A Request for Investigation, stating that members of the Louisiana State Board of Examiners of Psychologists are operating outside of their area of competence in regard to selection-testing and racial discrimination, was rejected by the Board. In a letter dated March 7, Ms. Jaime Monic, the Executive Director, said that the members do not have jurisdiction over themselves. Also, she said, they are not engaged in the practice of psychology as board members. However, they are open to reviewing this issue, Ms. Monic wrote.
The psychologists who submitted the request, Drs. William Costelloe, Julie Nelson, and Marc Zimmermann, are all business psychologists who have extensive experience with high stakes selection testing in the private sector. In their request for an investigation submitted in January, the three said, “There is evidence that confirms that the EPPP has adverse impact against African-Americans and Hispanics. […]
“Once adverse impact has been shown for a test it is improper to ignore the selection problems.
Furthermore, the way in which the test is used by the Board members drives up adverse impact. As just one example, the use of a hard cut off, and one that sets a higher bar considering the restricted sample, on a test with proven adverse impact, is an error in professional selection testing design.”
The March 7 letter noted:
“Dear Dr. Nelson, Dr. Costello and Dr. Zimmermann, On January 11, 2022, the office of the Louisiana State Board of Examiners of Psychologists (LSBEP) received your Request for Investigation form and a statement of complaint against current LSBEP Board Members. Please be advised that individual members of the LSBEP in their capacity as board members do not have jurisdiction to initiate a formal investigation or action against themselves under the authority of La. R. S. 37:2351 et al. All current Board Members meet the requisite requirements established by the Louisiana Legislature under Chapter 28 of Title 37 of the La. Revised Statutes to serve the LSBEP and are uniquely qualified to carry out this authority by way of their service, teaching, training, or research in psychology, degree and licensure as outlined under the provisions of La. R. S. 37:2353 et al. However, Board Members are not engaged in that which is defined as the ‘practice of psychology’ in their work as a Board Member.
“In consideration of the above, your Request for Investigation of the Board Members is rejected. However, the LSBEP will consider your concerns, “…that the EPPP has adverse impact against African-American and Hispanic populations“, including your concerns regarding LSBEP‘s continued use of the EPPP (Part I – Knowledge) as a tool to assess professional knowledge as required under R. S. 37:2356. (A)(7). This review is consistent with LSBEP’s statutory authority and its ongoing endeavors to increase multicultural awareness through assessment of candidates for licensure and continuing education offerings provided to all licensees who are involved in direct client services to ensure public protection.
“You will be notified in writing of the final disposition of this matter on completion of the review. If you have any documentation, including peer reviewed articles, valid documentation or studies to support your claims, and/or alternate valid assessments that measure entry level professional knowledge that should otherwise be considered, please forward that information directly to the office of the Louisiana State Board of Examiners of Psychologists at 4334 S. Sherwood Forest Blvd., Suite C – 150, Baton Rouge, LA 70816. Due to security and resources, emails or email attachments will not be accepted or downloaded for consideration in this matter.
“Thank you for calling our attention to any practices that raise concern regarding the practice of the profession. Sincerely, Jaime T. Monic, Executive Director”
According to Dr. Zimmerman, copies of Dr. Sharpless’ two articles on the adverse impact of the EPPP have been sent by US mail to the Board and more information will be sent to them for their study of the issue.