Professional knowledge is a very important tool in the world of expertise today. The abilities that are associated with professionalism are paramount in the growth and development of successful organizations.
There is a greater need for professional organizations to develop higher levels of professionalism in order to attract more clients alongside effective and efficient service delivery. Those companies or organizations which do not pursue professional ideas and practice usually find themselves on the verge of collapse within a limited period of time. In this paper, I seek to explore the American psychological organization and how it can contribute towards increasing professional knowledge and abilities. Also, the impact of this knowledge and abilities on a personal career is discussed.
The American Psychological Association
The American Psychological Organization is located in Washington, DC. It is an organization whose operations are scientific and fully professional. The geographical coverage is within the United States of America. It is the largest psychological organization in the world with over one hundred thousand members. The Mission statement of APA is to “advance the creation, communication and application of psychological knowledge to benefit society and improve people’s lives” (APA 2010). Its vision statement aims towards excelling as a scientific psychological organization in the world.
According to Eraut (1994), the importance of the client can improve service delivery and enhance professionalism in a great way. This means that a client has the ability to set the required pace and level in imparting professionalism. It is therefore the task of prospective clients to a particular organization to enhance the best abilities
among the experts. A good example is the American Psychological Association whose membership is about one hundred and fifty thousand. This overwhelming membership gives the association the mandate to increase professional knowledge and abilities to its members. It is a well reputed organization and well structured in terms of management and operations. As a result, its membership has increasingly grown over the years.
Maudsley and Strivens (2010) observe that a professional has to be dynamic enough to accommodate the ever changing world. There is no single organization whose activities are static and not affected by time. In fact, it is recommended that professionals should ever be in the learning processes so as to experiment themselves on whether they are still fit with the emerging changes. Some of the attributes worth to be developed in the course of the learning process are critical thinking associated with the ability to solve problems in a professional way. In this regard, The American Psychological association has set aside adequate funds to facilitate its research work. The sister organizations together with APA itself have varied range of grants, scholarships, and awards (APA, 2010). These funds are meant to carry out research activities within the field of psychology. Several clients have benefited as a result of this program. This is a welcome idea in the sense that further education to both members and non members will improve professional concept and ability in giving the desired service. An individual career success can be taken to higher levels in an organization which prioritizes research work to its clients. Learning is a continuous process and so is professionalism. If we stop engaging our minds as professionals, than we will end up killing the underlying ability in us (Cogan, 1955).
Improving professional knowledge and abilities is necessary to personal professional breakthrough. It is imperative that decisive steps be taken in order to boost professionalism. Seeking further education leads to better terms of employment and job satisfaction. It is however dependent on the choices we make everyday. Enough professional skill and knowledge is what we really need in this fast growing world of ideas.
American Psychological Association (APA 2010). The Association’s official website.
Cogan, M.L. (1955).Towards a definition of profession. Harvard Educational Review 1953; 23 (1):33 50.
Eraut, M. (1994). Developing professional knowledge and competence. Rouledge: Falmer publishers.
Maudsley, G., and Strivens, J. (2010). Promoting professional knowledge, experiential learning and critical thinking for medical students. Web.