Conceptual and empirical analysis of military recruit training attrition

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Abstract

A role choice model, which included attraction, expectancy, and intention indexes for both civilian and military roles, was used to analyze the recruit training turnover behavior of 1,521 male Marine Corps recruits. Demographic, expected leadership, and expected job content were also measured at the beginning of recruit training. It was found that on the way into recruit training, subsequent graduates and dropouts differed significantly on 20 of 29 variables, including intention to complete their enlistments, expectancy of completing their enlistments, attraction to the Marine role, and a number of other expected organizational and demographic variables. When the variables were subjected to stepwise multiple regression, a multiple R of .30 was observed for 11-wk recruit training attrition, with expectancy of completing, education, Marine role outcome expectancies, expectancy of finding an acceptable civilian role, and intention to complete being the 1st 5 variables to enter the equation. Results support the usefulness of moving beyond demographic prediction of attrition, including perception and evaluation of alternative roles, and exploring more closely the organizational entry process. (28 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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