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how long is the training for a police officer?

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Jyoti’s Answer

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Hi Naileah, recruitment practices for police officers/law enforcement officers vary by city and state. In my experience from the State of Illinois, one must achieve a Bachelor’s Degree (Criminology or related) and complete academy training to meet highly desired qualifications. Other departments do accept Associate Degree graduates as well, it really depends on the city you’re seeking future employment. Just like other careers, gaining early work experience can be an asset to one’s employability. A career in private security could be a good start in early related employment. A career training in the United States military is also highly valued for future law enforcement careers as well. Military service duty ranges. Here are a few suggestions. Best wishes in your career goals!

Jyoti recommends the following next steps:

  • Contact law enforcement agencies in cities you hope to work, ask about their recruitment criteria including education requirements, police academy length, and typical experiences held by new hires.
  • Contact military recruitment agencies to inquire about training and duty/service length requirements, and roles available related to skills needed for high-performing law enforcement officers.
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Kevin’s Answer

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There are two basic stages for training when you are talking about training length. Those time lengths depend on a state or the agency's policy.

The police academy: This can range from 4-16 weeks. Occasionally departments will also have an advanced academy.

Field Training and Evaluation: On the job training. This can be an additional 4-16 weeks long.

Additionally, you will have a probationary time period that can be up to 2 years or longer.

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