Regional Associations Reach Out for Science


The Science Directorate effort to promote science outreach programs by the regional psychological associations was so successful in 1996 that it is being repeated this year. The regionals have shown ingenuity and careful planning in using their $1,000 grants from the Science Directorate to design programs that meet their particular scientific needs.

This year, some of the regional associations are continuing science outreach programs that worked particularly well last year. For example, in 1996, the Southeastern Psychological Association (SEPA) gave $200 awards to the top five graduate student papers in areas of scientific psychology that are typically underrepresented at their meeting: animal behavior, neuropsychology, pharmacology, physiological, and comparative. Because of the positive feedback the program received, this year at its meeting in Atlanta, SEPA will again present graduate student awards.

The Rocky Mountain Psychological Association (RMPA) also focused on attracting science-oriented graduate students in 1996 by awarding travel grants to its annual meeting. This gen-erated a lot of competition, and therefore, is being repeated in 1997 to help students travel to the RMPA meeting in Reno.

The Western Psychological Association (WPA) is using its award this year, as it did last, to promote its Lewis M. Terman Western Regional Teachers' Conference. WPA is particularly interested in getting the word out about the conference to high school and community college teachers in the immediate geographic vicinity of Seattle, which is where the meeting is taking place this year.

Two regional associations are using their awards to venture onto the World Wide Web. Last year, the Midwestern Psychological Association (MPA) established a Web page (http://www.ssc.msu.edu/~mpa) with its grant. This year, it is expanding the capabilities of the page to make the full program of the annual meeting available, to allow people to apply for membership online, to enable proposal submission and nominations for session chairs online, and to facilitate communication. Following MPA's lead, the Southwestern Psychological Association (SWPA) will establish its own Web site this year. Last year, SWPA supported student travel awards with its grant.

Other regional psychological associations have been using their awards to support special symposia. In October 1996, the New England Psychological Association (NEPA) funded a well-attended symposium as part of its "Science and Society Series." The symposium topic was "Aggression as addressed from several psychological perspectives: An integration of scientific research and application." In 1997, NEPA will host the symposium "Preventing misuses of science."

The Eastern Psychological Association (EPA) will hold two special symposia this year in Washington, DC, on the fractionalization of psychology. Symposia titles are "The neuro-cognitive-social-clinical psychology of depression" and "Contemporary developments in behavior analysis across the domains of psychology."

The Science Directorate has sup-ported scientific activities at the region-als for some time, including the Distinguished Scientist Lecturer Program, exhibits at annual meetings, and the publication of highlights of the regional meeting programs.


To Homepage Search