Behavior: How to Train Cops

Presumably because police officers represent authority and often have to exercise it, there has been a tradition in some quarters that they should be trained by rigid, authoritarian methods. Such was the notion in the academy for rookie policemen in the Los Angeles county sheriff's department. "We had been committed to a high-stress program," says Assistant Sheriff Howard H. Earle, "a Pavlov's-dog style of conditioning the trainee by stress so that he would not panic when he got into a stressful situation on the job." But as social attitudes changed during the mid-'60s, Earle wanted scientific evidence to determine whether this...

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