Education hero image laptop and books


Jim Diaz-Granados joined APA last year as executive director of the Education Directorate and continues the important work of advancing the science and practice of psychology in education and training. As former executive director Cynthia Belar, PhD, said, educators are stewards of the discipline and the profession and are responsible for passing on, and in many ways creating, the field’s knowledge. One of our goals is to make sure the research being done within the directorate is distributed to those who need it most — educators, policymakers and the general public. It’s our job to make sure the voice of psychology is heard and heeded as we train and educate future generations.

We are proud of our accomplishments in these arenas in 2016. Our successful “Top 20 Principles for PreK-12 Teaching and Learning” has now been translated into various languages and widely disseminated; we’ve created useful career development resources for graduate students; and our ED-GRO advocacy efforts have resulted in $8.9 million to help fund 31 Graduate Psychology Education (GPE) Program grants. These are just a few of the initiatives that have had an impact in 2016. Please explore these pages to learn more.

Teaching & Learning Outcomes

APA is committed to enhancing the quality of teaching and learning outcomes at all levels of education and training. APA’s Coalition for Psychology in Schools and Education added Chinese and Slovenian to the English and Spanish versions of the “Top 20 Principles for PreK-12 Teaching and Learning,” a resource used by practitioners to help students learn more effectively. Another enhancement included the Center for Psychology in Schools and Education’s “Creativity in the Classroom,” a practice-based video module to help teachers learn how to make creativity a part of their teaching and enhance academic outcomes.

The directorate helped address the silent national crisis of violence directed against K-12 teachers by creating a webpage and companion brochure. This resource helps define the problem of violence, spot warning signs and provide evidenced-based solutions for teachers and school administrators.

Education in Psychology

The directorate contributes to a wide range of groups in a continued effort to represent psychology in the education and training community:

Quality Assurance

Through its Commission on Accreditation (CoA) and Continuing Education Committee (CEC), APA continued its quality assurance role in the areas of professional education and training and continuing education:

  • The new web-based CoA portal was fully implemented in 2016. This portal allows all parts of the review process to occur via a secure paperless system. Also new is the CE sponsor approval online application system (CESA OAS), which makes it easier for providers to apply to become APA-approved CE sponsors.

APA-approved Sponsors of Continuing Education

  • 2016 marked the final year of the “Guidelines and Principles for Accreditation in Professional Psychology.” Beginning in 2017, the CoA will accredit programs under the new “Standards of Accreditation in Health Service Psychology,” which will provide greater clarity to the public and more opportunities for innovation in health service psychology education and training.


APA-Accredited Programs in Professional Psychology




Postdoctoral Residencies





APA Supports Mental Health Reform

The Education Directorate helped coordinate the #MentalHealthReform Twitter campaign that increased awareness of the Mental Health Reform Act of 2016

APA’s Education Government Relations Office (ED-GRO) provided advocacy training and scheduled more than 130 congressional meetings for APA members to advocate for increased funding for psychology education and training programs. Public policy successes in 2016 included:

  • $8.9 million directed to the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to fund 31 Graduate Psychology Education (GPE) Program That’s a $1 million increase for the program, which supports the training of psychology graduate students and postdoctoral fellows to work in integrated care settings with underserved populations.
The GPE Program is the only federal program dedicated solely to the education and training of doctoral-level psychologists.
  • A $3 million increase to the authorization for GPE and inclusion of health service psychology programs in a new $10 million demonstration program. This program provides mental and substance use disorder prevention and treatment in underserved communities.
  • Expanded use of federal funds to support mental and behavioral health services at college counseling centers and increased funding for three new Behavioral Health Workforce Education and Training Program grants.