Centering on Mentoring

The Task Force

Former APA President Gerald P. Koocher, PhD, established a presidential task force on mentoring to connect psychology graduate students and early career psychologists with more experienced senior psychologists in a range of mentoring relationships that cut across areas of scientific and professional interests.

The mission of the task force was to work with organizations and individuals to facilitate mentoring relationships both formal and informal; and to leave structures in place that will sustain mentoring as an integral part of being a psychologist. To accomplish this goal, the task force generated programming appropriate for State, Provincial, and Territorial Psychological Associations and Divisions along with diverse educational, research, and policy outcomes, and web-based networking. The Task Force has established partnerships with the Policy and Planning Board as well as other Boards and Committees and there were convention programs.

Mentoring is a professional relationship with a focus on personal and professional development. It may occur through various communication venues including, but not limited to face-to-face interactions, phone, or e-mail. The duration and intensity of the relationship may vary depending on the dynamic of the match and the needs of the individuals involved. The program emphasizes mutual respect with a particular focus on ethics and etiquette. The task force adopted the terms "mentor" and "mentee," and not "protégé."

Task Force Materials

The Centering on Mentoring Task Force created an Introduction to Mentoring guide for mentors and mentees. The document defines mentoring, outlines the stages of the mentor–mentee relationship, addresses the ethics and etiquette of mentoring, and presents research about mentoring in general.

The Centering on Mentoring Task Force created a Mentoring Training module to guide the mentor and mentee as they enter into and maintain a mentoring relationship. The document addresses benefits of mentoring, roles for the mentor and mentee, discusses ethics and etiquette, and offers advice for the mentors and mentees in addressing issues and establishing a healthy relationship.

APA-Affiliated Mentoring Programs