Florida Police Training Overviews with Course Descriptions

The Florida area has 35 schools that offer police training programs. Get some information about the programs and some quick facts for two of these schools to make an informed education decision.

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Police Training Schools in Florida

Several colleges throughout Florida offer certificates, 2-year and 4-year degrees in law enforcement or criminal justice. Those completing one of these programs must still complete police academy training certified by the state of Florida before working in law enforcement. Learn about the curricula and hands-on field experiences of two Florida schools' programs in the following overviews, and then check out additional school facts in the table near the bottom.

  • Miami Dade College, located in Miami, offers an associate's degree in criminal justice technology - basic law enforcement, in addition to a bachelor's degree in public safety management.
  • Valencia Community College, in Orlando, offers law enforcement officer and auxiliary law enforcement officer certificates, along with two associate's degree options in criminal justice technology.

Miami Dade College

Miami Dade College offers police training programs, as well as training for traffic investigators and parking enforcement officers through the school's Public Service Aid Academy. The college serves as a regional police officer training center and offers the Florida Basic Abilities Test, which is a screening tool for new recruits in law enforcement and corrections agencies.

Associate of Science in Criminal Justice Technology - Basic Law Enforcement

Students usually enroll in this program after enhancing their communication, leadership and decision-making skills through police academy training. The program introduces students to corrections, criminology, rules of evidence and police administration. Training is also provided through co-op and work experiences in the field.

Bachelor of Applied Science in Public Safety Management

Police officers usually earn this degree to advance their careers, often leading to positions with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, United States Marshals Service or a state law enforcement agency. Students learn about constitutional law, rules of evidence, narcotics and human behavior within the criminal justice system. Other topics of study include terrorism, organized crime, civil law, methods of research and judicial policy.

Valencia Community College

Valencia Community College offers police training programs through its Criminal Justice Institute, which trains law enforcement officers, sheriffs and detectives. The school also offers training to 911 operators and animal control officers. Students can take advantage of online courses covering defensive driving tactics and DUI laws.

Law Enforcement Officer Career Certificate

This certificate program is designed for those starting careers as police officers and provides an overview of defensive, patrol and investigative techniques. Students also learn about CPR, the court system and first aid. They complete coursework dealing with firearms, traffic stops, crime scene management, stun guns and investigations.

Auxiliary Law Enforcement Officer Career Certificate

This certificate program is for students looking to work as volunteer police officers. The curriculum covers many of the same subjects as the Law Enforcement Officer Career Certificate program, including those in first aid, defensive tactics, criminal justice and firearms.

Associate in Applied Science in Criminal Justice Technology

Criminal justice students learn about law enforcement organization through coursework and field experience. They also complete general academic courses in English composition, psychology, math and the humanities. Other topics of study include police investigation, rules of evidence and procedure, juvenile justice and multicultural law enforcement.

Associate in Science in Criminal Justice Technology

This program is for students who intend to transfer to 4-year programs or transition into careers in law enforcement. Course requirements include English composition, psychology, criminology, rules of evidence and multicultural law enforcement. Students are expected to complete a field experience; they can also pursue electives in American Sign Language or Spanish.

Comparison of Schools

After exploring the program offerings above, it might be wise to look at some additional school facts in the table below. Learn about the tuition charges, enrollment numbers and graduation rates to make a solid decision.

Miami Dade College Valencia Community College
School Type 4-year, primarily associate's, public 4-year, primarily associate's, public
Total Enrollment (2012) 66,701* 42,915*
Campus Setting Large city Midsize city
Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2013-2014) $3,426 (in-state)
$11,955 (out-of-state)*
$2,378 (in-state)
$9,005 (out-of-state)*
% of First-Year Students Receiving Some Form of Financial Aid (2012-2013) 79%* 83%*
Acceptance Rate (2012) 100% (open admissions)* 100% (open admissions)*
Retention Rate 67.4% (2010)** 67% (2009)***
Undergraduate Graduation Rate (2013) 32%* 40%*

Sources: *NCES College Navigator , **Miami Dade College, ***Valencia Community College.

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