2012 APA/Clark University Workshop for High School Teachers: A summary

News from the 2012 workshop

When students returned to school and asked 25 high school psychology teachers what they did this past summer, you can be sure the students heard about their teachers’ experiences at Clark University in Worcester, Mass. Teachers from all over the U.S. converged on the Clark University campus to participate in the eighth annual APA/Clark University Workshop for High School Teachers, where they made new friends, exchanged resources and activities, and came away motivated to start back to school in September, eager to share what they learned with their students.

More than eight years ago, what has become fondly known as the Clark University “Psychology Teachers’ Summer Camp” was held for the very first time. Over those eight years, Clark University has continued to open its classrooms and dorms to workshop participants for this three day program, which has become one of the most sought-after professional development experiences available to high school psychology teachers.

For this year’s workshop, held in July, presenters included two master teachers, Debra Park and Michael Sullivan, Clark University psychology professors, and Dr. Amy Wolfson from the College of the Holy Cross. Dr. Randolph Smith of Lamar University delivered a keynote address entitled Though This Be Madness, Yet There is Method In't: The Importance of Research Methods in Introductory Psychology.

This annual workshop has been made possible through generous gifts from Lee Gurel, PhD, a Clark University alumnus and APA member, to both Clark and the American Psychological Foundation (APF). The workshop is co-sponsored by APA, APF, and Clark. Debra Park, one of the master teacher presenters, said, “I was honored to be involved in the planning and execution of the very first Clark University workshop eight years ago. When asked to come back and present at this year’s workshop, I did not hesitate to say ‘Yes!’ Teaching psychology has been my passion for over 35 years and to be able to continue to work with other teachers that share this passion is a joy. My profound thanks to Dr. Gurel, whose vision and generosity made the annual teacher workshop at Clark University a reality.”

When not participating in lectures, presentations and classroom activities, the teachers toured the historic Clark University campus, and learned about some of the early meetings held there at Clark University by prominent leaders in psychology, including G. Stanley Hall, Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud. Surely this firsthand look at psychological history helped round out a unique experience for participants, providing them with new information and ideas to take back to their psychology classrooms.

Information about the 2013 APA/Clark University Workshop will be posted to the TOPSS website by early 2013. The application deadline is traditionally April 15.

Eighth annual APA/Clark University Workshop for High School Teachers