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2020 Convention - Saturday Educational Sessions
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Saturday Educational Sessions

9:00 am - 10:30 am (1.5 CE credits)

Saturday Plenary: Looking to the Future: Opportunities for Psychology and Psychologists

At the core of psychology and the American Psychological Association’s (APA) mission is to use our science and knowledge to benefit society and improve lives. For us to do this, we need a strong and viable profession and discipline. Dr. Evans will share how APA is working to have a positive impact on important social issues, help the public better understand psychology, speak as an authoritative voice for the field by connecting psychological science and clinical expertise, and to prepare the discipline and profession for the future.

Attendees will be able to:

  1. Describe how psychology is increasing its contribution to urgent societal issues.
  2. Identify strategies for increasing the public's understanding of psychology's role in their health and well-being.
  3. Describe how psychologists are expanding their roles to meet the new demands of our economy and the changing healthcare involvement.
  Arthur C. Evans, Jr., PhD is a scientist-practitioner, clinical and community psychologist and health care innovator and is the CEO of the American Psychological Association. Dr. Evans has held faculty appointments at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine and the Yale University School of Medicine. He previously served as Commissioner of Philadelphia’s Department of Behavioral Health and Disability Services and as Deputy Commission of the Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. 

11:00 am -12:30 pm (1.5 CE credits)

Master Lecture: Leadership is Love. The Power of Human Connection

Leaders who are able to motivate and inspire others have a deep knowledge of self, and role model their beliefs and values. Through their words and deeds, they build trust, communicate clearly and inspire their work groups to create a culture of collaboration and community in the workplace.

These individuals have become authentic leaders. In this experiential session, we will address the Five Powers of Authentic Leadership®. In addition, Dr. Rittenberg will facilitate the audience in development of both communication skills as well as storytelling skills. The session will conclude with lessons learned as well as ideas of how to keep the fires burning (sustainability).

Attendees will be able to:

  1. Describe and discuss the 5 Powers of Authentic Leadership® model.
  2. Develop new and improved communication and storytelling skills.
  3. Identify strategies to use individually to further develop and maintain authentic leadership skills.

Mark Rittenberg, EdD,
is Professor of Leadership Communications, Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley. He is the Founder and Chief Creative Officer, at the Berkeley Executive Coaching Institute Distinguished Teaching Fellow, Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley. His executive coaching practice includes clients from major consulting firms and Fortune 500 companies including AT&T, Lockheed Martin Corp., GAP Inc., Levi Strauss and Adobe Systems. He created the Berkeley Executive Coaching Institute which conducts 3 certified trainings per year in partnership with UC Berkeley Executive Education.

Social Media, Entitlement and Other Clinical Challenges in the Digital Age

Michael G. Wetter, PsyD, FAPA, CEO/Owner, Private Practice, Sherman Oaks, CA; Tiffani Sainz, Associate, Wetter Psychological Services, Los Angeles, CA

As social media has become the dominant mode of communication and has redefined socialization, consideration must be given to the social, behavioral, and cognitive consequences of digital media. Why have more recent generations been labeled more "entitled?" This presentation will examine how entitlement behaviors are linked to increasing digital information resources, as well as how platforms such as Instagram or Facebook are likely to impact future generations. This session would be valuable to any clinicians working with children, adolescents, young adults, or families.

Attendees will be able to:

  1. Summarize how aspects of social media, excessive internet use, and modern forms of communication work to increase entitlement behaviors and other forms of maladaptive social functioning.
  2. Identify entitlement related behaviors of pediatric and adolescent age children.
  3. Identify effective behavioral strategies to decrease entitlement behavior.

Getting Parents On-Board: Using Motivational Interviewing with Parents of Transgender Youth

Stacy Hutton, PhD, Director, Private Practice, Atascadero, CA; Jay Bettergarcia, PhD, Assistant Professor, California Polytechnic State University

Research indicates that Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming (TGNC) youth have better mental health outcomes when their parents are supportive of their stated gender identity. However, parents of TGNC youth may experience ambivalence and even reluctance about a social or medical transition for their child. Parents of transgender youth are sometimes reluctant to support their child in social or medical transitions. This session will highlight how Motivational Interviewing can be an effective method in working with parents as they explore their ambivalence and solidify their own motivation to support their TGNC child.

Attendees will be able to:

  1. Articulate how ambivalence influences a parent's ability to support their child.
  2. Create MI-consistent reflections and summaries for parents in session.
  3. Identify parents' statements that signal "change talk" or "sustain talk".

Cultural Considerations for Mindfulness Based Interventions

Thema Bryant-Davis, PhD, Professor, Pepperdine University, Los Angeles, CA; Shelly P. Harrell, PhD, Professor, Pepperdine University, Los Angeles, CA

This interactive presentation features the work of two psychologists who have provided mindfulness based interventions primarily with racial and ethnic minority communities. Attendees will learn important cultural considerations to presenting mindfulness, soulfulness, and the use of culturally themed music, movement, proverbs, and spoken word.

Attendees will be able to:

  1. Define mindfulness and soulfulness.
  2. Describe cultural barriers to mindfulness based interventions.
  3. Describe the use of culturally informed mindfulness with ethnic minority clients.

2:00 pm - 3:30 pm (1.5 CE Credit)

Constructive Conversations About Politics and Culture: Talking Across the Aisle with Clients and Colleagues

Anatasia S. Kim, PhD, Associate Professor, The Wright Institute, Berkeley, CA; Alicia del Prado, PhD, Associate Professor, The Wright Institute, Berkeley, CA

Is it possible to talk politics and culture with clients and colleagues? What about when we find ourselves on opposite sides of the aisle? This presentation offers an antidote to the rising vitriol and divisiveness that has our communities deadlocked and demonstrates that constructive conversations about controversial issues are possible.

Attendees will be able to:

  1. Describe common pitfalls in having constructive conversations about politics and culture.
  2. Identify personal barriers that get in the way of having constructive conversations about politics and culture.
  3. Implement 2-3 essential ingredients in having constructive conversations about politics and culture.

Healing a Nation Addicted: A Call to Action

Jessica Byrd-Olmstead, PhD, Private Practice, Los Altos, CA

The U.S. is living through an "Opioid Epidemic." This session will explore "the how's and why's of addiction" including the impact of trauma on addictive behavior. Included is an overview of how treatment options for addiction have morphed over the years as has the idea of who needs to access care. Psychological and social determinants will be explored including a summary of the ACES study (Adverse Childhood Experiences). Finally, the presentation will offer insights into how psychologists can address addiction as a public health crisis both inside and outside of the therapy room.

Attendees will be able to:

  1. Identify biological, psychological, and social variables implicated in the pathway to addiction.
  2. Identify barriers to addiction treatment.
  3. Identify concrete action steps to address addiction including language used in treatment, assessment & referrals, and advocacy work.

Technology & Addiction in Teens

Paul Marcille, PhD Private Practice, Saratoga, CA; Sarah Borish, PhD, Neuropsychology Postdoctoral Fellow and Clinical Trials Sub-Investigator, Ray Dolby Brain Health Center, California Pacific Medical Center, San Francisco, CA

The impact of technology on the developing minds and social lives of adolescent cannot be overstated. Young people today have access to mobile devices that enable 24 hour a day connections to the internet, and this brought tremendous benefits along with a host of potential problems. With the use of case studies, this interactive workshop will present the latest research on the physiological, cognitive, emotional and social impact that technology is having on the lives of adolescents. The presenters will also provide clinical examples to demonstrate the addictive nature of many forms of technology, and clinical interventions for young persons and their families to mitigate the negative impact of technology.

Attendees will be able to:

  1. Describe the addictive nature and consequences of uncontrolled technology use.
  2. Identify when technology use has become an addiction for teens and be able to describe that to teens and their families.
  3. Implement new treatment approaches to treat technology addiction and to help teens and their families develop healthier relationships with technology.

That Guy Must Have Been Insane! Understanding and Evaluating Insanity in California

Craig R. Lareau, JD, PhD, ABPP, Private Practice, Arcadia, CA

There is a mystique that surrounds insanity cases; they gather unusual attention in the media, and they often turn into a battle of the experts. In this presentation, we will dig beneath the headlines to the legal and psychological foundations of insanity as it applies in California. After addressing the legal requirements of insanity, the process of evaluating a criminal defendant will be examined, including reviewing relevant sources of data, performing the clinical/forensic interview, required psychological testing, and necessary collateral interviews. Finally, the presenter will discuss how to use this data to come to the conclusion about insanity, and how psychologists can prepare to perform the important work of serving an expert witness, often in a high-profile setting.


Attendees will be able to:

  1. Describe the development of the insanity defense in California.
  2. Discuss the foundational aspects of performing an evaluation for a defendant raising an insanity defense.
  3. Explain how to apply relevant psychological data and information to come to a conclusion in an insanity evaluation.

4:00 pm to 5:00 pm (1.0 CE Credits)

Does My Client Have Hoarding Disorder?

Chia-Ying Chou, PhD, Director, Private Practice, San Francisco, CA

In America, 2-5% of adults suffer from Hoarding Disorder (HD). Hoarding is a common but rarely self-disclosed condition. This presentation is designed to help clinicians develop practical knowledge to effectively identify and assist those with HD. The session will include information on assessing a Hoarding Disorder, causes of the disorder, and current standard of treatment for patients.

Attendees will be able to:

  1. Apply the DSM-5 diagnostic criteria to assess Hoarding Disorder in real-life clinical settings.
  2. Formulate clinical cases by accurately identifying contributing factors and psychological mechanisms associated with hoarding symptoms.
  3. Provide appropriate help to individuals with Hoarding Disorder.

Staying Neutral: Avoiding Litigation in High-Conflict Client Cases

Elise Greenberg, JD, Partner at Brot, Gross, Fishbein, LLP, Sherman Oaks, CA

Therapists naturally become very involved in their clients' lives, helping them navigate divorce, custody concerns and even criminal issues such as child abuse. This professional guidance and potential mandated reporting holds tremendous power, and can raise myriad legal issues for therapists. This session will provide an overview of the Department of Children and Family Services reporting process, including what happens after a report is made. The presenter will explore the impact on the family when choosing whether or not to report, particularly if that family is involved in litigation, and will offer guidance on how psychologists can remain neutral in client conversations in order to avoid being pulled into litigation. Finally, she will address how to approach a subpoena or a notification of a deposition.

Attendees will be able to:

  1. Evaluate how to decide whether or not to report an issue to the Department of Children and Family Services, and understand the impact on reporting or not reporting.
  2. Discuss ways to remain neutral in client conversations and avoid being pulled into litigation.
  3. Identify the steps to take if subpoenaed or asked to be deposed.

"Got Skillz?": Navigating Psychological Interventions in the Expanding World of Professional and Collegiate E-sports

Sari Shepphird, PhD, Director, Sport & Perform Consulting & Psychological Services, Inc, Calabasas, CA

E-sports players are the fastest growing segment of athlete populations on the globe. The rapid rise of success in this sporting world has come with an underappreciated need for psychological interventions that address both mental health concerns as well as mental performance optimization. This presentation will focus on core interventions in both of these realms.

Attendees will be able to:

  1. Describe the e-sports culture, player populations, and psychological needs of esports athletes.
  2. Identify core psychological risks in the e-sports athlete community.
  3. Identify core psychological interventions useful for working with e-sports players and teams.

Embodying Heartfulness: An Introduction to Islamic Psychology

Azadeh H. Weber, PsyD, Noor Human Consulting, Saratoga, CA

Heartfulness practices are emphasized in Islamic psychology. Within the Islamic worldview the heart is viewed as an organ of perception and pathway to self-awareness. The construct of the psyche and treatment from an Islamic psychological framework will be explored to improve attunement with and healing for Muslim communities.

Attendees will be able to:

  1. Describe the views about mental health within the Muslim community.
  2. Utilize a heartfulness exercise to enhance positive affect and release trauma.
  3. Identify the concepts of the psychic system within Islamic psychology.


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