The Chronicle of Higher Education
August 10th, 2015
As the crowd filled the convention hall, a cluster of angry words
appeared on two large screens. Among them: Ashamed. Disappointed.
On a stage at the front of the room, Susan H. McDaniel, the incoming
president of the American Psychological Association, sat nervously in a
director’s chair, holding her hands in her lap. Those ugly words and
others, taken from a recent survey of student members, represented the
collective outrage over what is arguably the darkest period in the association’s 123-year history.
And Ms. McDaniel was here, at a "town hall" during the association’s
annual meeting, to answer hard questions, pledge to make changes, and
say sorry on the group’s behalf.
The association has faced withering scrutiny since the publication of
a report that found that it had colluded with the military to establish
loose ethics guidelines regarding interrogations of terrorism suspects
during the George W. Bush administration. Essentially, the report says,
the group turned a blind eye to psychologists involved in what many now