Committee Reports

Our committee chairs report on the activities of their committees over the past six months.

Membership Chair Update Fall 2013

Joanne Broder Sumerson, Chair
joannebrodersumerson@gmail.com

Happy Fall and Winter!  I hope it has been a good year for you. This year has zipped by and it seems like before we know it, we will be cheering in 2014.  Fall is the time of year to evaluate the progress of our personal and professional goals.  Thankfully, the Membership Committee met the annual goal of increasing our membership by 77% from 2012 to 2013.

Division growth means a bigger network for everyone.  We already have 45% members in the first quarter of 2014 than in all of 2012.  Our biggest increase in membership is from students.  I have been working with the Student Committee, the future of the Society of Media Psychology and Technology and oh my, what an impressive group who fit right in.  Our membership-as-a-whole consist of students (both formal and informal since we are always learning), psychologists, practitioners, and scholars who work together to publicize, study, research, educate, as well as apply media and technology to improve best practices for individuals, groups, and systems.

The Membership Committee needs to hear from you!  Please take five to ten minutes to complete the division’s voluntary, anonymous, and confidential Membership Satisfaction Survey.  The purpose of the survey is to get a pulse on how the Division is meeting your membership needs.  We administered a similar survey in 2010 and listened to your feedback.  Thank you in advance for your valuable insight by clicking this link https://survey.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_aXFuHqQTyhTkg97.

Social media is a great way to connect and network with our members.  Follow us on Twitter @APADivision46 to stay in the know with what is latest and greatest. Our Facebook group APA Division 46|Society of Media Psychology and Technology is an exciting place to learn some of the newest trends and controversies on topics of how we are influenced by media, technology, and other related issues in pop culture.  “Like” us on Facebook, along with the other 417 (and counting) “Friends” to read relevant articles and hear membership news such as links to their blogs, publication announcements, and media appearances.   Plus, the group is always looking for interesting content from you!

I hope to cross paths with you before the convention in Washington, DC. Aloha (still feeling the Hawaiian spirit)!

News Media, Public Education, Public Policy Committee Report

Jerri Lynn Hogg, Chair
HoggJL@aol.com

Committee: Elizabeth Carll, founder; Mary Alvord; Linda Berg Cross; Sharon Brennan; Helen Friedman; Pamela Rutledge; Paul Scheinberg; June Wilson; Karen McGraa; & Bernie Luskin.

The committee continues its mission to recognize the importance of news reporting to benefit the public.  Several committee members have participated in interviews that have appeared in national news outlets, including print, television, radio, and digital formats.

Annually, we recognize a journalist that exemplifies excellence in reporting psychological information and research.  The USA Today’s reporter Nanci Hellmich was this year’s News Media Recognition Award recipient.  She reported on many psychological issues, including changing personal behaviors to become healthier, the meaning of will power and self-control, stress, relationships and how children can survive emotional turmoil.  In her acceptance letter, she stated, “I have relied on the expertise of the American Psychological Association for most of my 30 years as a reporter at USA TODAY.”

New projects for the committee include adding to a developing series of interviews on the division website and will focus on specific recommendations helpful to psychologists who are interviewed by media.  I would like to thank the committee members for their ongoing work and participation.

The New Technologies Committee Report Fall 2013

Fran Blumberg, Co-Chair
blumberg@fordham.edu

Sharon Tettegah, Co-Chair
stettega@illinois.edu

The committee prepared an article for this issue of the Amplifier concerning media literacy initiatives for children, adolescents, and families drawing on interviews conducted earlier this year with leading experts in media literacy education: Stephen Balkam (FOSI), Sonia Livingstone (London School of Economics), and Renee Hobbs (University of Rhode Island).  Future interviews are scheduled with ethnographer Alice Marwick (Fordham University) whose work concerns online identity and consumer culture in the digital world.  Three committee members Jerri Lynn Hogg, Pam Rutledge, and Fran Blumberg also presented as part of an invited symposium on media literacy at the Hawaii APA convention.

Convention Programming Committee Report

Jerri Lynn Hogg, Co-Chair
HoggJL@aol.com

Fran Blumberg, Co-Chair
Blumberg@fordham.edu  (2013 convention)

Linda Gomberg, Co-Chair
Blumberg@fordham.edu  (2014convention)

Media Psychology & Technology:  Avatars, Telehealth, Twitter—the 2013 Hawaii Convention was a great success.  We look forward to more excellent programming in Washington DC in 2014!

Presentations at Hawaii included research, case studies, and dialogue on traditional and emergent media technologies for academic and practicing psychologists.  Themes integrated contemporary media, social media, blogs, ethical messaging, media literacy, virtual reality, telehealth, and technology applications for use with veterans, professional practice, social change and more.

We used Eventbrite to invite and connect members and convention attendees to our social hour.   We installed Augmented Reality throughout the convention site to engage attendees in an interactive dialogue about the upcoming presentations by linking to short videos by symposia chairs describing their panel.  A special thank you for Shane Pase for designing and testing all Augmented Reality installations; it was a labor of love.

The in-suite programming offered time and space for in-depth discussions, presentations, and demonstrations of new technologies outside of conference programming.   Shane Pase held a standing room only (with people waiting outside the door) series of Augmented Reality demonstrations and its uses in therapeutic settings.  Student groups and SIGs used the in-suite for meetings and sponsored talks.

The social hour was well attended, festive, and fun—thanks to Bernie Luskin and Mary Alvord for providing the suite.  During our social hour, awards were presented, raffle prizes of signed books, training, and more were given out, and there was even a celebratory song.  The tools and technology demonstrations were well attended.  Members and non-members (many of them are now members as a result of the social hour) gathered to share their mutual interest in media psychology and technology.

Mary Alvord’s presidential panel initiatives included collaborative talks on Effective and ethical messaging in the evolving digital world, Media literacy:  An imperative, not a luxury, Media Psychology:  Innovative applications of emerging technologies, and Apps, telehealth, virtual reality:  Addressing mental health needs of service wo/men and vets.  All were well attended and enjoyed.

The symposium Radical ways in which we are and will be communicating through social media with new technology, attracted APA Monitor reporter Lisa Bowen who wrote an APA Monitor blog about it. The article Virtual plus real equals augmented, showcased Augmented Reality applications, its impact, and included citations from panel members Shane Pase, Garry Hare, and Sean Thoennes.  This year’s programming included numerous co-listed events with other divisions and co-sponsored events with Division 47 Sports Psychology and Division 19 Military Psychology.

We are in full swing preparing for the 122sth convention in Washington, DC.  There are a few format changes due to a new APA initiative.  In addition to divisional programing, we have a new category for interdivisional collaborative programming with 125 hours for submissions that include at least two, but no more than three, divisions.  We have already submitted proposals for collaborative programing with several divisions on such topics as public relations training and how to navigate new technology for the psychologist, eHealth and eHealth interventions, storytelling for the public good, digital technologies, and quality of in-person social interactions.

The division specific programming with 16 hours will be created, designed, and reviewed by division members.  The theme for the 2014 Convention is Media Psychology and Technology:  Getting the word out!  The focus is on media and technology, early career media psychologist, and educational programming in media psychology and technology.  We hope to incorporate newer technologies and how they can be used in psychological research and mental health care.

We are seeking panel members for evaluating convention proposal submissions.  All submissions go through blind review.  Please contact me if you wish to be included on the blind reviewers’ panel.  It takes great effort to plan for a convention.  We want to thank everyone who assisted our efforts.   A special thank you to Fran Blumberg as she rotates off as co-chair of the program committee.  Her work as the 2013 co-chair was invaluable.   We welcome Linda Gomberg as committee co-chair for the 2014 convention.

It has been an honor to be a part of the planning.

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