Each year, chapter officers and advisors ask the Central Office how to go about inducting new members*. The intent of this guide is to simplify and explain the membership process. The process of inducting new members involves three different structural steps: Identify, Invite, and Induct.
Identify potential members by compiling a list of all eligible psychology majors and minors. There are three options for compiling this list:
Option 1. Faculty advisors can compile this list by obtaining from the school registrar a cutoff list of all undergraduate psychology majors/minors who are in the upper 35% of their class (seniors, juniors, and sophomores)** and have a minimum 3.0 psychology GPA, as well as all graduate psychology students who have a minimum overall 3.0 GPA. Only faculty advisors should look at student grades because of privacy concerns.
Option 2. If your school's registrar cannot provide your chapter's faculty advisor with such a list, your faculty advisor should request a list of all students sorted by GPA and determine himself or herself where the upper 35% cutoff of their class (for undergraduates) or 3.0 GPA cutoff (for graduate students) would be. After determining the cutoff, the faculty advisor can identify which psychology majors/minors are eligible for membership. Again, only faculty advisors should look at student grades because of privacy concerns.
Option 3. Distribute the Membership Application to all interested applicants who are undergraduate psychology majors/minors or graduate psychology students (see the advertising tips below for tips on finding applicants). All applications should be returned to the faculty advisor because of privacy concerns regarding student grades. Upon receipt of all applications, the faculty advisor should then compile a list of all applicants and verify their eligibility with the school registrar.
Once your chapter has identified all qualified candidates for membership, send the Invitation to Membership form to those qualified candidates. To ensure a good response rate, designate chapter officers to contact each candidate shortly after the Invitations to Membership are received. Collect all Invitations to Membership and membership fees by holding a general meeting or by setting a deadline for candidates to return the invitations and fees. Conduct a chapter vote to approve qualified candidates (as specified in the Psi Chi Constitution, election to membership shall be by a two-thirds vote at a regular meeting of the chapter).
Prepare and mail these three items to the Central Office at least three weeks before the planned induction ceremony:
- Registration Form. Include induction date on the front and attach a list of all new members' names in the correct format.
- One Check or Money Order for all new members' society registration fees (individual students' checks will not be accepted).
Chapter administrators should enter new members online at least 3 weeks
before the planned induction ceremony. See online instructions [provide link]
for entering new inductees and payment options.
All new members' certificates, cards, and lapel pins will be sent to your
faculty advisor's attention at the chapter address on file in preparation for
the induction ceremony. Your chapter may choose to hold informal inductions for
each group of new members (for example, at a chapter meeting), and later
recognize all those inducted throughout the year in one formal ceremony. The
advantage to inducting new members throughout the year is that it is important
that those students academically qualified to be members be provided with the
opportunity to participate in Psi Chi activities and to submit for Psi Chi
awards/grants throughout the year. Inducting new members at the beginning of
each semester or quarter can only help to increase chapter participation and
human resources for your chapter's activities.
* There is no limit to the number of times a chapter may register members during a given year. Members may be registered at any time (i.e., there are no national deadlines for registering members). To maintain active status, a chapter must register members at least once a year.
** GPA cutoffs for the upper 35% should be determined separately for seniors, juniors, and sophomores.
ADVERTISE PSI CHI TO POTENTIAL MEMBERS
Here are some additional advertising tips for attracting members to your chapter at the beginning of each academic term:
- Ask the campus bookstore if you can place bookmarks promoting Psi Chi in psychology textbooks prior to sale.
- Set up a table or booth during registration to promote awareness of Psi Chi. If your school has an activities/club/organization fair (or similar event) at the beginning of the term, maintain a table or booth there as well. A table can also be placed in the psychology department or student union to promote Psi Chi during the early days/weeks of school.
- Post flyers in the psychology department and around campus. Posters are available from the National Office.
- Ask department faculty for permission to speak in each psychology class for 5-10 minutes about Psi Chi and the benefits of membership (e.g., recognition, awards, educational opportunities, graduate school preparation, paper/poster sessions to present research, regional and national conventions, speakers, feeling of community, networking, etc.).
- Hold an open meeting for all interested students, members, alumni, and faculty. Many chapters have found that serving refreshments, snacks, pizza, etc. increases attendance at this meeting. Hand out information about upcoming event(s).
- Speak to individuals personally.
- Write letters or phone potential members.
- Hold a reception for potential members and faculty.
- Advertise in the college paper or on the college radio/TV station.
- Distribute a chapter newsletter to potential members.
All membership forms may be downloaded from this website here.