The 2014 APS College of Educational and Developmental Psychologists conference was held from 28 to 29 March at the Rendezvous hotel in Melbourne and was attended by over 227 delegates from Australia and overseas. Under the theme Consultant, client and context: Enhancing academic and social outcomes for students, the program brought together world leaders in improving outcomes for young people and included keynote speakers, interactive panels and individual research papers. There was a range of content presented across educational and school psychology, disabilities, mental health, and interventions relevant to practice with young people and their families.
Three eminent researchers drew on their extensive research experience and clinical work to present engaging keynote addresses. Professor Shane Jimerson of the University of California discussed the varying roles of educational psychologists throughout the world and provided insights into possible future avenues for the profession. Professor Ian Shochet MAPS from the Queensland University of Technology provided a practical overview of his work in building resilience in young people. An entertaining and thought-provoking final keynote address was delivered by Professor Mary Louise Hemmeter from Vanderbilt University, Tennessee, on the application of her multidimensional intervention approach to dealing with children with problem behaviours. These keynote addresses were complemented by 20 research papers which covered topics such as nurturing school belonging, autism interventions, predictors of cyber-bullying perpetration, and school relationships and interventions. Senior staff from Pearson Clinical Assessment provided a comprehensive session on new developments in psychometric testing, including the release of the WPPSI-IV and testing with the WISC-IV on the iPad.
A new aspect to the conference this year was two panel discussion forums. The first panel focussed on transforming options for young people – with Brendan Murray from Parkville College, the innovative school for students in the justice system, and Natalie Charles from Melbourne Grammar discussing the initiatives they are implementing in their diverse workplaces. The second panel presented Paul Bertoia, Carol Kelly, David Huggins, Monica Thielking and Vicki McKenzie discussing current and future challenges in schools.
The second day of the conference was devoted to workshops from the keynote speakers. Professor Jimerson presented an informative review and excellent resources on whole school and individual approaches to the prevention of and/or coping with bullying incidents in the school setting. Professor Shochet trained attendees in implementing the Resilient Adolescent Program within their respective school settings. The program uses the children’s story of the Three Little Pigs to assist young people to develop their own personal resources for building resilience skills. In the third workshop Professor Hemmeter discussed collaborating with school personnel and used the pyramid teaching model to stress the importance of early intervention and a team-based approach to managing ongoing challenging behaviour.
Many attendees sought the opportunity to network with new and old colleagues and the buzz of conversation indicated a good time was had by all.
Vicki McKenzie FAPS, on behalf of the APS College of Educational and Developmental Psychologists Conference Organising Committee
|Educational and developmental psychology expertise creates headlines
Media support for the APS College of Educational and Developmental Psychologists Conference focussed on highlighting the value of educational and developmental psychology to community wellbeing, and in particular student wellbeing. Coverage included eight media pieces that were syndicated around Australia to achieve a total of 157 placements across print, online and radio.
- The Herald Sun interviewed APS student member Daniel Quin, on his research into the effectiveness of suspending students from school, which was syndicated to Adelaide Now, Courier Mail, Daily Telegraph and News.com
- The Age interviewed Professor Sheryl Hemphill MAPS on her research into cyberbullying in young adulthood, which was syndicated to 144 other Fairfax outlets nationally.
- The Sunday Canberra Times interviewed Professor Ian Shochet MAPS on connectedness and teenage depression, which also appeared in The Age.
- Australian Teacher Magazine has engaged APS student member Daniel Quin to write an opinion piece on suspension of students from school.
- ABC Melbourne Breakfast radio interviewed keynote Professor Mary Louise Hemmeter, on instruction and behaviour in schools.
- ABC State-wide Drive NSW radio interviewed Professor Ian Shochet MAPS on the RAP teenage resilience program.
- ABC Newcastle Afternoons radio interviewed Dr Sarah Biggs on sleep patterns of children affecting behaviour.
- ABC New England Breakfast radio interviewed Professor Ian Shochet MAPS on building teenage resilience.
See ‘APS in the News’ online to read some of the highlighted articles.
Karen Coghlan, Manager, Media and Communications, APS National Office
Disclaimer: Published in InPsych on June 2014. The APS aims to ensure that information published in InPsych is current and accurate at the time of publication. Changes after publication may affect the accuracy of this information. Readers are responsible for ascertaining the currency and completeness of information they rely on, which is particularly important for government initiatives, legislation or best-practice principles which are open to amendment. The information provided in InPsych does not replace obtaining appropriate professional and/or legal advice.