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Kristi S. Multhaup
Mark E. Faust
Univ. of North Carolina at Charlotte
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Members-At-Large of the
David Washburn (08-11)
Jeremy Wolfe (08-11)
Mark Bouton (07-10)
University of Vermont
Nora Newcombe (07-10)
Gil Einstein (06-09)
Karen Hollis (06-09)
Mount Holyoke College
Graduate Student Representative
University of Iowa
Representative to APA Council
Emanuel Donchin (08-10)
University of South Florida
Thomas R. Zentall (07-09)
University of Kentucky
Michael Beran (Awards)
Mike Young (Fellows)
Southern Illinois University
Emily Elliott (Program)
Charles L. Brewer
Early Career Psychologist
California State U. at Fullerton
Science Directorate Update
Howard Kurtzman, Deputy Executive Director
APA Science Directorate
Greetings from Washington to the members of Division 3. Here is some of what we’ve been working on recently in the APA Science Directorate:
Science Funding and Policy in the New Administration. Along with other scientific organizations, APA advocated strongly for inclusion of supplementary funding for the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health in the recent economic stimulus bill. Individual APA members, alerted by APA Science Government Relations staff, also communicated with their Senators in support of the funding. The effort paid off. The final legislation, signed by President Obama on February 17, provided very large increases for both agencies. For FY 2009, the legislation added $3.0 billion to the NSF budget (on top of the FY 2008 base of $6.1 billion) and $10.4 billion to the NIH budget (on top of the FY 2008 base of $29.6 billion).
It is expected that the bulk of the funds will be used to support research projects that can make substantial progress within the next two years. The agencies will release specific plans for soliciting and funding proposals in the weeks ahead. APA will focus on ensuring that an appropriate portion of these new funds is used to support high-quality behavioral science research. APA will also work to maintain healthy budgets for these agencies in future years.
APA has already laid the foundation for a productive relationship with the new Presidential administration. During the transition period, APA, working with other organizations, submitted six statements to the incoming administration on a variety of research and public health policy issues. In December, APA Science Directorate officials met in person with the NSF transition review team. The important contributions of behavioral and social science research, both basic and applied, to health, education, national security, and economic development was a major theme of these communications. (See the December issue of Science Policy Insider News for more details on these efforts.)
Science Leadership Conference. The fourth annual APA Science Leadership Conference, sponsored by the Science Directorate and Board of Scientific Affairs, was held on Oct 2-4, 2008, in Tempe, Arizona. The theme of the conference was Designing the Future: Innovations in Knowledge Dissemination for Psychological Science. Organized in collaboration with the APA Publications and Databases Office, the conference explored the changing landscape of publication and sharing of scientific information and the new opportunities that arise for the dissemination of psychological science.
The 125 conference participants included not only psychologists but also library and information scientists, publishers, and scientists in other fields who have pioneered new approaches to disseminating research. The conference agenda featured presentations and discussions on such topics as:
A report of the recommendations generated at the conference, which will help guide future APA initiatives, is in preparation. For further coverage of the conference, see the November issue of Psychological Science Agenda (PSA) and the December issue of the APA Monitor on Psychology.
Advanced Training Institutes. The Directorate sponsors Advanced Training Institutes (ATIs) each summer at institutions around the country. They provide advanced graduate students, post-docs, and faculty-level researchers with exposure to current and emerging research methods and technologies. Four ATIs will be offered in 2009:
Nonlinear Methods for Psychological Science
University of Cincinnati
June 8-12, 2009
(application deadline: March 24)
Research Methods with Diverse Racial and Ethnic Groups
Michigan State University
June 22-26, 2009
(application deadline: March 30)
Structural Equation Modeling in Longitudinal Research
University of Virginia
June 29-July 3, 2009
(application deadline: April 6)
Exploratory Data Mining in Behavioral Research
University of Southern California
July 20-24, 2009
(application deadline: April 14)
Modest financial assistance is available for some ATI participants. For complete information and application materials, consult the ATI webpage.
Animal Research DVD. A DVD on The Role of Nonhuman Animal Research in Psychology, produced under the supervision of the APA Committee on Animal Research and Ethics (CARE), has been released. The DVD contains three segments: “Psychopharmacology” (previously released in VHS format), “Significance of Touch” (on the role of physical contact in development), and “Recovery of Function” (on recovery of motor function following nervous system injury). The segments, which are appropriate for high school and introductory undergraduate classes, can be used to initiate discussions on the relevance and ethics of research with nonhuman animals. Each segment is approximately 15 minutes long. Teacher study guides are also included on the DVD. You may obtain the DVD for free by contacting the Science Directorate at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-336-6000.
Grand Challenges Publications. Health Disparities, the third in a series of Science Directorate booklets on “Society’s Grand Challenges: Insights from Psychological Science,” has been released. The series, which also includes booklets on Prolonging Vitality and Global Climate Change, are aimed at lay and student audiences. The booklets can be found online or can be ordered from the Science Directorate (email@example.com, 202-336-6000).
Nurturing Interdisciplinary Science. The APA Board of Scientific Affairs (BSA), which oversees the Science Directorate, recently engaged in brainstorming sessions on how APA could enhance its support and promotion of interdisciplinary approaches to research and training. Writing in the January issue of PSA, Alice Young, former chair of BSA, reported on the many useful and imaginative proposals that emerged from these discussions. These ideas will inform the Science Directorate’s future activities. I invite all members to contact me with their own thoughts about what APA and academic institutions can do to advance interdisciplinary psychological science.
Award Deadlines Approaching. The deadlines for submitting nominations for major awards administered by the Science Directorate are coming up soon:
Research Service Commendation
Recognizes individuals who have made outstanding contributions to psychological science through their commitment to a culture of service
(Nomination deadline: April 1, 2009)
for Culture of Service in the Psychological Sciences
Recognizes individuals who have made major research contributions, in three categories:
· Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award
· Distinguished Scientific Award for the Applications of Psychology
· Distinguished Scientific Award for Early Career Contribution to Psychology
(Nomination deadlines: June 1, 2009)
See the APA Science Awards page for information on all awards, including prizes and funding for students.
You may stay current on Science Directorate news by checking back at our website and by reading the Directorate’s monthly newsletter, Psychological Science Agenda (PSA), and its science policy newsletter, Science Policy Insider News (SPIN).
I look forward to seeing many of you this summer at the APA Convention in Toronto (August 6-9). Feel free to contact me at any time with questions or suggestions.
Deputy Executive Director
APA Science Directorate