Police Training Requirements

Police officers are responsible for keeping the peace. They pursue and apprehend individuals who break the law, enforce traffic laws, arrest suspected criminals, resolve community issues, respond to emergencies, and investigate crimes.

State specific Requirements for police and law enforcement training.

According to the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the general job description of a police patrol officer is to enforce laws and ordinances, for the protection of life and property in their assigned area. Police officers receive assignments for the protection of a particular area, conducting investigations, and apprehending criminals.

Alabama Police Training Requirements

Alaska Police Training Requirements

  • No de-escalation training required
  • Other Required training: None, except firearms proficiency.
  • Accountable body: Legislature and Alaska Police Standards Council

Arizona Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

California Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

Connecticut Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

Idaho Police Training Requirements

Illinois Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

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

Kansas Police Training Requirements

Kentucky Police Training Requirements

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

Louisiana Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

Mississippi Police Training Requirements

Missouri Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

Nebraska Police Training Requirements

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

Nevada Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

Ohio Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

Oregon Police Training Requirements

Pennsylvania Police Training Requirements

Rhode Island Police Training Requirements

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

South Carolina Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

Vermont Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

West Virginia Police Training Requirements

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

Wisconsin Police Training Requirements

  • 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 Police Training Requirements

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Frequently Asked Questions

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 skills are needed to become a police officer?

As an aspiring police officer, the follow skills will help you in your law enforcement career:

  • Good interpersonal skills
  • Communication
  • Physical strength
  • Ability to work in teams
  • Ability to cope with stress and stressful situations
  • Strong work ethic
  • People skills
  • Respect for authority
  • Compassion and Patience
  • Stamina
  • Leadership ability
  • Composure

How much does it cost to attend a police academy?

The cost to attend a police academy can vary depending on your location. Costs usually total less than $5,000 if the academy is affiliated with a community college or state and county law enforcement training center.

How long is police academy training?

Police academy programs can be anywhere from 320 to 800 course hours and typically take six or eight months to complete. The requirements change from state to state, so the academy in California might be different than the academy in Alaska.

What is a police academy?

A police academy is a training school for new police recruits, also known as a law enforcement academy. Some academies are located at a college or university. The academy prepares the recruits for the police force they will be assigned to when they graduate.

How much money do police officers make?

According to data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), police officers and detectives earned a median average salary of $63,380 per year in 2018.

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.

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