PhD, a psychology professor at the College of Charleston,
who heads the APA working group. “And we’re working in a
mentorship role with CE sponsors to help them do the same.”
At APA’s 2012 Annual Convention, for example, Simonian
and her colleagues hosted a workshop for CE sponsors to
encourage them to incorporate the best practices the working
group had identified into their CE programs. The workshop
leaders modeled the desired behavior by presenting case studies,
using multimedia forms of presentation and asking participants
to break into small groups. Those small groups then presented
ideas for transforming a standard lecture into a presentation
that embraced best practices in learning.
“That’s just the beginning of what I hope will be a series of
workshops that will help bring this information to sponsors,”
says Simonian, who has changed her
own teaching practice by making her
classroom more interactive, asking
students to apply their knowledge to
real-life situations and quizzing students
more frequently. “We’re looking for ways
to serve not just as a regulatory board
but a board that helps CE sponsors
enhance their offerings.”
APA is already taking into account
research that demonstrates the
effectiveness of what’s called distributed
learning — extending learning time
beyond a single class.
“CE is often not an ongoing process,
but a single-shot hour, half day or day
where you learn a great deal and then
leave,” says Neimeyer. “That’s a great way
to get a lot of information across, but the
forgetting curve is massive.”
To avoid that problem, starting in
April, APA will launch new professional
development training institutes that will
distribute learning beyond the time spent
in a classroom.
Participants will spend two days in
workshops at APA, followed a month
later by a half-day webcast with the
presenter and workshop participants.
That follow-up will allow participants to
discuss how they’ve translated their new
knowledge into their practices and share
with the presenter and each other what
worked and what didn’t.
“Usually when you walk into a CE
program, you assume when it’s over, it’s
a done deal,” says Neimeyer. “In this case,
it’s just the start of the process.”
APA is also helping to build the
knowledge base on what makes CE effective. For the first time,
says Neimeyer, APA will conduct an outcome assessment of the
70 CE workshops offered at APA’s 2013 Annual Convention
in Honolulu. The goal is to assess whether participants have
translated their new knowledge into their practices and
determine which methods of instruction helped participants
achieve that goal most effectively.
Rebecca A. Clay is a writer in Washington, D.C.
TRAV E L DISCOUNTS FOR YOU
Make the most of your APA membership.
APA offers specialized products and services for you,
most at reduced rates for members. Let APA help connect
you to the best travel benefits for you.
APA ID: 99006004
For more information on all APA benefits visit:
The Wyndham Hotel Group
Discount Key Code: 1000000461
A membership benefits program sponsored
by APAPO for all APA members.