Becoming a Police Officer in Cedar Rapids, Iowa

The 203 sworn officers of Cedar Rapids work in close partnership with the community to help prevent crime in Iowa’s second largest city.  Follow this guide if you want to learn about what it takes to become a police officer in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

  1. Meet the Basic Qualifications
  2. Submit Your Application
  3. Written Examination
  4. Polygraph Examination
  5. Psychological Examination
  6. Interviews
  7. Medical Examinations
  8. Physical Fitness Test
  9. Attend Police Academy for Training

 

Step 1. Meet the Basic Qualifications for Cedar Rapids Police Officer Candidacy

If you wish to be considered as a police officer in Cedar Rapids, you must meet the following police officer requirements:

  • You must be 18 years old by the date of your written examination.
  • You must be younger than 65 years old by the date of the written examination.
  • You must have excellent vision:
    • Uncorrected must be at least 20/100 in both eyes
    • Correctable to 20/20 in both eyes
    • Normal color vision
  • You must have normal hearing
  • You must have graduated from an accredited high school or have a GED.
  • You must be fluent in English.
  • You must be a U.S. citizen.
  • You must either be a resident of Iowa or plan to become one upon employment.
  • You must not be addicted to alcohol or drugs.
  • You must possess a current valid Iowa chauffeur’s or driver’s license by the time you are employed.
  • You must not have had any suspensions, cancelations, or revocations of your driving privileges within 3 years before the date of your written exam.
  • You must not have the following convictions:
    • Aggravated misdemeanor less than 5 years before the date of your written exam.
    • Felony
    • Serious misdemeanor less than 2 years before the date of your written exam
    • Domestic assault or child abuse
  • You must not have performed the following with any illegal drug:
    • Unlawfully sold or delivered
    • Used while employed in law enforcement or as a prosecutor
    • Used in the 24 months prior to the date of your written exam

Step 2. Submit Your Application

You must submit a completed application to become a police officer in Cedar Rapids.  Information on the application process is provided by the city.

Step 3. Written Examination

When positions are available, you will take a written examination.

Step 4. Polygraph Examination

After you have passed your written exam, you will have to take a polygraph examination.  This is designed to verify the information on your application, help to determine your suitability, and help to show that you have good moral character.

Step 5. Psychological Examination

Once you have passed your polygraph examination, you will be further examined by a psychologist to show that you are suitable for a law enforcement career in Cedar Rapids.  Your personality and cognitive skills will be tested at this point.

Step 6. Interviews

After you have passed your psychological examination, you will be interviewed and assessed for your:

  • Appearance
  • Reason for seeking a law enforcement career
  • Background
  • Ability to communicate with a variety of types of citizens that you might come in contact with

Step 7. Medical Examinations

Once you have passed one or more interviews, the department will offer you employment.  Now, you will be tested by the City Nurse.  He or she will assess your

  • Health
  • Vision
  • Hearing
  • Pulmonary function

After your first medical examination, you will be required to undergo further testing by a physician to show that you are free from any emotional, mental, or physical conditions that could interfere with your ability to serve as a police officer in Cedar Rapids.  This will involve:

  • Standard physical exam
  • Drug test
  • EKG
  • Maximal treadmill stress
  • Lab work
  • X-rays

Step 8. Physical Fitness Test

Once you have been found physically fit to be a police officer in Cedar Rapids, you will have to pass a test of your physical endurance levels to show that you are in good enough shape to function as a law enforcement officer.  This test involves:

  • Sitting and reaching
  • Performing 1 min of sit-ups
  • Performing 1 min of push-ups
  • Running 1.5 miles

Step 9. Attend Police Academy for Training

After you have met the physical standards to be admitted to the academy, you will undergo basic training at the Cedar Rapids Police Academy.  Your training will practical training with academic coursework, so you have a thorough training in what to expect as a police officer in Cedar Rapids.  You can expect practical training in:

  • Using weapons
    • Firearms
    • Batons
    • Tasers
  • Defending yourself
  • High speed driving
    • Emergency response
    • Pursuit

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