Candidates for APA President
What is the greatest single challenge facing the practice of psychology?
First psychology must remain relevant to society. Beyond that, perhaps the greatest challenge to the profession involves economic viability. The cost of educating new psychologists increases while funding for predoctoral and postdoctoral placements dries up. Newly graduated young doctors are scrambling for $30,000 jobs! Is doctoral training really only worth $15 an hour? How will these new psychologists pay their educational loans? One answer is for psychology to restructure as other professions did long ago. Licensing exams should be taken upon receiving the doctorate, in order to permit reimbursement from third-party payers. Anything else is now anachronistic and irrational.
In the past, psychology has had little influence on K-12 education. How can psychology (in all of its applications) be brought to bear to improve how children are educated?
The study of psychology should be integrated into the curriculum of every child's education along with the basics of biology, chemistry and physical health. Beyond that, educational psychologists should be conducting relevant research with practical utility. School psychologists are already doing a great job but we need more of them. All psychologists should be providing more pro bono presentations to K-12 students, teachers and parents. Today's parents need lots of help and we can offer excellent parent-skills training. It's arguably better to offer this in the school environment rather than in therapy. Call your kid's school; offer your time. Educate!