APA-Approved Standards and Guidelines

APA Approved Guidelines

The following standards and guidelines have been reviewed following the procedures detailed in Association Rule 30-8 Standards and Guidelines and approved by the APA Council of Representatives as APA policy.

Standards

As these terms are used in APA policy, "standards" include any criteria, protocols or specifications for conduct, performance, services or products in psychology or related areas, including recommended standards. Standards are considered to be mandatory and may be accompanied by an enforcement mechanism.

Guidelines

As these terms are used in APA policy, "guidelines" include pronouncements, statements or declarations that suggest or recommend specific professional behavior, endeavor or conduct for psychologists or for individuals or organizations that work with psychologists. In contrast to standards, guidelines are aspirational in intent.

Clinical Practice

Clinical practice guidelines provide recommendations based on an independent systematic review of the research on treatments for specific disorders or health conditions.

Education

Education guidelines concern such matters as educational policy, assessment, program and curriculum development, and instruction.

Professional Practice

Professional practice guidelines are designed to guide psychologists in practice regarding particular roles, populations or settings, and are supported by the current scholarly literature but do not focus upon specific disorders or treatments.

*Developed by APA’s Public Interest Directorate to aid psychologists in their practice with special populations.

Public Interest

Public Interest guidelines and standards provide psychologists with the rationale and guidance for advancing multiculturalism, diversity, and social justice in psychological education, research, practice.

*Developed by APA’s Public Interest Directorate to aid psychologists in their practice with special populations.

Science

Science guidelines provide guidance to psychologists who conduct research with both human and non-human animals or who are engaged in psychological testing and assessment, in a variety of settings.

Miscellaneous