Pub. date: 2005 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412952514 | Print ISBN: 9780761927310 | Online ISBN: 9781412952514| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Professionalization of Staff
Anna Alice Grant
Certain occupations or careers such as law and medicine are thought to hold a “professional” status in our society. Generally an occupation is considered to have gained professional status when the following elements are present: a specialized body of knowledge is developed and maintained; practitioners undertake a training period during which that body of knowledge is studied, learned, and tested; members are recognized by the community and their clients as having authority in their field; the profession operates autonomously and develops a culture maintained through associations; and it develops, maintains, and enforces a code of practice and/or a code of ethics and behavior. Since the late 1970s and following significant changes in staff recruitment and training in the 1980s, corrections officials have increasingly sought to be perceived as professionals. However a number of barriers remain in place before the professionalization of corrections may be complete. Correctional employment is often poorly ...