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PSZ 19:16 (Pind. 1/97)
UNIVERSITI TEKNOLOGI MALAYSIA
BORANG PENGESAHAN STATUS TESIS***
JUDUL: THE SUFFICIENCY OF CURRENT TRAINING
CURRICULUM FOR DIFFERENT INDUSTRIES AND
ADEQUACY OF THE MINIMUM ACADEMIC
REQUIREMENT FOR SAFETY AND HEALTH OFFICER
SESI PENGAJIAN: 2005/2006
Saya SABRI BIN ZAINUDDIN
(HURUF BESAR)
mengaku membenarkan tesis (PSM/Sarjana/Doktor Falsafah)* ini disimpan di Perpustakaan
Universiti Teknologi Malaysia dengan syarat-syarat kegunaan seperti berikut :
1. Tesis adalah hakmilik Universiti Teknologi Malaysia.
2. Perpustakaan Universiti Teknologi Malaysia dibenarkan membuat salinan untuk
tujuan pengajian sahaja.
3. Perpustakaan dibenarkan membuat salinan tesis ini sebagai bahan pertukaran antara
SULIT
institusi pengajian tinggi.
4. ** Sila tandakan ( √ )
TERHAD (Mengandungi maklumat yang berdarjah keselamatan atau
kepentingan Malaysia seperti yang termaktub di dalam
AKTA RAHSIA RASMI 1972)
√ TIDAK TERHAD
(Mengandungi maklumat TERHAD yang telah ditentukan
oleh organisasi/badan di mana penyelidikan dijalankan)
Disahkan oleh
(TANDATANGAN PENULIS) (TANDATANGAN PENYELIA)
Alamat Tetap: NO. 22 JLN P9B/7 DR. ARHAM BIN ABDULLAH
PRESINT 9 Nama Penyelia
62250 PUTRAJAYA.
Tarikh: 17 Mei 2006 Tarikh: 17 Mei 2006
Catatan * Potong yang tidak berkenaan.
** Jika tesis ini SULIT atu TERHAD, sila lampirkan surat daripada pihak berkuasa / organisasi
berkenaan dengan menyakan sekali tempoh tesis ini perlu dikelaskan sebagai SULIT atau TERHAD.
*** Tesi s di maks udkan se ba gai tesi s bagi ij azah Doktor Falsafa h dan Sarja na sec ara penyeli dikan, at as
disert asi bagi pe ngaji an se cara kerja kursus da n penyel idi kan, atau Laporan Proje k Sarj ana Muda (PSM )
“I/We* declare that I/we* have read through this report and to my/our opinion this
report is adequate in term of scope and quality for the purpose of awarding the
degree of Master of Science (Construction Management)”
Signature : ……………………………………..
Name of Supervisor : DR.ARHAM BIN ABDULLAH
Date : 17 MAY 2006
THE SUFFICIENCY OF CURRENT TRAINING
CURRICULLUM FOR DIFFERENT INDUSTRIES AND
ADEQUACY OF THE MINIMUM ACADEMIC REQUIREMENT
FOR SAFETY AND HEALTH OFFICER
SABRI BIN ZAINUDDIN
A project report submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirement for
the award of the degree of Master of Science in Construction
Management
FACULTY OF CIVIL ENGINEERING
UNIVERSITI TEKNOLOGI MALAYSIA
MAY, 2006
I declare that this project report entitled “THE SUFFICIENCY OF CURRENT
TRAINING CURRICULLUM FOR DIFFERENT INDUSTRIES AND
ADEQUACY OF THE MINIMUM ACADEMIC REQUIREMENT FOR SAFETY
AND HEALTH OFFICER is the result of my own research except as cited in the
references. The report has not been accepted for any degree and is not concurrently
submitted in candidature of any other degree.
Signature : ……………………………………..
Name : SABRI BIN ZAINUDDIN
Date : 17 MAY 2006
Specially Dedicated To My Beloved
Wife, My Two lovely Kids, Parents and
To My Friends
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
Praise to Mighty Allah for His Grace and Mercy in helping me throughout this
research and to guide me in completing this study in time.
I would like to express my thanks to my honorable supervisor, Dr Arham bin
Abdullah who has really put his full effort through his academic knowledge,
guidance, support and encouragement during the preparation of this study. May
Allah bless him for what he has done.
I am taking this opportunity also to extend my respect towards his patience and
tolerance.
I would also like to appreciate the sacrifices, undertsanding, support and
encouragement by my wife, Hanita binti Mohd Noor. As for my two kids,
Mohammad Shafiq Sabri and Fatin Nabila Sabri, thank you to both of you for your
support.
Last but not least, I would like to thank to all the lecturers involved, SPS’s staff and
friends on their support given in the success of completing my Master Programme.
ABSTRACT
Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) 1994 considers a competent Safety and
Health Officer (SHO) to be at least those with a minimum of a pass in the Sijil
Pelajaran Malaysia, attended SHO course and passed the SHO examination, and have
a minimum of three years working experience in the field of occupational safety and
health (OSH). Having such a requirement for competency to help manage OSH
program in a diverse, demanding and high risk work environments appears highly
inadequate. A study was carried out to address the question of sufficiency of a single
SHO curriculum to meet the demand of a diverse and high risk work environment,
and the question of adequacy of current academic qualifications to meet the duties of
SHO as prescribed by OSHA. This study was based on questionnaires and
perceptions of 32 SHOs towards both questions. The statistical parameters that were
analysed includes the Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) and Pearson Correlation and
the descriptive tests of frequencies and percentages. Findings from the statistical
analysis on the perceptions of the respondents on the two issues above indicated that
the single SHO course curriculmn is sufficient to prepare SHO for the different
industries, and the minimum qualification of SPM with three years of working
expereince in OSH is adequate for the SHO to carry out his or her responsibilities as
specified in the SHO Regulations.
ABSTRAK
Mengikut Akta Keselamatan dan Kesihatan Pekerjaan 1994 (OSHA), seorang
Pegawai Keselamatan dan Kesihatan (SHO) yang kompeten ialah seseorang yang
sekurang-kurangnya lulus Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia, telah berjaya menamatkan
kursus SHO dan lulus peperiksaan SHO tersebut, dan mempunyai sekurang-
kurangnya tiga tahun pengalaman bekerja dalam bidang keselamatan dan kesihatan
pekerjaan (OSH). Bagaimanapun, mempunyai kelayakan tersebut untuk membantu
mengurus program OSH di pelbagai tempat kerja, dengan suasana yang amat
berbeza, mencabar, dan berisiko tinggi, kelihatan seperti tidak mencukupi. Justru itu
satu kajian telah dilakukan untuk mencari jawapan kepada persoalan kecukupan satu
kurikulum SHO untuk memenuhi keperluan tempat kerja yang mempunyai suasana
yang amat berbeza dan berisiko tinggi, dan juga persoalan kecukupan kelulusan
akademik minimum untuk melaksanakan tugas-tugas SHO seperti yang dinyatakan
di dalam OSHA. Kajian ini adalah berdasarkan kepada soal-selidik dan pendapat 32
orang pegawai keselamatan dan kesihatan yang kompeten terhadap kedua-dua
persoalan tersebut. Statistik yang digunakan untuk menganalisis data adalah Analysis
of Variance (ANOVA), Pearson Correlation, dan juga analisis kekerapan dan
peratusan. Hasil daripada analisis terhadap persepsi responden kepada kedua-dua
persoalan tersebut menunjukkan bahawa satu kurikulum SHO adalah mencukupi
untuk melatih pegawai keselamatan dan kesihatan untuk berkhidmat dipelbagai
industri, dan kelayakan minimum SPM dan tiga tahun pengalaman kerja didalam
bidang keselamatan dan kesihatan pekerjaan adalah mencukupi untuk mereka (SHO)
melaksanakan tugas-tugas SHO seperti yang termaktub didalam Peraturan Pegawai
Keselamatan dan Kesihatan Pekerjaan.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
CHAPTER SUBJECT PAGE
TITLE PAGE i
DECLARATION ii
DEDICATION iii
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT iv
ABSTRACT v
ABSTRAK vi
TABLE OF CONTENTS vii
LIST OF TABLES x
LIST OF FIGURES xii
CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION
1.1 Overview 1
1.2 Problem statement 2
1.3 Specific objectives of the study 3
1.4 Significance of the study 4
CHAPTER 2 LITERATURE REVIEW
2.1 Introduction 5
2.2 The Need for Safety and Health Officer 5
2.3 Appointment of a Competent Safety and Health Officer 6
2.4 Safety and Health Officer Training and Examination 7
2.3.1 Competency Based Program 6
2.3.2 NIOSH SHO Course 9
2.3.3 The New SHO Curriculum 11
2.3.4 Maintaining Quality and Continuous
Improvement of the SHO Curriculum 12
2.3.5 Government Initiatives for the SHO Programs 13
2.5 Safety and Health Practitioners in United Kingdom 14
2.6 Comparison of Malaysia's SHO Curriculum and UK's
Diploma Part I 18
2.7 Safety and Health Officers in Other Countries 19
CHAPTER 3 RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
3.1 Introduction 22
3.2 Location 22
3.3 Population and Samples 23
3.4 Data Gathering Instrument 23
3.5 Data Collection 24
3.6 Data Analysis 25
CHAPTER 4 RESEARCH FINDINGS AND DISCUSSION
4.1 Introduction 26
4.2 Response rate from Respondents 26
4.2 Sociodemographic data 27
4.3 Statistical analysis on Part A (Hypothesis I) 31
4.4 Statistical analysis on Part B (Hypothesis II) 44
4.5 Other Findings in the Study 51
4.6 Research limitation 52
CHAPTER 5 CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION
5.1 Conclusion 53
5.2 Recommendation 54
REFERENCES 56
APPENDICES
APPENDIX A - Frequency tables of questionnaires item 59
APPENDIX B - The New SHO Curriculum 65
APPENDIX C - SHO in Other Countries 68
APPENDIX D - Questionaires 69
LIST OF TABLES
TABLE NO
PAGE
1 A Comparison of NIOSH SHO Syllabus Equivalent Against 19
NEBOSH Diploma (Part I and II)
2 Distribution of Respondents by Gender 28
3 Distribution of Respondents by Academic Qualifications 28
4 Distribution of Respondents by Industries 29
5 Distribution of Respondents by Company Size 30
6 Distribution of Respondents by Duration of Service 30
7 Distribution of Training Providers 31
8 One-way ANOVA and Post Hoc Test on the Perception of 33
Sufficiency of SHO Course Curriculum for 3 Sectors of Industries
9 One-way ANOVA and Post Hoc Test on the Perception of 35
Sufficiency of the Four SHO Modules for 3 Sectors of Industries
10 Paired T-Test to Compare the Means of the Sum of Scores of the 43
Sufficiency of the Four SHO Modules, and the Sum of Scores of
the Sufficiency of the Overall SHO Program to Address Major
SHO Functions.
11 One-way ANOVA and Post Hoc Test on the Perception of Ability 47
of SHOs of Different Academic Backgrounds to Carry-out SHO
Functions
12 One-way ANOVA and Post Hoc Test on the Perception of Ability 49
of SHOs of Different Academic Grouping to Carry-out SHO
Functions
13 Correlation Between Ability to Carry-out SHO Functions and 50
Academic Group
14 Correlations Between the Duration of Services and Ability to 51
Carry-out Functions of SHO.
15 Average Level of Sufficiency of SHO Modules for All Industries 59
15A Level of Sufficiency of SHO Modules for Manufacturing Industry 59
15B Level of Sufficiency of SHO Modules for Petrochemical Industry 60
15C Level of Sufficiency of SHO Modules for Construction Industries 60
16 Frequency Table for items in Part A concerning Insufficiency of 61
SHO Course Curriculum
17 Frequency Table for the second part of Part A Concerning 62
Insufficiency of SHO Program in Addressing Major Functions of
SHO
18 Frequency Table for items in Part B Concerning SHO Ability to 63
Carry-out SHO Functions as Specified in the SHO Regulations
19 Frequency Table for items in Part B Concerning SHOs inability 64
to Carry-out SHO Functions
LIST OF FIGURES
FIGURE NO
PAGE
1 Bar Chart of the Sum of the SHO Modules Sufficiency Scores 34
2A Bar Chart of the Mean Scores for Module I 37
2B Bar Chart of the Mean Scores for Module II 38
2C Bar Chart of the Mean Scores for Module III 33
2D Bar Chart of the Mean Scores for Module IV 39
3A Percentages of the Level of Sufficiency of the Four SHO Modules 40
to Address Major SHO Functions in Manufacturing Industry
3B Percentages of the Level of Sufficiency of the Four SHO Modules 41
to Address Major SHO Functions in Petrochemical Industry
3C Percentages of the Level of Sufficiency of the Four SHO Modules 41
to Address Major SHO Functions in Construction Industry
4 Bar Chart of the Percentages of the Level of Sufficiency of the 42
Overall SHO Program by Industry Type
5 Bar Chart of the Mean Scores of the Ability of SHO to Carry-out 48
SHO Functions by Academic Qualifications
6 Bar Chart of the Mean Scores of the Ability of SHO to Carry-out 50
SHO Functions by Academic Qualifications
CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION
1.1 OVERVIEW
The Safety and Health Officer Regulations 1997 (P.U.(A)315) and the
Occupational Safety and Health (Safety and Health Officer) Order 1997
(P.U.(A)316) came into force on August 22, 1997. Under the law, employers of
specific industries fulfilling specific requirements detailed in the Order are required
to employ a competent Safety Health Officer (SHO). A competent SHO is one who
is registered with the Department of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH). The
requirement for the registration as a competent SHO includes possessing
qualification and/or experience recognized by the Minister of Human Resources, or
one who has passed the SHO examination coordinated by the National Institute of
Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) with a minimum of three years experience
in occupational safety and health.
NIOSH developed a curriculum for the SHO course in 1996 and began
conducting the SHO courses the following year. The minimum enrollment
requirement for the SHO course is a grade 3 in the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM)
with two years experience in occupational safety and health. Major revision of the
curriculum was made in 2001-2003, and the new curriculum was implemented on
April 2003. To date, more than 3000 participants has attended NIOSH SHO courses
and about 1,300 has passed the SHO examination and registered with the Department
of Occupational Safety and Health, as competent Safety Officers (Halim 2003).
1.2 PROBLEM STATEMENT
Industries required to employ SHOs, under the Law, are numerous and
diversified in terms of their activities, raw materials, processes, as well as the hazard
and risk present. For example, the hazard prevalent in the construction industry is
mainly physical hazard such as falling from heights and falling objects, whereas
hazard in the chemical industry is mainly chemical hazard such as toxic substances
and flammable gaseous. There is only one SHO curriculum for the SHO courses
conducted by NIOSH to train candidates to be competent SHOs and to serve the
different industries. The issue therefore is whether this single curriculum adequate to
prepare SHOs for the different industries with different hazard and risk involved in
the respective industries.
The current SHO curriculum consists of four modules covering 83 subjects in
about 160 hours (20 days). While many of the subjects are relevant to all industries,
such as all subjects in Module I covering OSH Management, Safety Policy, First
Aids and so on, many other subjects are relevant to certain industries only such as
Construction Safety, Petroleum Acts, Chemical Monitoring, etc.
One of the important roles of the SHO from the legal perspective is to advice
his employer or any person in charge at his work-place on the measures to be taken
in the interests of the safety and health of the employees at the work-place (SHO
Regulations 1997). The employer or the person in charge at the work place is
normally the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the company, a very senior position
indeed. The issue here is whether a competent SHO with only an SPM academic
qualification and three years of working experience is able to advice and to report to
the CEO all matters pertaining to occupational safety and health at the work place.
The work place in this contact could be a chemical plant which may be categorized
under the Control of Industrial Major Hazards (CIMAH) Regulations, or it could just
be a construction company involved in a building project worth more than twenty
million ringgits.
Abdul Halim bin Hashim, an ex DOSH officer, in his research “Training
Needs Assessment of Safety and Health Officers in the State of Selangor” (Halim
2003) found that 28.6% of the SHO respondents in his research registered difficulties
in carrying out their duties to advice their employers on safety measures at the work
place due to their lack of knowledge and experience. Another 35% said that they
have difficulties to conduct safety inspection and investigate accidents for the same
reason. For the duties of recording and analyzing accidents statistics, 45% said that
they have difficulties doing so because of their busy job schedules and difficulties in
gathering data. Halim’s samples for the above statistics are rather small (about 13
respondents) and confined to a small locality of Shah Alam only.
This study, is therefore very relevant to determine whether “Malaysia’s one
SHO for all” approach is adequate for the different industries and also to assess
whether the current minimum academic requirements for the SHO is adequate to
carry out their duties and responsibilities.
1.3 SPECIFIC OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
i). To determine whether the current single SHO curricullum is sufficient to
prepare Safety and Health Officers for the different industries requiring
them.
ii). To determine whether the current minimum academic requirement for SHO is
adequate for the SHOs to carry out their duties and responsibilities.
1.4 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
Industries required to employ Safety and Health Officers are clearly stated in
the Occupational Safety and Health (Safety and Health Officer) Regulaions 1997
(P.U.(A)315) and Occupational Safety and Health (Safety and Health Officer) Order
1997 (P.U.(A)316). The hazard and risk in these industries varies greatly depending
on the nature of activities, the materials and machineries used and the products or
services produced. In fact, the legal requirements for each of these industries varies.
Some are categorised under the CIMAH Regulations while others are not, and some
are subjected to the Building-by-Laws while others are not. Thus it is very important
that the subject on the sufficiency of a single SHO curriculumn to prepare SHO for
all of these industries be studied with the aim of improving it.
CHAPTER 2
LITERATURE REVIEW
2.1 INTRODUCTION
In Malaysia, the latest legislation to protect safety and health of people at the
workplace is the Occupational Safety and Health Acts 1994 (OSHA 1994). The Acts
was gazetted by the Dewan Rakyat in 1994 with the aim of providing a legislative
framework to resolve safety and health problems at the workplace. OSHA 1994,
supported by its Regulations, is a comprehensive piece of legislation, with its self-
regulating principle and the philosophy that those who create and/or work with the
hazards and risks are responsible for controlling and mitigating the hazards and
risks. OSHA differ greatly from the previous Act (FMA 1967) with its non
prescriptive approach.
2.2 THE NEED FOR SAFETY AND HEALTH OFFICER
One of the Regulations in OSHA is the Safety and Health Officer Regulations
1997, which require companies fulfilling the requirements specified in the supporting
Occupational Safety and Health (Safety and Health Officer) Order 1997, to hire
safety and health officers dedicated for the promotion of safe and healthy work place.
OSHA (1994) stated that the requirement to hire safety and health officer for the high
risk industries is for the purpose of ensuring that the provisions of the related laws
and regulations are adhered to and for the promotion of a safe conduct of work at the
place of work. The principle of self-regulation inbedded in the Act is also supported
by the employment of safety and health officer who will assist the manegement in
mitigating risk and hazard, promote safe and healthy work place and manage OSH in
the organisation (NIOSH 2003). Kamal Halili (2001) reiterated that with the
appointment of a safety and health officer, there is a definite person directly
responsible for OSH at the work place.
2.2 APPOINTMENT OF A COMPETENT SAFETY AND HEALTH
OFFICER
The Safety and Health Officer Regulations 1997 defined a safety and health
officer as any person registered with the Director General (of DOSH). The
qualification for the registration is described in the Regulations as a person who:
a) holds a diploma in OSH or the equivalent thereof from any professional
body or institution, approved by the Minister, on the recommendation
of the Director General;
b) has successfully completed a course of training in OSH and pass any
examination for that course or the equivalent thereof, approved by the
Minister, on the recommendation of the Director General, and has a
minimum of three years experience in OSH;
c) has been working in the area of OSH at least for a period of ten years; or
d) holds such other qualification or has received such training as
prescribed from time to time by the Minister pursuant to subsection
29(4) of the Act.
Apart from the above qualifications, candidates must be free from conviction
of any offence under the Act, or conviction of any offence and sentence to more than
a year imprisonment or a fine or more than two thousand ringgit, or free from being
declared as a bankrupt.
Although there are other qualifications and requirement for the registration of
SHO with DOSH, the SHO course and examination seems to be the "prefered" mean
to gain the registered SHO status with DOSH. Of about 2000 registered SHOs
currently, about 1600 of them get their registrations by taking the SHO courses and
examinations.
Pursuant to subparagraph (1)(b) on the qualification for the registration of a
safety officer above, the Regulations also exclusively mentioned the position of the
SHO course conducted by NIOSH as one of "the approved course". In fact, to-date
there is no known course other than curiculums based on the NIOSH model has been
approved for the purpose.
2.3 SAFETY AND HEALTH OFFICER TRAINING AND EXAMINATION
2.3.1 Competency Based Program
Rick Sullivan (1995) in his paper with the title of The Competency-Based
Approach to Training, characterised competency based training (CBT) as a training
program which is learner- or participant-centered, and the unit of progression is
mastery of specific knowledge and skills. This differ from the conventional training
approach in many schools where progression through the various subjects is time-
based, and at any given time during the year the teacher is expected to be at a
specific point in the textbook or course content. While time-based teacher-centered
approaches to education have met with varying levels of success over the years, it is
an ineffective system when the goal is to train individuals to perform specific, job-
related skills (Sullivan 1995).
A competency refers to an individual's demonstrated knowledge, skills, or
abilities performed to a specific standard (JGN Consulting). Competencies are
observable, behavioral acts that require a combination of skills to execute. In other
words, competencies consist of a combination of knowledge, skills, and abilities that
are necessary in order to perform a major task or function in the work setting. In the
contact of the SHOs the skills would include risk and hazard identification,
assessment, and control methods, safety inspection and accident investigation
processes, and adequate knowledge in the OSH legislation and standards.
Sullivan (1995) mentioned that Anthony Watson (1990) identified a number
of implications for organizations considering implementing a CBT system:
• Organizations must be committed to providing adequate resources and
training materials.
• Audiovisual materials need to be directly related to the written materials.
• Training activities need to match the objectives.
• Continuous participant interaction and feedback must take place.
• Trainers must be trained to conduct competency-based training courses.
• Individuals attending training must be prepared for CBT as this approach is
likely to be very different from their past educational and training
experiences.
The five essential steps in developing a competency-based training course
detailed by JGN Consulting are:
• Determine required competencies
• Specify course/unit learning objectives
• Identify learning outcomes
• Design of instructional activities and criteria to assess learning outcomes
• Develop process whereby trainees can demonstrate mastery of the
competencies
Thus while evaluation or assessment in traditional courses typically involves
administering knowledge-based tests, Foyster (1990) was quoted by Sullivan to
argue that assessment in competency-based programs must be criterion-referenced
with the criterion being the competencies upon which the program is based, and
simulation and work sample performance tests should include a checklist or some
type of rating scale. The differences in teaching and assessment techniques of a
traditional training program and that of the competency based program are quite
clear, as detailed above.
2.3.2 NIOSH SHO Course
NIOSH SHO curriculum which was first developed in 1996 by Worksafe
Western Australia for NIOSH, is a competency based program designed to prepare
candidates to become competent SHOs. The original SHO curriculum consists of
four modules covering about 56 subjects in 105 hours or 15 days. Apart from class
room lectures, video shows, and group discussions, a one day visit to a factory (site
visit) was also included in the program. The program was focused on specific
knowledge, skills, and abilities that are necessary for the SHOs in order to perform
their major tasks or functions as specified in the SHO Regulations.
In line with the assessment approach of a typical competency based program
described above, the SHO examinations involved knowledge based tests as well as
simulation or work sample performance tests. The examination consist of three
papers:
a) Paper I was designed to test the candidates understanding of the management
and legislative aspects of OSH. The paper consist of multiple choice
questions as well as essay questions based on Module I and II.
b) Paper II was designed to test the knowledge and comprehension of candidates
in the technical aspects of OSH. The format of Paper II was similar to Paper I
but the questions were based on Module III and IV.
c) Paper III was designed to test the comprehension of candidates pertaining to
the application and practice of OSH at the work place. The paper consist of a
work place assignment and an oral examination. The work place assignment
assess the ability of candidates to resolved OSH problems at the work place.
Although the SHO examinations are coordinated by the Examination Unit of
NIOSH, they are policed and strictly monitored by an independent Board of SHO
Examinations (BOE) for transparency and credibility. Questions for an examination,
were randomly picked from the SHO questions bank by a computer program, and
certified and sealed by the BOE. Only after passing all of the papers in the SHO
examinations, would a candidate who has at least three years of experinece in OSH,
be able to register with DOSH as a competent SHO.
2.3.3 The New SHO Curriculum
The curriculum has since been revised in 2003 by a team of not less than 20
prominent OSH professionals and practitioners from the industries, government
departments, higher learning instituitions, and other relavent organizations. The
contents has been revised to be "more Malaysianised", that is, scenarios, examples
and references are made based on local scenarios. It has also been expended to
include the latest OSH regulations and standards, and translated into Bahasa
Malaysia.
The new SHO curriculum consists of four modules covering 83 subjects in
about 160 hours (20 days). Module I covers OSH management subjects including
risk identification, assessment and control, OSH programs, auditing and performance
monitoring. These subjects provide the fundamental knowledge of OSH for any
future OSH practitioners, regardless of the industries that they are in.
Module II covers the provisions of the Legislations related to OSH, in
particular the OSHA 1994 and the FMA 1967. This is a critical module preparing the
SHO candidates with the knowledge of the laws with which they must be familiar
with in order to be able to advice their employers for compliance. The duty to advice
their employers on OSH related matters is specifically addressed in the SHO
Regulations (1997). Some of the provisions of the laws are directed to specific
activities or industries, and perhaps this is where in "specialised SHO courses"
coverage on certain laws would be more details than others. For example, the
USECCH Regulations is more relevant for industries using, supplying or
manufacturing chemicals, and the Petroleum (Safety Measures) Act 1984 and Gas
Supply Act 1993 are relevant for the industries related to the supply and
transportation of oil and gas, while the Building Operations and Works of
Engineering Construction (BOWEC) of the FMA 1967 is more relevant to the
construction industry.
Module III of the SHO course, covers subjects in occupational health
including occupational diseases, biological monitoring, medical surveillance,
toxicology, etc. Again, some of the subjects are more relevant to certain industries
than others. For example, the Chemical Health Risk Assessment, Chemical Hazard
Management and Chemical Monitoring subjects are more relevant to industries
using, supplying and manufacturing chemicals rather than construction industry. The
last SHO module or Module IV covers subjects in occupational safety. Among other
subjects thought are machinery hazard, safe guarding of machinery, and safe
machine operation which are more geared for the manufacturing industry; the
construction safety for construction industry, and office safety for the general office
environment. Thus, while many of the subjects are relevant to all industries, others
are geared for the needs of certain industries only.
The new SHO curriculum and examination also have incorporated more
elements of a competency based program. There are more interactions between
participants and speakers in the form of more group discussions and case studies, and
refined course material to focus on the basic competencies required. The
examination has also been revised to include new practical skill test on ten skill
workstations. The aim is to test candidates understanding of the practical aspects of
OSH. The work place assignment has also been refined with more specific
requirements in it.
2.3.4 Maintaining Qualities and Continuous Improvement of the SHO
Curriculum
The Curriculum Development Unit (CDU) is a special unit established not
only to undertake regular curriculum revision and development process on all
training courses in NIOSH, but also to strictly monitor and evaluate NIOSH speakers
for these courses. Speakers are graded according to the evaluations on their
performance by the participants, and also observations by designated personnel in
NIOSH. Those who failed to achieve certain standard established by the CDU will be
adviced to improve their performance, and subsequently dropped from the list of
speakers if they failed to do so. The SHO, being a flagship in NIOSH training
program, is given special attention. For example, the first major revision of the SHO
curriculum mentioned above involved the participations of some of the best brains in
the field of occupational safety and health in the country.
Other initiatives implemented by NIOSH to ensure continuous improvement
in the quality of the SHO certification program includes removing the Examination
Unit from the Training Division in 2003, and establishing it as an independent unit
reporting directly to the Executive Director. This reorganisation is important to
maintain transparency in the SHO examinations and as well as its credibility.
Independent Board of Examination to policise and monitor SHO examinations, and
Board of Appeal to handle appeal cases from unsatisfied candidates on their SHO
examination results have long been established to ensure impartiality.
2.3.5 Government Initiatives for the SHO Program
Under the SHO Order 1997, specific industries including manufacturing,
petrochemical, construction, wood working, metal and cement, which full-filled
specific requirements for the industries concerned are required to employ safety and
health officer. The current estimate on the number of SHO needed for the industries
in the country is in excess of twenty thousand by some estimates. Todate, the
number of SHO registered with DOSH is less than two thousands. Thus the number
of competent SHO that must be trained and certified is still grossly low and for that
reason, a number of training providers has been oppointed by DOSH to assist and
complement NIOSH in providing the SHO training.
Several government initiatives have been introduced over the years to
encourage potential candidates to pursue the SHO certification course. One of them
is a special grant from the Economic Develoment Unit of the Prime Minister's
Department for unemployed graduates to take up the SHO course with full
government funding. The Pembangunan Sumber Manusia Berhad (PSMB), an
agency under the Ministry of Human Resources offer a number of grants under the
Human Resources Development Fund (HRDF), for SHO course including the Skim
Bantuan Latihan (SBL), SBL-PKS (for SMI), Perjanjian Latihan Dengan Penyedia
Latihan (PERLA) and the Training Scheme for Retrenched Workers. The schemes
are targerted for different groups of workers or sectors of industries, and financing of
up to 85 percents are possible to the qualified candidates (PSMB 2003). Due to the
low number of competent SHOs available in the market, enforcement effort has not
been intensified on the requirement for the SHO. However, many companies are not
taking chance on the enforcement drive as the authority would not compromise on
any company violating the law if an accident occur at their work-places. The demand
for the SHO course has been on the upswing lately.
2.4 SAFETY AND HEALTH PRACTITIONERS IN UNITED KINGDOM
There are five categories of health and safety personals in the United
Kingdom based on their qualifications awarded by the National Examination Board
on Occupational Safety and Health (NEBOSH). Courses at the Diploma level are
designed to equip health and safety practitioners with an appropriate professional
level qualification to undertake responsibilities in relation to the risks of hazards at
the work place. The NEBOSH National General Certificate is a qualification
designed to help those with health and safety responsibilities (eg. managers,
supervisors and employee representatives) to discharge more effectively their
organisational duties and functions.
The three Diplomas awarded by NEBOSH (2003) are:
National Diploma Part 1
The Diploma is intended for health and safety practitioners working
either in low risk occupational settings where control strategies are well
documented, or as assistants to more highly qualified practitioners. It


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