Assessing the literacy of PCSOs: have the NPIA and MPS aligned the standard to operational requirements?

Rowell, Pauline (2010) Assessing the literacy of PCSOs: have the NPIA and MPS aligned the standard to operational requirements? MSc dissertation, University of Portsmouth.

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    This dissertation examines the perceptions of police front-line supervisors about the standard of written work of Police Community Support Officers (PCSO) on their teams. It aims to assess if the quality has any impact on the supervisor’s ability to perform their day-to-day work and therefore whether the standards for recruitment and training are set at a level that produces skilled officers who can effectively perform the role for which they were employed or whether adjustments need to be made. Little attention has been given to the impact of the writing skills of employees upon their line managers. Previous national and MPS studies into PCSOs have identified concerns with the standard of communication skills but there has been no specific research covering this. As there was a gap in the research, a methodology was identified to gather data from supervisors about the written work of their staff and the impact of this upon them. An electronic questionnaire was sent to all sergeants working under the Safer Neighbourhood umbrella and semi-structured interviews were conducted with training staff and sergeants who had completed the questionnaire. The results showed that there is a perception that literacy levels are poor. This leads to the conclusions that the pass mark within the recruitment process is too low and should be increased and that a formal assessment of written work should be conducted as part of the PCSO training course. Any weaknesses in literacy could therefore be addressed before the recruit became operational, reducing the burden on sergeants.

    Item Type: Dissertation
    Departments/Research Groups: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > Institute of Criminal Justice Studies
    Depositing User: Jane Polwin
    Date Deposited: 20 Jan 2011 12:49
    Last Modified: 28 Jan 2015 11:16

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