of Drug Abuse, NIH)
Ellen Diane Witt (National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, NIH)

2004 Ronald P. Abeles (Office of Behavioral and Social Science Research, NIH)
Israel I. Lederhendler (National Institute of Mental Health, NIH)
G. Reid Lyon (National Institutes of Child Health and Human Development, NIH)
Willo Pequegnat (National Institute of Mental Health, NIH)
Anita Miller Sostek (National Institutes of Health)

2003 Steven J. Breckler (National Science Foundation)
Edgar M. Johnson (Army Research Institute)
Peter G. Kaufmann (National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, NIH)
Lisa S. Onken (National Institute of Drug Abuse, NIH)
Delores Parron (National Institutes of Health)

2002 Rodney Cocking (awarded posthumously) (National Science Foundation)
Robert Croyle (National Cancer Institute, NIH)
Sarah Friedman (National Institutes of Child Health & Human Development, NIH)
David Shurtleff (National Institute of Drug Abuse, NIH)
Joseph Young (National Science Foundation)

Nominations for the 2007 awards will be accepted beginning in the fall. For additional information, and nomination forms, please see the Science Directorate.

Coming Soon: A Scientist's Guide to the APA Convention

The Science Directorate is currently preparing a listing of science-focused programs for the 114th APA Convention which is being held in New Orleans, LA from August 10-13, 2006. Science Directorate sponsored programs as well as sessions sponsored by APA Divisions will be highlighted. This web-based guide will be available online on the Science Directorate's webpage in late June. Copies will also be available for distribution during the convention at the Science Directorate Booth.

This guide is being developed to highlight and promote science-focused convention programming. Convention programs include symposia, paper and poster sessions, invited addresses, discussions, and workshops.