Police Training requirements

Breakdown of police training requirements by state.

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Apex Officer's VR training simulator for law enforcement specializes in de-escalation training.

How do you become a police officer?

Being a police officer is a meaningful and impactful way to serve a community. Unlike traditional occupations, an associate's, bachelor's or graduate degree is rarely mandatory in becoming a police officer. Instead, extensive and specialized training is required. This training is often provided by police academies on the local, regional or state level.

What does a police officer do?

In the simplest sense, police officers enforce laws and protect life and property. However, there is much more to it than that. Here’s how it breaks down. Police officers are sworn to protect and serve the communities in which they live and work. They enforce laws, obtain warrants, arrest and interview suspects, secure crime and accident scenes, write detailed reports and testify in court, among other duties. Officers often respond to emergency calls, working shifts that operate around the clock.

Alabama

Alaska

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: None, except firearms proficiency.
  • Accountable body: Legislature

Arizona

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: 8 hours per year of electives. 8 hours every 3 years of proficiency training in firearms, emergency vehicle operations, pursuit, first aid, physical conditioning and high risk stops.
  • Accountable body: Peace Officer Standards and Training Board

Arkansas

California

  • De-escalation training requirement: 2 hours every 2 years
  • Other Required training: 24 hours every 2 years. Minimum 4 hours each of arrest and control, driving, firearms or force options simulator. Other required courses: domestic violence every 2 years, first aid/CPR every 2 years, racial profiling/racial diversity every 5 years.
  • Accountable body: Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training

Colorado

Connecticut

  • De-escalation training requirement: 3 hours every 3 years
  • Other Required training: 60 hours hours every 3 years: 9 hours of firearms/use of force, 2 hours rape crisis, 2 hours domestic violence, 3 hours human relations (including serious mental illness), 1 hour juvenile law, 7 hours police and the law, 2 hours patrol procedures, 1 hour gang violence, 1 hour bias/bigotry, 32 hours of electives.
  • Accountable body: Police Officer Standards and Training Council

Delaware

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: 16 hours per year, plus firearms, CPR, defibrillator, Taser and first responder. Additionally, a sexual assault course once every four years and one hour every three years on child sexual abuse.
  • Accountable body: Council on Police Training

Florida

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: 40 hours every 4 years. Stun gun every year. Firearms every 2 years. Human diversity, use of force, domestic violence, juvenile sex offender and racial profiling every 4 years.
  • Accountable body: Criminal Justice Standards & Training Commission

Georgia

  • De-escalation training requirement: 1 hour per year
  • Other Required training: 20 hours per year, including 1 hour firearms proficiency, 1 hour use of deadly force, and 2 hours community policing.
  • Accountable body: Peace Officer Standards and Training Council

Hawaii

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: None
  • Accountable body: Legislature

Idaho

Illinois

  • De-escalation training is required, but no minimum hours set
  • Other Required training: No specific number of hours required, but departments are required to train officers in civil rights, constitutional and proper use of law enforcement authority, cultural competency, human rights, law update, procedural justice or use of force.
  • Accountable body: Legislature

Indiana

  • De-escalation training is required, but no minimum hours set
  • Other Required training: 24 hours per year, including 2 hours in firearms, 2 hours in physical tactics/use of force and 2 hours in police vehicle operation. Officers are also supposed to get periodic training in mental disorders, addiction, missing persons, human trafficking, domestic violence, child abuse, sudden infant death syndrome and various first aid techniques. But the state doesn’t enforce that requirement.
  • Accountable body: Law Enforcement Academy Board

Iowa

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: 36 hours every 3 years, plus firearms proficiency and CPR.
  • Accountable body: Legislature

Kansas

Kentucky

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: 40 hours per year
  • Accountable body: Legislature

Louisiana

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: 20 hours per year: 8 hours of firearms, 4 hours of defensive tactics/officer survival, 2 hours of legal updates, 6 hours of electives.
  • Accountable body: Council on Peace Officer Standards and Training

Maine

  • De-escalation training requirement: 2 hours per year
  • Other Required training: 40 hours every 2 years, including 10-12 hours specific topics that change every year. 2016 required topics included implicit bias and autism.
  • Accountable body: Criminal Justice Academy Board

Maryland

  • De-escalation training is required, but no minimum hours set
  • Other Required training: 18 hours per year. Firearms every year. Sexual abuse, treatment of victims of crime, victims’ services, and identity fraud victims’ rights every 3 years. CPR every 2 years.
  • Accountable body: Police Training Commission

Massachusetts

  • De-escalation training requirement: 4 hours per year
  • Other Required training: 40 hours per year, including firearms qualification and CPR. Specific course requirements change every year. In 2015 they included four hours on deadling with the mentally ill. In 2016 they included 3 hours of “fair and impartial policing.”
  • Accountable body: Municipal Police Training Committee

Michigan

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: Only mandatory training is firearms proficiency. The state does set advisory training standards: officer safety, communication, emergency vehicle operations, defensive tactics, legal update and mental disorders.
  • Accountable body: Commission on Law Enforcement Standards

Minnesota

Mississippi

Missouri

  • De-escalation training requirement: 2 hours per year; Mental health training requirement: 2 hours per year
  • Other Required training: 24 hours a year, including 1 hour racial profiling, 2 hours mental health, 2 hours officer well being, 2 hours implicit bias recognition, 2 hours de-escalation, 2 hours firearms.
  • Accountable body: Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission

Montana

Nebraska

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: 20 hours per year.
  • Accountable body: Legislature

Nevada

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: 12 hours a year, plus training in firearms, use of force. Officers must also show proficiency with less-than-lethal weapons if they carry them.
  • Accountable body: Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training

New Hampshire

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: 8 hours per year, plus firearms proficiency, use of force, first aid and CPR certificate renewal and defensive tactics refreshers.
  • Accountable body: Police Standards and Training Council

New Jersey

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: 4 hours on domestic violence every year, plus firearms proficiency, use of force and vehicular pursuit.
  • Accountable body: Attorney General

New Mexico

  • De-escalation training requirement: 2 hours every 2 years
  • Other Required training: 40 hours every 2 years, including amber alert training and pursuit policy training.
  • Accountable body: Legislature

New York

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: No specific state requirements except that officers must receive annual “instruction in deadly physical force and the use of firearms and other weapons.”
  • Accountable body: Legislature

North Carolina

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: 24 hours a year. For 2016: 6 hours of firearms, 4 hours legal update, 2 hours “juvenile minority sensitivity,” 2 hours human trafficking, 2 hours “citizens and guns” and 8 hours of electives.
  • Accountable body: Criminal Justice Education & Training Standards Commission

North Dakota

Ohio

  • De-escalation training requirement: 2 hours per year
  • Other Required training: Training requirements recently increased. 2016 requirement was 11 hours, increasing to 20 hours in 2017. Required subjects for training in 2016 were community-police relations and crisis de-escalation.
  • Accountable body: Peace Officer Training Commission, Attorney General’s Office

Oklahoma

Oregon

Pennsylvania

Rhode Island

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: Hate crimes, gangs and domestic violence training required by statute.
  • Accountable body: Legislature

South Carolina

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: 40 hours every 3 years, including one legal update course and one domestic violence course.
  • Accountable body: Legislature

South Dakota

  • De-escalation training is required, but no minimum hours set
  • Other Required training: 40 hours every 2 years, including firearms proficiency.
  • Accountable body: Legislature

Tennessee

  • De-escalation training is required, but no minimum hours set
  • Other Required training: 40 hours per year, including child sexual abus, emergency vehicle operation and 8 hours of firearms proficiency.
  • Accountable body: Peace Officers Standards and Training Commission

Texas

  • De-escalation training is required, but no minimum hours set
  • Other Required training: 40 hours every 2 years, including legal update. A ‘basic peace officer’ must receive cultural diversity and special investigative topics. Additional requirements for those holding ‘intermediate peace officer’ certification.
  • Accountable body: Commission on Law Enforcement

Utah

Vermont

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: Full time officers need 25 hours per year, including firearms, CPR and biennial domestic violence.
  • Accountable body: Criminal Justice Training Council

Virginia

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: 40 hours every 2 years, including 2 hours cultural diversity, 4 hours legal training and firearms proficiency.
  • Accountable body: Criminal Justice Services Board

Washington

West Virginia

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: 16 hours per year, plus firearms proficiency.
  • Accountable body: Legislature

Wisconsin

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: 24 hours per year, including handgun proficiency, plus 4 hours vehicle pursuit every other year.
  • Accountable body: Law Enforcement Standards Board

Wyoming

The origins

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Where it started

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Attracting users

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Hiring the 2 guys

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Time to take over the world

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Why time tracking

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Getting investment

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It's party time

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To Mars and beyond

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