ERIC Number: ED390600
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Jul
Reference Count: N/A
Skills and Requirements of Rural Human Service Organisations.
A review of the literature identified social, cultural, and work-related issues that may affect the retention and selection of qualified human services staff in rural areas. A survey of 60 rural professionals and follow-up interviews examined attitudes toward living in rural areas, skills required by rural human services organizations, and gaps in the skills of current staff. Respondents overwhelmingly saw aspects of lifestyle and community as the main attraction for remaining in rural areas. Work-related issues that might be factors in deciding to leave rural areas included isolation, distances travelled for job, lack of career path, availability of work, lack of resources, and lack of access to inservice training. Qualifications sought by human services organizations included professional requirements, personal attributes and life skills, and generalist skills. High motivation and morale were observed in organizations committed to staff networking, peer review, and staff utilization of inservice courses. Regarding educational needs, respondents had generally obtained their initial qualifications in their twenties and now had little time and energy to devote to study. They had difficulties in accessing reference materials and felt that coursework lacked relevance. Most areas surveyed lacked qualified social workers, with community nurses providing social work services. Suggestions are offered for recruitment and retention of professional staff and for development of rural-oriented undergraduate degrees and courses in human services. Contains 24 references. (SV)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: In: Issues Affecting Rural Communities. Proceedings of an International Conference Held by the Rural Education Research and Development Centre (Townsville, Queensland, Australia, July 10-15, 1994); see RC 020 376.