Predictors of Attrition in the Finnish Conscript Service
Final rept. Aug 2004-Aug 2006
NATIONAL DEFENCE COLL HELSINKI (FINLAND)
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This report describes attrition in the Finnish conscript service and identifies variables that predict attrition and their relative strength as determined by various statistical models. Subjects were 2,003 conscripts, 211 of whom were separated before completing their 6-month military obligation. The categories of predictors considered were conscript demographic and background variables, aptitude, mental and physical health, and pertinent attitudes and perceptions. The research extended previous research by considering a wider set of predictors, over time, and allowed for generalization through the non-U.S. sample. Results show that the soldiers who separated from the military were significantly different from those who completed their military service on numerous predictor variables. Especially strong in predicting attrition were measures of the conscripts sense of military obligation, education level, physical health, criminal record, economic history, expected adjustment, age, and past behavior problems. The models accounted for 25 to 40 of the variance in attrition but were modest in their ability to correctly classify those who were separated. The underlying analyses were completed and a draft report written when Mikael Salo was attached to the U.S. Army Research Institute under an Engineer and Scientist Exchange Program ESEP between the Finnish National Defence College and the U.S. Army Research Institute.
- Personnel Management and Labor Relations
- Military Forces and Organizations