Professional Knowledge and Abilities

Maintaining professional knowledge and abilities is essential to one’s career success. The continued striving for additional knowledge related to one’s professional field, or the attainment of knowledge from reliable and credible sources and organizations, allow an individual to possess the knowledge and abilities needed to succeed within a particular field. Various organizations and associations allow an individual from any professional field to further develop or enhance professional abilities and knowledge of a chosen profession.
American Psychological Association

Overview
The American Psychological Association is the largest association of psychologists with over 150,000 members. This global organization functions with the mission to aid society as a whole by improving lives of those dealing with psychological illness. Working continually to advance knowledge of mental illness, awareness, and treatment methods the American Psychological Association is the optimal source for professional knowledge and abilities for any individual entering or currently working within the field of psychology (American Psychological Association, 2010).

Increasing Professional Knowledge and Abilities
The individual seeking to enter or currently working within the psychology field will find a plethora of opportunity for increasing his or her professional knowledge and abilities through membership with the American Psychological Association. The organization’s purpose is to advance psychology both as a science and profession, and to also act as the leading means to the promotion of health, education, and human welfare (American Psychological Association, 2010).

The American Psychological Association offers its members in all branches of psychology encouragement and continually seeks to improve the understanding and methods of psychology through research. The association also implores its members to hold to very high standards of ethics, conduct, education and achievement. The member of the American Psychological Association is able to enhance or further develop his or her knowledge and abilities through various meetings, reports, discussions and publications and acts as a valuable resource for professional contacts (American Psychological Association, 2010).

Impact on Career Success
The individual seeking a career in psychology will undoubtedly find the American Psychological Association to have vast impact on his or her career success. By becoming a member of the association one is able to achieve increased success with the utmost respect from colleagues and clientele when one follows the Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct. These principles and code of conduct supply the professional with a guide to behavior which will enable the professional to function within the professional field and address many issues of ethical dilemmas the professional may face throughout his or her career (American Psychological Association, 2010). For the new professional just entering the field these guidelines are essential for success and advancement potential.

The American Psychological Association also makes available to the professional countless resources for credible and current information regarding any matter related to psychology which will enable the professional to always have access to valuable information required for treating those who suffer from mental illness. In addition, the association acts as the source for scholars seeking a degree in psychology to learn the standards associated with scholarly writings one will be required to complete throughout one’s educational experience (American Psychological Association, 2010).

Conclusion
In any profession one must continue to attain higher levels of professional knowledge and abilities in effort to achieve professional success. Regardless of the chosen career path an individual follows failure to seek additional knowledge and enhanced professional abilities will limit the chances of success in modern society which is ever-changing. Through research one is able to assimilate oneself with various professional organizations and associations such as the American Psychological Association, which offer valuable resources to the professional which can increase success for the professional in his or her chosen field.

References
American Psychological Association. (2010). About the American Psychological
Association. Retrieved Feburary 5, 2010, from http://www.apa.org/about/
American Psychological Association. (2010). Ethical principles of psychologists and code of
conduct 2002. Retrieved Feburary 5, 2010, from http://www.apa.org/ethics/code2002.pdf

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