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The Fine Art of Fishing:
Becoming Your Own T.A. Center
Sometimes, what we pull out may not be "the right catch" and you will want to do a bit of fishing for yourself. Also, since it takes a bit of time for technical assistance centers (even ours) to respond, it often is quicker to do-it-yourself. This self-help guide outlines easy-to-access resources we find helpful. (If you know of other good ways, please let us know).
Many resources can be accessed quickly through the Internet. If you are not personally connected to the Internet, hopefully you have access through your work site, local libraries, or a friend.
Click here to Search our Center's Databases for special materials, consultation cadre members, organizations, and internet sites
I. Information and Materials for Practitioners, Consumers, Program Developers, and Those Concerned with Staff Development
- Fact sheets
Client-friendly materials for youngsters, parents, school staff
Reports, statistics, & other updated information
We start close to home:
Quick finds. Offers a fast way to access Center technical information and resources. Click on Quick Find search box. From here, you can access Center responses to specific technical assistance requests we've received in the past; you can also access a variety of Center-developed materials.
Where to Get Resource Materials to Address Barriers to Learning. A general reference guide to places that provide information and materials related to mental health in schools (revised December, 2003). In this resource aid, you'll find a list of centers, clearinghouses, organizations, and other resources where information and materials can be obtained for a minimum cost). There's also a list of publishers and distributors of books and other materials you might find useful, and a set of sample fact sheets. This 262 page resource is available through our website in pdf format (http://smhp.psych.ucla.edu/dbsimple2.asp?primary=4500&number=9999) or you may want to order a copy for your reference files ($14.50 to cover the cost of copying and mailing).
Gateway to Links. the Gateway Sites page (http://smhp.psych.ucla.edu/gateway/gateway_sites.htm) provides a listing of major agency websites that offer access to other information and support relevant to the topics of mental health in schools and addressing barriers to student learning. We've also identified other Centers that provide free technical assistance.
In addition to the Gateway site, we've listed links to other agency websites (both public and private) that offer access to information and support relevant to the topics of mental health in schools and addressing barriers to student learning. These can be accessed on our web site at: http://smhp.psych.ucla.edu/links.htm
Center-based Search engines. Through our search engines you can either search our website or search our Center's databases for clearinghouse documents, consultation cadre members, and list of other organizations and websites. Reached at: http://smhp.psych.ucla.edu/websrch.htm
Next comes internet-based resources.
These include both government resources:
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services -- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) -- Center for Mental Health Services
- Address: P.O. Box 42557, Washington, DC 20015
Internet Web site: http://www.mentalhealth.org
SAMHSA's name indicates the topics with which it is concerned. Its Website offers a wide range of materials relevant to mental health and psychosocial concerns of young people and provides links to each of SAMHSA's divisions (the Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS), Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT), Center of Substance Abuse Prevention (CSAP), Office of Applied Studies, Office of Managed Care, etc.).
- U.S. Department of Education's Institute of Education Sciences Address: Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education
- 555 New Jersey Ave, NW, Washington, DC 20208-5500
Internet Web site: http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ies/index.html
The Institute of Education Sciences replaced the Office of Educational Research and Improvement in 2002. The Institute consists of the National Center for Education Research, the National Center for Education Statistics, and the National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance. It also has the archives of information from the Office of Educational Research and Improvement.
- The Safe and Drug-Free Schools Program U.S. Department of Education Office of Educational Research and Improvement, National Library of Education
- Address: 555 New Jersey Avenue, NW, Rm. 214b, Washington, DC 20208-5725
Phone: (202) 260-3954
Internet Web site: http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/osdfs/index.html?src=oc
This program is the Federal government's primary vehicle for reducing drug, alcohol and tobacco use, and violence, through education and prevention activities in our nation's schools. The Safe and Drug-Free Schools Program staff are available to provide technical assistance on program administration and grant application requirements to grantees and applicants. In addition, they have a number of books and videos for sale and numerous informational resources -- including Success Stories ‘94: A Guide to Safe, Disciplined, Drug-Free Schools.
- ERIC (Educational Resources Information Center)
Clearinghouse for school-related issues.
- Phone: (800) LET-ERIC (538-3742).
Internet Web site: http://www.eric.ed.gov/
ERIC provides unlimited access to more than 1.2 million bibliographic records of journal articles and other education-related materials, with hundreds of new records added twice weekly. If available, links to full text are included.
- Head Start Information and Publications Center (HSIPC):
- Address: Head Start Information and Publication Center,1133 15th Street, NW, Suite 450, Washington, DC 20005
Internet Web site: http://www.headstartinfo.org/infocenter/mentalhealth/mh_tkbok.htm
Offers a guide to early childhood mental health resources for Head Start staff and families that include publications as well as information about national and state organizations, family information and support, promising practices, and workplace mental health. HSIPC is a service of the Head Start Bureau
- E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Internet Web site: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/
MedlinePlus is a goldmine of good health information from the world's largest medical library, the National Library of Medicine. Health professionals and consumers alike can depend on it for information that is authoritative and up to date. MedlinePlus has extensive information from the National Institutes of Health and other trusted sources on over 650 diseases and conditions. There are also lists of hospitals and physicians, a medical encyclopedia and a medical dictionary, health information in Spanish, extensive information on prescription and nonprescription drugs, health information from the media, and links to thousands of clinical trials.
Along with checking government resources, we tap into professional associations. For example:
- National Association of School Psychologists (NASP)
- Address: 4340 East-West Highway, Suite 402, Bethesda, MD 20814
Internet Web site: http://www.nasponline.org/
This association publishes books, pamphlets, fact sheets, and CD-ROMS related to mental health in school settings.
- American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP)
- Address: 3615 Wisconsin Ave., NW, Washington, DC
Internet Web site: http://www.aacap.org/
Offers varied materials addressing mental health concerns (e.g., Facts for Families, practice parameters, meeting materials, policy statements) -- mostly free, many of which can be accessed through the Internet. Their publications catalogue is available on request.
- National Assembly on School-Based Health Care (NASBHC)
- Address: 666 11th Street NW, Washington, DC 20001
tel: (202) 638-5872
fax: (202) 638-5879
Internet Web site: http://www.nasbhc.org/
The National Assembly is an association whose mission is to nurture interdisciplinary school-based health care. They carry this out through the development and publishing of resource aids, fact sheets, and policy reports. They also act as a center for advocacy & public policy around school-based health care issues.
Next comes the library, online datatbases, and internet search engines
Library. In our searches, we often begin with a quick look at the library's catalogue for the latest books providing overviews and resource aids. We also look at periodical indexes. Many libraries have interlibrary loan and Internet connections. And good Reference Desk Librarians are worth their weight in gold. Many local college or university libraries allow non-campus members use of their services (sometimes for a small fee).
Online databases. General search sites that catalog both general and special interest magazines and journals. An example is:
Find Articles - http://www.findarticles.com/PI/index.jhtml
Internet Search Engines. These include:
- Google (http://www.google.com),
- Ask Jeeves (http://www.ask.com),
- Altavista (http://www.altavista.com), and
- MSN search (http://www.msn.com)
We also find compendiums of best practices useful. For example:
Best Practices in School Psychology V, edited by A. Thomas and J. Grimes, National Association of School Psychologists, Bethesda, MD: 2007, http://www.nasponline.org/profdevel/cpdmodules/bpfive.aspx
Advances in School-Based Mental Health Interventions: Best Practices and Program Models. Edited by K.E. Robinson, Civic Research Institute, Kingston, NJ: 2004. http://www.civicresearchinstitute.com/sbmh.html
Psychological Assessment of Children :Best Practices in Assessment for School and Clinical Settings. Edited by H.B. Vance, John Wiley & Sons, Hoboken, NJ: 2nd edition 1997 http://www.wiley.com/WileyCDA/WileyTitle/productCd-0471193011.html
II. Researching Research
Again, our first step here is to find a comprehensive, basic overview on the topic (e.g., recent books and journal review articles). We identify these through subject searches in library catalogues (narrowing the search down to the last few years) and through listings of books in print (which are readily accessible through the Internet). If we don't find what we need or if we need the most recent research, we look for relevant journal articles.
Current Index of Journals in Education. This database links to journals that deal with education evaluation and policy studies; searchers use keywords. Access through major libraries; documents can be requested from document delivery sources. Some services are subscription-based. Certain material can be accessed through the ERIC database (http://www.eric.ed.gov/)
PsychInfo is a reference database published by the American Psychological Association (http://www.apa.org/psycinfo/). Local university libraries often have access to PsychInfo and the journals (many universities will provide services for non-affiliated patrons).
Then, there are colleagues:
If you don't have a colleague to consult with, try our Consultation Cadre feature. You can search for a cadre right on our website. Just click on the search and quickfind link and go to the section on search our databases. Then select the cadre category in the selection box. You can also narrow your search to a specific state using the selection box on the right side of the screen. Then type in a couple of keywords and press submit. If you don't find someone, then you might need to expand your search criteria. If you need any help, just contact the Center.
You can also post a message on our Net Exchange message board. Just send a note to the Center and we'll post your request for assistance for others to see and respond to.
And, of course, as needed, feel free to contact any of the many technical assistance centers (many of which are listed on our website in our Gateway to Links)
(Use our Web site to connect with others -- including many of those listed above)
- Center for Mental Health in Schools, UCLA
- Department of Psychology, 405 Hilgard Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1563
Phone: (310) 825-3634
Fax: (310) 206-5895
Internet Web site: http://smhp.psych.ucla.edu
Support comes in part from the Office of Adolescent Health, Maternal and Child Health Bureau (Title V, Social Security Act), Health Resources and Services Administration (Project #U45 MC 00175) an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
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