Looking back and moving forward: research in the Journal of Mental Health Counseling. (Editorials).I am extremely pleased to begin my tenure as Associate Editor for Research for the Journal of Mental Health Counseling. Having served on the Editorial Board of the journal since late 1993, I have had the opportunity to both observe and contribute to the positive growth of the research section that occurred under the guidance of my recent predecessors Drs. Kevin R. Kelly and M. Carole Pistole pis·tole
1. A gold coin equal to two escudos, formerly used in Spain.
2. Any of several gold coins used in various European countries until the late 19th century. . During that time, I have seen an increase in the presence of research articles in the journal as well as an increase in the quality of the articles being published. Clearly, to have the chance to further the growth of the section through the position of associate editor is an exciting prospect. Perhaps predictably, it will be my intent to continue the legacy of the past associate editors and contribute to the ongoing growth of the section in some specific ways.
My major goals in continuing the heritage of the research section are three-fold. First is the long-standing commitment to a broad definition of research that has been articulated in the past (Brown, 1988; Kelly, 1993; Pistole, 1996). This definition does not revolve around Verb 1. revolve around - center upon; "Her entire attention centered on her children"; "Our day revolved around our work"
center, center on, concentrate on, focus on, revolve about a differential valuing of quantitative and qualitative methodologies but rather places a strong focus on the conceptual link between the research question and the design characteristics necessary to interpret the data in relationship to that question. Thus, as in the past, the research section of JMHC will demonstrate an appreciation for methodological diversity by publishing high quality quantitative and qualitative articles relevant to the knowledge-base and practice of mental health counseling.
Second, as suggested previously, the prevalence of research articles in the journal has increased relative to Practice, Theory, and Professional Exchange contributions over the past years as a function of specific editorial initiatives in this direction (i.e., Kelly, 1993; Pistole, 1996). Research is important to the identity, health, and vitality of the profession of mental health counseling, and it has an intimate relationship An intimate relationship is a particularly close interpersonal relationship. It is a relationship in which the participants know or trust one another very well or are confidants of one another, or a relationship in which there is physical or emotional intimacy. with practice in terms of addressing clinically generated questions and providing empirical support for intervention strategies. This strong presence of research in the journal must be maintained.
Third, the editors of the JMHC have consistently considered the journal as serving a professional development mission. For example, Pistole (1996) discussed this mission in terms of taking an "educative ed·u·ca·tive
Adj. 1. educative - resulting in education; "an educative experience"
instructive, informative - serving to instruct or enlighten or inform and cooperative stance" (p. 309) within the review process in order to both nurture new talent and insure the publication of high quality manuscripts. The approach and attitude to working with authors submitting manuscripts to the research section demonstrated in the past and articulated by previous editors will also be sustained during my tenure.
Beyond continuing the legacy of previous associate editors of the research section related to operating under a broad and inclusive definition of research, maintaining a strong presence in terms of both the quality and quantity of articles published, and viewing the review process as educative and developmental, I have identified three specific areas of concentration for my tenure in this position. These areas can be broadly identified as focusing on issues of (a) theory, (b) psychometrics psychometrics
Science of psychological measurement. Psychometricians design and administer psychological tests (see psychological testing), both to generate empirical data on mental processes and to refine their understanding of measurement techniques and the , and (c) significance with regard to research manuscripts. My goal will be to strengthen published research articles by increasing editorial attention to these areas. To this end, I briefly discuss each of these areas below.
Theories provide the conceptual thread that allows scientifically oriented disciplines to build a coherent knowledge-base that, in turn, informs and contributes to the application of that knowledge to practice. According to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.
2. In keeping with: according to instructions.
3. Lynd (1939) and Pedhazur and Schmelkin (1991), theoretically driven research provides a framework to guide questions, determine the variables of interest, inform the design strategies, specify the analytic approaches, and influence the interpretation of the results. Furthermore, as suggested by Ginter (1996), it is theory that weds research and practice, a necessary link for a discipline such as mental health counseling which values the practitioner-scientist model (Ginter, 1993). Despite its importance, however, theory is sometimes overlooked or only implied in the introductions of research articles, and often the link between the results and the theory is not clearly communicated. As associate editor of the research section of JMHC, I will focus strongly on insuring that manuscripts provide a clear articulation of the theory or theories that have provided the research grounding. In addition, I will be sure that authors and researchers discuss the relevance of the results to the theoretical formulations that have guided the research. In this way, our knowledge-base will be strengthened.
Data for quantitative research Quantitative research
Use of advanced econometric and mathematical valuation models to identify the firms with the best possible prospectives. Antithesis of qualitative research. comes from measurement. The quality of those data and the ability to interpret results in relation to the theoretical constructs of interest are a function of the psychometric psy·cho·met·rics
n. (used with a sing. verb)
The branch of psychology that deals with the design, administration, and interpretation of quantitative tests for the measurement of psychological variables such as intelligence, aptitude, and properties of the measures used (Pehazur & Schmelkin, 1991). Therefore, providing adequate historical as well as sample-specific support for the measures used in research published in JMHC is necessary in order to support the interpretations of the results. Psychometric support includes attention to validity and reliability (Meiers & Davis, 1990; Thompson & Snyder, 1998; American Educational Research Association The American Educational Research Association, or AERA, was founded in 1916 as a professional organization representing educational researchers in the United States and around the world. , 1999). Along these lines, Meiers and Davis and Thompson and Snyder have called for increased reporting of historical and sample-specific psychometric data. Additionally, Thompson and Snyder have called for language clarification with regard to discussions of reliability. Reliability refers to test scores and not to the tests themselves. The importance of this distinction is that, while there may be evidence of the reliability of test scores from previous literature, the reliability of the scores in any current research is an empirical question. Thus, it is incumbent on researchers to assess and report evidence of the reliability of the scores in their research. Similarly, validity is not a property of a test, but instead "refers to the degree to which evidence and theory support the interpretations of test scores" (AERA AERA American Educational Research Association
AERA Automotive Engine Rebuilders Association
AERA Air Emissions Risk Analysis
AERA Accelerating Economic Recovery in Asia
AERA American European Racquetball Association , p. 9). As associate editor of the research section of JMHC, I will focus on strengthening our published research by monitoring the use of language as it relates to reliability and validity and by expecting authors to report sample-specific reliability and validity information in addition to reporting historical psychometric information to support their choice of measures.
Finally, the recent resurgence in concern over the misinterpretation and misapplication misapplication,
n the use of incorrect or improper procedures while administering treatment; results from inadequacy in experience, training, skills, or knowledge. May also result from impairment or incompetence. of statistical significance testing (e.g., Cohen cohen
(Hebrew: “priest”) Jewish priest descended from Zadok (a descendant of Aaron), priest at the First Temple of Jerusalem. The biblical priesthood was hereditary and male. , 1994) has resulted in an increased expectation that authors provide additional statistics beyond the conventional p values used in null hypothesis null hypothesis,
n theoretical assumption that a given therapy will have results not statistically different from another treatment.
n statistical significance testing (Thompson, 2002; Wilkenson & APA (All Points Addressable) Refers to an array (bitmapped screen, matrix, etc.) in which all bits or cells can be individually manipulated.
APA - Application Portability Architecture Task Force on Statistical Inference Inferential statistics or statistical induction comprises the use of statistics to make inferences concerning some unknown aspect of a population. It is distinguished from descriptive statistics. , 1999). This concern has been so strong that the most recent version of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association The American Psychological Association (APA) is a professional organization representing psychology in the US. Description and history
The association has around 150,000 members and an annual budget of around $70m. (APA, 2001) has provided guidelines for authors related to reporting effect sizes in addition to p values and suggest that it is "almost always necessary to include some estimate of effect size or strength of relationship in your Results section" (p. 25). In general, the primary issue here is to consider not only statistical significance, but also issues of practical and clinical significance (see Thompson for a straightforward discussion of these issues). As associate editor, I will move us toward adopting an editorial policy requiring the reporting of effect sizes in quantitative research articles as has been done in a number of journals in the field. Reporting effect sizes will allow mental health counseling practitioners and researchers alike to better evaluate the importance of research results to their work.
In summary, I am very excited about beginning my tenure as the Associate Editor of Research for the JMHC. I am proud of the research tradition of the journal and my involvement on the editorial board since 1993. I believe that the initiatives that I have outlined herein will not only serve to continue that tradition, but will also contribute to ongoing positive growth of the research section and its reputation as an outlet for high quality research with relevance to the field of mental health counseling.
American Education Research Association. (1999). Standards for educational and psychological testing The Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing is a set of testing standards developed jointly by the American Educational Research Association (AERA), American Psychological Association (APA), and the National Council on Measurement in Education (NCME). . Washington, DC: Author.
American Psychological Association. (2001). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (5th ed.). Washington, DC: Author.
Brown, M. T. (1988). The mental health counselor A mental health counselor is a professional who provides counseling to individuals, couples, families, groups, or larger systems. A mental health counselor may also have training in educational and vocational counseling (MacCluskie & Ingersoll 2001). and research: And never the twain Never the Twain was a British sitcom produced by Thames Television, created by Johnnie Mortimer and starring Windsor Davies as Oliver Smallbridge and Donald Sinden as Simon Peel. shall meet? Journal of Mental Health Counseling, 10, 9-15.
Cohen, J. (1994). The earth is round (p < .05). The American Psychologist The American Psychologist is the official journal of the American Psychological Association. It contains archival documents and articles covering current issues in psychology, the science and practice of psychology, and psychology's contribution to public policy. , 49, 997-1003.
Ginter, E. J. (1996). Three pillars of mental health counseling--watch in what you step. Journal of Mental Health Counseling, 18, 99-107.
Ginter, E. J. (1993). A period of transition for the Journal of Mental Health Counseling: What we can learn from Necker cubes The Necker cube is an optical illusion first published in 1832 by Swiss crystallographer Louis Albert Necker. Ambiguity
The Necker cube is an ambiguous line drawing. and stones. Journal of Mental Health Counseling, 15, 221-227.
Kelly, K. R. (1993). Continuing the tradition: Goals for the Research Section of the Journal of Mental Health Counseling. Journal of Mental Health Counseling, 15, 232-235.
Lynd, R. S. (1939). Knowledge for what? The place of social science in American culture. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Princeton University, at Princeton, N.J.; coeducational; chartered 1746, opened 1747, rechartered 1748, called the College of New Jersey until 1896. Schools and Research Facilities
Meier, S. T., & Davis, S. R. (1990). Trends in reporting psychometric properties of scales used in counseling psychology Counseling psychology as a psychological specialty facilitates personal and interpersonal functioning across the life span with a focus on emotional, social, vocational, educational, health-related, developmental, and organizational concerns. research. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 37, 113-115.
Pedhazur, J. P., & Schmelkin, L. P. (1991). Measurement, design, and analysis: An integrated approach. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
Pistole, C. M. (1996). Publishing research in the Journal of Mental Health Counseling. Journal of Mental Health Counseling, 18, 307-311.
Thompson, B. (2002). "Statistical," "practical," and "clinical": How many kinds of significance do counselors need to consider? Journal of Counseling and Development, 80, 64-71.
Thompson, B., & Snyder, P. A. (1998). Statistical significance and reliability analyses in recent Journal of Counseling and Development research articles. Journal of Counseling and Development, 76, 436-441.
Wilkinson, L., & APA Task Force on Statistical Inference. (1999). Statistical methods in psychology journals: Guidelines and explanations. American Psychologist, 54, 594-604. (Reprint reprint An individually bound copy of an article in a journal or science communication available at http://www.apa.org/journals/amp/amp548594.html)
James R. Rogers, Ph.D., is an associate professor, Department of Counseling, The University of Akron Enrollment in fall 2006 was 23,539 students. The school offers more than 200 undergraduate degrees  and 100 graduate degrees . The University's best-known program is its College of Polymer Science and Polymer Engineering, which is located in a , OH