Police Officer Certification and Certificate Program Information
This article explores certificate programs and certification information for aspiring police officers. See educational prerequisites, program coursework and employment outlook statistics.
While formal education is not required for employment as a police officer, individuals can enroll in an undergraduate certificate program. They might complete programs in police science, law enforcement and security or basic police training before enrolling in a police academy. A certificate program in police officer training requires 24-30 credits for completion.
Students learn about government and law enforcement, investigative methods, safety procedures and psychology. Police officer candidates also gain communication and problem-solving skills. Many such certificate programs are gateways to 2- and 4-year criminal justice programs. In order to work as police officers, individuals must earn state certification by completing a comprehensive examination.
Applicants need a high school diploma or equivalent. Interested individuals are generally required to pass a physical exam and meet general fitness standards. A personal interview may be required for admittance.
Students learn through lectures and lab work. A GPA of 2.0 is typically required for completion. Topics of study include:
- Investigative procedures
- Local and national laws and government
- Civic relation strategies for law enforcement officials
- Safety procedures and first aid care
- Psychology fundamentals
- Sociology fundamentals
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
Employment of police officers and detectives is expected to rise 7% from 2010-2020, estimates the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, www.bls.gov. In 2012, police officers and sheriff's patrol officers earned an annual median salary of $55,270. Graduates of a certificate program for police officers can also work in private and public sectors as corrections officers, loss prevention specialists and security guards.
Certification Program Information and Continuing Education
In order to work as a police officer, applicants must complete police academy training, which is separate from the optional undergraduate certificate program. After completing police academy training, interested individuals must pass an examination for certification as a police officer; certification is administered independently by each state. In order to apply for certification, applicants must:
- Have U.S. citizenship
- Have a high school diploma or GED
- Not have any felonies
- Not have been dishonorably discharged from the military
- Be at least 18-21, depending on the state
- Undergo a physical examination
Related to Police Certifications
- Recently Updated
An associate degree program in criminal justice or law enforcement studies usually qualifies students to enter careers as...
Police officers enforce the laws of a community and ensure the safety of citizens and property. Students who want to become...
Aspiring police officers can find online classes leading to degrees in criminal justice at a variety of colleges and...
The different branches of the U.S. Military have their own law enforcement specialists, known as military police. Each branch...
- Police Cadet: Job Description, Duties and Requirements
- Narcotics Officers: Job Description, Duties and Requirements
- Police Commissioner: Job Description, Duties and Requirements
- How to Get an Oncology Fellowship
- Architectural Restoration Degree Program Information
- Types of Public Health Degrees: Overviews by Specialization
- Sterile Processing Certificate Programs
- Online Degree Programs in School Counseling
- Ophthalmic Assistant Career Information for Becoming an Ophthalmic Assistant
- Divorce Lawyer Job Outlook and Information About Starting a Career in a Divorce Law
- Constitutional Lawyer Career Info and Requirements for Constitutional Lawyers Wishing to Practice Constitution Law in the US