(redirected from profess)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Encyclopedia.


a person with a recognized set of skills and knowledge which qualifies them to practise a certain occupation. Usually this knowledge is gained from lengthy TRAINING and is certified by examination, often by a professional association. This pattern of entry to an occupation is similar to that of apprenticeships; however, the professions are usually understood to be those occupations which are located at the top of the occupational structure in terms of status, for example doctors, architects, lawyers etc. In so far as professional associations (for example the Law Society) stipulate the form and content of training and examination, they define the nature of the job tasks and the work standards that should be achieved and they control entry into the profession. Once individuals have been admitted to the profession it is customary in most instances for them to join the association. Professional associations are similar to craft unions (see TRADE UNION) in that they seek to maintain high incomes for their members by restricting entry to these occupations. Some associations (especially those governing public-sector professionals) are registered as trade unions and have become more similar to other unions in recent years, in that they have felt forced to mount industrial action or publicity campaigns to influence government and management policy decisions.

The notion of professionalism, i.e. that professional workers are special by virtue of their knowledge, has been much criticized in recent years. Critics have claimed that it is used to advance sectional interests, for example high income levels, and to prevent regulation by government or employers of the way tasks are carried out. Attempts have been made to weaken the power of certain professions; for instance, the recent trend in the UK Health Service for the allocation of resources to be determined on grounds of efficiency and effectiveness by management teams rather than on medical grounds as defined by doctors and consultants.

MANAGEMENT per se has generally not been viewed as a profession in the UK because there has been little agreement on the skills and knowledge which are integral to management, and no professional body has been able to enforce mini-mum standards. However, numerous associations concerned with particular aspects of management, for example the INSTITUTE OF PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT, have identified training requirements and hold examinations in an attempt to achieve professional status. Recently the MANAGEMENT CHARTER initiative has attempted to identify core ‘competencies’ of management as a first step to creating a profession of management.

References in classic literature ?
There are not many things which I profess to know, but this is most certainly one of them.
Stryker's PROFESS Navigation System has been gaining attention from Surgical Products' readers.
M2 PHARMA-March 2, 2015-Stryker Navigation Launches Profess Surgical Navigation System
Shawkat Shami Fine Jewelry Salon and AGA Profess Graphics signed an agreement to provide all the necessary advertising and PR services that the salon will need.
Summary: A 22-year-old Taiwanese man who stabbed a nurse during a bungled robbery last week has been arrested after returning to the crime scene to profess his love for her, police said Monday.
They profess to have warm relations with the Afghan government.
A growing culture of radical secularism declares that the nation cannot profess the truths on which it was founded," Gingrich said.
What I find annoying is there appears to be a rash of so-called experts, people who have never run a competitive grand prix team, who profess to be so knowledgeable about what is and isn't right for Lewis," said Dennis.
Unlike much of Protestantism, Rome is innately suspicious of feelings and enthusiasms; still, I can report that my predominant feeling was of a homecoming, of responding to a bell I had long heard toll, of taking my place at a table that had long been set, of finding spiritual companionship among those unashamed to profess the faith of the fathers.
You show the world you're not living by the principles you profess to believe in, and you Lose all credibility,'
Whether or not you agree with all of Essentials' views or actions, it is an organization that is committed to renewal based on the faith that we all profess each Sunday in the creeds, and proclaim in the gospel of Christ crucified.
Members are generally required only to profess belief in a Supreme Being who has revealed the moral law and to whom humans must give an account for their actions.