American Psychologist welcomes submissions for a special issue on psychology's contributions to multidisciplinary research teams.

Important Dates

  • February 20, 2018: 2-page letter of intent submission
  • March 10, 2018: invitations to submit a full-length manuscript sent
  • June 15, 2018: manuscript submission deadline

Purpose and Goals

The purpose of this special issue is to highlight the types of team research that have been conducted with psychologists as integral members of the team. The goal is to showcase the unique value of psychological research in solving everyday problems that require a multidisciplinary effort.

Other aims include synthesizing key findings from different domains, identifying transformative contributions and lessons learned, and emphasizing the role of research training for graduate and undergraduate students in the context of interdisciplinary team research.

This special issue is timely because of the current emphasis on multidisciplinary research to solve major real-world problems.

Manuscript Submission

Manuscripts from all areas of psychology as part of multidisciplinary teams are welcome.

We welcome manuscripts that describe multidisciplinary team research in any domain, highlighting the contribution of psychologists and their interactions with other team members.

Manuscripts should focus on the composition of the multidisciplinary team, highlighting how each component contributes to solving real-world problems and emphasizing the process and issues involved in conducting the research. Manuscripts should clearly identify team goals and describe the composition of the team, including the unique contributions of the various members.

They should briefly summarize the major findings of the research program, and how they were made possible by the team composition.

Manuscripts should include lessons learned, recommendations for effective team research, and involvement of students where appropriate.

Submission deadline for a 2-page letter of intent for the special issue is February 20, 2018.

The letter of intent should include author names and affiliations, manuscript title, and an abstract that outlines the proposed submission.

Abstracts should clearly convey how the proposed manuscript will address the goals of the special issue.

Invitations to submit a full-length manuscript will be sent by March 10, 2018.

The deadline for manuscript submissions is June 15, 2018.

All submitted manuscripts will undergo peer review. Thus, invitation to submit a manuscript does not guarantee inclusion in the special issue.

Robert W. Proctor, PhD, and Kim-Phuong L. Vu, PhD, will serve as the Guest Editors of the special issue, with Associate Editor Elizabeth A. Klonoff, PhD, ABPP.

Letters of Intent, as well as any questions, should be directed to Dr. Robert W. Proctor.

Manuscripts must be prepared according to the manuscript submission information on the American Psychologist home page and submitted electronically through the journal's manuscript submission portal.

Please specify in all correspondence and submissions that your work is intended for the special issue "Multidisciplinary Research Teams: Psychologists Helping to Solve Real-World Problems."

The editors look forward to receiving paper proposals.


Real-world problems are not specific to a discipline.

Multidisciplinary team research combines the best approaches, and collaboration among researchers with different expertise can lead to new discoveries and/or inventions that could not have been achieved otherwise.

However, there are many challenges to conducting team research with researchers whose primary backgrounds are from disciplines other than one's own.

Each discipline has its own language (vocabulary and technical terms), epistemology (theory of knowledge and how to acquire it), approaches (theories, methods and tools), criteria for acceptability (norms), etc.

It takes years to become skilled in one discipline, making it difficult to become skilled in multiple disciplines.

With multidisciplinary team research, one does not have to master multiple disciplines but must be well-versed in communicating with experts from other disciplines and working with them to achieve team goals.

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