[IPAC-List] Measuring Fear of Heights

Mark Hammer Mark.Hammer at psc-cfp.gc.ca
Fri Jun 25 16:20:26 EDT 2010

It's hard to imagine that anyone would apply to, and jump through the hoops for, any position that involved an activity/task/working-context that was aversive to them. My money is on simple functional capacity. There's more people who THINK they can do a job, and can't do it nearly as well as they think they can, than there are people who are afraid of some aspect of the job, and go through with it.

SOMEBODY has to have some sort of virtual reality exercise that mimics heights and then asks the participant to carry out the tasks while ignoring convincing omnipresent and robust height information. If they can do similar sorts of things with driving or flight simulators, they ought to be able to do it for working at heights.

And if no one has done it yet, THERE'S a market worth exploiting.

Mark Hammer

>>> "Wilkening, Kurt" <WilkeningK at HillsboroughCounty.ORG> 2010/06/25 4:04 PM >>>

I wonder if they give these power line maintenance folks a phobia test before hire? Heck, pilots, too.



Kurt Wilkening, Division Chief
Recruiting, Testing, and Certification
Hillsborough County Civil Service Board
601 E. Kennedy Blvd., 17th Floor
Tampa, Florida 33602
(813) 274-6764 (Direct)

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-----Original Message-----
From: ipac-list-bounces at ipacweb.org [mailto:ipac-list-bounces at ipacweb.org] On Behalf Of Reindl, Kevin
Sent: Friday, June 25, 2010 3:19 PM
To: ipac-list at ipacweb.org
Subject: [IPAC-List] Measuring Fear of Heights

I thought this might be a good question to pose to the IPAC list, since I'm sure many of the firefighter selection experts out there have encountered this...

Does anyone do any type of assessment/test that measures someone's fear of heights? We have been grappling with this for a while. We have some positions at a few of our companies that require employees to climb externally mounted stairs to the top of storage tanks (up to 200 feet). We've considered a pre-employment assessment where we simply ask candidates to actually perform this task. However, the concern for safety has always been a barrier.

Any thoughts/advice/experiences would be greatly appreciated.

Kevin Reindl
Sr. People Research Advisor
San Diego Gas & Electric
Human Resources
8306 Century Park Court, CP41A
San Diego, CA 92123-1530
Tel: 858-654-1823
Fax: 858-654-1515
Email: kreindl at semprautilities.com<mailto:kreindl at semprautilities.com>

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