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Text of Letter:
Clinical Neuropsychology Division 40
American Psychological Association
November 28, 1995
Dr. William Howell
Executive Director for Science
American Psychological Association
750 First Street NE Washington, DC 20002-4242
Dear Dr. Howell,
I am writing to inform you of some new developments towards promoting science that have taken place in the past year in Division 40, the Division of Clinical Neuropsychology. In 1994, Division 40 developed a long-term strategic plan to help define and outline plans for achieving specific goals in four broad areas: science, practice, education, and public interest. I have enclosed a copy of the Report of the Planning Committee for your review as it was published in the 1995 Winter edition of the Division 40 Newsletter.
In August, 1994, I was appointed to serve as Chair of the Science Advisory Committee for the Division, with the task of beginning to implement the science-oriented recommendations of the Planning Committee's report. A request was made to the Division members for volunteers to serve as committee members. I have been most fortunate in assembling 10 neuropsychologists to serve on this committee with diverse interests but a common goal in promoting science within our field. I have also enclosed a copy of the committee members for your review. The Division 40 Executive Committee has also provided the Science Advisory Committee with a budget to help us in achieving our mission.
This committee met for the first time in August, 1995 during the APA convention. A common opinion expressed among all committee members was that Division 40 needs to work in cooperation with the Science Directorate at APA in helping to broaden the perception of our Division within APA as not being identified as just a clinical” Division.Our over 4,000 members represent a wide array of neuropsychologists, including practitioners, educators and researchers, with the vast majority of members combining all of these areas in their daily work. We seek support and recognition first and foremost from your office as a Division that also warrants inclusion in the list of science” Divisions within APA. We ask to be more actively included in activities stemming from your office pertaining to the enhancement of science within the broader APA organization.
Letter - November 28, 1995
Often on our own initiative, Division 40 has annually supported and actively sought to participate in Science Weekend. Our 1995 Program Chair, Dr. Max Trenerry, attended planning meetings with your Directorate in the Fall of 1994 to help plan Science Weekend. Dr. Trenerry helped to organize several of the symposia that were offered and well received at the 1995 Science Weekend. Division 40 was also very encouraged by the decision of the APA Council's last year to provide the Science Directorate with additional funds to promote science within APA. As the appointed Division 40 Liaison to the Science Directorate, however, I was surprised to read about the recommendations a subcommittee of Science Divisions assembled by your Directorate made with regard to how this funding should be utilized. Our Division has no complaints with the decisions made for funding use, but we were disappointed that we were not considered a Science” Division, or asked to participate in this process. Perhaps we should have been more forthright in volunteering our services; we likely would have had some innovative ideas to offer the Science Directorate. I should also point out I received numerous communications from your office as the Division 40 Science Liaison throughout 1994, and also attended the day long meeting held with Division Science Liaisons at the 1994 convention. I have received no communications since that time from the Science Directorate. Division 40 definitely wants to be in close and consistent contact with your office, and to be kept abreast of new developments within APA as they pertain to science.We strongly desire to work closely with your Directorate towards achieving the science-oriented goals Division 40 has outlined.
In addition to working cooperatively with your office to improve the image of Division 40 as a Science Division within APA, our Science Advisory Committee has several other important agendas we wish to share with you.First, we look to actively recruit even more scientists into our Division. We hope to recruit members affiliated with other APA Divisions who share our common interest in researching brain-behavioral relationships into Division 40. We additionally seek to improve our relationships with other science Divisions within APA. We also seek to recruit new members from outside of APA; neuropsychologists and neuroscientists who also may misperceive of Division 40 as only meeting the needs of clinicians. We offer a very diverse program of research presentations at the APA convention (in fact, over 40 hours of programming), which we plan to more actively advertise among neuroscientists not affiliated with APA. As part of our efforts at getting the scientists to attend the convention, we also are developing plans to have advanced level continuing education courses offered at the convention that would have a broader appeal to neuropsychologists and neuroscientists.We anticipate these workshops being offered at the 1997 convention. Another important agenda item for us is to work on encouraging research in clinical settings and from a multidisciplinary approach. We further seek to encourage our student members' interest in science and research, and are developing plans for a student research grant program which would competitively provide students with funding for research projects.
At this juncture, we would very much welcome help from the Science Directorate towards achieving these important goals.We would appreciate efforts to improve communication between our Division and the Directorate, such as putting us on your active mailing list, e-mailLetter -
November 28, 1995
notifications, etc. We would very much like to know what projects the Science Directorate is working on, and how they may impact neuropsychologists.I believe you will find many Division 40 members interested in volunteering their expertise towards Science Directorate projects. We also request representation in the future as new planning groups are formed and decisions are made regarding the role of science within APA.We would further appreciate any advice and help from your office about how best to achieve the long-range goals outlined in this letter. For instance, do you have any innovative ideas about how Division 40 might attract APA members from other Divisions as well as neuroscientists who may not necessarily be current members of APA into Division 40 as members, or at the very least, entice them to participate in our convention program?
I look forward to working with your office and the over 4,000 members of Division 40 to continue to promote our mutual agenda of improving science's position and role within APA.
Ann C. Marcotte, Ph.D.
Chair, Science Advisory Committee, Division 40
Secretary, Division 40
Clinical Assistant Professor
Psychiatry and Human Behavior
School of Medicine
cc: Dr. Kenneth Adams, President, Division 40
Dr. Carl Dodrill, Past-President, Division 40
Dr. Eileen Fennell, President-Elect, Division 40
Members, Div. 40 Science Advisory Committee
Dr. Raymond Fowler, Chief Executive Officer, APA
Ms. Sarah Jordan, APA Division Services
(End of letter text)