Surveying the functions of safety professionals: The implication for safety curriculum development

Tsung-Chih Wu, Sheng Wen Feng, Tsai Yu Lin, Chia Hung Lin

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


When developing safety curricula, it is necessary to consider the perceptions of both internal and external safety professionals. This research aims to investigate the differences in perception between safety educators and safety professionals towards the functions of safety professionals, and provide a reference framework for giving safety professionals the necessary safety skills and for developing safety curricula. A safety function scale (SFS) was developed from the questionnaire of Hale et al and sent to 200 safety professionals and 200 randomly selected safety educators. This survey included 14 demographics information and a list of 45 tasks under the nine functions. An exploratory factor analysis (EFA) was used to analyze the construct validity of SFS. Moreover, the researchers conducted one-way MANOVA to test the difference between safety professionals' and safety educators' perception of safety professionals' functions. Of the 400 survey questionnaires mailed, 248 (62%) usable ones were returned. The initial EFA of 45-item SFS produced nine factors (inspection & research, regulatory tasks, emergency procedures & settlement of damage, management & financial, culture change, developing & implementing solutions, problem identification and analysis, knowledge management, training & communications) with eight values greater than 1 (Kaiser Criterion), which accounted for 71.92% of the total variance. The values of factor loadings were smaller than .50, however, two problematic items, Task10 and Task30, were dropped from the SFS. The EFA of the 43-item SFS produced nine factors with eight values greater than 1, accounting for 72.66% of the total variance. Multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) indicated that safety professionals had better perceptions than safety educators of developing and implementing solutions, training and communication, inspection and research, and management and finance. However, in terms of participation in regulatory tasks, safety educators had a stronger view. This research suggests that industries and universities should establish a communication channel to decrease the perception gap between safety educators and professionals. If universities can develop suitable curricula, graduates will be better equipped to compete for jobs.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2010 Jan 1
EventJoint International IGIP-SEFI Annual Conference 2010 - Trnava, Slovakia
Duration: 2010 Sep 192010 Sep 22


OtherJoint International IGIP-SEFI Annual Conference 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Engineering(all)
  • Education

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