Textbook Notes (363,019)
Canada (158,147)
Psychology (9,565)
PSYC39H3 (201)
Chapter 2

PSYC39 – Chapter 2.docx

7 Pages
Unlock Document

University of Toronto Scarborough
David Nussbaum

PSYC39 – Chapter 2 POLICE SELECTION Police selection procedures: A set of procedures used by the police to either screen out undesirable candidates or select in desirable candidates - ie. fitness, cogn abilities, personality, and performance on job related tasks History of Police Selection - psych involved since early 20 century in selection - Lewis Terman [1917] > used Stanford-Binet IQ test to assist California select th - personality tests used in mid-20 century > [1940] recruits in LAPD tested w/ Humm-Wadsworth Temperament Scale - by mid 1950s psych/psychiatric screening became standard - 1960/70s major changes to selection procedures in US o [1] 1967 US presidents commission on Law Enforcement and Administration of Justice > recommended higher educational req o [2] 1973, National Advisory Commission on Criminal Justice and Goals > recommended establishing formal selection processes [including tests of cognitive abilities and personality features] - slection procedures similar in Canada as US [background, medical, cogn/personality tests ie. RCMP police aptitude test/6 factor personality Q] The Police Selection Process - whether screening in/out approach stages to develop valid process > same 1. Job analysis stage: A procedure for indentifying the knowledge, skills, and abilities that make up a good police officer [KSAs] o conducted by organizational psychologist o formal > use survey/observational techniques o informal > asking mem of agency to list the range of qualities needed o ISSUES: KSA may not be stable over time  diff types of popo or policing jobs characterized by diff KSAs  individuals may disagree over which KSAs are important  street-level vs administrative officers o essential KSAs > honesty, reliability, sensitivity to others, good comm. skills, motivation, problem-solving skills and team player 2. Construction and validation stage: [1] develop a selection instrument for measuring the extent that this instrument relates to measures of police applicants posses relevant KSAs [construction] AND [2] ensure that this instrument relates to measures of police performance [validity] o most important is predictive validity > predict future performance - most serious problem in validation research is how we measure the performance of police officers > direct effect on the validity of instrument - no answer for above issue but researchers identify > freq of tardiness, freq of complaints, freq of commendation, graduation form training academy, academy exam scores performance ratings [NO consensus on is one better] - diff pictures of performance can emerge depending on the measures usedThe Validity of Police Selection Instruments the Selection Interview - In the recruiting of police officers, an interview used by the police to determine the extent to which the applicant possess the knowledge, skills. and abilities deemed important for the job [common instrument] - semi-strucutred interview > to ensure a more objective basis fro comparison - qualities may differ from agency to agency - mixed research on the [predictive] validity of the selection interview o ie. diff interviewers disagreeing on the same person on one attribute o low inter-rate reliability Psychological Tests - many unanswered questions but generally view that psychological tests are useful in deciding whether a person possess certain attributes and this can be used to help select applicants to become police officers Cognitive Ability Tests - procedure for measuring verbal, mathematical, memory and reasoning ability [better at predicting performance during academy than future perf] - ie. RCMP Police Aptitude test, RPAT > 114 mc Q o core skills > written composition, comprehension, memory, judgment, observation, logic and computation - supported by empirical research - reason for low validity coefficients may be due to personality factors Personality Tests - Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory > An assessment instrument for indentifying people w/ psychopathological problems [71% most often used] o consists of 567 t/f questions to find > depression, paranoia, schizo o evidence > significant but moderate levels of predictive accuracy  academy performance/supervisor ratings/freq of disciplinary - Inwald Personality inventory > An assessment instrument used to identify police applicants who are suitable for police work by measuring their personality attributes and behavior patterns o 310 t/f that measure > stress reactions, interpersonal difficulties, drug o more predictive than the MMPI - IPI predicted 3/7, MMPI and SILS only 1/7 > combing both did not improve over IPI Assessment Centers - A facility in which the behavior of police applicants can be observed in a number of situations by multiple observers - primary selection instrument used w/I an assessment center is a situational test, a simulation of real-world policing task , to tap KSAs - some research suggest that assessment centers do have moderate levels of predictive validity - work-simulation exercise >[50mins] 5mins watch instructional video > exercise has 10 units > each of 1min animation of illegal activity > given 3mins to complete t/f Q [designed to evaluate ability to identify law violation and choose appropriate courses of action] - domestic disturbance exercise > [35mins] 15mins to meet w/ 2 people in a domestic dispute > must intervene and and resolve it > after 15mins applicant is given 20 mins to complete report - homeowner complaint > [35mins] 15mins speak to homeowner about vandalism > at 10mins someone hands them a high priority dispatch > must terminate interaction with the homeowner and respond to next call - witness probing exercise > 20mins to interview two people who witnesses an armed robbery in a liquor store > 20mins mins for incident report POLICE DISCRETION - A policing task that involves discriminating btwn circumstances that require absolute adherence to the law and circumstances where a degree of latitude is justified Why is Police Discretion Necessary? - it is impossible to establish laws that adequately encompass all the possible situations that a officer will encounter therefore a degree of discretion is inevitable - if an officers tried to enforce all the laws he would be in court/station 24/7 - some laws are passed knowing that they will not be enforced strictly all the time - some laws are vague so officers are forced to interpret and apply themselves - most law violations are minor in nature - full enforcement of the law at all times = alienate publice and undermine support for the police - full enforcement of the law would overwhelm the criminal justic system including prisons - police have many duties to perform w/ limited resources > good judgment needed - *there are also negative results of using discretion > not all officers exercise discretion in a nondiscriminatory manner Areas Where Police Discretion is Used Youth Crime - police officers are the ‘initial gatekeepers’ to the juvenile justice system - common police responses > formal arrests, police cautions, community referrals, family conferences - 30-40% of youth crimes are managed informally by the police or through community referrals to community services - Canada > encouraged to use discretion in youth crime [formal sentences are not always the best way to deal w/ young offenders] - community based intervention strategies that use family mem, teachers, social workers are seen as more useful - restorative justice options [paying back the victim] are used more often in order to instill values of responsibility and accountability - Sparwood youth Assistance program > informal way of dealing w/ young offenders > intervention program that involves their family and the community as a while - resolution conference, which involves an offender and his or her family coming together with the victim and the police in an attempts to solve a problem by [1] compensating the victim, [2] penalizing the youth, [3] provide support to the youth’s family and [4] establish monitoring scheme to ensure the youth complies with the program o important is that the program relies almost entirely on the discretion of the police [whether t
More Less

Related notes for PSYC39H3

Log In


Don't have an account?

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.