What Does A Police Officer Do
In the simplest sense, police officers enforce laws and protect life and property. But of course, there is much more to it than that. Here’s how it breaks down:
Policeofficers are sworn to protect and serve the communities in which they live andwork. They enforce laws, obtain warrants, arrest and interview suspects, securecrime and accident scenes, write detailed reports and testify in court, amongother duties. Officers often respond to emergency calls, working shifts thatoperate around the clock.
The specific duties of a police officer will be numerous and diverse. Based on appointment, length of service and training, they may work with a K-9 unit responding to suspicions of drugs or dangerous weapons in vehicles and other property. Or, they might take a role on the SWAT team where they need to know tactics and procedures for working under dangerous conditions. Much of their daily routine will involve patrolling a certain area, such as a portion of a town or city. As they move up the ranks, they may investigate crimes ranging from petty theft to murder.
The Application Process For Police Officer Candidates
It isnt easy becoming a police officer. Potential candidates need to go through a stringent application process designed to weed out those who dont have what it takes to become outstanding police officers.
Police officers help maintain peace and order and ensure that members of the community stay safe. This job comes with immense responsibility. The application process itself is not for everyone.
Canadian police agencies generally follow the same process which involves a series of tests, checks and interviews, including:
- A written exam
- A polygraph exam
- A background investigation
Some of these tests require detailed paperwork but minimal preparation. For some tests, like the physical tests, you would be best prepared if you did a fitness training program, prior to, depending on your fitness level. Other tests, like the polygraph exam, require no preparation at all.
Applicants can be declined at any point in the stages listed above and even if a candidate passes every stage, an offer of employment is not guaranteed.
Once you have completed all assessments, your entire application package is reviewed and measured against other applicants to determine the most suitable candidates for the role as a police officer.
If you are recruited, you can expect a conditional offer of employment that allows you to advance to the final step before you become a police officer: cadet training.
Graduate From The Police Academy
After meeting the basic requirements and passing the law enforcement exam, you will attend a police training academy. Training at the police academy consists of the following:
In classroom training, future police officers gain an overview of law enforcement as a whole, including laws and regulations, criminal investigation methods, arrest and detainment procedures, as well as the various approaches to policing and public safety.
They also refine skills such as interpersonal communication, stress management and negotiation as well as develop a deeper understanding of ethics and cultural sensitivity.
In the field, future officers practice defense tactics, administrative duties, properly using a firearm, handling hazardous materials, vehicle operations and the proper use of force. Additionally, they may be required to interact with the public as well as simulate common or complex scenarios to practice problem-solving, investigation and
During this phase, candidates may begin to receive entitlements, allowances, and benefits, depending on the department. Once they have learned all the necessary skills, the trainees are ready to graduate and enter the field of policing.
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Step : Post Application Physical Examination And Fingerprints
Once a background investigation is complete, register on the Georgia POST website as a new user so you can begin your online application. It is essential that you complete this application correctly or your admittance to the Basic Training Course will be delayed. There are several attachments to the application as well as a requirement for a physical examination and a requirement that you are fingerprinted. You should go to Georgia Applicants Processing Service to be fingerprinted. Physical examinations generally cost about $30 and the fee to be fingerprinted is roughly $53. If you have any questions, contact your chosen academy for assistance.
Is Becoming A Police Officer In Your Future
While the steps to becoming a police officer may seem lengthy, completing them is absolutely necessary if you want to achieve the fulfilling career youve set your sights on. And a good law enforcement program will help you navigate the process.
Now that youre familiar with the process of how to become a police officer, you may be curious if you have what it takes to excel on the job. Learn more in our article, Often Overlooked Qualities of a Great Police Officer.
If youre already set on becoming a police officer, visit our Law Enforcement degree page to learn how we can help you take the next step toward becoming a police officer in Minnesota.
The Law Enforcement programs at Rasmussen University are not aligned to the standards of any professional licensing body other than the MN POST and are not intended to satisfy professional licensure requirements of any professional licensing agency in any other state.Editors note: This article was originally published in June 2016. It has since been updated to include information relevant to 2020. Insight from Shetler and Plantinga remain from the original.
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How To Become A Certified Peace Officer
To become a certified peace officer in Ohio, applicants must complete a Peace Officer Basic Training Academy that is approved by the Ohio Peace Office Training Commission. For more information about the process and expectations, explore the Ohio Attorney Generalâs Office links below.
Keep in mind that these are minimum requirements. Many law enforcement agencies require candidates to take a polygraph test, a written examination, and a psychological evaluation.
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Police Officer Salaries In Ontario
The provincial hourly rate ranges from $30.05-$57.69/hr with a median hourly wage of $46.15/hr. The salary range for police officers in Ontario is $56k-$117k/year, while the median annual salary is $97,115/year.
The median employment income in 2015 for police officers in Toronto was $107,627. The median employment income in 2015 for police officers in Ottawa was $105,533, and the median employment income in 2015 for police officers in Hamilton was $106,485.
The starting salary at the Toronto Police Service is $70,643.30/year. By the fourth year, expected the annual salary to be $100,923.48/year. Benefits include paid vacation, family medical and dental benefits, life insurance, pension plan, and paternal and maternity leave.
The starting salary at the Ottawa Police Service is $67,615.92/year. By the fourth year, depending on your performance reviews, the annual salary is expected to increase to $99,434.93/year. Benefits include education reimbursement programs, a generous pension plan, medical, dental and vision coverage, life insurance, as well as long-term disability insurance.
Meanwhile, if working for the Ontario Provincial Police , the average salary is roughly $100,500/year.
Here is a list of average salaries for police officers in Ontario, according to Glassdoor:
|$98K – $104K|
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Bachelor’s Degree In Law Enforcement
A law enforcement degree at the bachelor’s level typically takes four years to complete and can include many different topics or subjects. There are prototypical degrees such as criminal justice, criminology and law enforcement studies. But there are other majors that can hold police officers in good stead. For example, graduates with a degree in accounting are excellent candidates for a career in white collar crime investigations, while computer science majors can have an advantage if they’re interested in pursuing a career in computer forensics or cyber crimes.
Those in a bachelor’s degree program in a law-related field can expect to find courses like these:
Police Officer Application Process
General Minimum Qualifications
U.S. Citizenship Only United States citizens will receive consideration. Qualified applicants will be required to provide proof of citizenship early in the selection process.
Age Requirements Must be 21 years old but not older than 39 years old at the time of appointment .
Education Must possess a high school diploma or General Education Diploma .
Motor Vehicle License Must possess, provide, and have maintained a valid United States, state issued drivers license , and show evidence of responsible driving experience in the past one year.
Selective Service Must be registered with the Selective Service System or exempt from the Selective Service System registration as a female or due to age or military status. Those with military service must provide documentation of an honorable discharge.
Background Investigation Must complete a full background investigation.
Additional requirements may apply. Applicants may review and apply for United States Capitol Police career opportunities here.
How to Apply
The minimum qualifications listed above determine an individuals basic eligibility for employment with the United States Capitol Police . Please note, the application process can be lengthy. Depending on a persons specific circumstances, the process can take as little as a few months to more than a year.
The diagram below illustrates the hiring process for entry-level officers.
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How To Become A Police Officer
You can get into this job through:
- a university course
- the Police Now graduate leadership scheme
Alternatively you could self-fund a Professional Policing Degree before applying to join a force. You are not guaranteed a job at the end of the course. Instead, you have to apply for probationary constable roles within 5 years of completing this degree.
- 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
Police Officer Selection Process
It is important to point out that these steps are the same for all applicants .
The applicant should have a sufficient command of French to work for the Québec public service. It should be noted that all steps of the hiring process are conducted in French.
1. Selection interview
The interview aims to get to know you better and determine whether your profile matches the profile sought for the role. The interview lasts approximately one hour and includes behavioural questions and simulation scenarios.
The following skills are evaluated:
- Interpersonal communications
- Analytical skills
- Commitment and sense of responsibilities
2. Psychometric evaluation
The purpose of this step is to evaluate aspects of your personality that are critical to the job of a police officer. These personality traits are assessed using a psychometric evaluation designed specifically for the public safety field.
3. Security accreditation process/fingerprinting
4. Medical evaluation
This is an in-depth evaluation performed by a specialized firm. This evaluation includes:
- A physical examination
- Eye examination
- Drug screening
Please note that you must meet the following vision standard: 20/40 better eye, corrected to 20/20 20/100 other eye, corrected to 20/20 or 20/60 in both eyes, monocular measurements, corrected to 20/20.
5. Language evaluation
Administered by TELUQ, this evaluation aims to assess your knowledge of spoken English .
6. Overall review of your file
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What Do You Need To Become A Police Constable In Toronto
Officer candidates follow a detailed application and training process to become police constables with TPS. Once hired, new recruits attend the Ontario Police College for Basic Constable Training. You need to meet the following minimum requirements to become a Police Constable in Toronto:
- Be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada,
- Be at least 18 years of age,
- Be physically and mentally able to perform the duties of the position, having regard to your own safety and the safety of members of the public,
- Have successfully completed at least four years of secondary school education or its equivalent. . Where education has been completed outside Ontario, official proof of equivalency must be obtained,
- Be of good moral character and habits, meaning that you are an individual other people would look upon as being trustworthy and having integrity.
In addition, you must:
- Have no criminal convictions for which a pardon has not been granted,
- Possess a valid driver’s license with no more than six accumulated demerit points, permitting you to drive an automobile in Ontario with full driving privileges,
- Have current certification in CPR and first aid by the time the offer of employment is given,
- Possess a valid O.A.C.P. certificate,
- Have a minimum of 20/40 vision, with normal colour acuity,
- Successfully pass the hearing standards as outlined by the O.A.C.P.,
- Be able to pass a security clearance as well as a background investigation, credit and reference checks.
List Of Police Services Websites
Thank you for your interest in our local police services. Below is a comprehensive list of of the Police Services in Ontario. Once you click the link, you will be directed to the Police website.
Those interested in federal-wide policing can contact the RCMP for job opportunities. Please note that the RCMP does have a different Constable Selection Process and does not require the OACP Certificate in order to apply.
Royal Canadian Mounted Police
Section 83 of the Comprehensive Ontario Police Services Act, 2019, stipulates a person appointed as a police officer must:
is a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada
is at least 18 years of age
is physically and mentally able to perform the duties of the position, having regard to his or her own safety and the safety of members of the public
is of good character
has successfully completed, prescribed training by the Minister
In addition, you must
obtained a University Degree or a diploma from a college of applied arts and technology,
possess a valid driver’s licence with no more than six accumulated demerit-points, permitting you to drive an automobile in Ontario with full driving privileges
have current certification in Standard First Aid Level C CPR by the time the offer of employment is given
be able to pass a security clearance as well as background investigation, credit and reference checks.
This certificate is valid for 2 years. That includes all documents in Part A and the Part B, Part C testing.
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Submitting The Application Package
Applicants should ensure their police constable application package is complete, with all mandatory documents included, including vision and hearing forms. Application packages that are submitted incomplete will not be processed.
Applicants have three options to submit their applications to York Regional Police:
How To Become A Police Officer In Toronto
The Toronto Police Service is an elite law enforcement organization dedicated to serving and protecting the people of Toronto. As the Canadian metropolitan area with the most police officers, Toronto has many career opportunities for aspiring and current police officers, but the hiring process can be competitive. A policing degree or a criminology degree can set candidates apart, lead to promotions, and open doors to a broad range of job opportunities.
Lauriers online Bachelor of Arts in Policing and online Bachelor of Arts in Criminology and Policing develop analytical and critical thinking skills, foster key competencies required for leadership roles, and give public safety professionals an edge in their overall careers and salary potentialno matter where in Canada they may be studying from.
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Eligibility To Become Police Officer
How to Become a Police Officer? is a question that is in every aspirants mind. But first, an aspirant must decide which designation she/ he is targeting. The eligibility and recruitment process of various designations under the police department. is different. If you are targeting SP/ ASP/ DSP, you must clear the IPS examination. Meanwhile, For other posts, state governments hold separate recruitment exams. The recruitment exam will comprise both a written and physical test. The candidates must meet the proper height and weight description, depending on the post. The details regarding physique will be specified in the recruitment notifications. Staff Selection Commission is another authority that conducts the recruitment exam for Sub-Inspector of Police in several states.
Police Now Graduate Schemes
Police Now is an independent charity with a mission to transform communities by recruiting, developing and inspiring diverse leaders in policing.
The organisation works in partnership with police forces to attract, recruit and train outstanding graduates with leadership potential to be inspirational detectives and police officers through their award-winning national graduate programmes.
Equipping participants with core policing skills, Police Now’s two-year national graduate programmes help to develop leadership, communication and problem-solving skills that will serve graduates, and the wider community, for a lifetime.
The two graduate programmes are:
- National Graduate Leadership Programme – trains and develops graduates to become leaders in neighbourhood policing. Participants are placed in some of the most challenging communities in England and Wales, getting to know the issues up close and developing innovative ideas and techniques to tackle the challenges residents are facing.
- National Detective Programme – designed to equip graduates with the core policing skills required in modern investigative work. Throughout the programme, participants play an important part in solving crimes while developing leadership, communication, and problem-solving skills.
Both programmes involve the completion of a Graduate Diploma in Professional Policing Practice with the University of Huddersfield.
To be eligible for Police Now’s national graduate programmes, you must:
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Municipal Police Force Salaries & Benefits
In comparison to the federal police force, the municipal police agencies offer slightly higher salaries.
The Calgary Police Service offers a starting salary of approximately $66,000/year.
The Vancouver Police Department offers new hires $70,154/year with an incremental increase to $90,198 after 3 years. Benefits include paid vacation, medical and dental benefits and a BC Municipal Pension Plan membership.
The Toronto Police Service has a starting salary of $63,564.98 for their cadets. After year 3, police officers receive an annual salary of $90,836. Benefits include paid vacation, family medical and dental benefits, life insurance, pension plan, parental/maternity leave and more.
Considering that the median income for individual Canadians was $36,400 in 2018, according to Statistics Canada, the starting salary for a Canadian police officer is an attractive one.
When deciding between the federal or municipal level, keep in mind that while the RCMP might have a lower salary, the role involves police duties at the international, federal, provincial and municipal levels with a much wider variety in operational and administrative opportunities.Some specializations that are unique to the RCMP are: Integrated Border Enforcement Team, National Security, Marine Services, International Peace Operations and many, many more.