Defining the Ideal Applicant: Examining patrol officer perspectives on police organizational recruitment standards
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Previous research has examined the psychological, psychophysical, and physical traits of police officers and police recruits, however little is known about individuals who aspire or intend to become a police officer. By examining an online law enforcement-based internet community, this study seeks to identify the traits and attributes that patrol officers find important for applicants to possess and how those traits and attributes align with official recruitment criteria. The findings suggest that those attributes that patrol officers find appropriate are nearly identical to those that police services have in their official recruitment criteria. The results depart from past research in that the conceptualization of the ideal applicant suggests that there may not always be a cultural divide between patrol officer and supervisory culture.