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Article
Publication date: 5 April 2022

Jessica Herbert, Karissa Pelletier and Danielle Wallace

Given that formal training on autism is still a relatively infrequent occurrence for police officers, the objective of this study is to expose and describe the formal and…

Abstract

Purpose

Given that formal training on autism is still a relatively infrequent occurrence for police officers, the objective of this study is to expose and describe the formal and informal, nonorganizationally based means police officers receive on-the-job training regarding interactions with autistic individuals.

Design/methodology/approach

Using personal networks and snowball sampling, the authors interviewed 19 police officers from multiple US police departments who reported having known contact with an autistic individual while on duty. Interviews were transcribed and coded to identify themes describing formal training and informal means to learn about autistic persons during interactions.

Findings

The authors find that many officers received formal training on mental health, though few received specific training about autism. Most commonly, officers with a personal connection to autism (e.g. a child or loved one), passed down information and techniques to other officers on how to have positive encounters with autistic individuals. Officers also passed along field knowledge of known autistic individuals in patrol areas/beats to help others have positive interactions. Lastly, community members often assisted officers by sharing information about find where an individual may be located, may live or known personal characteristics/preferences.

Originality/value

Scholars examining police contact with autistic individuals infrequently detail the point of view and needs of officers in successfully interacting with this population. This work adds to this growing discussion by exposing how officers use personal experience, informal training and community members’ assistance as a stopgap for their general lack of training on how to interact with autistic individuals successfully and positively.

Details

Policing: An International Journal, vol. 45 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 21 September 2021

David R. White, Joseph Schafer and Michael Kyle

The purpose of this study is to explore the impacts coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) had on US police academies’ production of police recruits.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to explore the impacts coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) had on US police academies’ production of police recruits.

Design/methodology/approach

The study used a national online survey of police academy directors in the USA, followed by purposive, semi-structured interviews of select academy directors. A combination of quantitative and qualitative data is combined in a mixed methods approach.

Findings

The findings suggest that academies experienced a range of impacts related to COVID-19. These impacts lead to more questions concerning how academies and state-level governing boards responded not only to pandemic-related challenges, but also to their willingness to accept more online and alternative curriculum delivery strategies.

Originality/value

Police academies are a required step in the production of new police recruits in the USA, but researchers have paid little attention to how academies operate. While exploratory, this study provides some insights into how this aspect of policing weathered the COVID-19 pandemic, and offers suggestions for future research, as well as policy implications.

Details

Policing: An International Journal, vol. 45 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 5 July 2021

Gregory Drake

Officer wellness has become a popular area of focus in recent years. This purpose of this research is to examine the impact of a police training program, Blue Courage, on…

Abstract

Purpose

Officer wellness has become a popular area of focus in recent years. This purpose of this research is to examine the impact of a police training program, Blue Courage, on officer (n = 174) attitudes toward mental and emotional wellness.

Design/methodology/approach

Borrowing from the field of medicine, a data linkage approach is employed to match pre- and post-test surveys from officers who completed the training. This research uses a single-group pre-test post-test design to estimate the impact of the training, and a lagged dependent variable (LDV) ordinary least squares (OLS) model to compare the impact of the training across different types of officers.

Findings

Participants who completed the training had more positive attitudes toward mental and emotional wellness at post-test. Officers of higher rank and officers who worked in non-urban departments saw larger changes in attitudes toward wellness. Cynical officers, identified in the literature as withdrawing from training and failing to participate, saw comparable change in attitudes to less cynical officers.

Originality/value

Despite a relative inability of wellness training to work with police officers historically, this research suggests that certain approaches employed by Blue Courage, specifically by targeting officer cynicism, may improve officer engagement in training and improve training results.

Details

Policing: An International Journal, vol. 44 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 December 2020

Swen Koerner, Mario S. Staller and André Kecke

The study compares the impact of two different pedagogical approaches in police training by assessing the knife defense performance of German police recruits against…

Abstract

Purpose

The study compares the impact of two different pedagogical approaches in police training by assessing the knife defense performance of German police recruits against different types of knife attacks. Linear or nonlinear – which pedagogical approach leads to more efficient knife defense performance?

Design/methodology/approach

A total of 20 German state police recruits (w = 5, m = 15) were assigned to linear and nonlinear groups. The linear and nonlinear groups' performance on knife defense was assessed in a pretest, after a three-week training intervention in a posttest and eight weeks thereafter in a retention test, utilizing a mixed-method design (Sendall et al., 2018).

Findings

Quantitative data on knife defense performance suggest a lastingly better performance of the nonlinear group: in the retention test, participants of the nonlinear group were hit less (p = 0.029), solved the attack faster (p = 0.044) and more often (81.8%) than participants of the linear group (55.6%). In contrast, qualitative data reveal that, despite of evidence for a high level of perceived competence, the nonlinear teaching of knife defense skills has been accompanied by considerable uncertainties, affected by the lack of techniques and the focus on principles and operational parameters only.

Originality/value

It is the first study assessing the impact of different pedagogical approaches in police training. For the practice of police trainers, the results provide empirical orientations for an evidence-based planning of and reflection on pedagogical demands within their training (Mitchell and Lewis, 2017).

Details

Policing: An International Journal, vol. 44 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 March 2000

Michael J. Palmiotto, Michael L. Birzer and N. Prabha Unnithan

The widespread acceptance of community policing necessitates the need for training of recruits into its philosophy and practices. We provide a suggested curriculum for…

3161

Abstract

The widespread acceptance of community policing necessitates the need for training of recruits into its philosophy and practices. We provide a suggested curriculum for such training after describing its three basic premises. This is followed by discussions of the rationale for the curriculum, and a promising training method that can be used in its implementation. All of the above are summarized in our conclusion.

Details

Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, vol. 23 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 28 August 2007

Allison T. Chappell

The purpose of this paper is to determine the extent to which traditional field training incorporates community‐oriented policing and problem solving in its formal…

2653

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to determine the extent to which traditional field training incorporates community‐oriented policing and problem solving in its formal evaluation process. Can community policing be successfully integrated into the San Jose field training model as a formal component of training and evaluation of police recruits?

Design/methodology/approach

The paper analyzes formal field training evaluations and narratives in one police agency that uses the San Jose Field Training Officer Program. The agency endorses and practices community policing and problem solving.

Findings

Field training in this agency did not successfully integrate community policing and problem solving into the formal evaluation process.

Practical implications

Because field training occurs immediately after the academy, it is the best place to expose recruits to community policing and problem solving in practice, thus linking training with practice. If police agencies are truly committed to community policing, they must update their field training curricula to reflect the new philosophy and practice.

Originality/value

Though there has been considerable research in the area of community policing, little of it focuses on training, especially field training. Ironically, even though most agencies claim to practice community policing, they have failed to prepare their officers in the philosophies and skills necessary to perform the tasks well. Police academies are beginning to train recruits in community policing, but most agencies still use the San Jose FTO model, which was developed before contemporary community policing existed. Because field training is such an important part of police socialization, it must teach recruits the skills of community policing.

Details

Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, vol. 30 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 24 May 2013

Rebecca Mugford, Shevaun Corey and Craig Bennell

The purpose of this paper is to present a theoretical framework, which describes how police training programs can be developed in order to improve learning retention and…

2352

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present a theoretical framework, which describes how police training programs can be developed in order to improve learning retention and the transfer of skills to the work environment.

Design/methodology/approach

A brief review is provided that describes training strategies stemming from Cognitive Load Theory (CLT), a well‐established theory of instructional design. This is followed by concrete examples of how to incorporate these strategies into police training programs.

Findings

The research reviewed in this paper consistently demonstrates that CLT‐informed training improves learning when compared to conventional training approaches and enhances the transferability of skills.

Originality/value

Rarely have well‐validated theories of instructional design, such as CLT, been applied specifically to police training. Thus, this paper is valuable to instructional designers because it provides an evidence‐based approach to training development in the policing domain.

Details

Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, vol. 36 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 June 2010

Elizabeth Blaney

A variety of strategies have been developed with the goal of improving justice responses to intimate partner violence. Among these are increasing demands for specialized…

2124

Abstract

Purpose

A variety of strategies have been developed with the goal of improving justice responses to intimate partner violence. Among these are increasing demands for specialized training of justice professionals. This paper sets out to describe the development of a specialized training program for police officers, drawing attention to the role played by a strong partnership and collaborative approach.

Design/methodology/approach

Focus groups were held in the winter of 2008 with 30 police officers employed by a municipal police agency who had participated in specialized training on intimate partner violence.

Findings

As part of a follow‐up to the delivery of training, focus groups examined the impact of specialized training on the preparedness of officers and drew attention to existing challenges in policing intimate partner violence from their perspective. Drawing on earlier studies, the paper makes an important contribution to the law enforcement training literature, illustrating that key to successful development and delivery of specialized police training are extensive partnership and collaborative approaches throughout the initiative.

Research limitations/implications

The paper is limited by the missing voices of victims and whether or not they perceive a difference in officer response to intimate partner violence as a result of specialized training. In addition, the sample size is relatively small and thus the findings may not be generalizable to a larger sampling. Further, this paper is based on follow‐up only one year after training was implemented at the pilot stage. The work does not tell whether specialized training makes a difference over time or whether training is more effective when continuous. Therefore, the analysis must also be extended to police files, highlighting police responses to such calls.

Practical implications

Policing services have had to make intimate partner violence a priority. Given the number of calls to police for intervention and the risk of danger, more attention has been placed on specialized training, collaboration across academic and community sectors, as well as changes to legislation. This training is meant to complement existing police training initiatives and enhance awareness about some of the complex issues involved in police intervention.

Originality/value

With its focus on the voices and experiences of police officers responding to intimate partner violence calls, the paper addresses a gap in the literature.

Details

Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, vol. 33 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 December 2020

Alexis Rain Rockwell, Stephen A. Bishopp and Erin A. Orrick

The current study examines the effect of changing a specific use-of-force policy coupled with de-escalation training implementation on patterns of police use of force.

Abstract

Purpose

The current study examines the effect of changing a specific use-of-force policy coupled with de-escalation training implementation on patterns of police use of force.

Design/methodology/approach

An interrupted time-series analysis was used to examine changes in police use-of-force incident records gathered from a large, southwestern US metropolitan police department from 2013 to 2017 based on a TASER policy change and de-escalation training implementation mid-2015.

Findings

Results demonstrate that changes to use-of-force policy regarding one type of force (i.e. use of TASERs) coinciding with de-escalation training influence the prevalence of use-of-force incidents by increasing the reported police use-of-force incidents after the changes were implemented. This finding is somewhat consistent with prior literature but not always in the desired direction.

Practical implications

When police departments make adjustments to use-of-force policies and/or trainings, unintended consequences may occur. Police administrators should measure policy and training outcomes under an evidence-based policing paradigm prior to making those adjustments.

Originality/value

This study is the first to measure the effects of changing use-of-force policy and implementing de-escalation techniques in training on patterns of police use of force and shows that these changes can have a ripple effect across types of force used by police officers.

Details

Policing: An International Journal, vol. 44 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 9 November 2010

Hoon Lee, Hyunseok Jang, Ilhong Yun, Hyeyoung Lim and David W. Tushaus

The purpose of this paper is to examine police use of force using individual, contextual, and police training factors, expanding prior research by including multiple police

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine police use of force using individual, contextual, and police training factors, expanding prior research by including multiple police agencies in the sample, thus producing research findings that can be more easily generalized.

Design/methodology/approach

The data for the current study were derived from several primary sources: the Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR). Census, Uniform Crime Reports (UCR), Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), and 1997 Law Enforcement Management and Administrative Statistics (LEMAS).

Findings

Among individual level variables, age and arrestee's resistance were significant explanatory factors. Violent crime rate and unemployment rate were significant factors as the neighborhood contextual variables. Finally, in‐service training was a significant organizational‐level explanatory factor for levels of police use of force.

Originality/value

The paper bridges the gap in research between contextual factors and police use of force. It also deepens our understandings of the association between organizational factors and use of force by incorporating police training into the analytical model.

Details

Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, vol. 33 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

Keywords

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