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«SOCIOLOGICAL PRACTICE NEWSLETTER Prepared for the American Sociological Association Section on Sociological Practice Summer 2003 _ Honors to Clinical ...»

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Prepared for the American Sociological Association

Section on Sociological Practice

Summer 2003


Honors to Clinical Sociologists


Rick Stephens stephensr@enc.edu

Drs Judith A Cook and C. Margaret Hall have been

Eastern Nazarene College

honored recently for their outstanding contributions to our Secretary-Treasurer: community. We wish to highlight their work and commend Cynthia L. Sipe clsipe@aol.com them for their ongoing devotion to the profession.

Consultant, North Wales, PA The William Foote Whyte Award for 2003 is presented to Chair-Elect: Dr. Judith A. Cook, University of Illinois at Chicago. Those Leora Lawton lawton@techsociety.com supporting her emphasized her methodological innovation, Freeman, Sullivan & Co.

her commitment to inclusive research that affirms the dignity of people with disabilities and the value of drawing on

Past Chair:

multiple perspectives, and her inspirational influence on James Hougland soc125@uky.edu students in sociology and a variety of other disciplines.

University of Kentucky The William Foote Whyte Award is presented to an


individual who has made notable contributions to Terms ending 2003: sociological practice which can include several of the Rosalyn Benjamin Darling rdarling@grove.iup.edu following elements: outstanding clinical or applied work, Dorothy Jones Jessop dorijessop@aol.com exceptional service to the section, publications that advance both the theory and methods of sociological practice, or

Terms ending 2004:

mentoring an training of student for careers in sociological Eleanor

–  –  –

Center for Mental Health Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

She is the author or co-author of numerous articles and other publications involving mental health and HIV. Articles in press will soon appear in Psychology of Women Quarterly, AIDS Care, and Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal. Her eight 2002 articles appeared in such outlets as New Directions for Evaluation and American Journal of Public Health.

She currently serves as an Expert Consultant to the President‚s New Freedom Commission on Mental Health, a member of the National Task Force on Rehabilitation and Employment of Persons with Psychiatric Disabilities, and an Advisory Committee Member of the Schizophrenia Patient Outcome Research Team at the University of Maryland at Baltimore.

She has been honored with the Armin Loeb Award for Excellence in Psychosocial Rehabilitation Research, presented by the International Association for Psychosocial Rehabilitation Services (1995), the 2002 Mentor of the Year Award, presented by the Chancellor‚s Office, University of Illinois at Chicago, and the 2003 Researcher Award, presented by the Alliance for the Mentally Ill of Greater Chicago.

Professor C. Margaret Hall, Sociology and Anthropology Department, Georgetown University has been awarded the District of Columbia Sociological Society 2003 Stuart A. Rice Award for Career Achievement.

KGS: Of all that you've done, what was most personally rewarding for you? What feels like the most significant accomplishment?

CMH: The most personally rewarding aspect of my career as a clinical sociologist is my long term effort in theory construction. My identity empowerment theory has transformed how I relate to others, and my concept of social intelligence is a vital aspect of my everyday life. My biggest accomplishment is to be able to communicate to others how to make use of these tools.

KGS: Would you describe for us the highlights of your career?

CMH: The earliest highlight was being accepted into Dr. Murray Bowen's postgraduate program in family theory and family therapy in the Department of Psychiatry, Georgetown University Medical Center. I was the first sociologist to be included in the "holy trinity" of psychiatrists, psychologists, and social workers. Another highlight was being employed as a "clinical sociologist" (described as such in brochures) at Frederick County Community Mental Health Services in 1971, seven years before the Clinical Sociology Association was founded. My challenge was to work as a family therapist, and to coordinate community services for a wide variety of clients. The director of the clinic, where I worked only one day a week, was very enthusiastic about the possibilities of clinical sociology, especially when I earned a reputation for making progress with "difficult" clients. A last highlight was having a consulting office constructed at my home, where I developed my practice in clinical sociology. Somehow having this physical space added legitimacy to my serious professional pursuit of being a clinical sociologist.

KGS: What would you like those considering joining the field to think about in making the decision?

CMH: Consider the creative potential of sociological thinking to solve problems and improve the quality of life in society. Building a career in clinical sociology is a remarkable way to bring about constructive changes, and to create a more just world.


Training for Accreditation Review Committee:

Commission on Applied and Clinical Sociology The Commission on Applied and Clinical Sociology (CACS) will conduct training for individuals who are interested in serving as a member of a CACS Accreditation Review Committee (ARC). An ARC conducts the accreditation review process for any applicant program seeking accreditation from the Commission on Applied and Clinical Sociology.

This training is set for Mon Aug 18, 2003 from 12:00 - 4:00 pm in Atlanta at the Wyndam Atlanta Downtown during the ASA and SPA annual meetings. Anyone interested should contact Joyce Iutcovich Joycei@kurc.org ************************************************************************ Congratulations to Newly Elected Section Officers The Section welcomes its newly elected officers. The Chair-Elect for 2003-04 is Jay Weinstein. Jay is the President of the Society for Applied Sociology and is a Professor at Eastern Michigan University.

The new Secretary-Treasurer is Judith K. Little, who is an Associate Professor of Sociology, Humboldt State University and has been active in the ASA in many ways.

Three new Council members will take office in 2003 and will serve through 2006. They are:

Ann Marie Charvat, InService, Inc, and certification Chair of the SPA.

Theodore A. Lamb, Evaluator, Biological Sciences Curriculum Study.

Cynthia L. Sipe, Consultant, North Wales, PA Thanks to everyone who agreed to be a candidate for office this year, as well as to our outgoing officers!

Practice-Related Events at ASA in Atlanta Please check the ASA and SPA websites and/or programs for additional dates and times.

Section on Sociological Practice Reception (Co-Sponsored by SAS and SPA) – Sat 8/16, 6.30 pm Regular Session (at ASA Meeting): A Professional Culture of Applying Sociology - Sun, 8/17, 10.30 am Presider Leora Lawton, Tech Society Research - Discussant, Tillman Rodabough, Baylor University “A Tale of Three Discourses: Doing Action Research in a Research Methods Class”, Stephen R. Couch, Pennsylvania State University Abstract: This paper tells the tale of a collaborative research project between a graduate research methods course in action research, and a community grassroots environmental group. In order to give the students the opportunity to do part of an action research project, the instructor approached the leaders of the grassroots group and asked if they would like the class to undertake research that would be of interest to them. The grassroots group is concerned that toxic releases from nearby facilities are causing detrimental health effects to area residents, and asked that the class gather and analyze health data that would speak to their concerns. The results of the research generated media attention and angered a state representative, who attempted to discredit the research and to get the university to disavow it. The results of this saga are used to illustrate differences between the discourses of science, politics and education, and how interpretations of scientific research are shaped by the discourses in which they are used.

Implications for sociological practitioners and teachers are discussed.

“ The Possibility of Healthy Organizations”, Kathryn Goldman Schuyler, Alliant International University Abstract: I focus primarily on the question of what is meant by “healthy organizations,” how our consulting in this arena is impacted by theories we bring from sociology that unfortunately are unknown to non-sociologists working in this arena, and how we need to sustain our own state of well-being in order to be effective practitioners. Sociological practice can contribute significantly to the creation of “organizations of the future” (Argyris, 1973) in which there is a state of reciprocal maintenance (Bennett, 1976) between individuals and organizations. ‘Reciprocal maintenance’ means that neither is aiming to take advantage of the other: the organizations are designed to enable the growth and development of their members or workers (in the broadest sense, including managers) and the individuals do their best to enhance the organization’s long-term viability. I define as healthy those organizations that foster such ‘reciprocal maintenance’ and which create an organizational culture in which people have more influence and even control over the decisions that affect their lives.

“The Role of Status in Evaluating Research: The Case of Data Editing”, Erin Leahy, University of Arizona Abstract: Cleaning and editing apparently illogical, or seemingly incorrect, data is a ubiquitous research practice. But a lack of formal guidance in this realm of research may promote reliance on colleagues’ knowledge and on information from the situation at hand, such as status considerations. To investigate the extent to which status considerations influence sociological research practice, I conducted a survey-based experiment using hypothetical vignettes. A sample of sociologists was asked to respond to a hypothetical vignette depicting a researcher’s encounter with apparently messy data and a proposed editing strategy. The vignettes controlled for all variables except one – the status of the hypothetical researcher – and one vignette was randomly assigned to each sociologist. I find that status considerations are relevant to sociological research. Researchers judge the same data cleaning strategy more stringently when a graduate student, rather than a professor, proposes the strategy. Implications of these findings for the objectivity and universality of sociological research practice are discussed.

Section on Sociological Practice Council and Business Meetings – Sun 8/17, 12.30 pm Career Workshop: Operating Your Own Firm or Consulting Business – Sun 8/17, 12.30 pm – Ross Koppel – (Check program for possible time change) SPA and SAS Joint Meeting – Sun 8/17, 8-10 pm Commission on Applied and Clinical Sociology – Mon 8/18, 8 am – 12.10 pm Career Workshop: Clinical Sociology – Preparation and Career Opportunities – Mon 2.30 pm Jan Marie Fritz, Ann Marie Ellis SPA Silver Anniversary Conference 8/18-19 SPA Silver Anniversary Reception (Co-Sponsored by SAS and Section on Sociological Practice) – Mon 8/18, 6.30 pm – Speaker: Michael Buroway, Newly–elected President of ASA.

Continuation Session at SPA: The Professional Culture of Applying Sociology II – Tues 8/19 (Co-sponsored by the ASA Section on Sociological Practice and the Society for Applied Sociology) Chair and Discussant: Jay Weinstein, President, Society for Applied Sociology “An Academic Model for Client-Driven Community-Based Research”, Tillman Rodabough, Center for Community Research and Development, Baylor University Abstract: Three social science professors, driven by the dual goals of training students to apply their research skills in a community setting and providing much needed research to local community and governmental agencies, began a consulting firm to research community issues. This paper details the steps in building trust and a clientele in the community and how to manage a rapidly expanding business. This paper addresses three major issues. The first concerns developing a curriculum with minimal faculty that fits the academic demands of a university while protecting the privacy needs and meeting the time constraints of community clients. The second involves educating faculty colleagues and the university administration to provide institutional support for community research. The third consists of building relationships with community entities that provide the necessary opportunities for research and, in so doing, for funding the program. Several outcomes attest to the success of this endeavor: an integrated undergraduate/graduate program in applied research; a city council that makes data-based decisions and contacts the Center for program evaluations, population projections, needs assessments and data collection; and, finally, shared respect and stronger relationships between the university and community.

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