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Effectiveness of Conflict Management Training for Traffic Police Officers in Hong Kong

NCJ Number
International Journal of Police Science and Management Volume: 6 Issue: 2 Dated: Summer 2004 Pages: 97-109
Esther Y. Y. Lau; Eddie K. W. Li; Christine W. Y. Mak; Indie C. P. Chung
Date Published
13 pages
This study explored the effectiveness of a conflict management training (CMT) program for traffic police officers in Hong Kong.
Police officers must routinely deal with conflict as part of their job. As such, training in conflict management strategies and techniques would greatly benefit police officers. The Psychological Services Group (PSG) designed a CMT program that utilized a train-the-trainer approach to teach the basics of conflict management (CM) to traffic officers in Hong Kong. Police clinical psychologists trained 21 officers in CM strategies; these 21 officers were the “primary level” (PL) participants who in turn trained 211 fellow officers, who were known as “secondary level” (SL) participants. The training underscored three key components: “(1) heightening awareness of emotional reactions and CM approaches; (2) strengthening communications skills; and (3) enhancing anger management and emotional regulation.” Success measures included perceived self-efficacy, conflict management knowledge, conflict management skills acquisition, and generalization of conflict management skills. Survey instruments were administered to participants, (1) 1 day before training; (2) immediately before training; (3) immediately after training; (4) 3 months after training; and (5) 6 months after training. Results of statistical analyses revealed significant improvements for both PL and SL participants in self-efficacy and knowledge and skills in CM. One exception was noted in supervisors’ ratings. The 3- and 6-month follow-ups indicated maintenance of the training effects on self-efficacy. The implications are that psychological knowledge can be successfully utilized in law enforcement contexts. Tables, references