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APA 2021 Virtual Convention Announcement

SoAP Box: 
APA Meeting Announcements

Summer 2021

Jennifer F. Kelly, PhD, ABPP & Arthur C. Evans, Jr., PhD

APA 2021 Virtual Convention Announcement

Dear Colleagues,

The health and safety of our community is our top priority.

California continues to be experiencing a significant COVID-related crisis, with over 610,000 total deaths and 3.73 million COVID cases. Nearly 70% of our attendees are typically college and university faculty, many of whom are facing travel bans at least through September. Similarly, most of our international attendees are affected by U.S. travel restrictions.

While many states are cautiously following a phased-in approach to opening up their economies, it is far from clear that the hotel and convention industry in San Diego is ready to host a convention of our size during our event dates.

In light of these facts, the existing governmental restrictions and prohibitions, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s continued guidance to avoid large indoor gatherings, and the best available science, we have concluded that it would be impossible for APA to have a safe and successful convention in person in August. We believe that moving ahead with our in-person event would be detrimental to the health and safety of our attendees and San Diego’s community at large.

Therefore, we have decided to make APA 2021 fully virtual.

The decision to make APA 2021 a fully virtual event also means that the APA Council of Representatives (COR) meeting cannot be held in person in San Diego on August 11 and 12, as had been planned. APA is now considering whether to hold the COR meeting virtually on those dates, or whether to consider moving the COR meeting to later dates in 2021 to potentially allow in-person participation by COR members if the conditions allow. APA staff are currently investigating meeting options, and the Council Leadership Team will be seeking feedback from COR members in the coming weeks.

What we’re planning

As you’ve come to expect, APA’s conventions are the premier psychological events of the year — and this year will be no exception. At APA’s first fully virtual convention in 2020, we had a record number of nearly 15,000 attendees from more than 100 countries. We anticipate even greater numbers this year.

APA 2021 will bring together leaders in psychology and beyond for a three-day, immersive digital experience. There will be:

  • High impact events with incredible speakers addressing today’s most pressing topics and cutting-edge psychological research you won’t find anywhere else, including nearly 150 sessions on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Live Q&A sessions and networking events with presenters and attendees from across the discipline.

  • More than 1,000 on-demand presentations you can view on your schedule from anywhere in the world — for up to three months.

Registration will open in June. Visit for more event information and updates, or contact us with questions at

As our world continues to buffet us with uncertainty and turmoil, APA is here for you. Visit our resources on racism and hate. On misinformation and vaccination. On talking to kids about hard things. And on navigating the pandemic and its aftermath — from resources on grief and isolation, to new ways of doing research, to supporting telehealth. Don’t forget that APA is offering a slew of FREE support to psychologists and students that includes free access to APA Journal articles on COVID-19 and free APA memberships for new doctorates.

As always, we are here supporting you as we navigate our new realities together.

And we will be here for you during the convention — which will provide us an opportunity to come together virtually, to showcase how psychology is at the forefront of leading change, and to remind ourselves of how the power of psychology can be harnessed to improve the world.  

Please stay safe. We look forward to sharing some quality time together virtually in August. 

Jennifer F. Kelly, PhD, ABPP, 2021 APA President
Arthur C. Evans, Jr., PhD, APA Chief Executive Officer 

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