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Constitution

Psi Chi Constitution

Article I. Name
Article II. Purpose
Article III. Members
Article IV. Officers
Article V. Duties of Officers
Article VI. Meetings
Article VII. Board of Directors
Article VIII. Executive Committee
Article IX. Regions
Article X. Committees
Article XI. Voting Other Than in a Meeting
Article XII. Chapters
Article XIII. Publications
Article XIV. Dissolution
Article XV. Parliamentary Authority
Article XVI. Amendment of Constitution


Article I. | Name

The name of this organization shall be Psi Chi, hereinafter referred to as the Society.

Article II. | Purpose

Psi Chi is an international honor society whose purpose shall be to encourage, stimulate, and maintain excellence in scholarship of the individual members in all fields, particularly in psychology, and to advance the science of psychology.

Article III. | Members

Section 1. Classes of Members.

Members shall meet the following minimum criteria for membership. Any chapter, at its discretion, may establish higher academic criteria.

  1. Active Members. Active members are those who are making the study of psychology one of their major interests and who are faculty members or students in an institution where a chapter is located, or who are alumni members who have been admitted to active membership by a chapter. They shall have high standards of personal behavior. Election to membership shall be by a two-thirds vote at a regular meeting of the chapter. If assessed, active members shall pay chapter dues.
    1. Student Members. Student members shall be students enrolled in undergraduate or graduate programs in the institution represented by the chapter at the time of induction.
      1. Undergraduate students shall have completed at least three semesters or five quarters of the college course, have completed nine semester hours or fourteen quarter hours of psychology courses with a minimum grade point average of 3.0 in those courses, have registered for major or minor standing in psychology or for a program psychological in nature which is equivalent to such standings, rank in the top 35% of their class in general scholarship*, and have a minimum overall cumulative grade point average of 3.0* on a 4.0 scale.

        * Undergraduate students must first rank in the upper 35% of their class. In those rare instances in which a school’s upper 35% cut-off falls below a 3.0 GPA (e.g., 2.97), students must also have at least a 3.0 overall GPA.
      2. Graduate students shall have a minimum overall cumulative grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in all graduate courses, including psychology.
      3. In interpreting this section, the Society accepts the policy of the college or university regarding grades.
    2. Faculty Members. Members of the faculty may be elected to active membership by the chapter.
    3. Alumni Inductees. Persons graduated from an institution prior to the establishment of the Psi Chi chapter, faculty members, and other psychologists may be elected to membership if they met the current criteria for student membership when they were students.
  2. Alumni Members. Alumni members are former active members who are no longer associated with a chapter.
  3. Distinguished members shall have all the rights and privileges of active membership. They pay no dues or fees of any kind.

Section 2. Membership in the Society is open to qualified candidates of any age, sex, sexual orientation, race, handicap or disability, color, religion, and national and ethnic origin.

Section 3. Each person inducted as a member of the Society shall pay an induction fee to the Central Office of the Society. This fee entitles the member to life membership without payment of further Central Office dues or assessments. By accepting membership in the Society, members accept the Constitution, Bylaws, and policies of Psi Chi.

Section 4. Privileges of Membership. All members of the Society may wear the key of Psi Chi.

  1. Active members shall have the right to attend chapter meetings, to vote, to hold Society office, to be elected or appointed to committees of the Society and the chapters to which they belong, to receive the official Society publication(s), as determined by the Board of Directors, and such other privileges as the Board of Directors may determine. Only active student members shall have the right to hold chapter office.
  2. Alumni members shall have all the rights of active members except the right to vote and to hold office. They may receive the official Society publication upon payment of the subscription fee.
  3. Distinguished members shall have all the rights and privileges of active membership. They pay no dues or fees of any kind.

Section 5. A member desiring to resign from the Society shall submit such resignation in writing to the Executive Officer.

Section 6. Any member having resigned from membership may be reinstated upon application to the Executive Officer and upon meeting such uniform terms and conditions as may be established by the Board of Directors.

Section 7. Membership in the Society may be suspended or terminated by the Board of Directors for just cause. Sufficient cause for such suspension or termination of membership may be violation of this Constitution or any lawful rule or practice adopted by the Society or other conduct deemed by the Board of Directors to be prejudicial to the best interests of the Society. A statement of the charges shall be sent by registered mail to the last recorded address of the member, accompanied by notice of the time and place of the meeting at which the charges are to be considered. At least thirty days’ notice shall be given, and the member shall have the opportunity to appear in person or to be represented by counsel and to present any defense to such charges before action is taken by the Board of Directors. The Board of Directors may adopt such rules as may be necessary to ensure due process to the member. The decision for suspension or termination shall be by a two-thirds vote of the Board of Directors. A member suspended or terminated for just cause shall not be entitled to remittance of dues or fees.

Section 8. The amount of any Central Office fees or dues for any class of membership in the Society shall be established by the Board of Directors.

Article IV. | Officers

Section 1. The officers of the Society shall be the President, President-Elect, Past-President, six Regional Vice-Presidents, Executive Officer, and the Executive Director. The Executive Officer and the Executive Director shall serve ex officio, without vote.

Section 2. Officers, except the Executive Officer and Executive Director, shall be elected by mail or electronic ballot. Each chapter shall be eligible to cast one vote.

Section 3. Officers shall hold office for the following terms or until their successors are elected. The President-Elect shall be elected annually to serve a one-year term as President-Elect followed by a one-year term as President and a one-year term as Past-President. The term of office shall begin at the close of the annual Board of Directors business meeting at the Society annual convention. Vice-Presidents shall be elected to two-year terms by vote of the chapters of their regions, those from the Eastern, Rocky Mountain, and Western regions elected in odd-numbered years, and those from the Midwestern, Southeastern, and Southwestern regions elected in even-numbered years. The term of office of Vice-Presidents shall begin on July 1. The Executive Officer and the Executive Director shall be appointed to a three-year term by the President with the approval of the Board of Directors.

Section 4. To be eligible for nomination as President-Elect, the candidate shall have been a member of the Board of Directors for a minimum of two years within the past ten years at the time of nomination. No member who has served as President, President-Elect, or Past-President shall be eligible to another term in the same office. Vice-Presidents shall be eligible to a second term, but shall not be eligible to serve more than two terms as Vice-President. No member shall hold more than one office at a time. A member having served more than half a term shall be deemed to have served a term. The Executive Officer and the Executive Director shall be eligible for continuing reappointment.

Section 5. On or before November 1 of each year, the Executive Officer shall invite each chapter to submit nominees for the offices of President-Elect and Vice-President. Nominations shall contain a resume of the nominee's chapter and Society committee activities and offices held and a statement that the nominee has been contacted by the chapter and has consented to serve if elected. Nominations shall be dated by December 15. The Nomination/Election Committee shall consider the qualifications of all candidates for office and propose at least one candidate for each office to be filled. Election ballots, with a summary of information regarding the candidates taken from the candidates' nominations, shall be sent by the Executive Officer to the chapters on or before February 1. Completed election ballots from the chapters shall be dated by March 15 in order to be counted. Ballots shall be counted by an independent accounting firm engaged by the Board of Directors, and the count affirmed by the Nomination/Election Committee. In the event of a tie vote, a second election between the tied candidates shall be held.

Section 6. Should the office of President become vacant, the President-Elect shall become President automatically, to serve for the unexpired term and the term immediately following. Should the office of President-Elect become vacant, it shall be filled by election at the earliest possible time. Should the office of Past-President become vacant, it shall remain vacant for the remainder of the unexpired term. A vacancy in any other elected office shall be filled by the Board of Directors, the officer so elected to serve for the remainder of the unexpired term.

Section 7. Any elected officer may resign by submitting that resignation in writing to the Board of Directors. If any officer is unable or unwilling to perform the duties of office, or if a Vice-President is absent from the region represented for thirty days or more, he or she shall be deemed to have resigned, and the vacancy shall be filled as specified above.

Section 8. Any elected officer may be removed for just cause. Sufficient cause for such removal may be violation of this Constitution or any lawful rule, practice, or procedure adopted by the Society or other conduct deemed by the Board of Directors to be prejudicial to the best interests of the Society. For removal of an elected officer for cause, it shall be necessary for the Board of Directors to hold a formal hearing. A statement of the charges shall be sent by registered mail to the last recorded address of the officer, accompanied by notice of the time and place of the meeting at which the charges are to be considered. At least thirty days’ notice shall be given, and the officer shall have the opportunity to appear in person or to be represented by counsel and to present any defense to such charges before action is taken. The Board of Directors shall adopt such rules as may be necessary to assure due process to the officer. The decision for removal shall be by a two-thirds vote of the Board of Directors.

Article V. | Duties of Officers

Section 1. The officers shall perform the duties prescribed by this Constitution and by the parliamentary authority adopted by the Society.

Section 2. The President shall serve as official spokesperson for the Society, make arrangements for and preside at the Society annual convention, call and preside at meetings of the Board of Directors, appoint the members of the Society committees, and provide leadership and general supervision of the Society. The President shall be ex officio a member of all committees except the Nomination/Election Committee.

Section 3. The President-Elect shall preside in the absence of the President and fill any vacancy in the office of President, and shall have such other duties as may be determined by the President or the Board of Directors.

Section 4. The Past-President shall chair the Nomination/Election Committee, write a historical record of the Society, and shall have such other duties as may be determined by the President or the Board of Directors.

Section 5. The Vice-Presidents shall serve as the principal administrative officers of their respective regions. They shall make arrangements for and preside at the annual meetings in their regions, and have such other duties as may be determined by the President or the Board of Directors.

Section 6. The Executive Officer and the Executive Director shall carry out the duties and responsibilities assigned by the Board of Directors.

Article VI. | Meetings

Section 1.A Society convention shall be held annually to discuss matters pertaining to the welfare of the Society to be presented to the chapters for action, and to provide a means whereby members from various chapters may come to know one another. The Executive Officer shall present an annual financial report to the convention.

Section 2.An annual convention shall be held in each region to discuss matters pertaining to the welfare of the chapters in that region to be presented to the chapters for action, to provide a means whereby members from various chapters may come to know one another, and to provide an opportunity for members to present research papers and to participate in other appropriate convention activities. Any active student member may submit a paper to be considered for presentation at a regional convention program.

Article VII. | Board of Directors

Section 1. The Board of Directors shall consist of the President, President-Elect, Past-President, the Vice-Presidents, Executive Officer, and the Executive Director. The Executive Officer and the Executive Director shall be an ex officio member without vote.

Section 2. The Board of Directors shall have full authority to conduct all business of the Society except that which is delegated to the chapters by this Constitution.

Section 3. The duties of the Board of Directors shall include: to provide for and maintain office facilities for the Society; to be responsible for all property, real and personal, owned or held by the Society and cause to be bonded all officers and employees entrusted with such property; to determine the remuneration of the Executive Officer; to cause the accounts of the Society to be audited annually by a certified public accountant; to adopt an annual budget for the Society; to adopt rules and regulations for the conduct of the affairs of the Society; to appoint such agents, attorneys, and others it deems necessary; to perform such other duties as are prescribed or permitted by the laws of the State of Tennessee for Boards of Directors or by this Constitution.

Section 4. Regular meetings of the Board of Directors shall be called by the President.

Section 5. Special meetings of the Board of Directors may be called by the President and shall be called upon the written request of a majority of the voting members of the Board of Directors. Ten days’ notice shall be given, except for meetings during the Society annual convention. Business shall be limited to that which is stated in the call.

Section 6. A quorum shall consist of those members present.

Section 7. The Board of Directors shall be responsible for providing, on an annual basis, activities and opportunities that advance the leadership skills and abilities of Psi Chi members, especially chapter officers and faculty advisors. Such activities and opportunities may include but are not limited to: special leadership training programs/speakers at the regional conventions, grants and awards, a leadership conference at the national or regional level, and assistance to chapters.

Article VIII. | Executive Committee

Section 1. The Executive Committee shall consist of the President, who shall serve as Chair, the President-Elect, the Past-President, the Executive Officer, and the Executive Director. The Executive Officer and the Executive Director shall be an ex officio member without vote.

Section 2. The Executive Committee shall have general supervision of the Society between meetings of the Board of Directors and is vested with full power to conduct all business of the Society between meetings of the Board of Directors. It shall prepare and submit to the Board of Directors an annual budget, and shall serve as the finance committee of the Society. It shall recommend to the Board of Directors an auditor to prepare the annual audit of the Society’s financial records. The Executive Committee shall be subject to the orders of the Board of Directors, and none of its actions shall conflict with action taken by the Board of Directors.

Section 3. Meetings of the Executive Committee may be called by the President and shall be called upon the written request of any two voting members of the committee.

Article IX. | Regions

Section 1. The Society shall be divided into regions, the number and names of the regions to be determined by the Board of Directors.

Section 2. The Vice-President of the region shall be the principal administrative officer of that region. The Vice-President shall arrange for and preside at the annual regional convention, and may appoint regional officers, state coordinators, a regional program committee for the regional convention, and such other committees as are deemed necessary to carry on the activities of the region.

Section 3. Each chapter in a country other than the United States of America will be assigned to one of the regions as determined by the Board of Directors.

Article X. | Committees

Section 1. Standing Committees of the Society shall be established by the Board of Directors. The Chair and members shall be appointed by the President unless otherwise specified in this Constitution.

Section 2. The standing committees of the Society shall be:

  1. The Awards Committee shall review selection policies, review applications and nominations for awards, and select recipients.
  2. The Nomination/Election Committee of five shall consider the qualifications of all candidates for office and propose at least one candidate for each office to be filled, and shall monitor elections for all Board of Director positions. The Past-President shall serve as Chair. Four members of the Nomination/Election Committee shall be elected by the Board of Directors. Nominations for the committee may be submitted by chapters, regions, or members of the Board of Directors. No two members of the committee shall be from the same region, and no member shall serve consecutive terms on the committee.
  3. The Program Committee for the Society annual convention shall consist of the President as Chair and the Vice-President in the region where the Society annual convention is to be held.
  4. The Leadership Committee shall plan and recommend to the Board of Directors activities and opportunities to advance the leadership skills and abilities of Psi Chi members, especially chapter officers and faculty advisors. The Committee also shall be responsible for implementing and assessing the activities and opportunities approved by the Board of Directors. The President-Elect and Executive Director shall serve as co-chairs of the Committee.

Section 3. Each standing committee shall have committee bylaws, approved by the Board of Directors, delineating the committee’s area of responsibility, membership, conduct of business, and lines of accountability.

Section 4. Special committees shall be established by the President.

Section 5. A vacancy in any committee shall be filled by the President.

Article XI. | Voting Other Than in a Meeting

Section 1. Mail and/or Electronic Ballots by Chapters. Except in cases of emergency, for matters concerning Society policy on which chapters are to vote, a time frame of forty-five days shall be allowed for return of ballots.

Section 2. Mail and/or Electronic Ballot. Any question may be submitted in writing to the Board of Directors, a committee, or another established body of the Society for determination in lieu of a meeting of that body. A report of any action taken shall be verified and made a part of the minutes of the next meeting of that body.

Section 3. Conference Call. Members of the Board of Directors or of any committee or other body of the Society may participate in a meeting of that body through conference telephone or similar communication equipment by means of which all persons participating in the meeting can hear each other at the same time, and such participation shall constitute presence in person at the meeting.

Section 4. Procedures. Specific procedures not in conflict with these sections for conducting any absentee voting shall be determined by the Board of Directors.

Article XII. | Chapters

Section 1. A chapter of the Society may be established, maintained, or reactivated in a college or university in the United States of America and its territories, or in countries other than the United States of America offering a baccalaureate or advanced degree. The institution shall be fully accredited by its national or regional accrediting agency, and the program shall meet uniform criteria determined by the Board of Directors.

Section 2. Chapters may be established according to uniform criteria determined by the Board of Directors. Accreditation of the institution by the appropriate governmental body in the United States of America or in other countries will be regarded as the appropriate accrediting agency.

Section 3. A group desiring a charter for a collegiate chapter shall petition the Board of Directors of the Society. Eligibility requirements shall be determined by the Board of Directors. The qualifications of such petitioning groups shall be examined by the Board of Directors. A three-fourths vote of the Board of Directors and payment of the charter fee shall be required for a charter to be granted.

Section 4. A chapter must have at least three officers representing the functions of President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer, elected from among its active student members.

Section 5. Each chapter, through its officers, shall make an annual report to the Central Office.

Section 6. Each chapter shall register new members at least once each year.

Section 7. Each chapter shall have a Chapter Advisor who is a member of Psi Chi, chosen from the faculty by the chapter.

Section 8. Each chapter shall have chapter by-laws. This Constitution shall take precedence over chapter bylaws, and no provision in the bylaws of any chapter shall be contrary to this Constitution. Each chapter shall have full charge of its activities within the limits of this Constitution.

Section 9. The name of the chapter shall be the name of the college or university where the chapter is located followed by the words "Psi Chi Chapter."

Section 10. Chapter dues shall be determined by the chapter.

Section 11. To remain an active chapter, a chapter must induct members on an annual basis, shall file all required reports with the Executive Officer, and shall be current in all financial obligations to the Society. Chapters failing to comply will be placed on the inactive list and will lose all privileges of active status, including the right to vote.

Article XIII. | Publications

Section 1. All publications of the Society and the editors of those publications shall be determined by the Board of Directors.

Article XIV. | Dissolution

The Society shall use its funds only to accomplish the Purposes stated in this Constitution, and no part of its funds shall inure or be distributed to the members of the Society. Upon dissolution of the Society, the residual assets shall be distributed to one or more regularly organized and qualified organizations to be selected by the Board of Directors.

Article XV. | Parliamentary Authority

The rules contained in the current edition of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised shall govern the Society in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with this Constitution and any special rules of order the Society may adopt.

Article XVI. | Amendment of Constitution

Section 1. Amendments to this Constitution may be proposed by the Board of Directors or by any chapter in writing to the Executive Officer.

Section 2. A general announcement to chapters of a proposed amendment that has been approved by the Board of Directors by a 2/3 vote will occur within one month after receipt by the Executive Officer.

Section 3. Any member of Psi Chi may write in support of or in opposition to the proposed amendment. These views as presented or as edited by the Executive Officer shall be published within two months following the general announcement of the amendment.

Section 4. As soon as possible after the distribution of the proposal and the letters in support of or in opposition to the proposed amendment, the Executive Officer shall submit to each chapter a ballot containing the text of the proposed amendment, to be acted upon by a regular or special meeting of each chapter. Adoption shall be by a 3/4 vote of those chapters returning ballots by a date clearly specified on the ballot.

Section 5. Any amendment of this Constitution shall become the law of the chapters without further notice.

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