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Теория и методика профессионального образования
Selection and training of police officers
Author: Antanas Janušauskas, assoc. prof., Mykolas Romeris University Faculty of Public Security, Kaunas, Lithuania
This study intends to provide a descriptive-analytical inventory of models and policies that Lithuania are using with regard to recruitment, selection and training of police officers. For police officer ranks, it is compulsory that the applicant have a diploma from a university or a diploma recognised by the Lithuanian state in case they have graduated from a university outside Lithuania. Candidates for a position with the police need to have Lithuanian citizenship or be citizens of a European Union member state, but have good command of Lithuanian language.
The candidates for study in university undergo medical tests for the admission, looking at all the health problems that might impair the candidates’ capacity to cope with the tasks they would have to attend to in the future. Medical and psychological testing is conducted for admission, looking for:
· Ophthalmologic problems, especially colour vision and distinguishing capacities;
· Special attention is given to ear problems, and the hearing test is eliminatory;
· Psychiatric or psychological problems;
· Neurological and motor problems;
· Cardio-respiratory problems;
· Digestive or abdominal problems;
· Any other medical problems, such as recent surgery or acute or chronic conditions that would have a negative impact on the candidate’s general health.
The following health aspects must be evaluated during the medical examination:
1.Height and weight. Although the Lithuanian law does not stipulate for a minimum standard, the candidate’s height and weight is evaluated by the medical board, who will decide accordingly.
2.Full medical history of the candidate is taken, in order to identify potential health problems.
3.The medical examination must also clarify the existence of tattoos, piercing, personal marks, etc. respectively the visibility of such when the policeman wears a proper outfit. Such situations need to be examined by the medical board and communicated to the preliminary admissibility board. For marks that can be removed, the candidate may be asked to do so.
Passing of medical tests leads to psychological testing - questionnaire with multiple answers (grid test) and questions with short answers. Candidates for officers a computer-assisted psychological test is extremely complex, and failure to pass excludes the person from taking the examination tests. The psychological testing can be rescheduled only once, with failure to pass resulting in final exclusion.
Candidates for a job on the police force in future are required to take a number of physical tests that look at the following skills: athletic endurance, strength, self-defense skills. Sports’ testing is also extremely complex, and performance to all the minimum standards is compulsory. If the test is not passed, it cannot be repeated.
Performance appreciated as unsatisfactory on each of these tests results in the application for study being rejected automatically.
For those who pass the medical, psychological and physical testing, specific additional verifications are conducted regarding the candidate's psycho-moral profile, including checks in the databases of the state's information structures to identify persons who have had criminal sentences or potential associations with organised crime groups (especially for drug trafficking or trafficking in human beings) or into a group suspected for terrorist conspiracy, mafia or groups which, through their ideology or activity, are a threat to Lithuanian national security. Participation in such groups leads to the candidate being forbidden to join the police force structures in future.
With regard to educational requirements, the Lithuania police requires candidates for police officer positions to have a university diploma in a field that is relevant for the force - most frequently law. To pursue university education (study in Mykolas Romeris university), secondary education certificate required (school-leaving diploma). Selection basis to access to university - 3 secondary school exams indicators (in Lithuanian language, history, and foreign language – English, German or French). Police officer training in Mykolas Romeris university lasts for 4 years. On completion of training, graduates receive an bachelor degree (officer degree) and may be appointed into the various police institutions. Professional training schemes are designed by the police structures where officers work. These schemes may be organised through training programmes within the Mykolas Romeris university. Theoretical training is focused on acquiring and consolidating knowledge in the field of law, legal and forensic procedures, police theory, criminalistics, criminology and victimology, human rights, psychology, etc. Professional training programmes are coordinated by the Police department that ensures continuous training for police officers.
The police role, professional management practice and management education, remain separate areas of concern and inquiry with no articulated interdependencies or crosschecks. What is required is the development of a full framework of police management [1,2]. The arguments for certain knowledge, skills and attitudes, and for certain recommendations for educational practice, need to be soundly made out in accordance with an overarching clearly articulated philosophy of police management. An improved higher education/police relationship should be based on the realisation that regardless of debates on professions and the march of professionalisation, it is more important by far that practice itself is professional [3,4].
Taken together, education can be considered as an enterprise comprised of a teacher of sorts, a student or learner, a process or method of interaction, and a product or outcome. This can be formulated, hopefully usefully, as involving teacher, learner, method, and product whereby education can be seen as: teacher interacts with learner, using method, to produce product. In study process, police professionals and academics had to answer the following questions:
1.Which critical and authentic situations confront a police officer?
2.Which activities belong to these situations?
3.Which crucial decisions have to be made in these circumstances?
4.Finally, when is this police officer competent, i.e. what does he or she need in order to be able to perform these activities and make the decisions?
The four substantive questions of education are: Who teaches? Who learns? What methods? What dispositions? Education, aimed at assisting the staff of the institutions of state, needs to focus on how they can rebalance the benefits and the burdens of social life, keep abreast of developments in policy, and systematically and critically develop their own knowledge base. A great deal of work has been done on identifying the training needs of the Lithuania Police. The training need covers the following topics: crime prevention, community policing, investigations management, forensic sciences and crime analysis, prosecutions, public order policing, traffic management, management and supervision, contemporary issues, public and media relations, professional standards, strategic planning and policy research. The protection of internal security requires constant monitoring, analysis and development of mechanisms supporting work efficiency of relevant public subjects. The Faculty of Public Security in Kaunas is the only police research centre which meets such requirements. University education ought to have a new relationship with police, and particularly police managers, based on voice as a method and a disposition. This is a teachable point of view, a storyline that can inhabit our imaginations, and it allows that police managers as managers can learn, and that as students they can be taught.
In our faculty ongoing the next programms of study: Bachelor's Programme and Master's Programme. There are two forms of studies: full - time and part - time. Full time Students do not need to be police officers to enter the programme but must have an official letter of permission from the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Lithuania. It takes four studying years to get a Bachelor’s of law degree. Each year the number of students admitted to the faculty is determined by the quota submitted by the Ministry of the Interior. Master's Programme - students must have a bachelor degree and need to be police officers to enter the programme. The programme is part-time residential, meaning that on-the-job-training is included. It takes one and a half studying years to get the degree.
The required competencies are divided into four categories as to ensure that all aspects of policing and the underlying academic concepts are taken into account:
1.Professional - these are at the core of the profession and enable the police officer to deliver services in an adequate and systematic way.
2.Organizational - these enable the police officer to plan and co-ordinate his/her daily activities within the framework and policies of the organization.
3.Communicative - these enable the police officer to function and co-operate in a multicultural and multidisciplinary environment.
4.Individual - these enable the police officer to reflect on and contribute to his own development, the profession and the organization s/he works for.
1.Chapell A. Police Academy Training: Comparing across curricula / Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies and Management. 2008. Vol 31, No 1, pp. 36-56.
2.Faull J. Security in Europe-objective, initiatives and measures of the European Union. / The New Police in Europe. The Professional Journal for Further Education and Training. 2009. Vol 1, No 1, pp. 3–5.
3.Jaschke H.-G., Neidhardt K.A. Modern police science as an integrated academic discipline: A contribution to the debate on its fundamentals / Policing & Society. 2007. Vol 17, No 4, pp. 303–320.
4.Nedzinskas E., Bankaukienė N. Training practice – the premise for professionalism of a future officer of law enforcement. Changes in Social and Business Environment : proceedings of the 3rd international conference. Kaunas: Kaunas: Technologija. ISSN 1822-7090. 2009. pp. 279-288.
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