By drawing on the science of prevention, psychologists can develop
skills, relationships and personal qualities to bolster ethical resilience
and minimize risks related to unethical behavior.
BY ALAN C. TJELTVEIT, PHD, AND MICHAEL C. GOTTLIEB, PHD
Welcome to ‘CE Corner’
“CE Corner” is a quarterly continuing education
article offered by the APA Office of CE in
Psychology. This feature will provide you with
updates on critical developments in psychology,
drawn from peer-reviewed literature and written by
leading psychology experts. “CE Corner” appears
in the February, April, July/August and November
issues of the Monitor.
To earn CE credit, after you read this article,
purchase the online test at www.apa.org/education/ce.
Upon successful completion of the test (a
score of 75 percent or higher), you can print your
CE certificate immediately. The test fee is $25 for
members; $35 for nonmembers. The APA Office
of CE in Psychology retains responsibility for the
program. For more information, call (800) 374-2721,
As a result of having participated in this continuing education
program, participants will be able to:
1. Explain four factors that can affect both ethical
vulnerabilities and ethical resilience.
2. Identify at least three ways in which psychologists’
vulnerabilities can lead to ethical disaster.
3. Explain at least three ways in which psychologists can
develop ethical resilience.
Psychologists want to contribute to human welfare — and the vast majority of them do. But despite their best intentions, they may find themselves in situations where
they unwittingly slip into unethical behaviors.
Most psychologists try to prevent such lapses by, for
example, learning the APA Ethics Code and attending risk-management workshops to better understand ethical risks. Yet
research has shown that such efforts are not enough to keep
psychologists from ethical blunders.
How then can psychologists prevent such missteps? We
suggest that psychologists at all developmental stages — from
student to seasoned professional — are wise to examine and