Join Us

If you would like to become more involved with the APA Teachers of Psychology in Secondary Schools (TOPSS), and are interested in gaining leadership experience and positively impacting the teaching of high school psychology, we encourage you to consider serving on the TOPSS Committee. TOPSS is especially interested in encouraging individuals in all locations and from diverse backgrounds (including diversity in race/ethnicity, gender, ability/disability, sexual orientation, age and religion) to consider running for TOPSS office.

Elected Positions and Descriptions

In 2018, the following elected positions will be filled:

  • Chair-elect
  • Member-at-large (1)

Both are three-year positions. The TOPSS Committee meets at least once a year in Washington, DC. The APA covers travel and accommodation expenses. Please consider nominating a colleague who you feel would make a positive impact. Self-nominations are also welcomed.

Each term of office begins in January and continues for the succeeding 12 months.


The chair-elect serves a one-year term as Member of the TOPSS Committee and Executive Committee, and serves respectively as chair and past chair in the subsequent two years. Elections for this position will occur every year. The duties include:

(a) Involvement in individual projects and task forces as decided by the TOPSS Committee.

(b) Responsibility for annual year–end coordination of revisions of all TOPSS Committee job descriptions.

(c) Responsibility for the coordination of the election process, including the call for nominations.

Member-at-Large (4 total on TOPSS Committee)

The member-at-large serves a three-year term as Member of the TOPSS Committee.

(a) May be appointed to serve a “point person” to coordinate and oversee specific responsibilities to accomplish the mission and goals of the committee on behalf of high school psychology. Designated responsibilities include, but are not limited to diversity, communications (e.g., Psychology Teacher Network), professional development, curriculum (e.g., unit lesson plans), membership (e.g., building partnerships with college and high school teachers and providing support to various local teaching networks), and special projects (e.g., TOPSS Excellence in Teaching Awards). 

(b) Is involved in individual projects and task forces as decided by the TOPSS Committee.

Nomination Instructions

Nominations are due by July 1, 2018.

Nominees for the 2018 TOPSS Election are asked to submit the following materials/documents, to be posted to the TOPSS website during the voting period:

  • Vita or resume
  • Personal statement 
Personal statements must be limited to one page and provide information in three sections: 1) education and professional experience; 2) professional activities and honors; and 3) a platform statement. In the platform statement, candidates should address how they would support and further the mission of TOPSS.

Examples of past platform statements (PDF, 30KB) are available online.  

Please send nominations and materials to:

Emily Leary Chesnes
APA Education Directorate
750 First Street, NE
Washington, D.C. 20002-4242

Electronic submissions are encouraged.