How To Become A Cop

Police Training Programs

When determining the best police training programs to meet your individual needs, go through an organized decision making process.

First, analyze your career expectations and ask yourself a series of questions:

Will I want to specialize in a certain field of law enforcement?

Your answer to that question will determine the level of training, and which schools will be appropriate.  Someone who plans to become a security guard will go through a much shorter educational program than someone who wants to become a profiler for the FBI.

The security guard may be able to get on the job training right out of high school, or may find the appropriate course work at a junior college, or in the military.

The FBI profiler will need to earn a criminal psychology degree.  They will actually need a PhD in psychology or criminal law in order to get hired and be certified as a criminal psychologist.

A police dispatch center or records technician will go through different course work than a court reporter, but might find both programs available at the same two year technical college or online university.

Do I want to go to school, go into the military, or just get on the job training?

Any of these options may be possible training paths depending on your career expectations.

What type of program can I afford?

Most levels of education will offer scholarships; the cost of police academy and short term police training programs will probably be covered by the hiring agency.

Do I want to go through one of the police training programs close to home, or can I go to school in a different state?

There are a number of excellent criminal justice programs throughout the country; however, people in smaller or more rural states may find their options more limited.

Someone wanting to land a federal agent position will most likely need to find a graduate program and will want to graduate near the top of the class at one of the top criminal justice, law or psychology programs in the country.  Find out which police training programs and police training schools best match your aspirations.

Talk with school counselors and get listings of best schools for the kinds of specialties you are looking for.  Recruiters for the law enforcement agencies you are targeting will probably be able to suggest appropriate programs from which their officers are often recruited.

You may want to zero in on the school choices that are recommended by school and police human services officials. I would highly recommend getting a college criminal justice degree if you are wanting to advance in your law enforcement career.

What about doing a search for “best schools” online?

You can, and should, check out the programs listed in online catalogs of police training programs.  However, keep in mind that these listings may not be comprehensive and may be organized to highlight those colleges and universities that have paid to be represented on the list.  You can get a criminal justice degree online as well as a criminal justice masters degree. 

Related:

How to become a cop  A career in law enforcement can be very rewarding and fulfilling.

College Criminal Justice Degree - This is a good foundation to build a career.

criminal justice degree online   There are a number of accredited criminal justice degree online programs available at the certificate, associates, bachelors and masters level.  Many of these programs are associated with well-respected programs that are offered at the campus level.

Military Police Training   The Army MP program uses the LEADEX leadership excellence training program which teaches critical thinking skills using scenario challenges.

Police Training Programs   This program provides training in the basic law enforcement knowledge, skills and abilities that a new Federal officer must understand and/or be able to perform in the first two years on the job.

Free Police Training   This is a great deal for the recruit.

Police Training Videos   I don't know how instructive these videos are but I guess it can't hurt to check them out.

Police training supplies   These are some of the websites where you can find training supplies and duty gear.