How to become a police officer

Becoming a police officer: the requirements

To become a police officer. Depending on the career, specific educational qualifications are required.

  • For the higher service, one usually needs the higher education entrance qualification or technical college entrance qualification.
  • A secondary school leaving certificate is required for the middle service, or a secondary school leaving certificate with completed vocational training.

However, there are numerous exceptions and special rules – it is best to ask the responsible recruitment advisor. Some police forces only offer entry into the higher service.

There are also other formal requirements, including:

  • Minimum sizes
  • Age limits
  • orderly economic situation (no over-indebtedness)
  • Citizenship: In most federal states, EU citizens can become police officers, in exceptional cases members of other nations.

Last but not least, police officers must be of a character suitable for the profession. To be expected:

  • Sense of responsibility
  • Assertiveness
  • Communication skills
  • a confident demeanor
  • personal maturity

Appearance also counts – openly visible piercings or tattoos can reduce the chances of being hired.

The police selection process

The police’s aptitude selection process is divided into several sections:

It starts with an aptitude test in the form of an intelligence, competence, or performance test. Possible topics are knowledge, language proficiency, mathematics, logical thinking, visual thinking, concentration, and memory retention. The difficulties mainly take place on the PC. Individual tasks (e.g., dictations) have to complete with pen and paper in some areas. Most applicants fail the German test year after year.

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The police sports test can include different disciplines depending on the authority. The standard program provides endurance runs, Cooper tests, obstacle courses, or box boomerang tests. Pull-ups, push-ups, turning, and pendulum runs are a little rarer. Some state police do not take the sports test and instead expect a sports badge to present.

Job interview

However, The job interview or interview is an integral part of every police selection process. The examiners particularly interest in the applicant’s professional motivation and personality. Possible questions are: “Why did you choose to work as a police officer?”, “What are you currently interest in about the state police force xy?”, “What would you describe as your greatest strengths and weaknesses?”

However, Applicants in the senior service, in particular, have to prove themselves in a full-fledged assessment center. In role-plays, group discussions, group tasks, and post box exercises, the examiners pay specific attention to problem-solving and social skills: How does a candidate argue, how does he proceed? How do the applicants behave towards one another – who takes responsibility, which is more reluctant?

During the medical examination, the police doctor examines whether you meet the health requirements for police service. To do this, he determines, among other things, the body mass index (weight in kilograms divided by height in meters squared). Further points are an exercise ECG on the bicycle ergometer, a lung capacity measurement, blood and urine tests, and a drug screening. If the doctor thinks it is necessary, an X-ray can even carry out. Applicants also ask to provide a self-assessment of their health.

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How to become a police officer: training

Based on the selection process results, the examiners calculate a total number of points for each participant, often referred to as the “ranking value” (ROW). The available positions a now fill “from top to bottom” based on this ranking list. If you want to ensure that your application leads to the desired goal, you should always do your best!

So that a successful applicant becomes an honest police officer, only one thing is missing: training. It is dual, so it includes both theory and practical experience at offices. It lasts two years in the middle service and three years in the higher benefit. Strictly speaking, higher-level police training is not a course but rather a dual course of study at a police academy.

However, The theoretical part of the training focuses on political education, the legal fundamentals of police work, psychology, and criminology. Thus, The practical part deals with training and the use of coercive measures, among other things. Regular professional sport plays a significant role – police officers have to physically fit.
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