(Received 5 March 1988; accepted 14 June 1988)
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Questioned document examination has traditionally used on-the-job training as its primary instructional method. There are several deficiencies inherent in this method of training, however. Some of these deficiencies are the lack of a standardized course of instruction, the inability to evaluate the quality of the training received by an individual, the absence of any criteria establishing minimum levels of competency, and the length of time required which results in a reluctance to hire trainees. These and other shortcomings in on-the-job training are discussed in view of a survey that was conducted of 249 document examiners associated with federal, state, county, local, and private laboratories. Some possible remedies to correct the weaknesses in the current approach to training are offered.
Document analyst, Southern Region Crime Laboratory, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Memphis, TN
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