Committee Reports

APA Toronto Convention Program Committee Report
Program Highlights: Media Psychology For Good

Chair: Pamela Rutledge, PhD

The Division 46 theme for the upcoming 2015 Convention in Toronto is “Media Psychology For Good.” In keeping with this focus, Division 46 has a rich line-up of symposia that explore the positive impact, use, and potential of media and technology. The Presidential Panel “The Internet of You” emphasizes the theme of positive media by providing a multi-faceted look at how media and technology, from the personalized and constant connection afforded by wearables and smart phones to the sophisticated application of game dynamics, can impact attitudes, behavior, learning, and well-being.

True to the diversity of Division 46 members, the symposia present a range of areas where media psychologists can make a positive impact on the society. Symposia topics include a variety of clinical applications in the media, such as benefits, pitfalls and best practices of telepsychology, the role of social media as an intervention tool, and the use of video and filmmaking in the therapeutic process. Other symposia addressing the use and impact of interactive media technologies include the effects of playing videogames on attitudes and strategies for making online use more productive by exploring behaviors and strategies for dealing with such problematic online communications as prejudice and bullying.

One symposium will examine the pivotal role media psychologists can play as intermediaries between a crisis (e.g., the television-induced trauma surrounding 9/11) and its media coverage. Another panel compares the cultural differences in perceptions of civil rights between the U.S. and Canada for psychologists to lead the way in examining ethical issues underlying the spread of media technologies. Looking to the future, panels also take on the potential of developing media and technology for social impact, discussing aspects surrounding the use of media and emerging technologies for promoting social justice and advocacy.

Mark your calendars to attend the Division 46 Social Hour on Friday, August 7, 2015 starting at 5:00 pm. This is a chance to connect with old friends, make new ones, and celebrate the presentation of the Division 46 awards. We will also have information about some exciting projects, including the Division 46 Webinar Series and an innovative augmented reality project. You will also have the opportunity to see a demo of a new mobile game BattleKasters that is part of an innovative transmedia literacy project.

Time Title Type Location
10:00-10:50 am U.S. and Canadian Rights to Privacy Symposium Convention Centre Room 713A
11:00-11:50 am Social Media for Social Good Symposium Convention Centre Room 709
12:00-12:50pm Does it Matter How the Game is Played? Context Effects in Video Games on Attitudes and Behavior Symposium Convention Centre Room 206B
2:00-2:50pm Division 46 Executive Committee Meeting   Intercontinental Toronto Centre Hotel: Halton Room
3:00 -4:00 pm Division 46 Business Meeting Intercontinental Toronto Centre Hotel: Halton Room
Time Title Type Location
8:00 -8:50 am Interpersonal Relationships Mediated Through Technology Symposium Convention Centre Room 717B
9:00 -9:50 am The Internet, Dating, Companionship and Sex for an Aging Population Symposium Convention Centre Room 713A
10:00 -10:50 am The Use of Video and Filmmaking in Therapy and Research Symposium Convention Centre Room 709
11:00-11:50 am Internet of You—Media and Technology for Good Presidential Panel Symposium CE Credits Convention Centre Room 104D
4:00-4:50 pm Developing a Road Map for Telepsychological Practice Symposium Convention Centre Room 717A
5:00-6:50 pm DIVISION 46 SOCIAL HOUR Fairmont Royal York Hotel Salon B
Time Title Type Location
9:00 -9:50 am Effective Strategies for Dealing with Prejudicial and Potentially Harmful Online Communications Symposium Convention Centre Room 803B
10:00-11:50 am Media that Matters: Innovations and Advocacy Symposium CE Credits Convention Centre Room 205C
12:00-1:00 pm Ethnic/Race Aspects of Psychologists Work at Ground Zero Symposium CE Credits Convention Centre Room 104A
Time Title Type Location
1:00 -1:50 pm Topics in Media Psychology Convention Centre Exhibit Halls D and E

Award Committee Report

Chair: Bernard Luskin, EdD

The Board of Directors of the Society for Media Psychology and Technology congratulates the following 2015 award winners identified below. Awards will be presented during the 2015 APA Convention in Toronto, Canada. Additional awards will be announced as they are finalized.

Distinguished Lifetime Contribution to Media Psychology and Technology
Krishna Kumar, PhD

Dr. Kumar, professor of psychology, West Chester University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Kumar is being recognized for his steady and long-term leadership. Particularly noted is his tireless and creative work as Editor of The Amplifier Magazine, making it a professional publication of which Division 46 is very proud. Dr. Kumar has more than 100 publications, a long history of serving on many committees, is an elected APA Fellow and Fellow in seven APA divisions and is currently the President of Division 32, Society for Humanistic Psychology in addition to his service to Division 46.

Distinguished Applied Contributions to Media Psychology and Technology
Mary Karapetian Alvord, PhD

Dr. Alvord, is a psychologist and director of Alvord, Baker & Associates, LLC, MD. Her recognition is based on her 30-year history of applied contributions to psychology. The Awards Committee took particular note of her many publications, her strategic service to Division 46, her conduct of many seminars, webinars, panels, programs, leadership via Skype in the Classroom, active contributions to telehealth and telepsychology, and her mentoring in all areas of augmented reality applied in media psychology. Dr. Alvord is public education coordinator for the Maryland Psychological Association, President Emeritus of Division 46 and a major contributor in applied psychology.

Early Career Applied/Research Contributions to Media Psychology and Technology
Julia E. Hoffman, PsyD

Dr. Hoffman, National Director, Mobile Health, Mental Health Services of the Department of Veterans Affairs, is being recognized for her early career applied contributions to media psychology.

Early Career Applied/Research Contributions to Media Psychology and Technology
Janet de Merode, PhD

Dr. de Merode is being recognized for her applied work and research efforts on human issues of poverty in some 20 countries. Her article “Innovations and Principles for Success of the United Nations Literacy Decade” appeared in The International Learning Journal; she is a Lead Faculty for the International Psychology Department of The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, Washington D.C. campus and chairs the international committee of Division 46.

Student Dissertation/Research Award
Malte Elson, PhD

Dr. Elson, a digital game researcher from Cologne, Germany, is currently a post-doctoral researcher in the educational psychology research group at Ruhr University Bochum. His research relates to human learning and the acquisition of behaviors. His research focuses on how individuals can learn from and with media, voluntarily (e.g., in educational contexts) and involuntarily (e.g., the link between digital violence and aggressiveness). His dissertation (2015), was voted the best and is a model that others may use as a valuable resource.

Fellows Committee Report

Chair: V. Krishna Kumar, PhD

The Fellows committee is pleased to report the election of Christopher Ferguson as Fellow of Division 46 in 2015.

Membership Committee Report

Chair: Joanne Broder Sumerson, PhD

Happy Spring! This is a wonderful time of year to start something new. We survived the winter and well settled into 2015. Nature is blooming and so are our ideas.

The Membership Committee, Josh Cohen, Jonathan Grimes, and Eric Peterson, is working on our new and exciting spring projects to help our division meet your membership needs, based on Membership Survey data. We meet via videoconferencing every three weeks. Since you expressed that you want more networking opportunities, our current priority is to implement a Virtual Social Hour, which would be an online “party” where you sign up, log on, and meet people without having to wait until the annual “actual” social hour at convention.

We are growing steadily. Our membership consists of psychologists, practitioners, scholars, journalists, and students who work together to study, educate, and publicize to bridge the gap between research and practice in the media’s influence on behavior. We hope you will encourage your colleagues to join us.

We use social media for our personal and professional interactions, so why not include the Society of Media Psychology and Technology? 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, 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 for fun and relevant articles and hear members’ news such as links to their blogs, publication announcements, and media appearances. We are always looking for interesting content from you!

I look forward to meeting you at the Virtual Happy Hour and the “actual” Social Hour in Toronto.

Student Committee: Want to mentor a media psychology student?

Co-Chair: Shayne Aquino

Co-Chair: Tunisha Singleton

Media psychology students come in different ages, career goals, and stages in their program. Some are starting out and others are already involved in their respective professions. Having a mentor gives students a sense of direction and someone to look up to when the balance between school, work, and other obligations make the road to becoming a media psychologist rough and confusing. As a mentor, you can help pass down wisdom that you have learned over the years as you progress in your field. This Brief announcement is to ask for mentors who would like to be matched with mentees, as well as mentees who are searching for mentors.

Telepsychology Committee

Chair: Tony Ragusea

The Telepsychology Committee meeting is an important committee of Division 46. The application of psychology using technology is one of the frontiers of psychology, and the goal of the committee is to promote knowledge about and responsible, ethical use of technology. We meet every month via videoconference, and we are looking for new members. Grad students welcome! If you are interested, please contact me.

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