Nadine J. Kaslow, PhD, ABPP
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There is a culture shift such that board
certification in psychology has the same
status and level of expectation as board
certification in medicine
Board Certification by ABPP is the expected
standard for specialty practice in professional
psychology at the entry level
The public recognizes ABPP as the premiere
body for specialty board certification and
evaluation of the maintenance of competence
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Board certification by ABPP is expected by all
organizations that hire and employ
psychologists and by all groups that
credential psychologists
There is differential pay and reimbursement
for ABPP board certified psychologists
Students learn the value from their educators
and trainers that board certification is the
endpoint and view board certification as
accessible
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ABPP has strong senior partnerships with all
relevant professional organizations, including
education, training, credentialing,
employment, and psychology groups
The ABPP Central Office has the human,
financial, technological and communication
resources needed to provide comprehensive
service and to support to all relevant
constituencies
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At least
◦ 40-50% of (eligible) psychologists are board
certified by ABPP
◦ 50% of employers and credentialing bodies require
ABPP board certification
◦ 40% of the faculty in training programs are board
certified
◦ 80% of all training directors are board certified
◦ 50% of accreditation site visitors are board certified
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The diversity in board certified psychologists
matches that of licensed professionals
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The American Psychological Association (APA)
has the data regarding board certification in
their data base
Consumers ask if their psychologist is board
certified and referrals from others are based
on ABPP status
Student groups, such as the Association of
Psychology Graduate Students, recognize the
value of the credential and demand attention
to preparation for board certification as an
endpoint for training programs
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APA, Association of State and Provincial
Psychology Boards (ASPPB), the Council of
Chairs of Training Councils (CCTC), and
others request active ABPP participation –
ABPP is expected to be there in a leadership
role
ABPP is a convener of major conferences
ABPP is a recognized point of contact for the
public and media
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The boards and academies are under one
clear governance
ABPP has a state-of-the-art website
ABPP has one full year operating expenses in
reserves
ABPP has multiple funding streams to support
its activities
The ABPP Foundation has 100K
ABPP Central Office staff size is
commensurate with the demand of load
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Culture change in psychology
Higher standard of practice and a stronger
psychology profession
Greater recognition by payors/employers,
with enhanced negotiating position for
psychologists
More educational efforts for psychologists
More diversity among board certified
psychologists
Students are the driving force for
specialty board certification
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Better service to the public and greater ease
of identification by the public of quality
providers/services
Disappearance of vanity boards
Better able to invoke change in policy and in
the profession
We finally reach “tip”, when more licensed
psychologists are board certified than not –
this will afford us the momentum needed to
assure long-term success
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ABPP is more rigid, stagnant, bureaucratic
Increased internal politics and factions
Greater likelihood of litigation, as what is now
the essential credential is withheld/revoked
Greater scrutiny by government, especially
restraint of trade, need for regulation
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Huge workload of exam demand and
infrastructure
Some “ABPP elitists” will be upset
Disenfranchise some experienced
psychologists who believe their competence
is being questioned
Resistance and push back from more and
more powerful enemies
Other board certifying organizations hate us
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Some boards/academies upset
Too much workload for Central Office and
don’t expand it as needed
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Psychologists
 Have more clarity regarding expectations
 Are more confident and more secure regarding
their livelihood
 Have a higher standard of living
 Have more respect by the community and other
professions
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Complete license/credentialing portability
across jurisdictions
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We are busy, but adequately staffed
We have multiple subcommittees that are very
productive in a quasi-independent fashion
Subspecialties have evolved and perhaps
some have become specialties
We actively lobby and are actively lobbied
We set a pace for policy
We are quoted in the media
We are a leader in new initiatives
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We can focus our energy on new projects,
initiatives, etc.
We have a large headquarters and our own
building
We are not struggling with our sister
organizations, but we are welcomed by them
We have a sense of excitement and
enthusiasm about ABPP
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Ensure that ABPP is the only specialty board
credentialing body in professional psychology
Have vibrant, active, and sizeable specialties
Add new boards as new specialties emerge
and there are enough people in the specialty
Gain full endorsement of board certification
as an endpoint of education by APA
Have ABPP Continuing Education Workshops
as the predominant continuing education
vehicle for professional psychology
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Ensure that each specialty board has
◦ An official journal, with associated on-line
continuing education credits that includes
consensus statements and position papers
◦ On-line based continuing education book series
written by key ABPP experts (workshop books,
traditional books)
◦ A close affiliation with an APA division or some
other focused professional society
◦ A role in the creation of specialty specific residency
training programs
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Have each specialty board publish consensus
statements and related position papers
Ensure that each specialty board hosts an
annual meeting (specialty board meeting,
examinations, continuing education
workshops)
Encourage each specialty board to hold a
training model conference that creates a
blueprint document for the specialty
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Create large testing centers in geographical
areas
Have some specialty boards test
simultaneously so that greater numbers of
exams are given at one time on a national
basis
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Take the lead in major conference initiatives
that shift the landscape in psychology,
possibly related to assessment and
maintenance of competency
Assist in the changing of training models to
ensure ABPP eligibility of all students
completing training
Work with the Commission on Accreditation
and the APA Education Directorate to require
ABPP of training directors
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Have widespread buy-in of the early entry
program
Ensure that application upon completion of
residency programs is expected/required
Infuse diversity and inclusiveness in all
aspects of ABPP and board certification
Ensure that all jurisdictions recognize ABPP as
a specialty credential and for mobility
Expand the Central Office
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Partner with quality improvement
organizations
Influence employers and payers to recognize
the credential as essential to employment and
credentialing
Work to ensure that payers and employers
provide bonuses to those holding the
credential
Prioritize individual and cultural diversity in
our membership and examination process
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Partner with American Hospital Association
and others to get hospital requirements for
ABPP on staff
Identify one or more granting organizations
to support ABPP
Initiate public relations effort, including
media attention and contact with the
government, and make statements of public
interest
Undertake public education campaign
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Support an active mentoring system for each
specialty board that includes
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Workshops at meetings
Web-based materials
Workshop-related small books
List of local mentors
List of support/study groups
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Conduct an outcome study of board certified
psychologists and of the boards
Develop and institute a recertification plan
Ensure that ABPP has a constantly changing
website that meets the needs of the public
Support the low performing boards
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Board certification is dominant within
psychology
There is a national culture shift
ABPP represents the most viable means of
demonstrating advanced competence in
professional psychology
ABPP demonstrates the same level of
importance in psychology as board
certification has in medicine
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ABPP has a strong connection with
educational programs/community and
students see certification as an endpoint
Agencies and hiring authorities, across
settings, see ABPP as key to employment
ABPP is a leader on the national scene
There is strong student drive demand for
attention to board certification
There is strong central office and
infrastructure
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There are different expected numbers of
ABPPs in 2020
Training directors involved versus not a road
that will be productive
Level of integration of boards and academies
Level of inclusiveness
Level of exclusiveness
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Only product that assesses hands-on
competency – more fidelity in our
assessments
History of developing these credentialing
methods
Longevity of the organization
Dedicated, hardworking, and imaginative
Board of Trustees
Well respected Executive Director
Strong Central Office Staff
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Diversity in many different factors
Diversity committee is a standing committee
of the organization
Umbrella organization that has multiple
specialties being board certified
Founded on psychology and have a scientific
knowledge base
Increasingly at the education, training, and
credentialing tables
No other peer organizations
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Absence of a public recognition for both
board certification and ABPP
Voluntary leadership has many competing
professional demands
Lack of peer pressure and expectation
Confusion to the public
Not masters of our own fate
Well kept secret in our own profession
Too modest
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Within psychology, seen as exclusive, elitist,
and irrelevant
We have missed opportunities
Lack a sufficiently diverse array of
communication medium that will appeal to all
generations
Lack sufficient financial resources
No or very little empirical evidence that board
certified psychologists are high quality
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Impressive board
High quality board certified psychologists
Cadre of ABPP ambassadors
American Psychological Association Graduate
Student (APAGS) article
Liaison relationships with many key
organizations
ABPP book
Executive Director and Central Office staff
Upcoming Continuing Education conference
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APA events
Meet and greet for Directors of Clinical
Training
Some specialties have conferences
Liaison relationships with key publishers and
editors
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Agree upon a soft target for number of new
board certified psychologists and work
toward that goal
Partner with the most likely education,
credentialing, and student groups to increase
number of board certified psychologists and
the value of board certification (e.g., APA
Education Directorate, CCTC, ASPPB, APAGS)
Communicate the ABPP message through
multiple venues, including success stories
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Craft an internal document and blueprint to
help specialty boards be more successful and
to communicate most effectively with the
public
Develop a cadre of ambassadors engaged in
moving forward the ABPP agenda (academies,
board certified psychologists in leading
positions) and ensuring ABPP is more
inclusive and diverse and create talking
points for them
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Devise strategies to help ABPP gain greater
public recognition and improve its public
relations
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Education and credentialing community plan
– Kendall*, Hibbard, N. Kaslow, Otto, Cox
Communication plan – Thomas*, Goldberg,
Barlow, Lee
Specialty board plan – Sweet*, Eichel*, Ronan,
Tansy
Ambassador plan – F. Kaslow*, Besyner,
Davidson, Morris, Goldstein
Public recognition and relations plan –
Linton*, Nezu, Douglas, Pollard
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Checklist for specialty board
Connect with education community
Connection with ASPPB
Cadre of ambassadors – engaging them, 1
page of talking points
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Communication plan
Pick group to partner with and develop active
partnership
Set target number and plan to move toward it
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Strategic Planning - American Board of Professional Psychology