2018 Mid-Winter Meeting Notes

Joe Miles, Ph.D.
Joe Miles, Ph.D.

PDF file of 2018 Division 49 Mid Winter Meeting Summary


Travel Grants

Apply for Money to Study Groups:  Division 49 Foundation Awards!

Today more than ever, our work as group therapists is challenged as Group Psychotherapy continues to be absent from the list of Specialty Designations in psychology.  We urge many of you to consider applying for either of this year’s two grants, which help supports the study of group psychology and group psychotherapy.   Not up for research at this time?  Then please consider sharing with your colleagues or students!  These grants are great ways to build on our knowledge base and help with costs to conduct small research studies.  The deadline for both of these grants is June 1, 2018. For more information on who is eligible and how to apply, please visit

The APF Div. 49 Group Psychology Grant ($2,000) supports innovative group psychology research focused toward groups in applied settings.

The Group Psychology Grant focuses primarily on processes and performance in non-disordered populations. This may also include members’ beliefs about and identification with the group. Samples of topics appropriate for the group psychology award include (but are not limited to):

  • Impact of individual differences (e.g., personality), beliefs (e.g., identification with the group), and situational or structural factors (e.g., within-group conflict, virtuality) on group processes, judgment, decision making, or performance.
  • Impact of group interaction on member states such as beliefs, affect, interest in affiliation, and identification with the group.
  • Differences in leadership and its impact on group process or performance
  • Measurement of group-level constructs such as team emotional intelligence, group cohesion, collective resilience, collective efficacy, etc.

The APF Div. 49 Group Psychotherapy Grant ($2,000) supports innovative group psychotherapy research applied to small groups in a naturalistic setting.

The Group Psychotherapy Grant focuses primarily on groups in a therapeutic context. Issues such as effectiveness of different approaches to group therapy would fall under this area.  Although this will often involve studies of group psychotherapy, it may also include other groups with health implications (e.g., support groups for smoking cessation, weight loss, etc.). Samples of topics appropriate for the group psychotherapy award include (but are not limited to):

  • Efficacy of group therapy for specific disorders
  • Impact of member individual differences, including gender, personality, prior duration of disorder, or comorbidity, on effectiveness of group therapy
  • Relative efficacy of different modes of therapy (e.g., comparing group to individual) or different communication styles (e.g., use of referential language) within or across disorders
  • The role of group climate in the effectiveness of group therapy



Committee Reports

Treasurer’s Report

Amy Nitza, PhD
Amy Nitza, Ph.D., Treasurer

Our Division ended 2017 in a solid financial position.  Our 2017 year-end numbers are below, with 2016 year-end numbers included for comparison. Our primary source of revenue continues to be the journal, which performed well, although royalties were slightly lower than in 2016.  Membership dues were down significantly. However, our overall expenses were lower than anticipated, and we ended 2017 with a positive net income.


Division Performance Report 16-17
2017 2016
   Membership Dues 2242 3621
   Contributions 0 500
   Interest/Dividends 13 35
   Misc. (CE at conv) 0 0
   Royalties 42422 43408
Total Income 44677 47564
   Midwinter Meeting 10552.31 10711
   Newsletter 2300 2299
   Awards and Grants 9865.83 4600
   Convention 2720.39 6477
   Committees 584.91 945
   Liasions/External Committees 2747.87 7758
   Social Media 2000 2000
   Marketing 105 150
   APA Administrative Services 2850 2975
   Miscellaneous 30.81 0
Total Expenses 33757.12 37915
Net Income/(Loss) 10919.88 9649
Cash Balance 65501 52812
Investments/Other Assets 43963 43722
Net Assets 109464 96534

Looking forward, our budget for 2018 as approved by the board at the midwinter meeting in early February is below.  We continue to invest in our membership through the provision of numerous student and professional awards, and through division events and opportunities to connect at the APA Convention.  We also continue to invest in advocacy through sending representatives and liaisons to select APA committees and external groups as well.


2018 Budget Proposed  
 SUMMARY  2018 Budget
 Total income  $102,030
 Total expenses $52,200
 Income less expenses: $49,830
 INCOME DETAILS  2018 Budget
Journal Royalties $41,000
Dues $2,500
Interest $30
Contributions $500
CEU Royalties $-
Carry Forward from 2017 $58,000
Income: $102,030
100 Midwinter Meeting $12,000
200 Newsletter
  Editor Stipend $2,000
  Publishing $300
300 Awards & Grants
  Moreland Dissertation $1,000
  Student Posters $600
  Student Diversity Posters $600
  Group Psychologist of Year $1,000
  Professional Achievement in Diversity $1,000
  Student Diversity Award $500
  Practice Award $1,000
 Teaching Award $1,000
  Student Travel Awards $4,000
  Research Grant(s) $4,000
400 Convention
  Suite and Executive Meeting $3,000
  Social $2,500
  Promotional $1,000
  Student Conference Coordinator $2,000
  Recording Fellows Talks $2,000
500 Committees
  ECP $150
  Membership $750
 Student Committee $300
 Other Committees $1,500
600 Liasions/External Committees
  COS Dues  $550
  COS Attendance $900
  CAPP/FAC Attendance  $800
Other Liasions  $2,000
700 Social Media
  Consultant  $2,000
  Hootsuite  $-
  Other Social Media  $-
800 Marketing  $700
900 APA Administrative Services  $3,000
1000 Miscellaneous  $50
Expenses:  $52,200


If you have any questions about this report or our Division finances, feel free to contact me at any time.


Committee Reports

Committee for the Advancement of Professional Practice

Sean Woodland, Ph.D.
Sean Woodland, Ph.D.

CAPP Liaison Report

Notes from the open session of the Committee for the Advancement of Professional Practice (CAPP)

Sean Woodland, PhD

I am excited in 2018 to begin my role as Division 49’s CAPP liaison, as well as the Federal Advocacy Coordinator (FAC).  My first formal duty under this role was to attend the open session of the CAPP Meeting on February 2-3.  Below are some highlights from this meeting.

Day 1 Highlights

Friday morning started off strong with an address from Arthur Evans, PhD, CEO of APA.  His objective was to communicate his strategy for “modernizing” APA, along with some specific changes that will be coming soon.  Dr. Evans’ strategy is heavily influences by the idea of “transformational change”; that is, change that will better equip APA for the future landscape of the profession in ways that we’ve never seen before.  Included is a new membership model in which members will automatically gain access to both APA and its non-profit arm.  A moratorium will be placed on member dues for first three years after implementation.  This new model is designed to increase capacity for advocacy for both science and practice.

The afternoon also had a flavor of advocacy and change, including discussions on the upcoming Practice Leadership Conference (PLC), and an update on government relations.  The PLC will take place March 10-13, 2018.  The theme this year is “Advancing Practice Together.”  Invited to the PLC each year are state association leadership and designees, as well as division designees.  I will be attending PLC this year and will provide a full report for the next newsletter.

Friday’s government relations discussion focused on the efforts that the Political Action Committee (PAC) has been making to further the purposes of psychologists.  In the last year the PAC has been focused on lobbying for many causes, most notably preserving the Affordable Care Act.  PAC spending in 2017 was equally divided between political parties.

Day 2 Highlights

Saturday morning included a lively discussion on “the Master’s Issue.”  For decades graduates of psychology Master’s degrees have been left with an unsure path moving forward for practicing independently.  The urgency on this issue has been accelerated because CACREP (the accrediting body for Master’s counseling and specialty programs) has begun to systematically bar psychology Master’s graduates from taking licensing exams.  The CAPP views maintaining the status quo on the Master’s Issue no longer an option, and would like to pursue action soon.  The key issues include titles, scope of practice, supervised vs. independent practice, and accreditation.

The remainder of Day 2 was highlighted by technology advances and changes in psychology.  These include HipaaSmart and PsyPact; HipaaSmart is a new “one-stop shop” for education/information on

privacy, security, and breach notification.  PsyPact is the name for policy being put forth across states that will allow for temporary telehealth services from one state to the next.  There was also discussion of the EPPP2, which will include an additional examination germane to the independent practice of psychology.  Passage of the original EPPP (general knowledge of psychology) will be a prerequisite for taking the second part, but it is planned that students will be able to take the first half earlier than is currently specified.  These changes are planned to take effect in January 2020.

There was much more discussed during the two-day open session that could not be included in this summary.  Those interested in learning more may email Sean Woodland, PhD at

Committee Reports Other Information

Group Specialty

Nina Brown, Ed.D., LPC, NCC, FAGPA
Nina Brown, Ed.D., LPC, NCC, FAGPA

Dear Division 49 Members,

We are actively working towards getting “Group” recognized as a specialty by the Commission for the Recognition of Specialties and Proficiencies in Psychology (CRSPPP). The more or us to register positive comments about this application, the more likely it will be accepted. This would be an important recognition of group work and would have important implications for education, training, recognition and funding. Please take a few moments to register your comments at the link provided below.

Commission for the Recognition of Specialties and Proficiencies in Professional Psychology (CRSPPP)

The APA’s CRSPPP is accepting comments for specialty and proficiency petitions via the Education Directorate’s Public Comment website ( Closing deadline for comments is 5:00PM EST, 6th March 2018. Please contact Dr. Antoinette Minniti ( if you have any questions.

Early Career Psychologists Uncategorized

Polarizing Political Topics in Groups

Polarizing Political Topics in Groups


Using Group-Prevention to Target School Climate

Shana Ingram, BA
Shana Ingram, BA

Using Group-Prevention to Target School Climate

Bullying is not a new phenomenon, but its presence in our schools and its harmful effects not only in childhood and adolescence but throughout life is one of the most pressing reasons behind finding and implementing successful, sustainable prevention programs. If children do not feel safe in school, how can they be expected to learn? Providing a safe, supportive school environment is crucial in fostering academic and socioemotional success (Cohen, McCabe, Michelli, & Pickeral, 2009). This school environment, also known as school climate, reflects the quality of life experienced while at school and consists of students’, parents’, and other school personnel’s experiences (National School Climate Council, 2012). Research has shown that positive school climates promote academic achievement and social development (McEvoy & Welker, 2000), while negative school climates lead to increased aggression (i.e., bullying, assault), lower levels of academic achievement, and truancy (Astor, Guerra, & Van Acker, 2010). Regarding the prevalence of bullying in schools, recent statistics from the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Educational Statistics [NCES] show that, in 2015, approximately 21% of students between the ages of 12 and 18 experienced bullying while at school. Overall, 13.3% reported verbal harassment and 5.1% reported physical harassment. While females reported higher rates of overall bullying, specifically bullying relating to verbal harassment, males reported higher rates of physical assaults. Based on this study, bullying appears to occur more during middle school. Also, Black and White students reported more instances of bullying than Hispanic students.

Although there have been many programs that have worked to address socioemotional concerns in school systems, the majority of these programs have been found to be ineffective for a variety of reasons. However, the Safe and Welcoming Schools project at the University of Georgia focuses on improving school climate using prevention methods that are tailored to the school’s needs, and early findings related to the program’s effectiveness have been encouraging (Raczynski, n.d.).

I would like to invite others to share their experiences with programs that have effectively used prevention to target school climate and/or bullying within secondary schools.    

Shana Ingram






Astor, R. A., Guerra, N., Van Acker, R. (2010). How can we improve school safety research? Educational Researcher, 39, 69-78.

Cohen, J., McCabe, E. M., Michelli, N. M., & Pickeral, T. (2009). School climate: Research, policy, practice, and teacher education. Teachers College Record, 111(1), 180-213.

McEvoy, A., & Welker, R. (2000). Antisocial behavior, academic failure, and school climate: A critical review. Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, 8(3), 130-140.

National School Climate Council. (2012). School climate. Retrieved from

Raczynski, K. (n.d.). The Safe and Welcoming Schools Partnership: A university-school district collaboration for improving school climate. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. Retrieved from

U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. (2017). Indicators of School Crime and Safety: 2016 (NCES 2017-064), Indicator 11.





Early Career Psychologists

Early Career Psychologists

Early Career Psychologists

Dear Colleagues:

Given the challenging and sometimes divisive world we live in it is no surprise that we are addressing potentially polarizing topics in group.  An upcoming community conversation hour (hosted by the early career psychologist task force) is focused on how to navigate polarizing political topics in group.

Join us in a lively informal conversation, sharing your experiences with fellow group colleagues at all levels. Our hope is to provide a space for participants to discuss how we can initiate and facilitate useful conversations and minimize the polarization around political topics such as race, political parties, the “Time’s Up” Movement, etc. as group leaders.

This CCH will be on March 23rd at Noon (Eastern time) and is conducted via Zoom.

Please email the Society of Group Psychology and Group Psychotherapy for access to this free CCH at

Early Career Psychologists

Early Career Group Psychologist Column

Misha Bogomaz, Psy.D., C.G.P.
Misha Bogomaz, Psy.D., C.G.P.

Facilitating Your First Group


I remember vividly the first group I ever co-led during my doctoral internship. My experience in graduate school led me to believe that group is my love and passion. I participated as a group member in various training groups and even had a chance to co-lead a few of them. All of my experiences led up to that one moment; I was about to co-facilitate with my group supervisor. He had decades of experience facilitating and training numerous interns. Of course, I wanted to stand out. Of course, I wanted to be special. Of course, I wanted to impress him! On the outside, I looked calm and ready to go despite feeling tremendous anxiety on the inside. It was important to show him that I looked calm and competent.

A few minutes into our pre-group meeting, he looked straight at me and said: “Misha, I have two things to tell you. First, you need to make sure you’re having fun doing the group. If we are not having fun, it would not be a good experience for the group members.” The goal of having fun never entered my mind at any point during group training. I wondered what was the other piece of wisdom he was about to bestow on me.

“I need you to CTFD, please”, he said. I must have looked very puzzled because he chuckled and asked whether I knew what it meant. I had no idea. He leaned in and said “I need you to calm the f**k down. If something goes wrong, we will fix it.” We both burst out in laughter! With a sigh of relief and fear, I realized he could see right through my calm demeanor. Suddenly I realized that it was okay to be me. It was okay to have all kinds of experiences as a facilitator including anxiety. I also understood that no matter what happens in the group, we will deal with it. Something will always go wrong. However, we… I can fix it!


I took this idea to heart in my personal life as well. Instead of concentrating on what can go wrong interpersonally, I concentrate on our amazing capacity for repair. In groups, we repair — in more than one sense. In our personal life, CTFDing and engaging in repair, can lead to amazing deepness in any relationship.


I would like to pass this on to anyone about to start a group: CTFD, believe in your capacity to repair, and most importantly, have fun.


APA Programming

2018 Division 49 APA Programming

Debra O'Connell, M.S.
Debra O’Connell, M.S.

APA Programming Committee

The Division 49 Convention Committee looks forward to seeing everyone at the upcoming APA Annual Convention in San Francisco on August 9-12, 2018. We have an exciting program with symposia, skill-building sessions, and a poster session with an emphasis on diversity planned for the convention. Additionally, this year’s convention program will feature the annual business meeting, presidential address, two Fellows’ addresses, and the presentation of the Arthur Teicher Group Psychologist of the Year (the names of the two Fellows and winner of the Arthur Teicher award are TBD). The Presidential Address will be given by Dr. Tasca, and is titled “Towards an Interdisciplinary Discipline of Group Psychology and Group Psychotherapy.” Please see below for the titles of symposia, and skill-building sessions.

  • Examining Interpersonal Psychotherapy within Cultural and Group Contexts
  • Expanding Our Therapeutic Viewpoint: Binocular Vision and Group-As-A-Whole Work
  • Group180: CBT-Informed Group Art Therapy for Anxiety Disorders in Adults
  • Predictive Power of the ATES: Group Adventure Factor in Adventure Therapy
  • Should I Stay or Should I Go: Preventing Dropout in Group Therapy
  • The Nuts and Bolts of Creating and Maintaining Groups that Thrive
  • In addition to the above Division 49 programming, members of our Division collaborated on a proposal which was accepted by APA’s Collaborative Programming Group, titled “Multicultural Orientation: Research, Training, Practice and Future Directions.”

Full descriptions of the sessions as well as the accepted posters will be available when the full convention program is finalized. Please look for upcoming emails from the Convention Program Chair with more details this summer!