N J P A
New Jersey Psychologist Publication of the New Jersey Psychological Association
Fall 2010 • Volume 60 • Number 4
Special Section: Child Study Teams
PRSRT STD U.S. POSTAGE PAID TRENTON, NJ PERMIT NO. 114
New Jersey Psychologist Publication of the New Jersey Psychological Association
Table of Contents 2
Who’s Who in NJPA 2010
Central Office Update
April 9, 2011 Renaissance Woodbridge Hotel Iselin, NJ
Director of Professional Affairs Report
2011 Fall Conference
New Jersey Psychological Association Graduate Students (NJPAGS)
Special Section: Psychology, Education, and the Law
NJPA Membership Survey
APA Council Report
IMPORTANT DATES ▼ 2011 Spring Conference
October 29 & 30, 2011 Renaissance Woodbridge Hotel Iselin, NJ
We are accepting submissions for the cover photo of our winter issue. We encourage those of you who are amateur photographers to submit a winter inspired photo for consideration (vertical shots only). All photos must be submitted electronically in high-resolution digital format or jpeg file. If you have any questions or wish to submit a photo, please contact: Christine Gurriere at NJPAcg@PsychologyNJ.org All decisions are the sole responsibility of the Editorial Board and Central Office staff. Fall 2010
Who’s Who in NJPA 2010 website: www.PsychologyNJ.org
New Jersey Psychological Association
Editorial Board: Editor: Jack Aylward, EdD Associate Editor: Craig Fabrikant, PhD Herman Huber, PhD Michael Jaffe, PhD Megan Lytle Judith Margolin, PsyD Nancy Stuart, EdS Sarah Seung-McFarland, PhD Claire Vernaleken, PhD
NJPA 2010 Executive Board President: Lisa Jacobs, PhD President Elect: Sharon Ryan Montgomery, PsyD Past President: Phyllis Lakin, PhD Treasurer: Toby Kaufman, PhD Secretary: Sean Evers, PhD Director of Academic Affairs: Kathleen Torsney, PhD APA Council Representative: Rosalind Dorlen, PsyD
Members-At-Large: Janet Berson, PhD Phyllis Bolling, PhD Carol Friedman, PhD Jeffrey Kahn, PhD Jeffrey Singer, PhD Aaron Welt, PhD
Parliamentarian: Barry Mitchell, PsyD Affiliate Caucus Chair: Jeannine Zoppi, PhD NJPAGS Rep: Alexandra Wiltshire, PsyM Latino/a Psychological Association of NJ Rep: Lorna Myers, PhD ABPsi Rep: Phyllis Bolling, PhD
Central Office Staff Executive Director: Josephine Minardo, PsyD Administrative Officer: Jane Selzer Membership & Program: Susan Beatty Communications: Christine Gurriere Director of Professional Affairs: Barry Helfmann, PsyD
NJPA 2010 Committee & Special Interest Group Chairs Committees of the Board: Diversity: Phyllis Bolling, PhD Sudha Wadhwani, PsyD Finance: Toby Kaufman, PhD Governance: Phyllis Lakin, PhD Nominations & Elections: Dawn Gemeinhardt, PhD Personnel: Carol Friedman, PhD
Ongoing Committees: Academic & Scientific Affairs: Ilyse O’Desky, PsyD Committee on Continuing Education: Mark Lowenthal, PsyD Committee on Legislative Affairs: Pamela Foley, PhD Ethics: Pauline Bergstein, PhD Membership: Lois Steinberg, PhD; Anne Farrar-Anton, PhD Program: Laura Palmer, PhD Publications: Jack Aylward, EdD Public Education: Rosalind Dorlen, PsyD Technology: Aaron Welt, PhD Special Interest Groups: Early Career Psychologists: John Macri, PhD Forensic: Jonathan Wall, PsyD Health Psychology: Daniel Gallagher, PhD Neuropsychology: Carol Friedman, PhD NJPAGS: Alexandra Wiltshire, PsyM (Dawn Gemeinhardt, PhD; Kathleen Torsney, PhD, Co-Advisors) Prescriptive Authority: Bruce Banford, PsyD; Joseph Zielinski, PhD Psychology in the Schools: Thomas Massarelli, PhD Sport Psychology: Marshall Mintz, PsyD Trauma Response: Raymond Hanbury, PhD Resource Group Addictive Behaviors: Raymond Hanbury, PhD; Joseph Coyne, PhD DYFS Work Group: Barry Katz, PhD
Regional Organizations & Presidents Bergen: Stephanie Coyne, PhD Essex-Union: Jeannine Zoppi, PhD Mercer: Marta Aizenman, PhD Middlesex: Elissa Rozov, PhD Monmouth-Ocean: Charlotte O’Tiarnaigh, PhD Morris: Francine Rosenberg, PsyD Somerset/Hunterdon: Elio Arrechea, PhD South Jersey: Philip Bobrove, PhD
Preparation of Manuscripts All manuscripts submitted for publication should follow APA style. Manuscripts should be edited, proofread, and ready for publication. Please prepare your manuscript in a word-processing program compatible with MS Word or WordPerfect using Times New Roman font in 12 point type, left flush. Please submit your manuscript to NJPA Central Office and to Jack Aylward by e-mail attachment at the address below. Editorial Policy Articles accepted for publication will be copyrighted by the Publisher and the Publisher will have the exclusive right to publish, license and allow others to license the article in all languages and in all media; however, authors of articles will have the right, upon written consent of the Publisher, to free use of their material in books or collections of readings authored by themselves. It is understood that authors will not receive renumeration for any articles submitted to or accepted by the New Jersey Psychologist. The opinions, medical, legal, and social that appear in material contributed by others are not necessarily those of the Editors, Advisors, or Publisher, nor of the particular organization with which a particular author is affiliated. Manuscripts should be sent to the Editor: Jack Aylward, EdD E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or NJPA Central Office E-Mail: NJPA@PsychologyNJ.org Published by: New Jersey Psychological Association 414 Eagle Rock Avenue, Suite 211 West Orange, NJ 07052 973-243-9800 FAX: 973-243-9818 E-Mail: NJPA@PsychologyNJ.org Web: www.psychologynj.org
2010 NJP-PAC, Inc. Officers President: Donald Bernstein, PhD Treasurer: Carol Friedman, PhD
2010 NJPA Foundation Officers President: Mary Kelly, PhD Treasurer: Abigail Scandlen Secretary: Toby Kaufman, PhD
Deadlines for Submission of Manuscripts ISSUE DATE FALL WINTER SPRING SUMMER
SUBMISSION DEADLINE September 10 December 10 March 10 June 10
New Jersey Psychologist
From the Editor
Editorial by Jack Aylward, EdD
hree years ago the special section of the New Jersey Psychologist, was devoted to “Psychology and the Suburbs” (Summer, 2007, Vol. 57 #3) in which various authors looked at the growth of suburban America following World War II. While certain forms of adjustment difficulties inherent in this lifestyle form were highlighted, the consensus was that the move from urban to less populated areas of the country set the stage for a type of economic growth pattern that eventually provided greater educational, occupational, and social opportunities for working class America. In the wake of the recent and still very active effects of global economic difficulties, the values and aspirations that have emerged from this sociological phenomenon have been presented with some formidable and psychologically challenging problems. Homeownership, the cornerstone of the “American Dream,” has been a major recipient of such difficulties. Current Census Bureau statistics suggest a drop in household ownership to approximately 62%, a rate similar to that of 1960. Traditionally, such ownership built personal assets and stable neighborhoods, avidly supported by mortgage tax deductions and government-backed instruments. To many, it represented an important factor in terms of retirement security and financial wellbeing. Currently, six to eight million homeowners who are behind in their mortgages will lose their homes to lenders over the next two years. The potential for the shrinking of middle class America has been a concern to both sociologists and economists across the political spectrum. Part of the issue has to do with the “global economy” itself. American workers are now in competition for jobs with people from parts of the world where they have no minimum wage and very few regulations. Environments like these attract global corporations, increasing the difficulties for the American worker. In addition, given the central importance of home ownership and financial security, the fallout of such effects has seeped into other areas of middle class expectations. For instance, 61% of Americans live paycheck to paycheck with over 1.4 million individuals filing for personal bankruptcy in 2009, a 32% increase over 2008. As a result, 36% contribute nothing to their retirement, and a staggering 43% Fall 2010
have less than $10,000 dollars for such purposes. For the first time in our history, the US banks own a greater share of residential housing net worth than all individual Americans put together, with the bottom 50% of earners collectively owning less than 1% of the nation’s wealth. In addition, one out of six Americans is now on Medicaid. Projecting into the future has some researchers concerned that if the decline of the middle class continues, reviving it may be an incredibly difficult job. Indeed, psychologists are beginning to see the increase in anxiety disorders and adjustment difficulties centering on issues related to job and personal insecurities due to the current economic hard times. On a more positive note, the difficulties encountered by veterans returning from the war zones of Iraq and Afghanistan in obtaining psychotherapeutic services, as noted in my previous editorial (Summer, 2010, Vol. 60 #3), have received legislative attention from NJ Senator Frank Lautenberg. He has introduced a bill called the “Sgt. Coleman Bean National Guard and Reserves Mental Health Act.” The bill is in honor of the East Brunswick native who committed suicide after returning from his second tour of Iraq. The bill mirrors similar legislation introduced by Rep. Rush Holt to the House that approved the measure on May 28th. Both bills would require mental health screenings via phone at least once every 90 days for all members of the Individual Ready Reserve. Lautenberg’s bill extends such coverage to all members of the Inactive National Guard and the Individual Mobilization Augmented who have been deployed into combat since 2001. Furthermore, if additional screening is found to be necessary, the bill allows the military to provide job protection, basic pay, and other benefits while service members seek help. Part of the problem, at least as seen by advocates for veterans, is that the military, under pressure from Congress, dismissed hundreds of soldiers as having personality disorders rather than PTSD as a way of denying health care and other benefits. According to clinical psychologist Barbara Van Dahlen: “We really have an obligation to go back and make sure troops were not misdiagnosed.” Although this is very unlikely to happen, it highlights a serious problem.
The views expressed in the editorial are those of the editor with support of the NJPA editorial board and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of NJPA leadership or staff. ❖ 3
A New Era at NJPA by Lisa Jacobs, PhD
t’s hard to believe that by the time you read this article, my presidency will be just about over. It has been an eventful and interesting year for me personally as well as for NJPA. This job has been a learning curve of sorts. As I’m sure most presidents before me have said, “Now that I am getting ready to end my term, I’ve really gotten the hang of this job.” I believe it may be in the best interests of NJPA and Central Office to have a president serve for two years instead of one. I will be bringing this idea to the Governance and Nominations committees to discuss and see if this makes sense for our organization. We will keep you posted on that. 2010 has been a year of transition. It has been very exciting and at times stressful, too. Change is never easy. We spent the first half of the year with Interim Executive Director Jane Selzer and the staff running the day to day
operations at NJPA. They were all amazing and stepped up to a difficult and full plate. Kudos to Jane Selzer, who worked day and night (literally) to keep things moving smoothly. We searched for months to find just the right person for the executive director position. We were lucky to find Josephine Minardo (she has been a true find!), and she has jumped right in and done a remarkable job. As president, I now have a healthy appreciation for just how many things are on our plate at NJPA at any given time. Josephine and I have been keeping a “running agenda” that has at least 50 items on it. NJPA is a busy and involved organization! I look forward to Josephine bringing her creativity and knowledge to the job and really making it her own. Here are some things we have been working on throughout 2010: By the time you read this article, NJPA will hopefully have a new web platform so our website can accommodate our growth and new needs. Our hope is that every NJPA committee will be able to have their own space on our new and improved website. In addition, Josephine is working on setting up some new technology, such as
So many NJPA members have made the choice.
ASSOCIATED BILLING CENTER, LLC
Certified by the NJ Dept of Banking & Insurance
Exclusively Servicing NJ Mental Health Professionals Since 1996
Talk to our clients. Experience the Associated Billing Center difference.
On the web: mentalhealthbillers.com
Serving the entire state from our Central Jersey office Competitive fees without sacrificing quality
webinars in the near future. Fortunately, Josephine has experience and creativity in this area where I must admit I fall quite short. NJPA was in need of someone to take us to the next level of technology. Obviously, the lawsuits have taken up a tremendous amount of time at Central Office and Barry Helfmann, our DPA, has continued to trudge through the legal maze against insurance company abuses. I’ll let him update you on the latest with them. Once again, we held our business meeting at 11 a.m. during the Fall Conference so more of our membership could attend. Budget and bylaws amendments were presented to membership and these changes should improve the way we function here at NJPA. We are hoping to do a practice survey in the coming months to once again “take the pulse” of our members and see what needs you all have in that arena. When you get the link, please take a few minutes to fill it out. Your voice needs to be heard and answering these surveys is an important way to do it. The Personnel Committee has been hard at work this year updating the Personnel Manual and the Finance Committee has done the same for the Financial Policies. In short, NJPA is alive and well! We have made the transition smoothly and we are all really excited for what comes next! At this time I’d like to thank everyone who supported me during my presidency. Central Office staff were amazing. I’d especially like to mention Phyllis Lakin, past president, who gave of her time generously especially during the interim months. I am looking forward to Sharon Ryan Montgomery taking the helm of this great organization and I am confident she will be wonderful. When I stop for a moment to reflect, I am awed by our organization and how many things we are involved in and what we accomplish. It has been an honor for me to serve as your president in this transition year and I want to thank you for allowing me to play a small role in shaping the future of NJPA. I humbly thank you. ❖ New Jersey Psychologist
Executive Director’s Report
First Impressions by Josephine S. Minardo, PsyD, Executive Director
eflection. While preparing to write this article, my first “official” executive director column, I found myself reflecting on my last communication with you in mid-July, drafted only days following my arrival to NJPA. I talked about a new beginning, and indeed it has been—for me, for staff, for leadership, and most importantly, for NJPA as an organization. I have felt incredibly welcomed and accepted among my new colleagues and am grateful for all the new found relationships that I hope will only grow stronger as the years go by. I also talked about a “new home.” Settling in to my position, much like settling in to any new “home,” has been a series of transitions, marked by enthusiastic exploration, curious discoveries, challenging tasks, exciting opportunities, and amazing first impressions. Familiarity. Getting to know NJPA has been a true joy. Everywhere I turn there is something new to learn about, more leadership to meet, another member to talk to, and exciting initiatives to get involved in. Since I began, I have heard the phrase “New Jersey is special” repeatedly, even at APA meetings from those outside of the organization…and every day, I am discovering just how special we truly are. While in San Diego at the annual APA conference, I spent an evening talking with various NJPA members who stopped by during an organized social gathering. I felt immediately welcomed and embraced as part of NJPA; everyone was remarkably warm and genuine, and we openly shared common Fall 2010
interests and backgrounds. We even discovered that another member and I are both immediately descendent from the same small village in Sicily, while others and I grew up in the same familiar parts of New York City. I was very touched and inspired by all of these exchanges and look forward to more as I get to know all of you. Without a doubt, it is our remarkable staff, Jane Selzer, Christine Gurriere, Susan Beatty, and Barry Helfmann, whom I have come to know the best in this short period of time. They have been exceptional to work with. Together as a team, we have started to tackle some new projects, develop solutions to former challenges, continue valued traditions, and begin strategically planning how we will support NJPA as we move forward into this new millennium, everstronger, ever-wiser, and ever more effective on behalf of our members. Collaboration. Working closely with NJPA leadership, our current President Lisa Jacobs, Past-President Phyllis Lakin, and President-Elect Sharon Ryan Montgomery, affectionately nicknamed “The Triumvirate,” has been an incredible learning experience. They are always readily available with answers, historical background, advice, and a no shortage of institutional knowledge and wisdom that continually impresses me. Meeting with various committees and leadership groups, I can already see how committed and collaborative our respective leaders are, and how much everyone cares about the future of NJPA. Our Committee on Legislative Affairs (COLA) and our lobbyist seem always ready to respond to any legislative issue that arises, and in my short time here, there have been quite a number already. Finally attending my first
COLA meeting and experiencing the depth of knowledge around the table was quite inspiring. I know that NJPA members are in good hands with this expert and committed group. I have been equally impressed with our student leaders, NJPAGS, who are constantly busy reaching out to students, developing informative programming, and cultivating interest in NJPA…they are truly our future leaders. With a long history in student advocacy, I can recognize success (as APA did a few years ago with an award) and I readily see how critical NJPAGS will be to NJPA’s ongoing track record of recognized achievement. Our progress will also require a very solid leadership pipeline that will begin with student leaders and continue with Early Career Psychologists (ECPs) as we establish a new assembly of experts ready to take NJPA to the next level across the next generations. Having also been in state and national ECP leadership, I especially look forward to collaborating closely with our new professionals, every step, as we build our ECP initiative. Impressive Impressions. Early on, not long after beginning to delve into all the organizational aspects of NJPA, I also attended the annual APA Executive Directors’ meeting. The timing was serendipitous—it informed me about what all the other states are doing, but also allowed me to observe objective reactions about NJPA. Like any proud steward, I could not help but compare NJPA to other states. We are indeed one of the leaders in so many areas, and we have the potential to be “the head of the pack.” Staff does a superb job of maintaining and continually seeking additional revenue sources. NJPA is less than two-thirds dependent on member5
Executive Director’s Report ship dues income that makes us more financially secure and diversified should membership ever drop. However, with regard to membership, we fare quite well in this area, and by capturing over half of all licensed psychologists in New Jersey, NJPA is far ahead of most other states in that regard. We can feel additionally secure in knowing that our budget is now balanced and healthy—a rarity in these economic times. Future Directions. With all the successes so far, where else can NJPA go? The areas I am seeing the most room for growth is in technology and programming, and the two are intricately tied to one another. I believe that NJPA has tremendous potential here, and by building on other areas of strength, our progress is limited only by our imagination. For starters, you may have noticed a new more colorful and graphic “Friday Update,” along with a great deal of focus on “Going Green” and “Going Virtual.” Our 2010 Ballots were exclusively online this year for the first
time ever, and we hope everyone will take greater advantage of our online dues billing that was introduced last year. The next and most significant project will be a transformation and redesign of our website that was approved at the September Executive Board meeting and will be underway as you read this. Our new website will make it possible to provide more information to our members and the public, including creating space for all of our committees, special interest groups, and affiliates to show off their work and reach out to interested members and non-members. We will also be able to incorporate newer technologies, including instant polling, webinars, virtual meetings, and other exciting developments. These updates in technology will also make it possible to do more virtual programming, with the use of webinars, webcasting, and other such media. This allows us to offer live and archived events to members at very low cost with little preparation or overhead
investment. It also provides us with countless opportunities to create “products” and events that generate nondues revenue, and attract new members who are looking for these kinds of benefits. These changes are necessary for NJPA to move forward and they will doubtless re-invigorate the organization. That said, I know we also value our traditions and need to be strategic when planning such tremendous change in the ways we interface with our members and the public. We are planning to phase in the technology gradually and will calibrate that pace with the needs and responses of the organization. I can only hope that my enthusiasm for technology will begin to become contagious all on its own. Now, a little over three months as your new executive director (four months, when you read this), the season has changed, the transition is nearing completion, communication is transforming, and the organization is off to a great new beginning…it will only get better. ❖
New Jersey Psychologist
Director of Professional Affairs Report
So What’s This About Anyway? by Barry Helfmann, PsyD, Director of Professional Affairs
y now everyone should have heard that there is an insurance crisis in New Jersey. Since the early 1990s, with the onslaught of managed care, psychologists have faced many issues and obstacles in dealing with third party payors. Some members have asked me why the association is so consumed with the current state of affairs. Insurance for mental health services, that appear in any number of forms, have been a challenge for us. In 1974, New Jersey psychologists were successful in passing Freedom of Choice legislation that mandated insurance companies reimburse equally to licensed psychologists for mental health services as they do for physicians. This was the beginning of our long history and marriage to the insurance industry. Mental health services were “carved out” and treated as separate from physical illness and treatment. At the time, it seemed like a very smart choice. Today, it has caused us any number of difficulties, particularly related to cost containment and cost mismanagement. James Wrich, a noted behavioral health economist, analyzed the New Jersey State Health Benefit plan and substantiated the unintended, negative economic consequences of the current case management practices in a document known as “The Wrich Report,” released in January of 2008. Given our successes in passing Peer Review, Temporary Disability, Duty to Warn, Specialty Guidelines for Custody/ Visitation Evaluations, Hospital Practice, Competency Evaluations in Criminal Cases, Prompt Payment Law, Mental Health Parity, and Capacity for Guard-
ianship, why do we now have an insurance crisis? How is this really different from the past struggles? Up until 2007, The State Health Benefits plan operated in a non-managed care environment except for those who chose the HMO plan. Three plans were offered: Traditional, NJ Plus, and HMO. Only 23% of all eligible participants chose the HMO option. Most of those opting for this plan tended to be young adults who believed they had less need for health care services than their older contemporaries. Since that particular state plan covers almost 900,000 lives or approximately 8% of the population in New Jersey, it is the standard most private carriers follow. Hence, what happens to this plan is crucial to the health insurance needs of the rest of the state. In my opinion, Horizon Blue Cross, as an agent for the State of New Jersey, has declared “war” on the health benefits of its public employees. While marketed as an “expanded PPO,” the new plans, called Direct 10 and Direct 15, are now being acknowledged as traditional managed care plans. Out-of-network (OON) benefits are being managed as if the patient is seeing an in-network therapist. Patients’ freedom of choice and privacy are being violated. It seems clear that this is a systematic campaign to eliminate OON care and force patients to all go in-network. Given the phenomenon of ”phantom panels” and Freedom of Choice, this attack on patients and psychologists is extremely significant. It is the most serious intrusion in our ability to provide quality mental health care that I have seen in over 30 years.
With great reluctance, but steadfast resolve, NJPA instituted litigation against these abuses in our lawsuit against the State of New Jersey and its agents. We attempted court ordered mediation but the defendants (Horizon/Magellan) continued to stonewall any attempts at resolution. By the time you read this article, we will be moving ahead with our lawsuit to protect the rights of our patients to have their confidential information protected. It is essential that we prevail, or there is a strong possibility that psychotherapy as we know it, will be a thing of the past. This is why we keep urging all of our members to contribute to our legal defense and public relations fund. We are fighting an adversary with very deep pockets and we need sufficient resources to see this through to a successful conclusion. Please go to <www.speakyourmindnj.org> and make your contribution TODAY! ❖
In Memoriam Hannah Schwartz, PhD NJPA Member, 27 years
The Treasurer’s Trust
Treasurer’s Trust by Toby Kaufman, PhD
hope this finds everyone saying goodbye to summer refreshed and rejuvenated. As your treasurer, I have the enviable task of reporting the overall state of NJPA’s financial health. I am pleased to tell you that, as an organization, we continue to enjoy as positive a picture of financial health as one could hope for, particularly in light of the ongoing fluctuations in the nation’s economic health. While this is due to a number of factors, the primary reason for NJPA’s overall financial health continues to be our loyal membership. Despite our good financial health, it is not a time to sit back and be complacent. In order to continue to be effective, we need more funding resources than dues payments alone. NJPA is involved in projects and initiatives that benefit all psychologists in the state of New Jersey, efforts requiring financial resources far beyond dues income. The ongoing lawsuits against major insurers continue to be an extraordinary expense for us. In addition to the legal funding, members also give to our PAC and Foundation on an ongoing basis. Though these are difficult times financially, at least for some of us, we are all being called on to give as generously as we can. Why? It is crucial to keep in mind the long view, in terms of the potential benefit and gain to each of us individually, and as a profession in the state of New Jersey, as well as to the public welfare in general. I am writing during the period of the Jewish high holy days, that seems particularly fitting in a sense. A major focus of this period is on the concept of “charity.” Here I am talking to you about giving to your association to 8
benefit not only yourselves but also the public we serve. There are various ways in which we can “give” to NJPA. In light of how well the association serves all of us, I hope that we are all able to see giving to NJPA as, in one sense, a “giving back” to the organization that truly works very hard to benefit us all in performing our roles as psychologists in the state of New Jersey. The most basic and, of course, bare minimum, is through our dues payment. Beyond dues, there are various avenues for giving monetarily to NJPA such as the legal fund, the PAC, and the Foundation. Giving to the various facets of our organization is as simple as filling in amounts on the respective lines on the dues statement, making a call to Central Office or, of course, putting a check in the mail. In addition, we encourage you to consider making some kind of bequeathment to NJPA. Some of our generous colleagues have remembered the organization in their wills, while others have made generous spontaneous contributions simply because they were inspired by one cause or another. It is indeed possible, as others have done, to remember NJPA, while we are still active members. There are various ways to do this; for example, as recurrent annual giving, or as a single onetime gift. Monies can even be earmarked for a specific use that you designate, or without restrictions and used more generally by NJPA. An additional way to give— to NJPA, to the environment, and back into your own pocketbooks all at the same time— is in taking advantage of the increasing opportunities to “go green” and do
things electronically. For example, ballots and dues statements can now be completed electronically. As an organization, NJPA is making every effort to be “greener and greener” as a way to cut costs, save money, and help the planet at the same time--certainly a win-win situation for all. This effort can succeed only with the participation and cooperation of our membership. We are asking that you access and complete any forms you can online. In addition, the website is being revamped as appropriate, to make it more user-friendly and helpful, in order to eliminate the need for paper mailings, etc. to whatever extent possible. In sum, while we enjoy overall financial health as an organization, our dues alone are not enough to allow us to do all that is needed for our profession, our patients, and the public in the state of New Jersey. There are various ways to give back to our NJPA that works so hard for us all, whether through making a bequest or other forms of donation, in addition to supporting our efforts in doing more and more electronically. Let’s all give. I wish you all a wonderful fall. ❖
New Jersey Psychologist
Legislation That May Affect Your Practice by Pamela F. Foley, PhD
s most members are aware, NJPA has been involved in extensive legal efforts that address abuses of insurance companies. Less visable, although equally important to the longterm health of psychology practice, is the continual monitoring of proposed legislation in Trenton. Six times a year, COLA reviews bills that may affect the practice of psychology – either positively or negatively, and recommends action by NJPA in response to these bills. Legislation may be proposed in response to pressure from constituents, or they may reflect the interests of industry or consumer groups. In some cases, NJPA also works proactively with sponsors to propose bills. An example of this is A412, which if passed, will provide immunity for court-ordered custody evaluators. This article reviews just a few examples of bills that have been reviewed and tracked over the past year and NJPA’s response to them. These include bills we’ve supported, those on which we’ve requested amendments, and those we’ve opposed.
Bills NJPA Has Supported A bill NJPA recently supported was Senate bill S936 (and the identical Assembly bill A2287) that requires consumer complaints to licensing boards of professions, regulated by the Division of Consumer Affairs, be resolved within 120 days after the complaint is filed. This bill was signed into law by Governor Christie on May 6, 2010 and will take effect 180 days after that date. Compliance will be monitored by the attorney general and the legislature. We also support two bills introduced in March, 2010 that are focused on monitoring the actions of managed care organizations. The first of these is A2553 reFall 2010
quiring annual audits of managed care plan provider networks by a private auditing firm, as well as an audit by the state auditor for organizations that provide services to the state. This bill, which would begin to address the phantom network problem, was referred to the Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee, and we continue to track its progress. A second bill, A2096 (that is identical to its companion bill, S1539), establishes a Center for the Study of Health Care Billing Data that would establish an unbiased database of usual and customary charges for health care services throughout the State of NJ. This bill is currently being considered by both the Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee and the Senate Commerce Committee. Requested Amendments Some bills may be unacceptable in their original form, but it may be possible to speak with the sponsors and negotiate amendments. An example of this is S1742 that would require health care providers, who participate in a carrier network, to give their patients notice of their out-of-network coverage (or lack of it) when referring to an outof-network provider. We are not opposed to generally informing patients that a provider may be out of network. However, because providers may not have the time or access to this information for individual patients, NJPA has requested that this bill be amended to place the responsibility on the patient to contact the carrier if coverage is not clear. Another bill for which we have requested amendments is A2511/S1743 that would make the waiver of an insured patient’s deductible, copayment, or coinsurance a form of fraud subject to criminal and civil penalties. Note that this bill did not oppose lowering of fees for patients who have difficulty making payments, as long as a claim was not submitted to the insurer as if the full fee had been charged. However, because this bill
allowed no exception for a provider who makes a sincere but ultimately unsuccessful attempt to collect these payments from their patients, we have contacted the sponsors and asked them to add such a disclaimer to protect providers in these cases. Bills NJPA Has Opposed In some cases, a bill is unacceptable and cannot be revised in a meaningful way. In the past year, and example of such a bill is S1666, that is similar to a bill we previously opposed (S57). This bill would have required a videotaped recording of all interviews by psychologists and other mental health experts in child custody cases. Costs associated with the video requirement can become enormous due to the extensive time and number of individuals who would have to review all taped material. Further, COLA members expressed concern regarding the negative impact on children being videotaped in an extremely stressful situation. We have been in contact with the sponsors to express our concerns. We also continue to oppose two bills originally introduced during the previous legislative session that would compromise the confidentiality of psychological treatment for college students. First, A2255 would allow institutions of higher education to request previous mental health records of all students who plan to attend that institution, and A2256 requires colleges and universities to inform students’ parents of mental health treatment, without the students’ consent. We attempted to negotiate amendments with the sponsor, but these bills were reintroduced and are now under review by the Assembly Higher Education Committee. For the full text of these bills, as well as current information regarding the status of these or any bills introduced during the current or past legislative sessions, members may visit the web site of the NJ Legislature, at <http://www.njleg. state.nj.us>, and enter the bill number, sponsor, or search by topic. ❖ 9
Federal Advocacy Update APA Practice Organization staff attended receptions for Representative Rob Andrews (D-NJ) on September 15 and Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) on September 21. Peter Newbould thanked both Andrews and Menendez for supporting the Medicare 5% “extender” for 2010 psychotherapy services that was part of the health reform law and asked for their help in extending it to the end of 2011. Andrews predicted that a post-election session would pass an omnibus spending bill that includes another short-term delay of the 21% Medicare “SGR” cut. Congressman Andrews, who chairs an Education & Labor subcommittee with jurisdiction over ERISA, was a strong supporter of health reform that included mental health parity. Senator Menendez said that Congress would prevent the SGR cut to Medicare Part B but the length of the delay is uncertain at the cost of $1 billion per month.
Coming Soon! Look for the launch of NJPA’s newly redesigned website in early 2011!
NJPA and Live2Create are teaming up to develop an attractive, content-rich, user-friendly, and interactive website for our members and the public. Our goal is to give NJPA a polished, professional web presence and to provide an enhanced level of online services, and outreach opportunities. • • • • • • •
New Features! Members’ Private Community Streamlined Member Management System Committee/SIG/Affiliate Web pages Discussion Forums Instant Polling Webinars Virtual Meetings
…and more! 10
CBT Training/Supervision Group Bi - Weekly in Cranford at GSP Exit 136
Led by Lynn Mollick, PhD • Consultation on members’ cases • CBT for all adult disorders • Didactic material and role playing • All CBT approaches including DBT, ACT, REBT, CT, Mindfulness, Schema Therapy • Congenial colleagues Appropriate for experienced clinicians and those wishing to develop expertise in CBT. Dr. Mollick is co-founder, Program Chair, and Steering Committee Chair of the New Jersey Association of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapists. In 2009 and 2010 she led a CBT supervision group at GSAPP, and has over 30 years experience as a CBT therapist. Reasonable fee Additional information, contact Dr. Mollick:
LynnMollick@Verizon.net New Jersey Psychologist
NJPAGS: Opportunities to Participate, Learn, Develop, and Network by Alexandra Wiltshire, PsyM
n the past few weeks, I have received e-mails from several students from various graduate programs asking the question: “How can I get involved with NJPAGS?” I am delighted to see that the beginning of a new school year brings refreshed interest in finding opportunities to develop and excel. As a graduate student, I understand the demands placed upon us. Deadlines are outlined for projects and papers on the first day of class, more deadlines are posted for submissions to grants, scholarships, and posters; manuscripts need to be written, bills are due for rent and utilities, and time must be spent reading material for class. With all of these demands placed upon the student, why should anyone get involved with NJPAGS? Well, before I answer the initial question: “How can I get involved with NJPAGS?,” let us first answer the questions: “Why should we get involved? and “What can NJPAGS do for me?” NJPAGS is an active student organization consisting of student members from various graduate psychology programs from the specialist to doctoral level with representation of members from programs both within and outside of New Jersey. Our student organization is based on those who volunteer their time to make NJPAGS active and successful. Since NJPAGS is dedicated to providing programs to serve the needs of graduate students, it is critical that we give feedback and voice our needs. NJPAGS will not read our articles or research our projects for us; however, what NJPAGS can do is give us opportuFall 2010
nities to develop as leaders and professionals. Courses in school teach techniques on how to address the presenting problem and provide tools to run statistical analyses. Schools might also offer opportunities to engage in research and have clubs to join for socializing with colleagues. But what if you desire the experience to develop leadership skills? Where would you find opportunities to explore the field of psychology to find that specialty that fits your interests? As you progress through the semesters and become established in your program, practical questions will begin to arise that may be difficult to answer. Where does one’s clientele come from? How much should I charge? What are the benefits and headaches of being an insurance provider? Should I be in a supervision group once I’m licensed? These questions are only a few of the many that have surfaced for me. It is not that the questions themselves are difficult to answer, but it was hard to find an opportunity and setting to discuss these questions with an established professional. In starting my internship, I have reached the point in my graduate career where I can look back to see what I have accomplished. As promised, my program provided me with a solid foundation of knowledge and with challenging practica (externships) to develop my clinical skills. Although classes and practica took up the majority of my time, I found myself desiring additional opportunities to develop in other areas. I simply wanted to become the best psychologist that I could be for my
patients. In doing that, I wanted to be more knowledgeable about the practice of psychology, at a level beyond that of therapist-client. I found myself looking for opportunities to further develop my leadership skills. I desired the chance to create relationships with established psychologists in order to learn about their career paths and secrets to success. If what I have detailed thus far resonates with you, then we can finally address the question: “What can NJPAGS do for me?” Participate, learn, develop, and network–NJPAGS has provided opportunities for me to engage in each of these. I have participated in a student body composed of graduate psychology students from many different programs. This has given me the opportunity to network with students and to learn about the variations in programs and different specialties that exist. Through holding various roles with NJPAGS, I have experienced different levels of leadership that have allowed me to appreciate the complex structure of a growing organization. From being an active student member, to member-atlarge for Diversity, to chair-elect, to current chair, and eventual past chair, I have learned through participation and experience about the responsibility of leadership, the necessity of collaboration amongst board members and advisors, and the importance of campus representatives and active members for sustainability and growth of the organization. Participation in NJPAGS has allowed me to network and establish invaluable relationships with many psychologists. 11
As the current chair of NJPAGS, I have had the opportunity to participate in NJPA Executive Board meetings as a voting member and representative for NJPAGS. Through this participation, I have interacted with influential, established professionals and learned the role that NJPA has in the legislative process. A seat on the NJPA Executive Board has given me the chance to learn how meetings transpire, when motions are generated and accepted, and how preparation and participation are key to keeping to the proposed agenda. In addition, I have experienced writing proposals and participated in the nomination and election processes. I have refined my time management skills and learned the importance of delegating tasks with follow through.
I list the gains I have made as a member of NJPAGS to demonstrate what NJPAGS can do for you. If you share the same determination that I have in becoming the best psychologist for your patients, then we must now address the question: “How can I get involved with NJPAGS?” First, complete the application found at <www.psychologynj.org> and pay the $25 membership fee to become a member of NJPA. You will automatically become a member of NJPAGS allowing you to attend all NJPAGS events for free. In addition, when you attend NJPA conferences, your ($30) lunch is paid for by the NJPA Foundation. Once you have joined, contact your campus representative to find out when and where the next NJPAGS general
meeting or event is going to take place. Some examples of events include the NJPAGS Retreat, the Networking Social, Coffee and Conversation, and the NJPAGS Spring Conference. After you have identified an event, attend the event and network with students and psychologists to find opportunities to join committees and ongoing projects. If you are interested in participating on a particular NJPA committee, search the NJPA website for the contact information of the NJPAGS Member-at-Large for that committee. If you have additional questions regarding how to become an active member of NJPAGS, I would be delighted to hear from you. Please contact me at email@example.com. I look forward to seeing you at our next event. ❖
NJPA welcomes the following new members: Members Jennifer Abbey, PhD Jessica Arenella, PhD Jessica, Auth, PhD David Baldwin, PhD Natalie Bray, PsyD Megan Brown, PhD Yu-Wen Chou, PsyD Therese Cresanti-Daknis, PhD Ilyse DiMarco, PhD Erin Falk, PhD Sue Harris, PhD Mary Katherine Hawryluk, PsyD
Sara Hickmann, PhD Michele Horn-Alsberge, PhD William Ivory, PhD John Janko, PhD Sheryl Markulin, PsyD Lisa Mendelson, PsyD Andrew Merling, PhD Daniela Montalto, PhD Steven Myers, PhD Gianni Pirelli, PhD Sonja Ramirez, PhD David Schuh, PsyD
Shiri Sella, PsyD Peter Sempepos, PsyD Stacey Spencer, EdD Jennifer Strollo, PsyD Megan Toomey-Lynch, PsyD Samuel Tuttle, PsyD Deborah Vineberg, PsyD Student Affiliate (NJPAGS) Emile Berk Danielle Forshee Ari Lowell Bryan Niederman
New Jersey Psychologist
It Only Takes a Minute to Touch the Future by Mary E. Kelly, PhD, MBA President, NJPA Foundation Board of Trustees
s I sit down to write this column, it is a beautiful September afternoon. The summer is giving way to fall, and you can just feel it. The air is cool and crisp, and the sky is that breathtaking shade of blue that is so beautiful, it almost overwhelms the senses. Yet I recognize that as you, dear colleague, sit down to read this article, fall will be giving way to winter and things may look quite different. And so, the challenge for me is to project a bit into the future and try to write something that will still seem relevant three months from now. But, of course, do any of us truly know what is in store? And yet, in all of the work we do, we touch the future one way or another. Those of us who are clinicians work to ease the pain and suffering our clients experience in the here and now, but we also keep an eye toward helping them grow and develop, to be able to cope with whatever challenges they may face going forward. Those of us who are academicians or clinical supervisors are directly responsible for training the next generation of psychologists, imparting knowledge and our own expertise, and serving as mentors and role models. And, those of us who have administrative positions work tirelessly toward advancing the profession and ensuring the continued delivery of psychological services to those who want and need them. Whatever your particular role, I’m sure you’ll agree that there is something deeply satisfying about knowing you’ve helped to make a difference, and that someone out there has a chance for a better future, in part, at least, due to your efforts. As I sit down to write on this beautiFall 2010
ful September day, all is not idyllic in the world. We live in troubling and stressful times, to say the least. The news is full of stories of war, terrorist threats, civil and political unrest, and so on. The news on the economic front is particularly dire, as we continue to experience the loss of jobs and high unemployment rates. Needless to say, we are all affected by these trends. If you work in private practice, maybe some of your clients are feeling the pinch and are cutting back on sessions, or perhaps cutting out treatment entirely. If you work for an agency or institution, perhaps some of your funding has been cut, or programs have been eliminated. Maybe you are personally feeling the pinch and finding that you have been making changes in the way you think about spending. Many of us have concerns about our personal and professional futures during these turbulent times. While every one of us feels the impact of the economic downturn, obviously some are more affected than others. The single parents, working hard to raise their children with very limited resources… the undocumented workers who come here to forge better lives for their families, yet face numerous obstacles every day…the troubled kids who don’t have strong family support systems. It is folks like these who have a tendency to slip between the cracks. Especially problematic, from my perspective, is the ever-widening gap between the “haves” and the “have-nots” in our society. Unfortunately, this situation is not likely to have changed much since that beautiful September afternoon when I sat down to write this article.
There are so many who are suffering that could use psychological help, but who don’t have (indeed, maybe never have had) decent access to mental health care. It is these very vulnerable people that the Foundation seeks to support. We do so by offering scholarship awards and stipends to graduate students in our community who have in some way dedicated themselves to easing the burdens of those who are less fortunate, either through research or through direct clinical service. Some of our past award winners go on to work for agencies or organizations dedicated to serving marginalized populations. We can’t really quantify how many lives, or how many futures are impacted, but you can see that a monetary gift to the Foundation reaps rewards exponentially. As I noted in the beginning of this article, none of us really know exactly what the future will bring. But, we do know this – if we do nothing, then it is likely that nothing will change. When you support the Foundation, you ensure that some very deserving folks will get access to the psychological help they need. You also ensure that some very deserving graduate students will receive some much-needed financial assistance and added incentive to continue their good works. In the minute or so it will take you to write a check payable to the NJPA Foundation, you will gain yet another chance to touch the future. Can we count on you to help? ❖
Meet Our Diversity Committee –
Part 1: Diversity Committee members share how they incorporate diversity principles and theories into their development and practice in psychology by Phyllis Bolling, PhD and Sudha Wadhwani, PsyD
Contributors: Carol Chu, BA and Michael Likier, PhD
Introduction he Diversity Corner has recently focused on introducing the NJPA community to the work of the Diversity Committee as well as beginning a conversation on the importance of diversity to the practice of psychology, in general, and to our practices as psychologists in New Jersey, specifically. In these articles, the diversity status of our clients and examining issues of cultural competence in working with diverse client populations has been an area of focus. We now shift to the consideration of the diversity status of the psychotherapist that is also a key element in the therapeutic process, and an important one to explore from a personal as well as a professional level. This is the first installment of showcasing our Diversity Committee members’ perspectives on the incorporation of diversity principles and theories into their practice of psychology. Our committee members serve as role models in exhibiting commitment and motivation in integrating diversity into their personal and professional development and practice of psychology. In the following narratives, the writers highlight the complexity of maintaining a culturally competent practice. As noted by Kelly and Greene (2010), ethical practice requires that we, as therapists, understand our own reac-
tions to clients, the impact of our own diversity status and identities on our view of ourselves, and the impact of this on our clients, as well as what this all may evoke in them as to the effects on the therapy process and in addressing such material in treatment. Carol Chu, BA, Doctoral Candidate, Fairleigh Dickinson University Most graduate students would agree that learning about a theory and actually applying it in the context of a case formulation may be quite different, both procedurally and cognitively. While learning about a theory requires the mental capacity of rote memorization and systematic study, the application of that theory obliges us to demonstrate our understanding of the theory by implementing it during case formulation. Graduate school prepares one as best as possible, via lectures, presentations of case studies, and clinical supervision, in order to identify one’s therapeutic orientation. However, no precept or idea can substitute for the experience itself. Ethnically, I identify as Colombian, Chinese, and Peruvian, and because I identify with each of these ethnic categories so strongly, they all influence my worldviews in terms of my therapeutic style and appreciation for cultural diversity and social justice. I believe that before
a therapist attempts to understand his or her patient culturally, it is good practice to gain knowledge about one’s own cultural heritage(s). It is important for the therapist to be aware of their cultural beliefs, mores, and traditions, and to be able to discern cultural similarities and/ or differences between themselves and their patients. This insight can help in striving to practice in a more culturally competent manner, and to provide genuine empathy, appreciation, and understanding of one’s patients. Choosing my therapeutic orientation has been one of the most challenging learning experiences in graduate school. I am a third year, Clinical Psychology PhD student, and as my caseload of patients increases throughout my training, I continue to treat individuals from diverse cultures who have a variety of beliefs, customs, morals, and identities. Until recently, I believed I would practice from a cognitive/behavioral orientation, since in learning its principles, I saw it as being more practical and efficient in improving functioning. However, the decision as to what “theoretical orientation” is chosen becomes a more difficult one as you notice that individuals are multicultural in nature. Therefore, a singular theory does not specifically explain every client’s issues. As I was taught in graduate school, and later New Jersey Psychologist
observed firsthand during clinical practice, there are commonalities among different orientations that often may overlap. Although I have yet to identify with a single theoretical orientation, I am more confident in stating this: You have to continue hypothesizing and disproving your theories until one of your theories is proven. Also, how you approach treatment will ultimately depend on which theoretical orientation you are most comfortable utilizing. However, the groundwork in formulating your case needs to occur prior to the beginning of treatment. The eventual formulation can be founded on any number of theories largely dependent on which one best explains the facts detailing the issues of your patient. As previously mentioned, the task of choosing a therapeutic orientation has not been an easy one for me. Perhaps I speak too soon of it in my career, although acknowledging the fact that every individual is multicultural in some way has strengthened my ability to believe that not every person should receive the same form of treatment for their mental health problems. It is difficult to identify yourself with a single theoretical model when treating a diverse population, since you need to account for individual differences. In addition to theoretical treatment models, obtaining an understanding of the patient’s culture, either by familiarizing yourself with your patient’s culture before meeting and/or asking them to educate you about their culture, is vital to the treatment and its efficacy. Having a sense of your patient’s culture, or perhaps knowing they do not identify with any culture, can open many avenues for the therapist in the course of the therapy. This would include anticipating treatment obstacles, compliance, and openness to recommendations. The patient’s culture can also serve as precipitating or perpetuating factors to their issue. What is important to keep in mind in treating multicultural individuals is whether any aspects of their cultures inherently clash with one another and how that may affect the individual. Several of these issues are taught to graduate psychology students, although Fall 2010
there is still a dearth of academic interest in multicultural issues. I currently hold the position of member-at-large for the Diversity Committee of the New Jersey Psychological Association of Graduate Students (NJPAGS)–see below for list of members. While noting that our community is becoming increasingly diverse, and yet the role of culture is often excluded from supervision, case conceptualizations, and classes, NJPAGS is attempting to disperse information about culture and its role in therapy and associated research amongst psychology graduate students. Personally, I strive for social equity via my involvement with NJPAGS in advocating for the affirmation of multiculturalism and diversity. I recognize that by serving marginalized groups, both therapeutically and linguistically, I help to decrease mental healthcare disparity and stigma. However, aside from trying to be a culturally competent student, researcher, and therapist, I hope to increase the general appreciation for cultural diversity informally by continuing to provide consultation services to volunteer organizations that help migrant populations, and by being more cognizant of my own worldviews. In the realms of research and clinical practice, I aspire to continue working with refugees, asylum seekers, survivors of torture, and monolingual Spanishspeaking patients. Michael Likier, PhD, Licensed Psychologist Since taking a course on racial identity with Robert Carter, PhD in 1991, social justice and cultural competence have been the values driving my career. Currently, my professional roles are: full-time clinician within a group medical practice; adjunct professor in a graduate program; and organizational consultant around issues of diversity. Additionally, I am an active member of the NJPA Diversity Committee. What follows is one way that I utilize assessment data and research to integrate multicultural principles into my practice. I posit that these guidelines may help any clinician increase the vitality of his or her work. My clinical work is
informed primarily by cognitive therapy, however, the following guidelines are not bound to any particular orientation. 1) Assess the diversity of our clients, and if applicable, our colleagues and support staff, relative to our catchment area. If there is a mismatch and we are not attracting and/or retaining clients that differ from us, this could be a fruitful area to address. Research shows that cultural match is an important factor in retention; therefore, diversifying our teams to be congruent with the clients we serve would be a worthwhile endeavor (Gallo, et al., 1995). Solo practitioners who practice within diverse areas can offer culturally specific services and incorporate cultural elements into their work environment, e.g., magazines, artwork, and wheelchair accessibility (Sue & Sue, 2003). 2) Assess clients’ length of stay, diagnoses, and treatment outcomes along lines of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability, and other dimensions of diversity. We may notice that clients who differ from the culture of our office have less favorable outcomes. Analyzing such data can lead us to recognize our own blind spots and help guide the development of our practice (Cross, et al., 1989). 3) Stay up to date on the literature. This will assist us in choosing interventions, should any of the aforementioned assessments support our need to do so. Developing cultural competence involves acquiring knowledge, skills, and awareness of self and others that will enable us to become more effective practitioners. The literature continues to advance rapidly and can provide guidance in understanding how to incorporate issues such as: race, gender, and sexual orientation identity development; the impact of microaggressions on those with “minority” identities and privilege on those with “dominant” identities; and the impact of “color-blindness” on therapists’ conceptualization of the impact of cultural variables on the etiology and treatment of client issues (Sue, 2010). While we are bound by what the existentialists refer to as our biological “throwness,” research demonstrates that multi15
cultural competence and racial identity are greater predictors of treatment success in cross cultural dyads than cultural match (Constantine, et al., 2008). Conclusion We would like to thank the contributors to this article and all members of the Diversity Committee for their commitment to issues of diversity and their work on the committee. We would also like to highlight an exciting opportunity we had to dialog about diversity issues during the NJPA Fall conference in October. The Diversity Committee hosted a workshop entitled “The Conceptualization and Practice of Diversity in Psychotherapy Across Theoretical Orientations,” that included a panel presentation of psychologists of varying theoretical orientations (e.g. family systems, cognitive behavioral, and psychodynamic, among others) who discussed the role and relevance of diversity in their practice as psychologists and how they incorporate
diversity perspectives and principles into their theoretical orientation and psychotherapeutic practice. ❖ NJPA Diversity Committee Members: Phyllis Bolling, PhD (co-chair); Sudha Wadhwani, PsyD (co-chair); Laura Palmer, PhD; Deidre Waters, PsyD; Susan McGroarty, PhD; Rose Mary Fernandez, EdD; Shashi Jain, PhD; Janet Berson, PhD; Michael Likier, PhD; Zahida Nagy, PhD; Mihaela Dranoff; Marshall Harth, PhD; Carol Chu; Peter Economou; NJPAGS Diversity Committee Members: Dawn M. Berger, Elizabeth J. Carroll, Amy Nadel, Mihaela Dranoff, Tova Lane, and Reshma Stafford. References: Constantine, M.G, Fuertes, J.N., Roysircar, G. & Kindaichi, M.M., (2008). In W.B. Walsh (Ed.), Biennial Review of Coun seling Psychology (pp. 97-128). New York, NY. Taylor & Francis Group.
Cross, T.L., Bazron, B.J., Dennis, K.W., & Isaacs, M.R. (1989). Towards a cul turally competent system of care. Washington DC: Child and Adoles cent Service System Program Techni cal Assistance Center. Gallo, J.J., Marino, S. Ford, D., & Anthony, J.C. (1995). Filters on the pathway to mental health care, II. Sociodemo graphic factors. Psychological Med icine, 25, 1149-1160. Kelly, J. F. & Greene, B. (2010). Diver sity Within African American, Female Therapists: Variability in Clients’ Ex pectations and Assumptions About the Therapist. Psychotherapy, 47, 186-197. Sue, D. (2010). Microaggressions in everyday life: Race, gender and sex ual orientation. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley & Sons.Sue D., & Sue, D. (2003). Counseling the culturally diverse: Theory and practice, Fourth Edition. New York, NY: Wiley & Sons.
Public Education Committee Event The YMCA of Greater Summit, the NJPA Public Education Committee, and Overlook Hospital of Summit, NJ participated in a Community-wide Healthy Day event to promote a "healthy mind, body, and spirit" on Saturday, September 25, 2010. It was the first Community Health Day that marked the partnership efforts of the Y, NJPA, and Overlook Hospital in Summit, NJ. The goal was to offer free screenings, lectures, educational materials, food, and giveaways in a number of facilities throughout the community. The goal of the partnership is to "promote a health mind, body and spirit." In our location at the Y, attendance was robust, adults loved the APA Public Education materials and the children loved the raisins that we distributed. Committee members Lynn Schiller, PhD, and Lisa Greenberg, PhD helped staff the table and we all had the opportunity to talk with many interested folks about mind/body health. Rosalind S. Dorlen, PsyD, Chair, NJPA Public Education Committee.
New Jersey Psychologist
Special Section: Introduction
Psychology, Education, and the Law Guest Editor: Lisa Tomasini, PhD Liaison Editor: Judith Margolin, PsyD
ducation is a critical issue for many of our families. The process of determining whether a student has needs that qualify for individualized programming can be bewildering. Psycho-educational evaluations may be conducted by a school psychologist; independent evaluations may also be completed by a private psychologist, either as an initial evaluation or in response to a disagreement with the school district’s evaluation. If the disagreement about a reasonable educational program for the child’s needs is not resolved, the psychologist may have to testify in the Office of Administrative Law. This is an ever-evolving area that requires specialized knowledge and training both in assessment and the laws regulating the provision of educational programs. Following are several articles from the vantage of a private psychologist, a public school psychologist, and an Administrative Law judge. They address the issues of Special Education and Section 504, two types of regulations affecting student rights in their educational programs. The first article describes how Michael Gerson, PhD, a private psychologist in Livingston, assesses for attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder and learning disabilities. A nuts-and-bolts article, it names tests and the procedures he uses in evaluating students. The article by Lisa Tomasini, PhD, a private psychologist in Livingston and Facilitator of Therapeutic Services in the Hudson County Schools of Technology, speaks to the school psychologist’s view of the laws governing student education and the requirements for obtaining an evaluation, determining eligibility for services, and the types of programs available according to the least restrictive environment concept. Finally, the Honorable Jeffrey Gerson and his law clerk, Boris Shapiro, assume the legal perspective on the education cases that have come before the Office of Administrative Law. Admissibility and qualification of a psychologist as a legal expert in a due process hearing are reviewed. Psycho-educational evaluations can be an important niche for the private psychologist who knows the law. An informed psychologist experienced in assessment and procedural requirements has a substantial ability to guide parents in affecting the quality of program their child receives. In the best of all possible worlds, a private psychologist can help ease the coordination of reasonable parental expectations and pragmatic school offerings. ❖ Fall 2010
Authors: Michael Gerson, PhD, has maintained a private practice in Livingston for over 30 years. He is a partner in the group Gerson Hagovsky Antonelli & Altman, LLC. He has achieved ABPP diplomate status in Family Psychology. Dr. Gerson specializes in the evaluation of disorders of learning and attention in children and adolescents. Lisa Tomasini, PhD, has been an associate in the private practice of Gerson Hagovsky Antonelli & Altman, LLC, for eight years. Formerly a school psychologist in both public and private schools, she is currently also the Facilitator of Therapeutic Services for the Hudson County Schools of Technology. Initially Dr. Tomasini was a researcher in child development, parent-child attachment and maltreatment, and a Development Specialist for the Division of Youth and Family Services who delivered state-wide training on the assessment of parent/child interaction and conducted research on the effects of maltreatment. Jeffrey Gerson, JD, after more than 20 years in private practice, has been an Administrative Law Judge in Newark, NJ for the past 18 years. One of his areas of expertise is special education law. During the course of his tenure, he has presided over hundreds of special education cases. Boris Shapiro, Esq., Law Clerk to the Office of Administrative Law, is a graduate, with honors, from Rutgers University School of Law-Camden.
Learning Disabilities, Attention Deficits, and the Private Practice Experience by Michael J. Gerson, PhD, ABPP
n our practice, several of us specialize in the diagnosis of learning disabilities and attention deficits. As a result, we are constantly involved with school systems and the acronyms of the special education process. The alphabet soup of 504s, IDEA, and IEPs is part of our daily work. This article will describe some of the typical issues that arise in this area. The initial referral to our office is typically from the child’s pediatrician or from another psychologist who is seeing the child and her family in therapy. Concerns usually revolve around the belief that the child is “not performing academically up to his/her potential,” or the child’s teacher might tell the parents that “Johnny is easily distracted, and cannot focus on his work;” or “He can’t seem to remember how to spell words that he previously knew;” or “He can’t follow directions, and has difficulty working independently.” So what do we do when we get a referral? How do we obtain information that will determine if the child has an attention deficit or a learning disability, and how do we help the parents access and effectively utilize the educational benefits to which the child may be entitled? The Initial Interview: We first meet with the parents and, based on the information obtained, decide whether a full psycho-educational evaluation is needed or if an ADHD evaluation would be more appropriate. There are clinical issues, as well as cost and insurance reimbursement issues that attach to this initial decision. For example, if the presenting symptoms include a history of distractibility, concentration weakness, impulsivity, and other symptoms of attention issues, a full battery including an intelligence test and an achievement battery may not be necessary. In this instance, an ADHD evaluation alone may suffice. In the many instances where the student’s academics are faltering, a full battery (that includes the evaluation of ADHD) may be the better choice. In this instance, it is our belief that the parents need to be made aware that this full evaluation can be obtained at no cost from the child’s schools system. Of course, the school may not be willing to conduct the full evaluation for a variety of reasons, or the parents would prefer to have the evaluation performed privately. Keep in mind that school personnel, while capable of conducting excellent evaluations, are usually not trained in the intricacies of evaluating and diagnosing ADHD, and in any academic per18
formance evaluation, we believe that ruling ADHD in or out, represents an important part of the process. What kind of evaluation is necessary for the child to obtain a 504 Plan? To obtain a 504, a “full” evaluation, including measures of intellectual ability and academic achievement, is not necessary. For an ADHD child, a diagnosis by a psychologist along with a demonstration that the disability is interfering with a life activity is usually sufficient for the child to obtain the accommodations that a 504 Plan will provide. In order for a child to obtain a 504 Plan, a thorough and, if necessary, a legally defensible ADHD evaluation must be performed. Such an evaluation includes multiple sources of information. Symptoms of ADHD do not occur only in the classroom, nor do they occur only when the child is at home. They are frequently hard to ascertain, and often do not appear in a one-to-one evaluation. The foundation of, and perhaps the key to, an effective ADHD evaluation lies in obtaining multiple sources of information. Multiple sources of information include data from the child (questionnaires, test results, clinical interview, and observations), information from parents (interview information and questionnaires), information from teachers (questionnaires), standardized test data from school, and review of school progress reports and the child’s homework. Psychologists run the risk of having their report discounted by school personnel and by the courts as well if the information they obtain does not include data obtained from school personnel. Thus, in our practice we almost always obtain information in a structured format from the child’s teachers. What questionnaires are useful for obtaining parent and teacher information? There are many structured questionnaires on the market, and in our office we use several. For example, we may use the Connors Children’s Behavior Rating Scale (CBRS), the Behavior Assessment System for Children-2nd Edition (BASC-2), or the Attention Deficit Disorders Evaluation Scale (ADDES). We have found that a very helpful series of questionnaires to obtain structured information from parents and from teachers is the Aggregate Neurobehavioral Student Health and Educational Review (the Anser System), a series of parent and New Jersey Psychologist
teacher questionnaires that assess a child’s development, behavior, and health. The Anser System provides structured information regarding the child’s attention (productivity controls, processing controls, etc.), academic information, early medical and behavioral history, as well as information regarding social functioning. What instruments are useful to screen/test the child? There are many possibilities here as well. One example of a particularly useful neurodevelopmental screen is the Pediatric Examination of Early Childhood (PEEX 2) for children between the ages of six and nine, and the Pediatric Examination of Early Childhood Readiness (Peeramid 2) for children between the ages of nine and 15. For adolescents (age 14+), a helpful structured interview is the Survey of Teenage Readiness and Neurodevelopmental Status (Strands). The Strands provides information on the way the adolescent views his/her cognitive functioning including attention, memory, higher order cognitive processes, sequencing ability, and language processing. The questions are asked in a structured format, and the adolescent provides structured answers as well as elaborations. At the conclusion of the ADHD evaluation, the data (i.e., test screening, interviews, and questionnaires) are combined to arrive at a thorough diagnosis that can be used to effectively apply for a 504 Plan. Why do school systems dislike 504 Plans? As opposed to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), whereby a learning disabled child is classified and the school receives significant amount funds from the state for each child that is classified, 504 plans are part of the regular education process and schools receive no funds for 504 plans. Nevertheless, the school system is legally obligated to provide the necessary accommodations at their own cost. What kind of evaluation is necessary for a child to be classified? A child with a learning disability who requires classification and an Individualized Educational Plan (IEP) will need much more in the way of testing than a 504 plan child. In order to access the benefits of a special education program, federal and state law mandates that the child must be classified and receive an Individualized Educational Plan. This IEP establishes learning goals, and the methods and resources that will be employed in achieving these goals. In order to fulfill this mandate a “full” evaluation is required. A “full” evaluation consists of three types of data: A measure of intellectual/cognitive ability obtained from a psychological evaluation using the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children-IV (WISC-IV) or another individual intelligence test, levels of educational attainment obtained from recognized tests such as the Wechsler Individual Achievement Test-III (WIAT-III), or the Woodcock-Johnson III (WJ-III), and a social Fall 2010
assessment consisting of the family and child’s social, medical, and behavioral background. In schools, the educational evaluation is usually conducted by a learning disabilities teacher consultant (LDTC), while a school psychologist conducts the psychological evaluation. Recently however, an opportunity for the psychologist in private practice has arisen. The Psychological Corporation and Pearson, publishers of the WISC-IV, have beefed up the WIATIII and are marketing it to psychologists, who are already their customers via the WISC-IV. With the advent of the new WIAT-III, psychologists in private practice have an even easier opportunity to conduct a “full” evaluation, i e., a combined psychological and educational evaluation, often referred to as a “psycho-educational” evaluation. There is however, some significant re-tooling that is required for the psychologist who would like to do this. While psychologists could always use the WJ III, the new WIAT-III has been re-tooled to not only link directly to the WISC-IV, but to reflect increasingly sophisticated measures of educational attainment. The new WIAT-III includes various tests of reading, math, sentence building, sentence combining, and essay composition that can help in the diagnosis of learning disabilities and in preparing an IEP. Scoring and interpreting these subtests have not usually been part of the traditional doctoral program, nor have they been typically included as a part of a psychologist’s training. While the skills required to score and interpret the WIATIII subtests are different from the skills required to score tests psychologists are traditionally more familiar with, the learning curve effort to develop these skills may be well worth it. The psychologist in private practice can now be equipped to conduct both the psychological and educational components of the full evaluation. In addition, the software used to score and interpret the WISC-IV and the WIAT-III is “linked,” and the statistical discrepancies between the child’s intellectual ability and educational performance are readily available. Readily available as well are suggestions for the child’s IEP and other aspects of the child’s educational planning. Special Education law (IDEA) states that the child must be administered a recognized test of psychological functioning such as the WISC-IV, and a recognized measure of educational achievement, of which the WIAT-III is one. The law does not mandate the particular tests to be used, nor does it mandate who should conduct which part of the evaluation. The Psychological Corporation and Pearson made use of this detail in constructing the new WIAT-III and marketing it to psychologists. Psychologists have always bought and used the WISC; expanding the WIAT to this market increases Psych Corp’s market, while providing psychologists with a potential expansion of their services. Why would a parent choose a private evaluation for their child rather than have the evaluation performed by the school’s child study team for free? A school system is required to conduct an evaluation only 19
when “there is reason to suspect there is a problem” (NJ Administrative Code, Title 6A, Chapter 14). A parent’s request, even well founded, may not be enough “reason to suspect a problem.” A request or note from the child’s pediatrician or, if the child is in therapy, from the child’s psychologist stating the reason and the necessity for an evaluation, may also not be enough to convince an already over-burdened Child Study Team to conduct a full evaluation. There are at least four other reasons why a parent may choose to have a private evaluation. The parents may want to obtain an unbiased, objective viewpoint from a person not associated with the child’s school, or they may want to have the evaluation performed by a privately recommended person with the background and experience of the parent’s choosing, and/or the parents may desire to keep their child’s record private. In addition, a private evaluation provides an opportunity for parents to discuss the results of the evaluation before a decision is made about whether or not to involve the school. Will a school system pay for a private evaluation? Yes. However, the psychologist in private practice has to call a few things to the parents’ attention to make this happen. A little known aspect of the special education law (New Jersey Administrative Code 6A-14.4) says that if a parent, for any reason, is dissatisfied with the school Child Study Team’s evaluation of their child, they simply have to request a private evaluation. They may not even have to state a reason for their desire to have an evaluation performed privately; as Lisa Tomasini indicates in her article, the law states that, “the school district shall not require the parents to provide their reasons for objecting to the school district’s evaluation.” Assuming, however, that there is a reasonable basis for the parent’s concern—and obtaining an unbiased evaluation from the parent’s point of view can be reason enough—the school system will either honor this request or go through the time consuming and expensive step of a due process hearing. In my experience, on several occasions, parents have requested that a psychologist in our office perform the initial evaluation. In some instances, the school systems readily agreed. Child Study Teams are usually already so busy, that they do not mind doing this. Administratively, the school system sends a payment voucher that we fill out in estimating the fee for the evaluation. Upon the completion of the evaluation, they pay the voucher. In instances in which we have underestimated the complexity of the evaluation (and it happens), have had to use additional tests, and have used more time than originally estimated, the school systems have allowed us to revise the voucher. Try getting a managed care insurance company to be as reasonable! Will the parent’s insurance pay for this evaluation? Parents frequently ask this question, and depending on the reason for the evaluation, the answer is yes, no, or maybe. If 20
the evaluation arises out of academic concerns, i e., the child is not performing well in school or a learning disability is suspected, insurance companies say that this does not constitute “medical necessity,” and they will decline payment. Essentially, if the evaluation is something that the school system can perform, and is to be used for educational placement, the payment burden is on the parents. If, however, the referral is from the child’s pediatrician and an attention deficit is suspected, we have found that an insurance company is likely to honor the claim. Insurance companies will typically ask the reason for the testing, what information the testing will provide that an interview would not, and what tests will be used in the evaluation. They then will approve a certain amount of time for specific tests. Essentially, insurance companies typically will not cover an evaluation that has an educational component, i e., a psycho-educational evaluation, although they are more apt to cover an evaluation for an attention deficit. What Do the Courts Say? In some instances, a school may refuse to provide the child with a 504 Plan even when there is a diagnosis of ADHD and the impairment is interfering with the child’s education. If this situation cannot be resolved between the school and the parents, it may go to Administrative Law Court, where education law disputes are heard. Recent court decisions have placed an increased emphasis on objective measures used to make a diagnosis. This places psychologists in a unique position. Psychologists typically utilize objective measurement techniques to reach their conclusions regarding a child’s educational needs, and courts look favorably upon this objective process. Picture the following scenario in Administrative Law Court: “How, Dr. J., did you determine that Johnny has difficulty thinking and/ or concentrating? What measurements did you use to reach your conclusion that Johnny has ADHD, Inattentive Type?” In instances like this, the psychologist’s diagnosis will likely have more credibility than a traditional medical diagnosis. The legal acceptance of, and favor toward, psychologists performing ADHD evaluations and making recommendations may surprise some school personnel who are used to dealing only with medical diagnoses. The law is clear on this issue: a diagnosis of ADHD by a psychologist trained in such evaluations is absolutely sufficient to have a child formally recognized as having received an ADHD diagnosis. As a matter of fact, courts look more favorably upon a diagnosis by a psychologist who has used questionnaires, tests, and has obtained this information from multiple sources than they do the diagnosis from a physician who is more apt to use clinical judgment only. Can They Do That? Take this scenario: The psychologist has provided a diagnosis and the parents have requested a 504 program for their ADHD child. As a result of the psychologist’s diagnosis, the New Jersey Psychologist
child’s pediatrician has prescribed medication, and the child has improved significantly, academically, and behaviorally. The school now says that although the student may have the impairment, it is no longer negatively impacting a life activity, and thus a 504 is not necessary. Is this okay? The new 2009 law makes it quite clear: School systems are to “make an educated estimate” of what the student would be like in the absence of mitigating measures. Thus, in the case cited, Johnny would be eligible for a 504 Plan, and if the school system declines to provide one—which they likely will since, “Johnny is now almost on grade level,”—the psychologist, with knowledge of the latest law, can help the parents pursue their child’s rights to a free and appropriate public education. If the child has a disability, does he/she automatically qualify for a 504 Plan? Some parents, upon learning of their child’s diagnosis of ADHD, will ask the child’s pediatrician to write a letter to that effect with the hope of obtaining a 504 plan. School personnel have been known to bristle at letters from outside professionals that simply state that the child has a particular disability, and that request a 504. Some physicians write the diagnosis on a prescription pad, and parents have been known to wave it in the face of school officials while demanding a 504 Plan. This makes school personnel bristle even more. In order to obtain a 504, it is not enough for the child to simply have impairment. In order to receive a 504, a child must have a disability diagnosis, and the disability must be causing a substantial impact on a major life activity. ADHD may affect learning, but the major life activity affected could also be reading or thinking. (Sleeping or eating disorders are other examples of diagnoses that affect a major life activity.) Thus, it is not enough to simply have the disability in order to obtain a 504 Plan; the disability must significantly impact a major life activity. And what exactly, is a “major life activity”? It is important for the psychologist to know that in January, 2009, congress made some important rule changes that altered the way school systems and the courts interpret the laws governing student eligibility for Section 504. As of 2009, “major life activities” now include additional activities such as difficulty thinking, concentrating, sleeping, eating, breathing, talking, walking, and reading. Certain behavioral problems have been added as well; for example, an adolescent who is addressing an alcohol problem can now be considered for a 504 Plan. Can a child who is not performing up to her potential obtain a 504 Plan or receive Special Education advantages? To the surprise of many psychologists, and to the chagrin of many parents, school systems (and the courts) are not interested in the fact that a child might not be performing up to her potential. Unfortunately, for New Jersey suburban students in Fall 2010
particular, the frame of reference used by schools (and by the courts) is the “average student in the general (i.e., national) population.” This lowers the bar significantly and makes it much more difficult, although certainly not impossible, for your patient to obtain any kind of special education or 504 Plan help. Hopefully, this article has provided some insight into the kinds of evaluations that are needed for a student to access aspects of the regular or special education process, and the clinical assessment used to do so. ❖ References Conners, Keith (2008). Children’s Behavior Rating Scale, Multi-Health Systems, Inc. Levine, Melvin (1980, 1988, 1996). Aggregate Neurobe havioral Student Health and Educational Review (The Anser System) School Questionnaire for Developmen tal, Behavioral and Health Assessment of the Secondary School Student. Educators Publishing Service. Levine, Melvin (1993-1995). Pediatric Examination of Educa tional Readiness at Middle Childhood- Second Edition. Educators Publishing Service. Levine, Melvin (1996). Pediatric Early Elementary Examina tion-Second Edition. Educators Publishing Service. Levine, Melvin, & Hooper, Stephen (2001). Survey of Teenage Readiness and Neurodevelopmental Status, Student Inter view. Educators Publishing Service. McCarney, Stephen, & Anderson, Paul (1996). Adult Attention Deficit Disorders Evaluation Scale, Home, and School Ver sions. Hawthorne Educational Services, Inc. Reynolds, Cecil, & Kamphaus, Randy (2004). Behavior As sessment System for Children- Second Edition. AGS Pub lishing. Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children-Fourth Edition (2003). Pearson Education. Wechsler Intelligence Achievement Test-Third Edition (2009). Pearson Education. Woodcock, Richard W., McGrew, Kevin S., & Mather, Nancy (2001). Woodcock-Johnson-III. Riverside Publishing Com pany.
Looking for licensed therapists in private practice in New Jersey, who have experience working with couples. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and advise expectation of payment for services, along with your resume. You may contact me at: 732-246-8484. To get an idea about my practice you can go to: <www.YourMarriageCounselor.com>
Outside Looking In: Straddling the Fence between Private Practice and School Psychology by Lisa Tomasini, PhD
rivate practitioners may be the first professionals to suspect a learning disability or other disabling condition in their school-aged clients. Unless they have experience with school systems—including familiarity with the types of services and programs available, and the intricacies of referral and determination of eligibility for services—guiding the family may seem a daunting prospect. Based on the dual perspectives of my “day job” as a school psychologist/facilitator of therapeutic services and a private practitioner by evenings and weekends, the following will provide an insider’s view to assist in understanding and navigating the publicly-funded education system to obtain supports for students in need. Who is able to receive accommodations and modifications in their school program? Who is eligible to receive special education? These questions are not equivalent, and not everyone is aware that there are two different systems in place to provide supports: Section 504 and Special Education. In New Jersey, at-risk students are brought to the attention of the Intervention and Referral Services Committee (I&RS), the primary global mechanism for assisting general education staff. The I&RS Committee determines whether lower level interventions, consideration for Section 504, or referral for special education might be appropriate. If knowledgeable parents prefer, they may specify which of these they are requesting. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 may be considered as the larger umbrella under which Special Education is subsumed. Section 504 is a civil rights statute (29 U.S.C. §794) that prohibits discrimination on the basis of a handicap. Individuals with disabilities that substantially impact a major life activity such as eating, sleeping, breathing, walking, seeing, hearing, bowel and digestive functions, learning, etc., are assured “reasonable accommodations” to allow access to their educational program. These are outlined in a 504 Accommodation Plan. An Accommodation Plan may be developed for temporary situations, such as a student with a broken arm requiring a note-taker, or for a chronic condition, such as a student with diabetes needing to include regular snacks during school. “Access” was originally interpreted as physical access, addressing width of doorways, height of drinking fountains, wheelchair ramps, etc. Application of Section 504 underwent a parent-driven expansion for children with Attention Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder, for whom commonly requested accommodations and modifications included extended time on 22
tests, an extra set of books for home, provision of class notes, etc., to allow access to regular education programs. A Section 504 Accommodation Plan outlines the accommodations and modifications needed to allow a student to be maintained in the regular classroom. Accommodations refer to changes in how a student accesses information and demonstrates learning, including but not limited to changes in presentation and response format for homework and tests, instructional strategies, scheduling, environment, equipment, and architecture. In-class resource programs, teacher aides, oral testing, extra time on tests, an extra set of books for home, a note-taker or tape-recorded lectures, reduced written work, assistive technology such as FM amplification systems, Braille or large print books, laptops, etc., are examples of accommodations. So are related services (described below), integrated therapies, and consultation services. Modifications are changes in what a student is expected to learn, including variation in instructional level and content, or the level of mastery expected. Examples include use of a calculator for math tests, substituting projects for written reports, use of video in place of text, word banks on tests, spell check, alternative text books, or specifying that 60% = C instead of the standard 70% = C. There is no funding for Section 504. There are fewer procedural safeguards than there are for special education, although their similarities are increasing. If the district violates a student’s Section 504 plan, the family may seek monetary compensation for this civil rights offense. In contrast, violations of the IEP (Individualized Education Program), the special education contract, are only compensated by additional educational opportunities. Special education refers to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA), a federal funding statute which guarantees a free, appropriate public education of individuals with disabilities from ages three through 21 in the least restrictive environment suited to their individual needs. Originally enacted in 1975 as the Education for All Handicapped Children Act, Public Law 94-192, it was amended in 1997 as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and revised in 2006. In New Jersey, special education is governed by the Administrative Code, Title 6A, Chapter 14. In general, it must be demonstrated that a student has a disability that adversely affects educational performance and that special education and related services are needed. It is not required that the student actually fail before they are considered for special services, only that the student’s program does New Jersey Psychologist
not appear to confer a reasonable educational benefit, and that this is not due to lack of instruction, environmental, cultural, or economic disadvantage or the inability to speak English. A referral for evaluation by the Child Study Team may be made by a teacher, an administrator, or the family. The quickest method to begin the referral is for the family to write a letter directly to the Director of Special Services requesting an evaluation. It is only when the director receives the written request that the clock is started on the evaluation process. There are strict timelines governing response to this letter and subsequent milestones marking progression through the evaluations, determination of eligibility, and the development and commencement of the Individualized Educational Program (IEP). A meeting must be held within 20 calendar days to determine whether an evaluation is necessary. If the evaluation is requested by the school, the parents have the right to withhold consent if they do not agree. If the family wants the evaluation but it is denied, the parents have the right to appeal this decision through mediation or a due process hearing before an administrative law judge. Typically, parental requests for evaluation are upheld. The school district will provide a copy of the special education code (NJAC 6A:14), due process hearing rules (NJAC 1:61), and a copy of the Handbook of Parental Rights in Special Education. Initial evaluations include a physical exam, a hearing screen, and at least two evaluations by the Child Study Team, whose members include a school social worker, school psychologist, and learning disabilities/teacher consultant. Specialized evaluations may be included as needed, such as occupational or physical therapy evaluations, neurological or psychiatric evaluations, audiological or central auditory processing evaluations, etc. Parents must give written consent before the evaluations begin, as well as prior to determination of eligibility for special services and implementation of the initial IEP. Districts have board-approved professionals to conduct the specialized evaluations. However, the family has the right to request an independent evaluation at no cost to them if they object to an evaluation performed by the district or if a particular type of evaluation was not conducted but is believed to be pertinent. Interestingly, the school district “shall not require” the parents to provide their reasons for objecting to the school district’s evaluation. The district may either agree to the independent evaluation or initiate a due process hearing to defend the original evaluation. There are 14 categories of special education classification, each with its own requirements for eligibility: Auditorily Impaired, Autistic, Cognitively Impaired, Communication Impaired, Deaf/Blindness, Emotionally Disturbed, Multiply Disabled, Orthopedically Impaired, Other Health Impaired, Social Maladjustment, Specific Learning Disability, Traumatic Brain Injury, and Visually Impaired. There is only one category, Preschool Child with a Disability, for children aged three to five years. The remaining categories apply to students aged five years until graduation from high school. There is no necessary correspondence between a mediFall 2010
cal or a psychiatric diagnosis and an educational category. A comment about determining a category of eligibility is in order. Districts apply decision-making rules flexibly. For example, Asperger’s Disorder falls on the autistic spectrum. However, it would be rare to classify an individual with Asperger’s as Autistic for educational purposes since the corresponding programs likely would be much more restrictive than necessary. Instead, the individual might more appropriately be considered as Other Health Impaired or, if there are writing deficits, as having a Specific Learning Disability. Other Health Impaired often is the category used for individuals with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. One district even considered a bipolar student “Other Health Impaired,” balancing the psychiatric diagnosis based on the student’s functional level with medication and therapy. Specific Learning Disability is a category that has undergone changes in conceptualization. It used to be mandatory that a severe discrepancy be demonstrated between cognitive ability (IQ) and achievement scores. It was incumbent upon each district to determine a statistical formula and criteria for determining severe discrepancy. With the most recent reauthorization of IDEIA, this is no longer required. Functional performance in the classroom now may provide the basis for this category, conceptualized in one form as a Response to Intervention (NJAC 6A:14-3.4(h)6). Under IDEIA, if a student is determined to be Eligible for Special Services, decisions must be made about appropriate placement and the related services required. Related services may be, to quote special education attorney Melinda Maloney Baird, “Anything in the world.” Examples include transportation, speech and language services, occupational and physical therapy, in-school counseling, certain types of medical services, and more recently, parent counseling and training such as the LOVAAS parent-training component for parents of a child with autism that helps them acquire the necessary skills to support the implementation of their child’s IEP at home. There is a continuum of educational placements according to how specialized they are, that is, how far removed from a regular education or mainstream program. It is mandated that students be educated in a program that is least removed from the mainstream AND most appropriate to their individual needs, including their social/emotional needs. This condition is termed the “least restrictive environment” (LRE). Lowest on the continuum is in-class resource support, indicating a regular education setting with a special education teacher in the mainstream classroom. Moving in the more restrictive direction, pull-out resource support indicates that the student receives supportive instruction from the special education teacher in a separate class for some days, but the regular education teacher maintains responsibility for the student, including grading. Next, replacement resource means that the student receives instruction and grading in a special education class limited to no more than ten students. A self-contained class implies that the student spends most if not all of the day in the special education setting, being mainstreamed into the regular education setting as appropriate, such as gym and specials or even a 23
content area class if beneficial. Placement outside the neighborhood school may occur either to a specialized program in or out of the district. Hospital programs with an educational component or, more long-term, residential placements comprise the far end of the continuum that is most removed from the regular education setting. Each year, it is determined whether a student should participate in an extended school year program to ameliorate the regression and slow recoupment rate that vacations might incur for more vulnerable individuals. It is important to note that the continuum of restrictiveness does not indicate which program is the least restrictive for a particular student. The “least restrictive environment” (LRE) is the level of programming most appropriate for the student’s individual needs. The district is expected to demonstrate efforts to accommodate the student in the regular classroom, including the consideration of supplementary aids and services. The benefits of a regular education setting versus the special class education setting must be reviewed for the student. Finally, the negative effects on other students in the regular class must be factored into the placement decision. Removal from regular education occurs only when the nature or severity of the disability is such that education in the regular classroom, with the use of supplementary aids and services, cannot be achieved satisfactorily. This standard provides more than a de minimus educational benefit, but does not require “the best” education. To again quote attorney Melinda Maloney Baird, the standard for a student’s program can be likened to “a serviceable Chevy, not a Cadillac.” Should a family choose to send their child to a private school, evaluations, supplementary instruction, and related services—but not special education, per se—are available through county Educational Services Commissions. If the family wants the district to be responsible for private school tuition, the program must offer special education benefits not available in-district. Being a special education student provides specific protections regarding discipline. Preschool students with disabilities may not be suspended or expelled. Otherwise, students with disabilities may be suspended up to ten days per school year without the provision of services. If a student is suspended for ten or more days, this is considered a de facto change in placement and a program must be provided “to the extent necessary to enable the student to progress appropriately in the general education curriculum and advance appropriately toward achieving the goals set out in the student’s IEP (NJAC 6A:14).” This translates to include both the provision of instruction and related services during the suspension. There are special guidelines regarding removal for drugs or weapons, “dangerousness,” or causing serious bodily harm. An important disciplinary safeguard exists for students with disabilities. In each student’s IEP, it is asked whether a student’s behavior impedes the student’s learning or the learning of others. If so, a Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP) must be developed that determines appropriate positive behavioral interventions and supports to address such behaviors. 24
If disciplinary action is being considered beyond the responses outlined in the BIP, especially if it involves suspension of ten or more days in a given school year, the IEP team must conduct a Manifestation Determination. If the disability is determined to underlie the misbehavior, the student may not be suspended. Transition services offer another valuable support to classified students. Beginning at age 16, a student’s strengths, interests, and preferences are aligned with postsecondary goals related to training, education, employment, community participation and, if appropriate, independent living. If the family does not believe the student will be able to live independently as an adult, plans to continue legal guardianship despite the student attaining legal majority, must be solidified. Development of self-advocacy skills is an important part of transition, and relies on personal understanding of one’s own disability. Once legal majority is obtained at age 18, it is the student’s right and responsibility to inform others of his/her eligibility for certain accommodations and modifications. If college is planned, a 504 plan may need to be developed because special education ends with high school graduation whereas Section 504 applies throughout adult life, even in occupational settings. Postsecondary services for job training and placement through the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services, the Division of Developmental Disabilities, the Association for Retarded Citizens, etc., may also be planned. A final word is in order regarding that very popular accommodation of extended time on tests, especially as it applies to standardized tests such as the HSPA (High School Proficiency Assessment), the SAT, or ACT. Before extended time is granted for high stakes tests, a history of its need and use in the classroom must be documented. Initial identification in high school designating the need for extended time on tests is unlikely to procure such an accommodation for college-bound students. Individualization of programs continues to be a burgeoning movement in contemporary education, with some calling for personal learning plans for every student. Until such occurs, Section 504 and IDEIA provide options for responding to the needs of individuals with disabilities. Private practitioners’ awareness of available supports both in school and in the post-secondary world can provide a critical component in their clients’ achievement of personal goals. ❖ References Baird, Melinda Maloney (May 14, 1999). Y2K and the IDEA of the Day. Presentation at the New Jersey Association of Pupil Services Administrators’ Spring Conference, East Brunswick, NJ. New Jersey Administrative Code, Title 6A, Chapter 14, Spe cial Education. (Revision adopted August 2, 2006). New Jersey Department of Education, Office of Special Edu cation Programs. Parental Rights in Special Education. (Revised May 2009). Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 U. S. C. § 794. New Jersey Psychologist
Expert Testimony from a Psychologist by Jeffrey Gerson, JD, and Boris Shapiro, Esq.
Admissibility of Expert Testimony, Generally xpert witnesses are treated under the Uniform Administrative Procedure Rules as they are under the New Jersey Rules of Evidence.1 Testimony of a psychologist testifying in his/her expert capacity is admissible if such testimony, a) assists the administrative law judge in understanding the evidence or determining a fact at issue, and b) the opinion is based on facts and data presented to the psychologist (at or before the hearing) and within the scope of the psychologists qualifications.2 If of a type reasonably relied upon by experts in the particular field in forming opinions upon the subject, the facts or data need not be themselves admissible in evidence.3 Restated, the test of admissibility is whether the psychologist has knowledge or experience not common to the world that renders his/her opinions beneficial to the judge in determining the question or fact at issue.4 As such, this standard is nearly identical to the standard described in the New Jersey Rules of Evidence.5
Qualification of a Psychologist as an Expert, Generally A psychologist must be in possession of specialized knowledge that permits him/her to render an expert opinion and to explain the basis of such an opinion.6 Such specialized knowledge may be derived from professional licensure, educational credentials, and/or specialized occupational experience.7 In the interest of full disclosure however, when the subject matter of the expert testimony falls distinctly within the province of the field of psychology, the expert will generally be required to be licensed.8 Ultimately, it is at the discreFall 2010
tion of the court whether to qualify the psychologist as an expert.9 Basis of Psychologist’s Analysis, Generally Generally, a psychologist’s analysis must be based on sound, adequatelyfounded scientific methodologies involving data and information of the type reasonably relied upon by experts in the field.10 Support for an expert’s methodology may be found in professional journals, texts, conferences, symposia, or judicial opinions accepting the methodology. Courts may also consider testimony from other experts in the field who use similar methodologies. The appropriate inquiry is not whether the court thinks the expert’s reliance on the underlying data was reasonable, but whether comparable experts in the field would actually rely on that information.11 Psychologist’s Medical Opinion, Generally A psychologist’s medical opinion testimony must be framed in terms of reasonable medical certainty or probability, not possibility.12 Specifically, when there is expert testimony regarding the cause, source, or identity of a specific disability, injury, or ailment, the rule of reasonable medical certainty-orprobability applies.13 Net Opinion Rule, Generally Under the rubric of the net opinion rule, expert testimony is excluded if it is based merely on unfounded speculation.14 The rule sheds light on the principle that an expert witness’s expertise qualifies him/her to take facts and form opinions based on the facts; not to offer a factually unsupported opinion.15 The
latter, of course, would amount to an invasion of the judge’s function as a factfinder. In essence, the net opinion rule is a restatement of the established principle that “an expert’s bare conclusions, unsupported by factual evidence, [are] inadmissible.”16 Hence, although administrative rules provide an administrative law judge with wide latitude as to the admission of evidence, one cannot circumvent the principle that an expert’s opinion must be based on factual evidence.17 Accordingly, the probative strength of an expert’s opinion can bare no more weight than the underlying facts themselves.18 Special Office of Administrative Law (OAL) Rule for Experts, Judicial Notice Generally, judicial notice allows a fact to be introduced into evidence if it is an axiom. Matters admitted under judicial notice are accepted without being formally introduced by a witness. Specific to the OAL, notice may be taken of generally recognized technical or scientific facts within the specialized knowledge of the agency or administrative law judge.19 Hearsay, Generally In laymen terms, hearsay is information made known to a witness by a third party (concerning some event, condition, or thing) of which the witness has no direct knowledge. Put simply, hearsay is secondhand information that a witness was made aware by someone else and did not see or hear himself. When submitted as evidence to prove the truth of the matter asserted,20 such statements are called hearsay evidence. Such use of hearsay evidence in New Jersey courts is generally not allowed.21 25
Unlike New Jersey’s Rules of Evidence, hearsay evidence is admissible in administrative law hearings. “Hearsay evidence which is admitted shall be accorded whatever weight the judge deems appropriate taking into account the nature, character and scope of the evidence, the circumstances of its creation and production, and, generally, its reliability.”22 A case, however, cannot be won on hearsay evidence alone. “[S]ome legally competent evidence must exist to support each ultimate finding of fact to an extent sufficient to provide assurances of reliability and to avoid the fact or appearance of arbitrariness.”23 The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Generally The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), 20 USCA §§ 14001487 requires that all children with educational disabilities have access to a free, appropriate public education (FAPE) and related services designed to meet their unique needs. In New Jersey, “[e]ach district board of education shall have policies, procedures, and programs . . . in effect to ensure . . . [a] free, appropriate public education . . . is available to all students with disabilities between the ages of three and 21. . . .”24 At a minimum, the education offered to a disabled child must be sufficient to confer some educational benefit upon the pupil.25 Further, students with disabilities must be educated, to the maximum extent appropriate, in the least restrictive environment.26 Special education is available for the following classifications: auditorily impaired; autistic; cognitively impaired; communication impaired; emotionally disturbed; multiply disabled; deaf/blindness; orthopedically impaired; other health impaired; preschool child with a disability; social maladjustment; specific learning disability; traumatic brain injury; or visually impaired.27 Role of the School Psychologist in the Special Education Process The district’s requirement to provide special education pursuant to the IDEA consists of: (1) identification; (2) evaluation; (3) determination of eligibility; (4) 26
development of an individualized education program (IEP); and (5) placement.28 First and foremost, a state must have procedures in place to locate and identify disabled children residing within the state in need of special education. Once identified, a student who requires services beyond those provided within the regular classroom will be referred to a child study team (CST) for an evaluation to determine eligibility for special education programs.29 The CST consists of a school psychologist, a learning disabilities teacher-consultant, and a school social worker.30 Upon determination of eligibility for special education, an IEP team (that may include the school psychologist) will develop an IEP that establishes the rationale for the student’s educational placement and serves as the basis for program implementation.31 Inter alia, the IEP includes a statement of the student’s present levels of educational performance, a statement of measurable annual goals, including specific short-term objectives or benchmarks, and a description of the educational program to be provided.32 Further, the written plan specifically details the educational activities, related services, and supplementary aids and services that will achieve the stated goals. Upon completion of the IEP, the district will place the child in the least restrictive environment33 where he/she can be conferred a meaningful educational benefit from the proposed IEP.34 Either the parent or the local board of education may request a hearing when there is a disagreement as to the identification, evaluation, placement, or the denial of a FAPE pursuant to the child’s IEP.35 A school psychologist may be involved in any, if not all of the aforementioned procedures; as such, his/her expert testimony will be germane when a due process hearing is conducted. While a discussion of a psychologist’s role as an expert witness is in order, only due process claims brought pursuant to FAPE violations will be discussed at this juncture. Role of psychologists as expert witnesses in due process hearings involving FAPE violations To reiterate, a school district must
provide a disabled child with a free and appropriate public education (FAPE). In 1982, the United States Supreme Court (USSC) defined ‘appropriate’ as “personalized instruction with sufficient support services to permit the child to benefit educationally from that instruction.”36 The Third Circuit (where New Jersey courts lie) has interpreted the 1982 decision to require IEPs to provide “significant learning” and confer a “meaningful benefit” to the disabled child.37 Because each child is unique, the determination of whether a “meaningful benefit” was bestowed requires “a student-by-student analysis that carefully considers the student’s individual abilities.”38 It is not uncommon for a child’s abilities/potential to be evaluated by a psychologist. As such, your expert testimony will be afforded considerable weight by the administrative law judge (ALJ),39 and likewise germane to the determination of whether a meaningful benefit was conferred. While not every psychologist will evaluate a child’s abilities, at a minimum, you will be expected to educate the ALJ40 as to the intricacies of the particular disorder that the child suffers from. This will be the case regardless of whether you work for the district (and are part of the IEP team) or are a private psychologist hired by the parents. Due to the unavoidable fact that some judges will be less familiar with special education matters than others, you should be prepared to discuss the disability ”ad nauseam.” This includes, but is not limited to: the typical characteristics/behaviors of a child with the disability; symptoms that may manifest; the effect of the disability on the child’s ability to learn; whether the disability can be treated; how the disability can be treated; tests used to diagnose the disability (and its severity); and methodologies for dealing with the disability. If you are a school psychologist that is part of the IEP team, expect to testify as to your assessments, test, interviews, and observations of the child. For instance, be prepared to educate the judge as to the severity of the child’s disability, the progress he is making during the school year, and what additional services may be in order. Of New Jersey Psychologist
particular importance, allocate enough time to thoroughly observe and interview the student at various points of the year.41 For instance, “[a] parent[’s] attorney may ask you why you spent only 30 minutes observing a student in a classroom.”42 A judge’s determination that you did not spend enough time observing the child, may negatively affect the weight your testimony is afforded. Similarly, “[m]ake sure you use the latest editions of assessments. [If not], be prepared to explain why you carried out an older version of an assessment.”43 Your failure to do either may leave you vulnerable to an attack on reliability by opposing counsel and his expert witness. In particular, make sure you can justify the use of your particular assessment by having knowledge of the latest relevant literature. Similarly, familiarize yourself with opposing psychologist’s assessment methods and literature so you can offer an informed opinion if asked to compare them.44 Keeping in mind that your observations may be implemented into the IEP, be complete, accurate, and thorough with your assessments. Your failure to relate accurate information to the IEP team or to make proper recommendations for an extended school year, out of district placement, or related services may lead to oversights and give rise to a FAPE violation. Counseling sessions (for emotionally disturbed children in particular) can play a crucial role when determining whether a child was conferred a meaningful educational benefit. As such, the parent’s attorney may inquire as to the details of the sessions and their frequency. If you partook in such sessions, be prepared to testify as to your observations of the child, your recommendations, and the degree to which the IEP reflected your recommendations. While a school psychologist will testify to his observations and how the child has progressed through the school year, a parent’s psychologist will be expected to testify to the lack thereof. Typically, you, as a private psychologist, will initially be expected to conduct an individual evaluation of the child. This evaluation will include your observations of Fall 2010
the child both at home and at school. In conjunction with your observations, you will review IEPs, evaluations, progress reports, model transition plans, social works assessments, and any other documents of relevance. Typically, you will then prepare a report stating whether you feel the school’s program is appropriate, whether the child is progressing, what if any other services should be implemented, and most importantly, whether you believe the child is receiving a FAPE. It is not uncommon for a psychologist to recommend an extended school day, an extended school year, or an all-together out of district placement. As has been articulated above, a due process hearing can be a demanding experience regardless of your years of practice and level of training. This is why it is important to take time to prepare for a due process hearing. You should be familiar with not only your assessments and observations, but also the assessments, reports, and literature of the opposing psychologist. Further, while opposing attorneys have no personal vendetta against you, they will nevertheless do everything within their power to put your credibility and credentials into question, and the reliability of your assessments in issue. As such, it is important for you to be honest, consistent, and well-tempered throughout the Special Education process. ❖ References
37 New Jersey Practice, Administrative Law and Practice S5.36, at 285 (Steven L. Lefelt, et. Al) (2nd ed. 2000). 2 N.J.A.C. 1:1-15.9(b) 3 Rubanick v. Witco Chem. Corp., 125 N.J. 421, 431 (1991). 4 Scully v. Fitzgerald, 179 N.J. 114 (2004). 5 See N.J.R.E. 702 6 State v. Moore, 122 N.J. 420, 458-59 (1991). 7 State v. Frost, 242 N.J. Super. 601, 615 (App. Div. 1990). 8 State v. Frost, 242 N.J. Super. 601, 615 (App. Div. 1990). 9 Rempfer v. Deerfield Packing Corp., 4 N.J. 135 (1950). 10 Kemp v. State, 174 N.J. 412 (2002). 11 Rubanick v. Witco Chem. Corp., 125 N.J. 421, 449-50 (1991). 12 State v. Freeman, 223 N.J. Super. 92, 116 (App. Div. 1988). 13 Biunno, Current N.J. Rules of Evidence, 1
comment 4 on Evid. R. 702 (2000). 14 Viocolo v. Diamond Shamrock Chemicals Co., 240 N.J. Super 289, 300 (App. Div. 1990). 15 Bowen v. Bowen, 96 N.J. 36, 50 (1984). 16 Buckelew v. Grossbard, 87 N.J. 512, 524 (1981). 17 N.J.A.C. 1:1-15.1(c). 18 Johnson v. Salem Corp., 97 N.J. 78, 91 (1984). 19 N.J.S.A. 52:14B-10(b). 20 New Jersey Rules of Evidence; Rule 801. 21 New Jersey Rules of Evidence; Rule 802. 22 N.J.A.C. 1:1-15.5(a). 23 N.J.A.C. 1:1-15.5(b). 24 N.J.A.C. 6A:14-1.2(b). 25 Lascari v. Ramapo Indian Hills Regional School District,116 N.J. 30, 47-48 (1989). 26 N.J.A.C. 6A:14-1.2(b)(5). 27 N.J.A.C. 6A:14-3.5(c). 28 34 C.F.R. § 300, subpart D. 29 N.J.A.C. 6A:14-3.3(c), (d). 30 N.J.A.C. 6A:14-3.1(b). 31 N.J.A.C. 6A:14-1.3, -3.7. 32 N.J.A.C. 6A:14-3.7(e). 33 N.J.A.C. 6A:14-4.2. 34 Polk v. Central Susquehanna Intermediate Unit 16, 853 F.2d 171, 179 (3d Cir. 1988). 35 N.J.A.C. 6A:14-2.7(a). 36 Hendrick Hudson District Board of Education v. Rowley, 458 U.S. 176, 203, 102 S. Ct. 3034, 3049, 73 L. Ed. 2d 690, 710 (1982). 37 Polk v. Central Susquehanna Intermediate Unit 16, 853 F.2d 171, 179 (3d Cir. 1988). 38 Ridgewood Bd. of Educ. v. N.E., 172 F.3d 238, 248 (3d Cir. 1999). 39 In general, a decision made by an admin istrative law judge (ALJ) must be made on substantive grounds based on a deter mination of whether the child received a FAPE. However, in matters alleging a pro cedural violation, an ALJ may decide that a child did not receive a FAPE only if the procedural inadequacies impeded the child’s right to a FAPE, significantly im peded the parents’ opportunity to parti cipate in the decision-making process regarding the provision of FAPE to the child, or caused a deprivation of educa tional benefits. 40 An OAL proceeding does not have a jury. As such, the ALJ will play the role of the fact finder. 41 Know your role before testifying in due process hearing, Today’s Psychologist, Vol. 13, No.9 April 01, 2010. 42 Know your role before testifying in due process hearing, Today’s Psychologist, Vol. 13, No.9 April 01, 2010. 43 Know your role before testifying in due process hearing, Today’s Psychologist, Vol. 13, No.9 April 01, 2010. 44 Know your role before testifying in due process hearing, Today’s Psychologist, Vol. 13, No.9 April 01, 2010. 27
The NJPA Membership Survey of 2009
by Sudha Wadhwani, PsyD, Co-Chair, NJPA Diversity Committee Michelle Truffin, MA, Research Consultant, Montclair State University Lois Steinberg, PhD, Chair, NJPA Membership Committee
o maintain and improve the quality of the New Jersey Psychological Association (NJPA), and to meet the needs of our members, a comprehensive survey of the membership was conducted via an on-line questionnaire in January 2009. The survey was open for approximately four weeks, and we were pleased by the high number of responses. Out of a total of 2,050 NJPA members, 688 responded to the survey, yielding a 33.6% response rate. The survey data can be viewed from several perspectives and themes, in particular, NJPA members’ professional concerns and their personal experience with NJPA, as well as diversity issues and the future needs of the members individually and of the association as a whole. A series of Friday Updates informed the membership of some of this information, and many of the statistical analyses were included in an earlier edition of the New Jersey Psychologist, (Vol. 59, No. 1; pp. 4243). A longer version of this article that includes demographic information and more complete analyses and discussion, is in the Members Only section of the NJPA website at <www.PsychologyNJ.org>. Professional Concerns Survey responses indicated that in January 2009, during the peak of the country’s economic crisis, respondents’ focus was on professional survival. NJPA members’ highest professional concerns at that time related to the future of private practice, parity issues, the future of psychology, and managed care/insurance/reimbursement concerns. When responding to the survey, members were less concerned with such factors as prescription privileges, multicultural/diversity issues, or issues related to personal safety; they focused mainly on keeping the profession viable. Respondents primarily felt that NJPA was very helpful with concerns related to insurance, parity, and government regulations. They indicated that NJPA was attuned to concerns about the future of private practice and managed care. Even with economic uncertainty, it was noticeable that the majority were 28
satisfied with their income, felt “somewhat to very optimistic” about the future of psychology, and were “somewhat to very satisfied” with their work in psychology. Since this survey was conducted, however, NJPA has been increasingly aware of problems with insurance and managed care. Given the reaction to the current insurance crisis, members might have responded differently to many of the questions if the survey was sent at a later date. The outpouring of responses to the insurance crisis indicates that many members have become increasingly concerned with income since answering the survey. Participant Experience Responses related to participant experience with NJPA indicated that members found many of NJPA’s programs and services to be very useful. These included personal consultation with Central Office staff, help with ethical issues, and NJPA’s advocacy with legislators and regulators. In addition, members utilized and appreciated the Friday Updates, their subscription to the NJ Psychologist, involvement in CE programming, attendance at the NJPA fall and spring conferences, and access to the Members Only section of NJPA’s website. However, many respondents did not utilize many NJPA programs and services, including consultations about licensure and insurance, Medicare, business practices, or advocacy with the Board of Psychological Examiners. Whether respondents were unaware of the existing programs and services NJPA offers to its members, they found no need for them, or had other reasons that were not disclosed. When asked about the ways they have participated in NJPA, only one-third identified as committee or special interest group members. Fewer members attended annual meetings than in the past. More positively, membership in NJPA affiliate organizations significantly increased, as did the number of members reading the Friday Updates, voting in annual elections, and utilizing the NJPA website. Reasons for not attending annual meetings included: topics were not relevant, not feeling welcomed, or that other members were “too cliquey,” or New Jersey Psychologist
that the scheduled times/days/locations were not convenient. Although only a few respondents expressed these concerns, we feel that all voices are relevant and we will consider this feedback carefully in future planning. In fact, the Colleagueto-Colleague program being promoted by the affiliate groups aims to address this need for welcoming new members, pairing them with a colleague, and helping them feel less isolated at meetings. Hopefully the new emphasis on “Going Green” will greatly simplify members’ ability to register for conferences, vote annually, and renew dues, thereby allowing more people to participate in these activities. Narrative feedback indicated a very positive experience with NJPA, although the few negative comments were also important. Attention to these concerns helps NJPA improve all members’ experiences with NJPA. Among these concerns were the needs for meetings to be more centrally located, more support for Early Career Psychologists (ECPs), and for NJPA to create an atmosphere that is more responsive and welcoming to current and prospective members. Some commentators felt that the association was not welcoming, its climate discouraged participation, and it was not supportive, responsive, or open. On the other hand, commentators liked NJPA’s opt-in e-mail list and phone support, and generally found NJPA staff helpful. Regarding NJPA’s policies, activities, and programs, most saw CE offerings to be relevant to their needs, felt that NJPA supported their professional development, and believed that NJPA activities and programs respected diversity. As to conferences, more than half felt that programs were of direct interest to them, that conferences and meetings were convenient to their schedule, and that NJPA publications reflected their own interests. However, some members were unhappy with meeting/conference times due to location, time/day, religious or practice conflict, or lack of interest in the conference topic. Comments suggest that non-members do not join NJPA because of the cost of membership, location and scheduling of meetings, and a negative view of the association’s focus on private practice and towards a perceived psychoanalytic orientation. Please know that all comments are considered valuable and NJPA strives to create a climate that is beneficial, responsive, and welcoming to all members, and works actively to address all concerns. The Diversity of NJPA The survey results demonstrated that the membership of NJPA does not reflect the rich diversity within the state of New Jersey. Our membership does not come close to the proportion of ethnic diversity within New Jersey, as compared to data from the Census Bureau. NJPA would benefit from the inclusion of psychologists across multiple aspects of identity, including age, gender, race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, ability, language, marital status, specialty area, theoretical orientation, years of experience in the field, type of work setting, and geographical region within NJ. Fall 2010
Overall, NJPA is strongly committed to diversity initiatives and works actively to increase the diversity of membership. In addition, we hope to maintain an organizational commitment to addressing multiculturalism throughout all NJPA initiatives, programs, and activities. This is reflected in our mission statement, the work and composition of the various committees, and the commitment to funding a Diversity Delegate to the annual APA State Leadership Conference in Washington, DC. Furthermore, both LPANJ and NJABPsi are invited to send representatives to our Executive Board meetings. Looking to the Future NJPA takes your feedback very seriously, and is addressing the concerns and negative feedback highlighted by the survey. Responding to members’ concerns is vital to providing quality programs and services to our community. We intend to expand on and increase what NJPA is doing well, while addressing the concerns and problems that many of you have raised. As a psychological association we strive to represent and advance our profession. It is critical that we work together to support one another, advocate for our profession, and serve as agents of change in our respective communities. Along with changes mentioned throughout this article, the June 2010 Executive Board Retreat specifically focused on ways to promote member involvement, increase interest, utilize technology, enhance diversity, address the needs of ECP’s, and other matters that will foster growth and commitment to the organization. In addition, a new survey to address practice issues, will be forthcoming. All responses were greatly valued. NJPA’s main goal was and continues to be to improve your experience as a member. Thank you for helping us to do this. Keeping communication open is vital to the health of any organization, and NJPA continually strives to be the association our members want us to be. ❖ References US Census Bureau, Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2008 (127th Edition). Washington, DC, 2007; <http:/www.census.gov/statab/www>; <http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/sates/34000.html> Note: The authors would like to express their particular thanks to Michael Likier, PhD & Phyllis Bolling, PhD for their assistance with diversity issues. We are grateful to the members of the NJPA Membership Committee for their insights and comments, all of which were so helpful to the data analysis. In addition to the authors, the committee includes Drs. Anne Farrar Anton, Resa Fogel, and Phyllis Lakin, and NJPAGS representative, Olga Diamantis.
Member News Sheila Bender, PhD presented a paper on “Darwin, Mind and a Global Psychology” at the Asian Psychological Association 2010 Convention in Darwin, Australia. Ruth Lijtmaer, PhD presented 3 papers at the Second Annual Conference on: “Integrating Traditional Healing Practices into Counseling Psychology, Psychotherapy, and Psychiatry.” The papers were: Pre-conference: “Diversity and Multicultural Counseling in USA;” and “Race, Culture, and Psychotherapy.” Conference paper: “Integrating Latin American Traditional Healing Into Counseling and Psychotherapy,” July 22 - 23, 2010, University of Kwazulu-Natal, Durban, South Africa. She also wrote Chapter 16: Migration, Cultural Values and the Medical Model: Pittu Laungani and Psychotherapy, in the book Bridging East-West Psychology and Counseling. Eds. Roy Moodley, Aanchai Rai, and Wassem Alladin. Sage Publications, India, 2010. Norbert Wetzel, ThD was awarded the “Distinguished Contribution to Social Justice” 2010 Award by the American Family Therapy Academy (AFTA) for his work at the Center for Family, Community, and Social Justice, Inc. His work with the disadvantaged youth and their families in NJ public schools is supported generously by the NJPA Foundation. Juneau Gary, PsyD was appointed to serve as representative of the American Psychological Association (APA) to the United Nations where APA is accredited to the Economic and Social Council and to the Department of Information.
Looking for a practice opportunity that provides – • • • • •
A steady source of referrals; Electronic submission of progress notes and billing information; Prompt payment schedule; Clinical supervision and assurance of insurance compliance; No billing responsibilities or overhead costs?
has part time positions available for New Jersey Licensed Psychologists. Openings in selected geriatric long term care and long term psychiatric facilities. This is an opportunity to work in a multidisciplinary setting. We offer a competitive salary, comprehensive training and compliance supervision.
Contact: Richard M. Samuels, PhD, Guardian Eldercare, PC. Phone: 201-567-3690, Fax: 973-774-7040 or e-mail us at: email@example.com We are an equal opportunity employer.
New Jersey Psychologist
APA Council Report
Summary of APA Council’s August 2010 Meeting By Rosalind Dorlen, PsyD
t the opening of the meeting of the Council of Representatives at the August 2010 APA Convention in San Diego, Council reaffirmed its 2004 policy statement in unwavering support of civil marriage for same-sex couples. The annual convention provided a unique opportunity to present the growing body of science that is the foundation for this position that has influenced many of the legislators, judges, and other public officials who are working to achieve this goal. Council additionally addressed the recognition of seven specialties and proficiencies in professional psychology. Included among the seven specialties were: industrial-organizational psychology, sports psychology, psychopharmacology, personality assessment, geropsychology, clinical neuropsychology, and behavioral/cognitive psychology. Specialties and proficiencies are recommended by the Commission for the Recognition of Specialties and Proficiencies in Professional Psychology and are designed to help both the public to identify and practitioners to demonstrate distinct areas and activities within the scope of psychology. In other action, Council: • Received the Report of the 2009 Presidential Task Force on the Future of Psychology as a STEM Discipline. This report articulates the rationale for the inclusion of psychology as a STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathema tics) discipline and recommends strategies for further com munication and policy efforts to foster that recognition. • Received the Report of the Task Force on the Psychosocial Effects of War on Children and Families who are Refugees from Armed Conflict Residing in the United States. • Approved the 2011 preliminary revenue and expense budget that estimated $103,193,200 in revenues and $103, 311,800 in expenses. That small operating deficit is expected to be corrected for the council's next review of the 2011 budget in February. • Suspended the annual Consumer Price Index dues increase, holding member dues steady through the end of 2013. In 2011, full member dues will be $287. • Approved a proposal for a modified council representation plan that keeps the number of representatives from state, terri torial, and provincial psychological organizations and APA divi sions at 162 while also ensuring that each group has at least one voting representative. The proposal requires a by-laws change and, therefore, the approval of the full member-ship. A ballot will be distributed to all voting members this fall. • Adopted a plan for a central office inventory of the association's overall greenhouse gas emissions. The inventory will review Fall 2010
APA's buildings and business practices. Findings will be used to compare APA greenhouse gas emissions to those of similar busi nesses and organizations and set emission goals for the association. APA publisher Gary R. VandenBos, PhD, briefed the Council on the association's publishing program and the evolution of science publishing over the last three decades. According to VandenBos, APA enjoys international recognition for its PsycINFO database and PsycNET platform and the overall quality and impact rating of its journals, but must also keep pace with changes in the information industry. APA's publishing revenue has increased from $45 million in 2000 to close to $80 million this year, but the rate of the program's overall revenue growth is slowing as competition from other technology platforms has increased. Approximately 60% of APA's publishing revenue comes from the sale of licenses to the association's electronic databases. In other action, the Council witnessed the presentation of the 2010 Raymond D. Fowler Award for service to the association to longtime governance member, independent practitioner, and former member of the Board of Directors Matty Canter, PhD. In addition, New Jersey’s Dorothy W. Cantor, PsyD, was awarded an APA presidential citation by President Carol Goodheart. Dr. Cantor was recognized for her years of service to APA and current leadership of the American Psychological Foundation (APF). Also honored was Lee Gurel, PhD, for his generous gifts to the APF. Tens of thousands of refugees leave their home countries due to war and violence each year and resettle in the United States; 40% of those refugees are children. In an effort to more fully understand and mediate the impact of armed conflict, displacement, and resettlement on children's development and well being, the APA Task Force on the Psychosocial Effects of War on Children and Families who are Refugees from Armed Conflict Residing in the United States was created in 2008. The group's report was presented to Council. They reviewed available research and indicated that while children and their families displaced by war endure great trauma and adversity, they also demonstrate profound strength and resilience in their coping and adaptive mechanisms. While more research is indicated on this multi-dimensional issue, some treatment programs are showing promise, including comprehensive services, individual treatment methods, family therapy, and group work in schools and community settings. Community engagement, collaboration, and culturally informed practice are particularly important for the refugee client population. The report concluded that training for psychologists working with refugee populations should include non-traditional elements, such as interface and collaboration with other agencies and “service providers,” such as community-based mutual assistance organizations and language interpreters. I want to thank you for the opportunity to represent you at APA Council. Please e-mail me at Dorlen@mindspring.com with your input or suggestions regarding Council. ❖ 31
Being Wrong: Adventures in the Margin of Error By Kathryn Schulz Harper Collins, 2010 Reviewed by: Michael Jaffe, PhD
o err is human, with the improbable exceptions of the Pope and Stephen Hawking. But what is more enjoyable than being right? Pointing out others’ mistakes (“I told you so”) is also pretty cool, and why I am an editor. When I am wrong, I always have a good explanation- I didn’t have all the facts, or I wasn’t paying attention, but privately, I feel embarrassed (“What was I thinking?”). Our credibility depends, to a large extent, on the accuracy of our perceptions. Politicians famously avoid taking responsibility for errors (“Mistakes were made,” rather than “I screwed up”). Songwriters are more realistic (“You may be right, I may be crazy,” sings Billy Joel, “but it just may be a lunatic you’re looking for”). Or see Sheryl Crow’s, My Favorite Mistake, allegedly about her affair with Eric Clapton (I could be wrong, but not likely). When we admit errors of judgment or knowledge, there’s almost always a series of “buts.” (I would love to hear (and kick) Bernie Madoff’s buts). Human intelligence evolved because of its survival value, and most of the time, we are right. “Individually and collectively, our very existence depends on our ability to reach accurate conclusions about the world around us...It is imperative for our survival, gratifying our ego, and, overall, one of life’s cheapest and keenest satisfactions” (p. 4). But journalist author Kathryn Schulz maintains that, although being wrong makes us cringe, it is also a window into our human nature, and teaches us who we are. Ironically, realizing that one is wrong feels like being right. We forget our mistakes pretty quickly, as Freud illustrated in The Psychopathology of Everyday Life; so-called Freudian slips may be glimpses into revealing psychic truths. How do we know whether we are right or wrong? “To be wrong is to believe something is true when it is false or, conversely, to believe that it is false when it is true” (p. 11). But this is not a book about philosophy, empiricism, logic, or morality. Instead, it addresses how we think about being wrong (making factual errors), and how we feel about it (p. 12). It’s mainly “built around stories of people screwing up” (p. 17). In the first part of this fascinating book, the author traces the history of how we think about wrongness and the 32
two models of error (errors are normal and useful, errors are deplorable and bad) that reflect on us and our world. Keep in mind that science gravitates toward testability and falsification. Errors incrementally lead us to the “truth” (p. 32). Descartes doubted everything, including his existence, foreshadowing The Matrix. The second part of this book (The Origins of Error) explores the fallibility of knowledge, the factors that lead us to make mistakes, including how our senses fail us (e.g., perceptual illusions and blind spots), and our higher cognitive processes that struggle to come up with a convincing and useful interpretation of an extremely complex world. Am I (or you) dreaming this book review, or is it really happening? No way to know! The third part (The Experience of Error) focuses on how we feel when we screw up, and how we can use our insights about our fallibility to “transform our worldviews, our relationships, and, most profoundly, ourselves” (p. 23-24). Part four, Embracing Error, summarizes the good side of error, “the lessons we can learn from it, the ways it can change us, its connections to our intelligence, imagination, and humanity” (p. 300). (Not medical error, which universally sucks). So, don’t take your beliefs too seriously. And I may be going out on a limb, but you will not regret reading this book. ❖
Barry W. Klein, Psy.D. Psychologist
Child, Adolescent, Adult, Family PDD, Autism, Asperger’s Syndrome, ADHD Behavior Problems, Parenting, School Consultation, Supervision 68 Essex Street Millburn, NJ 07041 973.376.8890 NJ Lic 4204
915 West End Ave. Ste 1A New York, NY 10025 917.692.1281 NY Lic 8960
New Jersey Psychologist
NJPA acknowledges 2010 Sustaining Members
By advancing your level of membership to Sustaining Membership status, you have generously demonstrated your additional support of your professional association. We thank you for your commitment and dedication to your organization! Amy Altenhaus, PhD Jeffrey Axelbank, PsyD John Aylward, EdD Les Barbanell, EdD Thomas Barrett, PhD Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD Margaret Beekman, PhD Roderick Bennett, PhD Andrew Bernstein, PhD Janet Berson, PhD Mary Blakeslee, PhD Philip Bobrove, PhD Elisa Bobrow, PhD Daniel Bromberg, PhD Valerie Brooks-Klein, PhD Charles Buchbauer, PhD Susan Buckley, PsyD William Coffey, PsyD Kathleen Cullina-Bessey, PsyD Richard Dauber, PhD John Diepold, Jr, PhD Rosalind Dorlen, PsyD Lynn Egan, PsyD Susan Esquilin, PhD Anne Evers, PhD Sean Evers, PhD Brian Farran, PhD Anne Farrar-Anton, PhD Janie Feldman, PsyD Stephen Feldman, PhD Resa Fogel, PhD James Fosshage, PhD Thomas Frio, PhD Joseph Ganz, PhD Dawn Gemeinhardt, PhD Leslie Gilbert, PhD Larry Gingold, PsyD Gary Goldberg, PhD Wayne Goldman, PhD Luise Gray, PsyD Lisa Greenberg, PhD Susan Grossbard, PsyD
Mathias Hagovsky, PhD Raymond Hanbury, PhD Kelly Hargadon, PhD Gladys Hirschorn, PhD Jane Hochberg, PsyD Kathy Howley, PhD Nancy Just, PhD Jeffrey Kahn, PhD Sarah Karl, PhD Robert Karlin, PhD Charles Katz, PhD Roberta Katz, PhD Kristine Keane, PsyD Joel Kleinman, PhD Deirdre Kramer, PhD Lorraine LaConti Herrenkohl, PhD Phyllis Lakin, PhD Roman Lemega, PhD Neal Litinger, PhD N. John Lombardi, PsyD Rebecca Loomis, PhD Mark Lowenthal, PsyD Marilyn Lyga, PhD Roger Maitland, PhD Stanley Mandel, EdD Phyllis Marganoff, EdD Neil Massoth, PhD Frank McElroy, PhD John McInerney, PhD Kenneth McNiel, PhD Edward Merski, PsyD Lauren Meyer, PsyD Barry Mitchell, PsyD Bea Landman Mittman, PhD Norine Mohle, PhD Ruth Mollod, PhD Marsha Morris, PhD Robert Morrow, PhD Rosemarie Moser, PhD Daniel Moss, PhD Susan Neigher, PhD
Ronald Newman, PhD Cheryl Notari, PhD Rose Oosting, PhD Susan Parente, PsyD Kristen Peck, PhD Carmen Pelaez, PsyD Lori Pine, PsyD Gina Rayfield, PhD AnnaMarie Resnikoff, PhD Mary Roberts, PhD Barbara Rosenberg, PhD Lori Rosenberg, PsyD Gina Rudolph, PsyD George Sanders, PhD Nancie Senet, PhD Arlene Shaffer, PhD William Shinefield, PsyD Scott Sigmon, EdD Ronald Silikovitz, PhD Jeffrey Singer, PhD Brooke Sorger, PhD Jeffrey Spector, PsyD Jakob Steinberg, PhD Lois Steinberg, PhD Marjorie Steinfeld, PhD Deana Stevens, PsyD Ira Sugarman, PhD Anthony Tasso, PhD H. Augustus Taylor, PhD Tamsen Thorpe, PhD Carol Turner, EdD Kathleen Waldron, PhD Jonathan Wall, PsyD Virginia Waters, PhD Daniel Watter, EdD Ida Welsh, PhD Aaron Welt, PhD Emily Wildman, PsyD Stanley Zebrowski, PhD Michele Zembow, PhD Jeannine Zoppi, PhD
Show your support and join your colleagues by becoming a Sustaining Member! Receive free enrollment in the Referral Service, CE discounts, and special public recognition.
Left to Right: Carol Goodheart, PhD, APA President; Jeffrey Barnett, PsyD, Heiser Award Coordinator; Rosalind Dorlen, PsyD, Heiser Recipient; and Nanci Klein, PhD, President of Division 31, APA.
The Karl F. Heiser Award honors those psychologists who have given voluntarily of their time to define the discipline of psychology statutorily by state and federal laws and regulations through advocacy. Rosalind Dorlen, PsyD was presented with a commemorative pin and certificate at a special event held at the 2010 APA Convention in San Diego.
New Jersey Psychologist
NJPA 2010 ELECTION RESULTS
Congratulations! Mathias Hagovsky, PhD President-Elect Milton Spett, PhD Member-At-Large (General Membership) Jeannine Zoppi, PhD Member-At-Large (Affiliate Organizations)
Do you have a professional passion you would like to share with our readers? If so, consider creating a special section for the New Jersey Psychologist! The editorial board is seeking authors and guest editors, with similar interests, to develop a theme for a future special section. A liaison editor is assigned to work with the selected guest editor. The guest editor maintains contact with the various individual authors and streamlines the editing process prior to publication. As you know, the journal is the professional publication of our association and is read by fellow psychologists, students, and affiliate and state psychological associations across the country. So, if you or someone you know, are involved in an area of psychology that would be of interest to the NJPA membership tell us about it! Contact Editor Jack Aylward at firstname.lastname@example.org or Central Office at NJPA@PsychologyNJ.org
Have you joined the Members Only Opt-In Listserv? Connect with your colleagues who are already engaged in lively, on-line discussions. The Members Only Opt-in Listserv is a forum for NJPA members to take part in interactive discussions on topics such as managed care, treatment and referral inquiries, and other professional concerns. Subscribing to this listserv is by request only; members must “opt-in” after reviewing the listserv guidelines, policies, and rules, and agreeing to abide by them. To review the guidelines and opt-in, please log on to the Members Only section at www.PsychologyNJ.org and click on “OPT-In-Listserv” under the “Get Involved” heading. We hope you will find this listserv to be a valuable benefit of membership, and we look forward to the many lively discussions that will ensue! If you need further assistance, please contact Central Office at 973-243-9800.
A VERY SPECIAL THANK YOU TO OUR LEGAL DEFENSE FUND CONTRIBUTORS! Special Recognition $15,000
APA Committee for the Advancemnt of Professional Practice (CAPP) Grant
NJ Coalition of Mental Health Professionals
Members/Affiliates $2,000 - $2,200
Rosalind Dorlen, PsyD Nancy McWilliams, PhD Middlesex Psych Assoc David Panzer, PsyD Nina Williams, PsyD
$1,000 - $1,500
EUCAP Stephen Garbarini, PsyD Morris Goodman, PhD Mathias Hagovsky, PhD Lisa Jacobs, PhD Deirdre Kramer, PhD John Lagos, PhD Phyllis Lakin, PhD Mercer Psych Assoc Morris Psych Assoc Nancie Senet, PhD
$751 - $999
Larry Gingold, PsyD Pilar Ortega, PsyD
$501 - $750
Bergen Psych Association Andrew Bernstein, PhD Susan Buckley, PsyD Karen Cohen, PsyD Gary Goldberg, PhD Osna Haller, PhD Margery Honig, PhD Madelyn Milchman, PhD Larry Perfetti, EdD Mark Pesner, PhD Peter Richman, PhD Mary Roberts, PhD Jeffrey Spector, PsyD Martha Temple, PsyD Barbara Tocco, EdD
$301 - $500
Kathryn Adorney, PhD Amy Altenhaus, PhD Jeffrey Axelbank, PsyD Donald Bernstein, PhD Nancy Bloom, PsyD Richard Brewster, PsyD Sidney Cohen, PhD Richard Dauber, PhD Patricia DeSear, PhD Rosalie DiSimone-Weiss, PhD Joan Fiorello, PhD Pam Foley, PhD Muriel Fox, PhD Kenneth Freundlich, PhD Ruth Goldston, PhD Ora Gourarie, PsyD Lisa Greenberg, PhD Reuben Gross, PhD Hadassah Gurfein, PhD Aynn Hartman, PhD Douglas Haymaker, PhD Barry Helfmann, PsyD
Jane Hochberg, PsyD Nancy Just, PhD Toby Kaufman, PhD Terence Kearse, PhD Michael Koffman, PhD Gloria Loew, PhD David MacIssacs, PhD Phyllis Marganoff, EdD Bea Mittman, PhD Sharon Montgomery, PsyD Rosemarie Moser, PhD Rose Oosting, PhD Sharon Perrotta, PsyD Lori Pine, PsyD Lori Rosenberg, PsyD Michael Sakowitz, PhD Elissa Savrin, PhD Richard Schwartz, PsyD Ann Stainton, PhD Lois Steinberg, PhD Carol Turner, EdD Daniel Watter, EdD Bonnie Wiesner, PhD
$101 - $300
Rika Alper, PhD Benjamin Alterman, PhD Mark Aronson, EdD Elio Arrechea, PhD Richard Auletta, PhD Irwin Badin, PhD Bruce Banford, PsyD James Battaglia, PhD Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD Margaret Beekman, PhD Sheila Bender, PhD Pauline Bergstein, PhD Janet Berson, PhD Mary Blakeslee, PhD Philip Bobrove, PhD Elizabeth Bond, PhD Natalie Brown, PhD Craig Callan, PsyD Tadd Campbell, PhD Shelley Carroll, PhD Monica Carsky, PhD Mark Chernin, PhD Rosemarie Ciccarello, PhD Joseph Coyne, PhD Stephanie Coyne, PhD Daniel DaSilva, PhD Jeanette DeVaris, PhD Linda Earley, PsyD Sean Evers, PhD Anne Farrar-Anton, PhD Samuel Forlenza, PhD Myrna Frank, PhD Diane Friedman, PhD Milton Fuentes, PsyD Cheryl Futterman, PhD Lorraine Gahles-Kildow, PhD Dawn Gemeinhardt, PhD Jill Gentile, PhD Marc Gironda, PsyD Ronald Gironda, PhD Linda Glazer, PsyD Carol Goodheart, EdD Susan Grossbard, PsyD Lori Rayner Grossi, EdD Judith Gurtman, PhD Kathryn Hall, PhD Abigail Hamilton, PsyD Raymond Hanbury, PhD Nancy Hays, PhD Frances Hecker, PhD
John Hennessy, PhD Kathy Howley, PhD Maureen Hudak, PsyD Monica Indart, PsyD Glenda Insabella, PhD Jeff Kahn, PhD Paula Kaplan Reiss, PhD Meline Karakashian, PhD Susan Kasper, PhD Charles Katz, PhD Ilene Kesselhaut, EdD Myra Klein, EdD Chris Kotsen, PsyD Lorraine LaConti Herrenkohl, PhD Marcia Laky, PhD William Linden, PhD Bonnie Lipeles, PsyD Ronald Loffredo, PhD N. John Lombardi, PsyD Rebecca Loomis, PhD Mark Lowenthal, PsyD Deborah Lubetkin, PsyD Alba Ludmer, EdD William Boyce Lum, PsyD Susan Marx, PsyD Neil Massoth, PhD John McInerney, PhD Kenneth McNiel, PhD Nancy Melendez, EdD Greer Melidonis, PsyD Barbara Menzel, PsyD Edward Merski, PsyD Barry Mitchell, PsyD Tamerra Moeller, PhD Norine Mohle, PhD Stanley Moldawsky, PhD Leila Moore, EdD Marsha Morris, PhD Daniel Moss, PhD Charles Most, PsyD Morgan Murray, PhD Susan Neigher, PhD Timothy O'Connell, PhD Robert Pasahow, PhD Howard Paul, PhD Herbert Postash, PhD Adam Price, PhD Alan Radzin, PhD Gina Rayfield, PhD Katheleen Reidy, PhD Dolores Reilly, PsyD Anna Marie Resnikoff, PhD Louis Richmond, PhD Paul Rockwood, PhD Barbara Rosenberg, PhD Francine Rosenberg, PsyD Joellyn Ross, PhD Elissa Rozov, PhD George Sanders, PhD Letitia Sandrock, PsyD Gail Schrimmer, PhD Helene Schwartzbach, EdD Karen Sciaraffa, PhD Arline Shaffer, PhD Samuel Shein, PhD Edmund Shimberg, PhD William Shinefield, PsyD Scott Sigmon, EdD Frank Sileo, PhD Ronald Silikovitz, PhD Howard Silverman, PhD Richard Silvestri, PhD Jeffrey Singer, PhD Karen Skean, PsyD Shawn Marie Sobkowski, EdD
Tamara Sofair-fisch, PhD Milton Spett, PhD Jakob Steinberg, PhD Deana Stevens, PsyD David Szmak, PsyD Lucy Takagi, PsyD John Tarpinian, EdD Agustus Taylor, PhD Patricia Tistan, PhD Mindi Turin, PhD Claire Vernaleken, PhD Barbara Von Klempner, EdD Jonathan Wall, PsyD Seth Warren, PhD Virginia Waters, PhD Karen Way, PhD Allen Weg, EdD Aaron Welt, PhD Emily Wildman, PsyD James Wulach, PhD, JD Michael Zarabi, PsyD Stan Zebrowski, PhD Michael Zito, PhD Jeannine Zoppi, PhD
Ellen Adamoyurka, PhD, PsyD Julie Alter, PhD Elvira Anselmi, PhD Carol Armenia, PhD Charles Bachus, PhD Elaine Belz, PhD Rhea Bensman, PsyD Jeffrey Bessey, PhD Lynn Bisco, PsyD Philip Bisco, PsyD Lily Bollinger, PsyD Isabel Brachfeld, EdD Joseph Braun, PhD Louis Burdman, PhD Barbara Byrd, PhD John Caliso, PhD Lorraine Carr, PsyD Mark Cetta, PhD Barry Cohen, PhD Robin Cooper-Fleming, PsyD Mark Cox, PhD Rochel David, PhD Deborah Dawson, PsyD Tara Donnelly, PhD Laura Eisdorfer, PsyD Kali Roy Eklof, PhD Roberta Fallig, PhD Michael Feldman, PhD Ellen Fenster-Kuehl, PhD Benjamin Fialkoff, PhD Carol Friedman, PhD Richard Gaines, PhD Maureen Gallagher, PhD Marie Geron, PhD Lisabeth Gertner, PhD Harlene Goldschmidt, PhD William Gordon, PhD Sandra Grundfest, EdD Emile Gurstelle, PhD Stanley Hayden, PhD Nancy Hicks, PsyD Scott Johansen, PhD Roberta Katz, PhD Judy Kaufman, PhD Jacob Kind, PhD Robin Lang, PsyD Stuart Leeds, PsyD Ruth Lijtmaer, PhD Viviana Litovsky, PhD John LoConte, PhD
New Jersey Psychologist
A VERY SPECIAL THANK YOU TO OUR LEGAL DEFENSE FUND CONTRIBUTORS! $100 (continued)
Alfredo Lowe, PhD Lisa Lyons, PhD Heather MacLeod, EdD Daniel Mahoney, EdD Stanley Mandel, EdD Bonnie Markham, PhD, PsyD Nancy Marks, PsyD Jim Mastrich, EdD Carol McCrea, PhD Robert McGrath, PhD Leslie Meltzer, PhD Stanley Messer, PhD Elizabeth Nadle, PsyD Hulon Newsome, PsyD Sallie Norquist, PhD Cheryl Notari, PhD Carly Orenstein, PsyD Michael Osit, EdD James Owen, PsyD Claudia Pascale, PhD Kristen Peck, PhD Francesca Peckman, PsyD Alan Rappaport, PhD Jill Rappaport, PhD Ann Reese, Phd, PsyD Kit Riley, PhD Anne Rybowski, PhD Carole Salvador, PsyD Donna Schatten, PhD Louis Schlesinger, PhD Paul Schottland, PhD Zelig Schrager, PhD Doris Schueler, PhD Jeffrey Segal, PsyD Paula Selkow, PhD Laura Shack-Finger, EdD David Siegman, PsyD Pierce Skinner, PsyD Henry Srednicki, PhD Steven Sussman, PhD Cloey Talotta, PsyD
Lynn Taska, PhD Veronica Thomas, EdD Tamsen Thorpe, PhD Gerard Vaccarella, PhD Steven Weitz, PhD Ida Welsh, PhD Carol Wenzel-Rideout, PsyD Gail Winbury, PsyD Sharon Wolbert, PhD Joan Wolkin, PhD David Yammer, PhD Wayne Young, PhD Joshua Zavin, PhD
$99 and under
Susan Albert, PsyD Michelle Alberti, PhD Keith Alexander, PhD Barbara Alter, PhD Mary Altonji, PhD Manuel Alvarez, PhD Annette Appleheimer, PsyD Rosemary Arena, PhD Kyle Barr, PsyD Patricia Baszczuk, PhD Amy Becker-Mattes, PhD Roderick Bennett, PhD Judith Bernstein, PsyD Mona Birk, PhD Monica Blum, PhD Gordon Boals, PhD Suzanne Bober, PsyD Phyllis Bolling, PhD Patricia Brady, EdD Randy Bressler, PsyD Charlotte Buchmann, MA Linda Centeno, PhD John Charles, EdS Lawrence Chasin, PhD Ronald Coughlin, EdD Meredith Cregg-Wedmore
Sheila Dancz, PhD Michelle Farber Daniel, PsyD Margaret DeLong, PsyD John Dovel, PhD Helen Demetriades, PsyD Elaine Elliott-Moskwa, PhD Robert Evans, PhD Brian Farran, PhD Marcha Flint, PsyD Walter Florek, PhD Edward Franzoni, PhD Sharon Freedman, PhD Mary Ann Gdula, PhD Judith Glassgold, PsyD Jane Glassman, PhD Elizabeth Goldberg, PhD Vivian Guze Cynthia Haines, PsyD Freda Hansberg, PhD Sandra Harris, PhD Kay Herud, PhD Josephine Hines, PhD Hailey Hirschmann, PhD Barbara Holstein, EdD Russell Holstein, PhD Ellen Hulme, EdD Susan Huslage, PhD Elaine Hyman, PsyD Jeri Isaacson-Will, PhD Sarah Karl, PhD Mary Kelly, PhD Laurie Kepecs-Schlussel, PhD Stanley Keyles, PsyD Diane Klein, PhD Candice Knight, PhD, APN Phyllis Kresch, PsyD Kenneth Kressel, PhD Neal Litinger, PhD Robert LoPresti, PhD Marilyn Lyga, PhD Deborah Mandell, PhD
Howard Mangel, EdD Margery Manheim, PhD Judith Margolin, PsyD Robert Massey, PhD Steven Master, PhD Frank McElroy, PhD Lynette McKeon, PsyD Gene Nebel, PhD Ronald Newman, PhD Marilyn Nusbaum, PhD Behnaz Pakizegi, PhD Laura Palmer, PhD Susan Parente, PsyD Craig Pearl, PsyD Lauren Picciano, PsyD Ange Puig, PhD Richard Rapkin, PsyD Lawrence Rispoli, PsyD Lucas Rockwood, PsyD Debra Roelke, PhD Noreen Romano, PhD Carolyn Rooney, PhD Gianine Rosenblum, PhD Komal Saraf, PhD Lynn Schiller, PhD Alice St Claire, PsyD Mary Ellen Stanisci, PhD Barbara Starr, EdD Helene Steinfeld, PhD Kathleen Torsney, PhD Larisa Wainer, PsyD Deirdre Waters, PsyD Elaine Weinman, PhD ***Listing reflects contributions received through October 29, 2010.
PLEASE DONATE TODAY! NJPA is pursuing legal remedies for the intrusion into psychological practices and the violation of New Jersey laws including, but not limited to, Peer Review, Prompt Payment, Loss Ratio, Health Claims Authorization, Processing and Payment Act (prohibiting the recapturing of fees). We are committed to taking action! NJPA has pledged $50,000 to match member donations, but addressing these issues requires significant resources, and we are asking for your financial support. Please give generously! To send a check, please fill out below and return. To donate online, visit: www.speakyourmindnj.org NAME: Billing address: ______________________________________________________ Total amount: $ Payment method:
Check (Make payable to NJPA) Visa MC
Cardholder's name (please print): Credit card # Expiration date:
3-digit security code: (on back of card)
N J P A NJPA 414 Eagle Rock Avenue Suite 211 West Orange, NJ 07052 (973) 243-9800 Fax: (973) 243-9818 NJPA@PsychologyNJ.org
New Jersey Psychological Association CALL FOR NOMINATIONS Nominations are currently being solicited for four positions on the 2012 NJPA Executive Board. All candidates for elected office in the New Jersey Psychological Association must meet the following criteria: 1. Full Member, in good standing, for at least two years. 2. Evidence of volunteer involvement in NJPA for at least one year. 3. No pending ethical or legal violations. Volunteer yourself or nominate a colleague to serve. Submit a prepared statement of nomineeâ€™s qualifications along with this form and return to the Central Office by March 31, 2011. Members of the Executive Board have the responsibility to govern the Association, set policy and priorities. In addition to these major roles, each board member has specific responsibilities. Important Note: Material for Executive Board meetings is sent electronically. Board members must be able to access these documents.
Please print the name of the person you nominate on the line after the position title and print and sign your name at the bottom of the form. Check if you know the member is willing to serve. The Nominations Committee will establish the list of eligible candidates for ranking by the Executive Board to develop the slate.
PRESIDENT-ELECT Candidates for President-Elect must have served three years or one term on the Executive Board; or chaired a committee, special interest group (SIG), or resource group; or had an active role as a committee/SIG/Resource group member in the last seven years. Term of office:
January 2012 to December 2013 as President-Elect; January 2013 to December 2014 as President; January 2014 to December 2015 as Past President.
Willing to serve _______
Responsibilities: Serve as a member of the Executive Board and perform the duties of President in the event of absence or incapacity of the President. Member of Executive Committee, Personnel Committee, Nominations & Elections Committee, and Finance Committee, and become fully familiar with the affairs of the Association. Attend COLA meetings, NJPA Foundation meetings, work with NJPA Affiliate Organizations, and attend other meetings at the request of the President. Attend the APA State Leadership Conference in Washington, DC.
TREASURER _______________________________________________________ Candidate for Treasurer must have familiarity with finances, budgets, and investments. Term of office:
January 2010 to December 2012
Willing to serve________
Responsibilities: Fiscal management and oversight of investment accounts, ensure that priorities are reflected in the annual budget, chair Finance Committee, serve on Executive Board and Executive Committee, as well as other Board Committees as designated.
MEMBER-AT-LARGE (General Membership) - 1 seat open
__________________________________________ Term of office:
January 2012 to December 2014
Willing to serve _______
MEMBER-AT-LARGE (Affiliate Member) â€“ 1 seat open ______________________________________________
Term of office: January 2012 to December 2014
Willing to serve _______
Responsibilities: Serve on the Executive Board and Board committees as appointed by the President. Represent the broader constituency of NJPA. Participate in all discussions and decision-making of policy, priorities, and planning for NJPA. Attend Board meetings, Board retreats, and Committees of the Board meetings as assigned.
Print name of nominator
Signature Return this form and the statement of qualifications of the nominee(s) to: NJPA 414 Eagle Rock Avenue, Suite 211 West Orange, NJ 07052 Fax: 973-243-9818 Deadline: March 31, 2011
New Jersey Psychologist
Classified Ads The NJ Psychologist accepts advertising of interest to the profession. The minimum rate for Classified Ads is $50 for the first 30 words or portion thereof, plus a charge of $1 for each additional word. For display ad information, visit our website at <www.PsychologyNJ.org.> Acceptance of advertising does not imply endorsement by NJPA. Email inquiries to NJPAcg@PsychologyNJ.org ATTN: Christine Gurriere, or call 973-243-9800. The NJ Psychologist is mailed on or about the 10th of February, May, August and November. The journal is mailed as part of a bulk mailing, therefore delivery times may vary with local post offices.
SPACE AVAILABLE EAST BRUNSWICK
Attractive professional office building in desirable Williamsburg Commons. Share waiting room with psychologists. Suites available Full- or Part-Time. Call 732-257-0755. ❖
Psychotherapy/Psychoanalysis: 2 offices in beautiful 3 office suite. Newly renovated, soundproofed, carpeted, air conditioned offices with sunny windows and window blinds, security intercom system. Exceptional garden setting. Available full time but can be shared. Available 9/1. No fee. 201-567-5535. ❖
Furnished office in Montclair. Ground level in lovely converted Victorian house. In suite with established psychologist; shared waiting area, restroom, and kitchen. Full- or Part-Time rental. Susan Esquilin, 973-744-1720. ❖
Beautiful, wheelchair accessible offices, FT/PT in professional suite of independent practitioners sharing waiting room; Onsite parking. Enjoy peer interaction and possible referrals. Contact Ryna @ 201-848-5578. ❖
Professionally furnished office, P/T or F/T. Shared waiting room. Excellent location, strong potential for referrals. 201-327-7755 or email@example.com ❖
Beautiful professional office for sublet in Ramsey, NJ, 4 days per week. Waiting area, elegant internal furnishings, free parking lot. $550/month. If interested, please call 201-227-1399. ❖
Beautifully furnished, newly renovated office in established mental health practice, separate playroom, waiting room, professional complex, ample parking. Seeking child psychologist, referrals available. Leo Sitrin, PhD: 908-279-7950 X10, email: firstname.lastname@example.org ❖
SCOTCH PLAINS/WESTFIELD AREA
Newly furnished, shared office suite available for psychologist, LPC, or social worker. Full/PT. Centrally located in professional bldg. Ample Parking, Referral opportunities, new patients on a weekly basis. Call Maria @908-322-0112 or email@example.com ❖
EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES LCSW/LPC/PHD
Seeking P/T help in a busy private practice in Scotch Plains, NJ. Licensed Clinical Social Worker, LPC, or PhD. Must have knowledge in family systems, preferably Bowen Family Systems and Marriage & Family therapy. Experience working with couples. Call Maria @908-322-0112 or email firstname.lastname@example.org ❖
CBT experience desirable. To join private practice part-time. Therapy only. No assessment. No managed care. Email resume to CranfordPsych@aol.com or mail resume to Psychology Associates, 1150 Raritan Road, Suite 101, Cranford, NJ, 07016. ❖
East Brunswick: Part-Time licensed psychologist wanted for group practice. Clients, space, and billing provided. For more information call 732257-0755. ❖
Are you looking for rewarding and fulfilling employment? The Rossi Psychological Group, now an affiliate of Vericare, is a leader in the growing field of geropsychology, delivering compassionate care and multi-disciplinary behavioral interventions in respected long-term care facilities. Contracting with over 150 facilities in 21 counties, Rossi/Vericare gives you the flexibility and freedom to provide quality geropsychological services in a collaborative, supportive, ethical environment. Choose your hours, your level of commitment, and your location. Earn between $400-550 per day. For more information on the benefits of joining Rossi/Vericare’s behavioral management treatment team, contact 800-257-8715 x1166 or slekic@vericare. com. Visit us at <www.vericare.com>. ❖
CBT TRAINING/SUPERVISION GROUP
Learn techniques. Understand newest approaches. Bi-weekly in Cranford. Congenial colleagues. Reasonable fee. Contact Lynn Mollick, PhDCo-founder NJ Association of Cognitive Behavioral Therapists and GSAPP Clinical Supervisor. 908-276-3888 or LynnMollick@verizon.net. ❖
All APA members will be receiving an Apportionment Ballot in early November. This ballot determines the distribution of votes for every decision that comes before the APA Council of Representatives. PLEASE GIVE ALL 10 VOTES TO NEW JERSEY We were successful in acquiring a second seat for 2009, but we lost it for 2010. Let’s cross that threshold again and gain a second seat for 2012! With your votes, New Jersey can add a second seat, and double our voice. The APA Council of Representative is APA’s chief governing body. The Council votes on MANY items that impact state associations and the professional practice of psychology including the APA budget – we must insure that practice issues are funded at a priority level, federal advocacy, and public education campaign activities as well as policy documents such as the Ethical Principles, Model Licensing Act, and Recordkeeping Guidelines. Remember, New Jersey’s representatives are YOUR voice on state issues in APA policy. By having two seats on the APA council, we will have twice the voice for our concerns. Keep our state association and practice issues prominent on the APA Council. Make your voice heard – help us represent your interests and priorities. CAST YOUR 10 VOTES ON LINE 91!
JAMES S. WULACH, PhD, JD 206 MAIN STREET SUITE 22 MILLBURN, NEW JERSEY 07041 (973) 763-4588 Telephone Consultation Available ATTORNEY AT LAW Legal & Ethical Issues, State Board Matters
LICENSED PSYCHOLOGIST #1299 Therapy, Supervision, Testing, Forensic, Custody
Author: Law & Mental Health Profs: NJ Former President, NJ Psychological Assn. Certificate, NYU Postdoctoral Program
New Jersey Psychologist
Coverage that works as hard as you do!
Trust-sponsored Professional Liability Insurance You work hard to be the best you can be. Nowadays, that includes being up-to-date on new rules, regulations, and ways to protect your patients and yourself. We work hard to ensure that your bases are covered in the event of a lawsuit, licensing board action, or other government investigation.
Recent Policy Enhancements §
With the Trust, you get so much more than a malpractice insurance policy. You get an entire risk management program – with free risk management consultations from the Trust Advocate, educational workshops, independent learning opportunities, and premium discounts for participation in our risk management programs.
Are you getting ALL you can out of your professional liability insurance? To find out, call the people you can trust at 1-877-637-9700 or visit us online at www.apait.org. Join more than 40,000 of your colleagues and get the peace of mind you deserve. You’ve worked hard for it!
Protection for licensing board investigations and record keeping during retirement Protection for investigations of violations of the HIPAA Privacy Rule Protection for Medicare or Medicaid payment investigations Specific deposition expense reimbursement Increased reimbursement limits for “Loss of Earnings” and “Premises Medical Payments”
w w w . a p a i t . o r g • 1 - 8 7 7 - 6 3 7 - 9 7 0 0 *
Underwritten by ACE American Insurance Company (ACE), one of the ACE Group of Companies. ACE USA is the U.S. based retail operating division of the ACE Group of Companies, headed by ACE Limited (NYSE:ACE) and rated A+ (Superior) by A.M. Best and A+ (Strong) by Standard & Poor’s (Ratings as of March 31, 2009). Administered by Trust Risk Management Services, Inc. Policy issuance is subject to underwriting.
Work as hard 7.5 x 10.indd 1
5/18/10 9:40:37 AM
Take a Look. Log on. Keep Up. Learn. Participate.
www.barbrack.com Christopher R. Barbrack, Esquire, Ph.D. (NJ Lic. 1293) More than 20 years devoted exclusively to the practice of law. Previously, full-time, tenured associate professor, Graduate School of Applied & Professional Psychology, Rutgers University and Clinical Psychologist at the Carrier Foundation.