Pub. date: 2002 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412950664 | Print ISBN: 9780761922582 | Online ISBN: 9781412950664| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Police Selection and Training
Vivian B. Lord
There are about 17,000 public law enforcement agencies in the United States, employing approximately 750,000 sworn law enforcement officers. The job has become more complex in the past few years as officers have become more responsible for solving problems, correctly applying a complex matrix of new laws, and using complex technology. It has always been potentially dangerous, physically demanding, and emotionally stressful. Officers have a great deal of discretion and authority to make quick decisions and expect compliance, but they are also exposed to a number of temptations to their integrity. Administrators of police departments are searching for individuals who are of high moral character, emotionally stable, well adjusted, people oriented, assertive (but not aggressive), and logical. Overall, the selection process for police officers is considered a “screening-out” rather than a “screening-in” process. In other words, there are minimum criteria that must be met. At each stage applicants will be ...