Q1: How do you envision an APA that both embraces its considerable history and reinvents itself in order to remain relevant for 21st-century psychologists?
The field of psychology has aided considerably in expanding the understanding of human nature and behavior by incorporating methods of scientific inquiry. Significant developments on multiple fronts have contributed to these advancements, including methods of treating mental disorders, insights about why people behave the way they do and, more recently, mapping the brain to explore the mysteries of consciousness. In order to remain relevant, APA must continue to invest resources devoted to educating the public and encouraging those with enthusiasm and intelligence to enter the field and assist in tackling the daunting problems of the 21st century.
Q2: Although the public is often fascinated by human behavior, it does not always view psychology as a science. What are your ideas for making APA the go-to place for the public to get information about the science of human behavior and its applications?
It is imperative that APA be recognized as the "go-to" place for information about psychological and clinical sciences. Watching TV while working out in my fitness center, I was delighted to see that research findings regarding the benefits of exercise were credited to APA. We know that behavioral health issues have become major contributors to preventable illnesses, leading to rising health-care costs; APA must make behavioral health issues the focus of public information. Continued dissemination of research about the science of health and human behavior is vital in order for psychology to become embedded in the public consciousness.
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