Getting Involved in Professional Organizations

Authored by: Sally L. Grapin , Celeste M. Malone , Gary Stoner

Handbook of University and Professional Careers in School Psychology

Print publication date:  December  2020
Online publication date:  December  2020

Print ISBN: 9780367353674
eBook ISBN: 9780429330964
Adobe ISBN:


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Professional organizational service is vital to the profession of school psychology, including its workforce and the clients it serves. In school psychology, professional organizational service refers to contributions to professional associations that directly or indirectly enhance the organization’s capacity to advance or advocate for children and families, practice, training, or the profession itself. Across school psychology’s state, national, and international associations, faculty, practitioners, and students have numerous opportunities to contribute to the development of their profession through organizational service. This chapter reviews professional organizations that represent the field of school psychology, including the National Association of School Psychologists, Division 16 of the American Psychological Association, Trainers of School Psychologists, and the International School Psychology Association, among others. Additionally, we describe types of organizational positions (e.g., volunteer, appointed, and elected positions) as well as potential service roles for both newer and more senior organizational members. In discussing organizational involvement, we explore its theoretical roots in organizational socialization and leadership theories. We also describe phases of organizational involvement, including entry (i.e., initial socialization and learning) and advancement (i.e., increasing integration in the fabric of organizational operations). Finally, we conclude with recommendations for further reading.

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