British Psychological Society
The British Psychological Society (BPS) is a representative body for psychologists and psychology in the United Kingdom. The BPS is also a Registered Charity and, along with advantages, this also imposes certain constraints on what the Society can and cannot do. For example, it cannot campaign on issues which are seen as party political.
Founded on 24 October 1901 at University College, London (UCL) as The Psychological Society, the organisation initially admitted only recognised teachers in the field of psychology. Its current name of The British Psychological Society was taken in 1906 to avoid confusion with another group named The Psychological Society.
Under the guidance of Charles Myers, membership was opened up to members of the medical profession in 1919. In 1941 the society was incorporated and following the receipt of a royal charter in 1965, the society became the keeper of the Register of Chartered Psychologists. The register was the means by which the Society could regulate the professional practice of psychology. Regulation included the awarding of practising certificates and the conduct of disciplinary proceedings. The register ceased to be when statutory regulation of psychologists began on 1 July 2009. The profession is now regulated by the Health and Care Professions Council.
A member of the British Psychological Society who has achieved chartered status has the right to the letters "C.Psychol." after his or her name. The BPS is also licensed by the Science Council to award Chartered Scientist status. The highest designation the Society can bestow is a Fellow of the British Psychological Society (FBPsS), showing a significant contribution to and understanding of the discipline.
In 2012 the BPS had 49,678 members and subscribers, in all fields of psychology, 18,342 of whom were Chartered Members. Its current President, for 2012/13, is Dr Peter Banister. Every year, in April or May, the Society holds its Annual Conference, in a different town or city each year. In recent years it has been held in Dublin (2008), Brighton (2009), Stratford-upon-Avon (2010), Glasgow (2011), London (2012) and Harrogate (2013). In 2014 the conference will be in Birmingham.
The Society aims to raise standards of training and practice in psychology, raise public awareness of psychology, and increase the influence of psychology practice in society. Specifically it has a number of key aims, as described below.
- Setting standards of training for psychologists at graduate and undergraduate levels.
- Providing information about psychology to the public.
- Providing support to its members via its membership networks and mandatory continuing professional development.
- Hosting conferences and events.
- Preparing policy statements.
- Publishing books, journals, The Psychologist monthly magazine, the Research Digest blog, including a free fortnightly research update, and various other publications (see below).
- Setting standards for psychological testing.
- Maintaining a History of Psychology Centre.
The BPS publishes 11 journals:
- British Journal of Clinical Psychology
- British Journal of Developmental Psychology
- British Journal of Educational Psychology
- British Journal of Health Psychology
- British Journal of Mathematical and Statistical Psychology
- British Journal of Psychology
- British Journal of Social Psychology
- Journal of Neuropsychology
- Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology
- Legal and Criminological Psychology
- Psychology and Psychotherapy: Theory, Research and Practice
- Robert Armstrong-Jones
- Sophie Bryant
- W.R. Boyce Gibson
- Frank Noel Hales
- William McDougall
- Frederick Walker Mott
- William Halse Rivers Rivers
- Alexander Faulkner Shand
- William George Smith
- James Sully
The following have been Presidents of the Society
- 1920-1923 Charles Samuel Myers
- 1923-1926 Charles Edward Spearman
- 1926-1929 Francis Aveling
- 1929-1932 Beatrice Edgell
- 1932-1935 John Carl Flügel
- 1935-1938 James Drever Sr.
- 1938-1941 Albert William Wolters
- 1941-1943 Cyril Burt
- 1943-1944 Tom Hatherley Pear
- 1944-1945 Millais Culpin
- 1945-1946 Godfrey Thomson
- 1946-1947 Robert John Bartlett
- 1947-1948 Charles Wilfred Valentine
- 1948-1949 Stanley J.F. Philpott
- 1949-1950 Robert Henry Thouless
- 1950-1951 Frederic Charles Bartlett
- 1951-1952 William Brown
- 1952-1953 Cecil Alec Mace
- 1953-1954 Arthur Rex Knight
- 1954-1955 Philip E. Vernon
- 1955-1956 Leslie S. Hearnshaw
- 1956-1957 Eric Benjamin Strauss
- 1957-1958 Alec Rodger
- 1958-1959 Magdalen D. Vernon
- 1959-1960 Frederick Viggers Smith
- 1960-1961 James Drever Jr.
- 1961-1962 Edwin A. Peel
- 1962-1963 George C. Drew
- 1963-1964 Arthur Summerfield
- 1964-1965 Donald Eric Broadbent
- 1965-1966 George Westby
- 1966-1967 Grace Rawlings
- 1967-1968 George Seth
- 1968-1969 Boris Semeonoff
- 1969-1970 Robert John Audley
- 1970-1971 Harry Gwynne Jones
- 1971-1972 Harry Kay
- 1972-1973 Max Hamilton
- 1973-1974 Brian Malzard Foss
- 1974-1975 Oliver Louis Zangwill
- 1975-1976 Jack Tizard
- 1976-1977 May Alison Davidson
- 1977-1978 Alan Douglas Benson Clarke
- 1978-1979 Philip Marcus Levy
- 1979-1980 Peter H. Venables
- 1980-1981 Kevin J. Connolly
- 1981-1982 Derek Ernest Blackman
- 1982-1983 Ralph R. Hetherington
- 1983-1984 Halla Beloff
- 1984-1985 Charles Ian Howarth
- 1985-1986 Robert Maclaughlin Farr
- 1986-1987 David Legge
- 1987-1988 Lea S. Pearson
- 1988-1989 Anthony John Chapman
- 1989-1990 Maurice Anthony Gale
- 1990-1991 Peter Edwin Morris
- 1991-1992 Fraser Norman Watts
- 1992-1993 Edgar Miller
- 1993-1994 Ann Mary Colley
- 1994-1995 Geoffrey Anthony Lindsay
- 1995-1996 Stephen Edward Newstead
- 1996-1997 Margaret Valerie McAllister
- 1997-1998 Christopher Noel Cullen
- 1998-1999 Ingrid Cecilia Lunt
- 1999-2000 Patricia Frankish
- 2000-2001 Tommy MacKay
- 2001-2002 Vicki Bruce
- 2002-2003 Graham Davey
- 2003-2004 Alexander (Zander) Wedderburn
- 2004-2005 Ken Brown
- 2005-2006 Graham Powell
- 2006-2007 Ray Miller
- 2007-2008 Pam Maras
- 2008-2009 Elizabeth Campbell
- 2009-2010 Sue Gardner
- 2010-2011 Gerry Mulhern
- 2011-2012 Carole Allan
- 2012-2013 Peter Banister
Honorary Members and Fellows
The following were Honorary Members of the Society:
- 1904 John Hughlings Jackson
- 1905 Harald Høffding, Sir Francis Galton, William James, Georg Elias Müller, Théodule Armand Ribot, Carl Stumpf
- 1910 James Sully
- 1911 Oswald Külpe
- 1912 Franz Brentano, James Ward
- 1926 Edward Claparède, Sigmund Freud, Gerardus Heymans, Pierre Janet, Henri Piéron, Edward Lee Thorndike, Edward Bradford Titchener, Hendrik Zwaardemaker
- 1927 Baron Albert Eduard Michotte van den Berck
- 1928 Mary Whiton Calkins
- 1932 James Rowland Angell, James McKeen Cattell, Sante de Sanctis, William Stern
- 1934 Havelock Ellis, Ernest Jones, Felix Krueger, William McDougall, Conwy Lloyd Morgan, Charles Samuel Myers, Alexander Faulkner Shand, Charles Edward Spearman, George Frederick William Stout
- 1937 Samuel Alexander, Henry Head, Charles Scott Sherrington
- 1940 Georges Dumas, Beatrice Edgell, Kurt Koffka, Carl Emil Seashore
In 1946 all surviving Honorary Members were made Honorary Fellows.
The following have been or are still Honorary Fellows of the Society:
- 1946 Carl Gustav Jung, Sir William Mitchell
- 1950 Gordon Willard Allport, Clark Leonard Hull, David Katz, Wolfgang Köhler, Karl Spencer Lashley, Gardner Murphy, Lewis Madison Terman, Louis Leon Thurstone
- 1952 Thomas Hunter
- 1954 Edgar Douglas Adrian, Edward Chace Tolman, Robert Sessions Woodworth, Jean Piaget, Edwin Garrigues Boring, Cyril Burt, Frederic Bartlett, Donald O Hebb, Ernst Kretschmer
- 1955 Albert William Phillip Wolters
- 1958 May Smith, Melanie Klein, Agostino Gemelli, Alexander Luria, Tom Hatherley Pear, Charles Wilfred Valentine, Henry Tasman Lovell
- 1959 Henry Cohen, 1st Baron Cohen of Birkenhead
- 1960 Ernest Hilgard, Roger Russell
- 1961 Russell Brain, 1st Baron Brain
- 1962 George Humphrey, B F Skinner, Robert H Thouless
- 1963 Otto Klineberg, Robert John Bartlett
- 1965 Anna Freud, Cecil Alec Mace
- 1966 Aubrey Lewis, Robert Robertson Rusk, Fred Schonell
- 1967 Lionel Penrose
- 1968 Neal E Miller, Erwin Stengel
- 1970 Edward George Glover, John Giffard, 3rd Earl of Halsbury, Margaret Dorothea Vernon
- 1972 Raymond Bernard Cattell, Harry Harlow, Henry Murray
- 1974 Michael Fordham
- 1977 James J Gibson, Eleanor J Gibson
- 1978 Michael Rutter, Philip E Vernon
- 1979 Desmond Pond
- 1981 Robert Hinde
- 1982 Oliver Zangwill
- 1984 Jerome Bruner
- 1985 Noam Chomsky
- 1986 Donald Broadbent
- 1988 Herbert A. Simon
- 1989 George Armitage Miller
- 1990 Jack Davies
- 1991 Elizabeth Loftus
- 1992 Michael Argyle
- 1993 Margaret Donaldson, Klaus Werner Wedell
- 1994 Ulric Neisser, Freda Gladys Newcombe
- 1995 Alan D Baddeley, Patrick Rabbitt
- 1997 Victoria Bruce, John Morton, Peter B Warr
- 1998 Heinz Rudolph Schaffer
- 1999 Antony John Chapman
- 2000 Richard L Gregory
- 2001 Maurice Anthony Gale
- 2003 Miles RC Hewstone
- 2005 Andrew William Young
- 2006 Uta Frith, William Yule, Glynis M Breakwell
- 2007 Alan DB Clarke, Anne M Clarke, Hannah Steinberg
- 2008 David Victor Canter
- 2009 David M Clark
- 2010 Raymond Henry Charles Bull, Cary Lynn Cooper
The Research Digest
The BPS also publishes a free fortnightly email digest of recent psychology research, which now has over 27,000 subscribers. The Research Digest also appears online as a blog where people can read and comment on featured research: 
Member networks: Sections, Divisions and Branches
The British Psychological Society currently has ten Divisions and thirteen sections. Divisions and Sections differ in that the former are open to practitioners in a certain field of psychology, so professional and qualified psychologists only will be entitled to full membership of a Division, whereas the latter are interest groups comprising members of the BPS who are interested in a particular academic aspect of psychology.
The Divisions include the Division of Teachers and Researchers in Psychology, the Division of Health Psychology, the Division of Forensic Psychology, the Division of Child and Educational Psychology, the Scottish Division of Educational Psychology, the Division of Occupational Psychology, the Division of Counselling Psychology, the Division of Clinical Psychology and the Division of Neuropsychology. The Division of Clinical Psychology is the largest Division within the BPS - it is subdivided into Faculties[quantify] - the largest of these is the Faculty for Children, Young People and Their Families.
The Sections include the Consciousness and Experiential Psychology Section, the Cognitive Psychology Section, the Developmental Psychology Section, the Psychology of Education Section, the History and Philosophy Section, the Psychology of Sexualities Section, the Psychobiology Section, the Psychotherapy Section, the Qualitative Methods Section, the Psychology of Women Section, the Social Psychology Section and the Transpersonal Psychology Section.
The term "Division" in the American Psychological Association does not have the same meaning as it does in the British Psychological Society, coming closer to what the British Psychological Society refers to as "Sections". Branches are for members in the same geographical region.
Consciousness and Experiential Psychology
The Consciousness and Experiential Psychology Section (CEP) is a Section of the British Psychological Society for those interested in the psychology of consciousness and experience. Initiated in 1994 by Jane Henry, Max Velmans, John Pickering, Elizabeth Valentine and Richard Stevens, the Section promoted and supported the reincorporation of consciousness studies into mainstream psychology. Official approval for CEP was announced in 1997 during the BPS Annual Conference. The Section’s mission is ‘to advance our understanding of consciousness, to bring scientific research on consciousness closer to other traditions of inquiry into the nature of mind, and to explore how this research can be used to improve the quality of life’. As of 2010 Susan Stuart is the Section Chair. Every year in September the Consciousness and Experiential Psychology Section holds its annual conference, usually in Oxford.
The Consciousness and Experiential Psychology Section is one of thirteen Sections of the BPS. This Section is for anyone interested in broad-based, rigorous academic exploration of consciousness and experience. The Section is an interest group comprising members of the BPS and also unaffiliated members. In the modern era the Consciousness and Experiential Psychology Section was the first, and remains the only, Section of a nationally representative body of professional psychologists devoted to the study of consciousness.
Following a number of scandals arising in the 1990s in the psychotherapy field, the UK government announced its intention to widen statutory regulation, to include inter alia psychologists. The BPS was in favour of statutory regulation, but opposed the proposed regulator, the Health Professions Council (HPC), preferring the idea of a new Psychological Professions Council which would map quite closely onto its own responsibilities. The government resisted this, however, and in June 2009, under the Health Care and Associated Professions (Miscellaneous Amendments) Order, regulation of most of the psychology professions passed to the HPC, since renamed the Health and Care Professions Council.
The Society's main office is currently in Leicester in the United Kingdom. Before the transfer of registration and associated functions to the HPC, there were over 100 staff members at the Leicester office. There are also smaller regional offices in Belfast, Cardiff, Glasgow and London.
The British Psychological Society's logo is an image of the Greek mythical figure Psyche, personification of the soul, holding a Victorian oil lamp. The use of her image is a reference to the origins of the word psychology. The lamp symbolises learning and is also a reference to the story of Psyche. Eros was in love with Psyche and would visit her at night, but had forbidden her from finding out his identity. She was persuaded by her jealous sisters to discover his identity by holding a lamp to his face as he slept. Psyche accidentally burnt him with oil from the lamp, and he awoke and flew away.
A note about psychotherapy
The BPS does not supervise the separate profession of psychotherapy (including hypnotherapy and other techniques), which is covered by the overarching body, the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP). As a special member of the UKCP, the BPS views "psychotherapy, as well as the use of hypnosis with psychotherapy, is most appropriately regarded as a post-qualification specialisation for members of one of the primary professional groups such as medical practitioners, applied psychologists or social workers". The UKCP maintains a register of psychotherapeutic counsellors who are not necessarily BPS members. The BPS maintains a register of BPS member psychologists working as psychotherapists.
- "Founder Members of the BPS". Hopc.bps.org.uk. Retrieved 2012-02-20.
- "Presidents of the BPS". Hopc.bps.org.uk. Retrieved 2012-02-20.
- "Honorary Members of the BPS". Hopc.bps.org.uk. Retrieved 2012-02-20.
- "Honorary Fellows of the BPS 1946-1969". Hopc.bps.org.uk. Retrieved 2012-02-20.
- "The British Psychological Society Annual Review 2009". Issuu.com. 2010-05-04. Retrieved 2012-02-20.
- Velmans, M. (2009) Understanding Consciousness (2nd Ed). London: Routledge/Psychology Press
- "Consciousness and Experiential Psychology Section" at bps.org.uk
- Steinberg, H. (2001). A brief history of the Society logo. The Psychologist, 14, 236–237. Download article via 
- [dead link]
- Powered by Intergage www.intergage.co.uk. "The United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy". Psychotherapy.org.uk. Retrieved 2012-02-20.
- "Register of Psychologists Specialising in Psychotherapy".