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Eye on Psi Chi: Summer 2017
Annual Report of
the Psi Chi Past-President
Dan Corts, PhD, Augustana College (IL)
View this issue in Digital and PDF formats.

It was a privilege to serve as President of Psi Chi for the 2015–16 academic year, and what a year it was! Psi Chi has changed in many ways, and from my perspective, these changes have all made us stronger as an organization. For our staff in Chattanooga, TN, one of the biggest changes was the move to a new location. In the past decade, our membership has increased and services have expanded so much that our operations outgrew the space. The investment in a larger, more modern home office will allow Psi Chi’s staff to work efficiently and expand as we continue to grow. Most members do not see what goes on behind the scenes, but if you are ever in Chattanooga, stop in and say hello.
Changes come about in many ways; sometimes it is in response to situations, like outgrowing the office. In contrast, we on the Board of Directors believe that the best changes are made deliberately, with clear goals in mind, and with the best data possible. To that end, the Board developed Vision2020, a strategic plan designed to further the mission of recognizing and promoting excellence in the science and application of psychology. By adopting this plan, the Board and employees of Psi Chi have been able to set short- and long-term goals in three pillars of Vision2020: Scholarly Pursuits, Member Development, and Chapter and Member Experiences.
Scholarly Pursuits
There have been a number of changes already put into action. In the realm of Scholarly Pursuits, Psi Chi “encourages members to conduct exemplary research, disseminate and apply research findings, and maintain a lifelong interest in exploring the field of psychology.” The Editor of Psi Chi Journal of Psychological Research, Dr. Melanie Domenech Rodríguez, helped transition the Journal to be freely open access, meaning that nonmembers anywhere can access the articles for no charge. Melanie stepped down from that role, but has been elected to serve as President for the 2017–18 year. The Journal has welcomed a new Editor, Dr. Debi Brannan. Debi has served as Associate Editor for several years, so she brings experience and continuity to the position, along with her impressive enthusiasm for the job. The changes that are currently underway include the use of badges to promote open science.
Psi Chi has also worked toward Scholarly Pursuits by developing the new Research Advisory Committee (RAC). The RAC has been formed to make suggestions for partnerships, build research skills, and alert members to research opportunities that arise. Finally, Psi Chi now provides a recruiting tool for members seeking participants for their online research. If you would like to post your study, visit the website at While you’re there, please consider helping your fellow members by participating in their studies.
Member Development
To further Member Development, Psi Chi will “provide information and opportunities to enhance members’ professional and personal lives.” We now offer a job board as a way to assist our members. This Career Center, available through the Psi Chi website, allows members to look for positions in psychology and related fields, regardless of the stage in their careers.
For members pursuing graduate school, Dr. Merry Sleigh (Southeastern Regional Vice-President 2012–16), began work on Psi Chi’s first nonperiodical publication—An Eye on Graduate School: Guidance Through a Successful Application. This e-book is a compilation of Eye on Psi Chi articles authored by Psi Chi chapter advisors and other experts, and is now available online at
Lastly, the Psi Chi Awards and Grants program offers more than $400,000 to fund member research, travel, and other achievements. The Awards and Grants committees identified improvements by streamlining the application process and reallocating funds to strengthen the grant programs that have seen the highest demand of applications.
Chapter and Member Experiences
All of the above changes can serve to enhance Chapter and Member Experiences: to foster a “vibrant and meaningful environment for chapters and all members to contribute to and benefit from continued engagement.” Another area of change came from the high levels of participation at the regional conventions, and demand for a greater variety of programming. To support this, the Board of Directors has shifted the budget to better support these high-demand activities.
Finally, Executive Director Dr. Martha Zlokovich and I had the good fortune to make friends at the University of Havana, Cuba. A student group there, lead by Alejandro Pena, put together a week long IX Encuentro Internacional de Estudiantes de Psicología and invited Psi Chi to attend. Due to international sanctions against the Cuban government, Psi Chi, which is based in the United States, has not been able to develop chapters in Cuba until last year. So it was with great excitement that we put together the first international trip organized by Psi Chi for its members and issued invitations through our publications in the Spring 2016.
As we move beyond the 2015–16 academic year, we invite everyone to join us by setting up your own Vision 2020 chapter goals with our worksheet available at The Psi Chi Board, along with the Central Office staff, is committed to developing opportunities to keep our Professional Organization relevant to and supportive of its membership for now and many years to come.

Additional Information

Dan Corts, PhD, discovered psychology at Belmont University (TN) where he earned a BS in psychology, he then completed a PhD in cognition at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. After a post doc at Furman University (SC), he went to Augustana College (IL). He has been involved with Psi Chi for 15 years as an advisor. During that time, he also served on the Midwestern Steering Committee and Grants and Awards Committee, as a consulting editor for the Journal, and completed one term as Midwestern Vice-President. Dr. Corts splits his research work between applied cognitive psychology and student development issues across all levels of education. He also is coauthor of Psychological Science: Modeling Scientific Literacy and the forthcoming Ethics and the Undergraduate Researcher.



Copyright 2017 (Vol. 21, Iss. 4) Psi Chi, the International Honor Society in Psychology


Eye on Psi Chi is a magazine designed to keep members and alumni up-to-date with all the latest information about Psi Chi’s programs, awards, and chapter activities. It features informative articles about careers, graduate school admission, chapter ideas, personal development, the various fields of psychology, and important issues related to our discipline.

Eye on Psi Chi is published quarterly:
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Summer (April)
Fall (September)
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