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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 74737 Find in a Library
Title: Interpersonal Communication and Human Relations Training for Corrections Personnel
Journal: Communication Education  Volume:29  Issue:1  Dated:(January 1980)  Pages:54-60
Author(s): D Brooks; J Winsor; T Shoemaker
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 7
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: A case study is presented of the process of designing, implementing, and refining a program for training corrections officers in interpersonal communications and human relations; recommendations are offered for future similar workshops.
Abstract: Some months prior to the workshop, the leaders made brief visits to jails and a State penitentiary to determine the communication needs of corrections officers. Findings indicated the need to provide training in dealing with stressful situations and in handling conflict. In order to make the 1-day workshop training practical and relevant to the needs of the trainees, the training relied heavily on communication exercises, role-playing, and lecture-discussion techniques for stimulating active participation in questioning, clarifying, evaluating, and applying concepts and principles. The primary conceptual training vehicle was transactional analysis. The basic objectives of the training were (1) to increase awareness of communication behavior in human relations; (2) to examine personal transactions, including interracial communication and communications with inmates, staff, and family members; and (3) to develop sensitivity to possible harmful/helpful communication behaviors. The workshop leaders were careful not to present themselves as authorities on how the corrections officers should communicate with inmates. In all phases of the training, the trainees were urged to draw on their own experience in applying the transactional analysis concepts to their work. Some of the basic principles emphasized in the workshop were (1) all behavior communicates; (2) first impressions are often irreversible; (3) positive feelings toward self generally yield positive relations with others; (4) greater self-disclosure usually leads to increased trust; and (5) honest self-evaluation is basic to growth in communication skills. Footnotes which include references are provided.
Index Term(s): Communications; Conflict resolution; Correctional human relations Training; Correctional Officers; Correctional stress training; Inmate staff relations; Stress management
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