Law Enforcement Academy


What are the primary law enforcement academy requirements?
Most law enforcement academies require applicants to be at least 18 years-old. Applicants must also have a valid state driver’s license and be willing to get a fingerprint check.

What are the educational requirements of law enforcement academy?
Applicants usually must have at least a high school education, and some departments require 1 or 2 years of college coursework or, in some cases, a college degree.

Are part time law enforcement academy courses available?
Yes, throughout the country there are several part time law enforcement academy programs. Contact your state for more information.

When are fees due for law enforcement academy?
Fees are usually due at the beginning of the program.

Do I need a college degree to attend law enforcement academy?
No, for most programs it’s not necessary to have a college degree. However, it is mandatory to have high school diploma or GED to be accepted into a law enforcement or corrections academy training program. Note: Applicants with a college degree are more likely to being admitted over applicants without a degree.

Are there law enforcement academy courses available online?
There are a few online programs available. However, even though these programs are conducted by recognized or state-certified instructors, they do not confer college credits or continuing education units. It is the student’s responsibility to file a copy of the certificate with your state agency to seek its addition to your training record.
At this time, all credited law enforcement academies require onsite attendance.

How competitive is it to enroll into law enforcement academy?
Competition varies among programs.

How long are most law enforcement academy programs?
If you’re applying for a state or large local police departments, law enforcement academy programs often last 12 to 14 weeks.

Which law enforcement academy should I attend if I’m interested in a smaller agency that is not a state or local police department?
Applicants interested in smaller agencies can attend regional or state academies.

When do most law enforcement academy programs start?
Law enforcement academy programs are open enrollment on an ongoing basis.

Are there nationally ranked law enforcement academies that are more prestigious than other academies?
Law enforcement academies are not currently ranked because states have different curriculum standards. Most law enforcement academies contain similar curriculums taught by different instructors that tailor to the state’s requirements. Police academies that extend over a longer period of time may provide law enforcers with more information. It is best to contact your local state for suggested academies; some academies may be better fits depending on the instructor selection.

What funding options do I have to reduce the cost of attending law enforcement academy?
There are many options to reduce the cost of attending law enforcement academy:

  1. Many agencies will support their officers through sponsoring them. Contact your local agency for funding options.
  2. Grant opportunities for training are available across the country. Visit the Office of Justice Programs Community Capacity Development Office for tips on effective grant writing for grant writing tips. Another grant route would be to hire a grant writer. Accredited organizations like PoliceOne offer grant writing services for a small fee.
  3. Programs through the Homeland Security provide funding based on the number of students attending the program. Specific funding opportunities include Bureau of Justice Assistance.
  4. Contact your local law enforcement academy for financial aid options. There are several opportunities available on a local level.

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