Policy and Procedures for Society of Counseling Psychology (SCP) LISTSERVs

In addition to complying with APA listserv rules, it is necessary to comply with the SCP LISTSERV Policy Statement.

On February 28, 2007:, the SCP Executive Board voted unanimously to approve SCP LISTSERV Policy Statement submitted by Linda Subich, Director of the Communications and Technology Board:

  • Subscribers to SCP sponsored LISTSERVs must be members of SCP and/or the relevant SCP group responsible for the LISTSERV (e.g., section, STG)
    • Members of governance LISTSERVs (e.g., Treasurers LISTSERV) are approved for addition by the VP for Communications based on conversation with the presidential trio and consultation of the SCP governance roster.
    • Members of other LISTSERVs are approved for addition by the Communications Officer (or otherwise designated LISTSERV coordinator) who makes the recommendation to add an individual based on whether the person is on the group’s current membership roster.  Limiting subscribers to group members means the dialogue is among fellow professionals and the chance of unwanted spams is reduced.
    • Occasionally, a person with special skills or expertise who is not a group member may be invited or allowed to subscribe. The local LISTSERV Coordinator makes such decisions.
  • Annually, the Coordinator of SCP LISTSERVs will prompt individual LISTSERV coordinators with a subscription list for their LISTSERV so that they may recommend deletion of persons who are no longer members (or in the case of governance LISTSERVs, additions of appropriate persons).
  • Blind subscriptions are not allowed; all LISTSERV subscribers must be identified by name (not just by e-mail address).
  • New subscribers to LISTSERVs will receive a standard set of welcome and procedural statements that will be developed by the Coordinator of SCP LISTSERVs and will include APA LISTSERV policies, how to post to the LISTSERV, how to unsubscribe from the LISTSERV, LISTSERV courtesy reminders, and a copy of the Division’s policy regarding LISTSERV research (see below).
  • Division policy regarding the use of any SCP LISTSERVs to distribute surveys and research opportunities is that such requests should be handled by LISTSERV managers (or the person designated to do so by the owner(s) of the LISTSERV) in a cautious manner with sensitivity to both ethical and pragmatic matters. For a research request to be granted, at minimum, the requestor should provide the following for evaluation by the LISTSERV manager (or the designated research request manager):  a description of the research, its methods and its purpose, and a URL or approval file number as proof of local IRB approval of the research. It is suggested that only research that is deemed relevant to LISTSERV members be approved. It is also suggested that research that is web-based and needs only a link to a web address is preferable to research with attachments or embedded questions; the latter options may contribute to LISTSERV clutter due to respondents hitting the “reply” button. Finally, LISTSERV managers (or the designated research request manager) should monitor the flow of requests forwarded to LISTSERV members and be sensitive to the demands made on members’ time and mailboxes.
  • Archives on each LISTERV must be available to all subscribers. The use of archives provides a history of the issues discussed on the LISTSERV that may enrich future dialogues on the same or similar issues.


  • The default procedure to institute a new LISTSERV is that a request is made to APA Division Services and they set up the structure.  New LISTSERVs may be opened once a Section or SIG has been recognized by the Executive Board. Once that approval is obtained, the person instituting the LISTSERV can contact the current SCP Listserv Coordinator: Jeffrey G. Yeung, Ph.D. (email), to complete the necessary documentation and request the new LISTSERV. 
  • Each LISTSERV must have a designated SCP owner (i.e., LISTSERV Coordinator) who is part of the group represented by the LISTSERV.  This Coordinator manages the LISTSERV and is the point of contact for and transmitter of requests for subscription and for unsubscription.  These requests are forwarded to staff at APA Division Services.  Local LISTSERV Coordinators also ensure that SCP LISTSERV policies and procedures are followed by their subscribers.
  • A LISTSERV may be decommissioned by obtaining the Executive Board’s approval and contacting the APA Division Services Office.

A Reminder to APA Listowners (and subscribers)

Rule 5: APA does not endorse or forward requests for research participation to any APA listserv. Divisions may choose to post requests for research participants to their listservs. If you need more information about a Division listserv, it is recommended that you contact the listserv administrator of that Division. Please note the following statements regarding the limits of division and all other listservs as sources for research participants and samples.

APA disclaimer regarding limits of division listservs as research

  • Listservs (Division and other APA discussion lists) make no claim to be exhaustive collections of members who may fit into one or more specific category (e.g., clinical psychologists, practitioners, educators, and so on). In fact some 45% of APA members do NOT belong to any one Division. By using a Division as the “universe” for one’s respondents, researchers are excluding a large number of eligible participants and hence may be introducing bias into their research.
  • Many members belong to more than one Division, and if the research is being sent to more than one Division, the researcher faces the challenge of defining response rate given duplication and of removing duplicate records.
  • APA members and others who are not APA members belong to Divisions and topical listservs for a number of reasons, some of these
    may not reflect the fact that the member works in the area covered by the Division or list in any more than a tangential sense – raising questions about the suitability of the sample to the research.

These guidelines are also available here.

Research Request Guidelines

As of March 10, 2015, Division 17, the Society of Counseling Psychology (SCP), has revised its policy for utilizing the Division listservs to recruit research participants.  Dissemination of research requests is reserved for research by members of SCP and Student Affiliates of Seventeen (SAS).  Research by students under the supervision of SCP members is eligible for dissemination on the SCP listserv as well.  Due to potential conflict of interest, SCP student affiliate research requests shall not be disseminated to the SAS listserv; rather, SCP student affiliates are encouraged to use other SCP listservs not maintained by students. Similar to other researcher requests, students are asked to send their request to the current SCP listserv coordinator for review and consultation about appropriate listserv outlets based on their topic area.  If you have received approval to submit a research request to the listserv prior to March 10, 2015, the approval remains valid for that particular research project.If you have any questions, please feel free to email the current Listserv Coordinator: Jeffrey G. Yeung, Ph.D. (email).

Please adhere to the following procedure if you choose to utilize a SCP listserv to recruit participants for your research project:

  • Research requests should be submitted to the current Listserv Coordinator for review and dissemination to the listserv to ensure compliance with these policies.
  • Include key information about the project in your email to the listserv, including expectations of participants and a detailed description of what participation entails, an accurate reflection of the amount of time expected of participants, the voluntary nature of participation, and the ability for participants to terminate participation at any point during their involvement.
  • Include relevant IRB information, specifically the university IRB that approved the research, the protocol number of the research project, and the contact information of the investigators so potential participants have the opportunity to ask questions.

We know that many researchers use APA division listservs to collect data for their research, so we want to maintain this recruitment avenue as an option. To do so, we ask everyone’s cooperation with these policies. If you have any questions or would like to discuss these policies further, please feel free to email the current Listserv Coordinator Jeffrey G. Yeung, Ph.D. (email).