Society for the Teaching of Psychology: Division 2 of the American Psychological Association

ECP Member Spotlight: Ciara Kidder, Ph.D.

01 Sep 2022 12:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

ECP Member Spotlight: Ciara Kidder, Ph.D.

What is an ECP?

An ECP is a faculty member who is within ten years of starting their career. I am starting my 6th year of full-time teaching, and I believe regardless of the length of time someones been teaching, there are always new things to learn and ways to evolve as an instructor.

How did you get involved in STP?

I joined STP when I was a graduate teaching assistant. I loved teaching and quickly realized that I wanted it to be my focus after graduation. I had a friend who had been to the National Institute of Teaching in Psychology, so I began looking for other teaching focused opportunities at conferences and online. 

What is a challenge you faced as an ECP?

A challenge I faced as an ECP was learning how to say no to something. I enjoy being a part of different groups on campus and teaching a lot of classes, but these can’t be done at the same time. Every committee takes time away from teaching so striking a balance between serving the university in some way and focusing on teaching is so important to be able to do. I also think that as an ECP it's intimidating to say no to something on the chance that it might be something that helps your tenure application (if you are tenure track). I don’t think I necessarily have this figured out yet.

What does being an ECP in STP mean to you?

Being an ECP in STP means that I have opportunities to connect with other ECPs. This opens so many doors to talk with others who are going through similar situations or asking similar questions. 

What advice would you give to newer ECPs?

It’s okay to change your mind. Whether it’s about a job you thought you wanted, a committee you joined, a class you designed, or a writing group you joined. If you assess your goals and your capacity and something no longer serves you, you don’t owe people your time and energy. Should you be respectful and courteous to others if changing your mind impacts them, yes; and there’s a lot of different ways to do this depending on what it is. Be willing to adapt and evolve as you go through life and career! 

What is an interesting fact about you?

I have spent two summers coaching in our local soccer kids program. After playing youth soccer as a kid, I wanted to provide the experience to others. Even though I have worked with 6/7 year olds, I apply some of the things I’ve learned as a teacher to help manage a team and teach skills! 

What is next after being an ECP?

I hope to continue to be involved in STP as part of different committees and perhaps in different leadership roles. There are so many opportunities to serve and the Get Involved page on the website is updated regularly. 

Your STP Early Career Psychologists Committee

Ciara Kidder, Ph.D

Albee Mendoza, Ph.D.

Courtney Gosnell, Ph.D.

Janet Peters, Ph.D.

Amanda Woodward, Ph.D.

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