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How to Become a Police Officer in Alabama

Becoming a Police Officer in Birmingham, Alabama

Of all of the municipal Police Departments in Alabama, Birmingham is the largest.  More than 1,100 full time employees are responsible for law enforcement services over an area covering 160 square miles.

Here you’ll find a step-by-step guide that explains how to become a Police Officer in Birmingham, Alabama:

  1. Meet the Basic Qualifications
  2. Submit Your Application
  3. Written Examination
  4. Physical Fitness Screening
  5. Polygraph Examination
  6. Physical Examination
  7. Psychological Screening
  8. Background Check
  9. Attend Academy for Training

Step 1. Meet the Basic Qualifications for Birmingham Police Officer Candidacy

You must meet certain requirements for the Birmingham Police Department to consider you for Police Officer jobs:

    • You must be a U.S. citizen.
    • You must have reached the age of 21.
    • You must have a high school education:
      • Diploma
      • GED
  • You must have a driver’s license valid in Alabama.
  • You must not have any felony convictions on your record.
  • You must have been honorably discharged (if applicable).

Step 2. Submit Your Application

You can submit your application online.

Step 3. Written Examination

Your next step will be take a civil service examination that will measure your ability to be successful during your Academy training and on the Minimum Standards test of Alabama.

Step 4. Physical Fitness Screening

Another aspect of your initial screening is a physical fitness test that is given by the Birmingham Police Department.  This test could include such events as:

  • Scaling a 6 foot fence
  • Dragging a 165 pound dummy for 5 yards
  • Walking 5 yards along a balance beam
  • Crawling though a window
  • Running 1.5 miles in 15:28
  • Pushing a car for 15 feet

Step 5. Polygraph Examination

After you have passed both your written and physical examinations, you will be given a lie detector test.

Step 6. Physical Examination

Once you have passed your lie detector test, a physician will examine you to make sure that you are physically fit enough to be a Police Officer in Birmingham.

Step 7. Psychological Screening

After you have been cleared by a doctor, you will be tested by a psychologist to ensure that you have the mental fortitude to become a Birmingham Police Officer.

Step 8. Background Check

Once you have passed your psychological examination, your background will be investigated to make sure there is nothing preventing you from becoming a Police Officer in Birmingham.

Step 9. Attend Police Academy for Training

After you have passed your background check, you will be trained at the Birmingham Police Academy for about 20 weeks.  This will take place 5 days a week for 8 hours a day.  You will receive about 920 hours of training in such areas as:

  • Community relations
  • Criminal law
  • Defensive tactics
  • Firearms
  • First Aid
  • Patrol procedures
  • Physical Fitness
  • Search and seizure

Once you have completed your Academy training, you will spend at least 16 weeks with a field training officer, so that you will reach a high level of professionalism in the field.

Becoming a Police Officer in Hoover, Alabama

The Hoover Police Department is responsible for fighting crime and maintaining the peace in the sixth most populous city in Alabama. Use the information in this step-by-step guide to learn how to become a police officer in Hoover.

  1. Meet the Basic Qualifications
  2. Submit Your Application
  3. Written Examination and Physical Agility Test
  4. Interviews and Personality Assessment
  5. Medical Evaluation
  6. Attend Police Academy for Training

Step 1. Meet the Basic Qualifications for Hoover Police Officer Candidacy

There are certain requirements that you must meet to be considered for Hoover police jobs:

  • You must be 21 years old on the application’s closing date.
  • You must have a valid driver’s license.
  • You must be able to obtain a driver’s permit for Hoover.
  • You must have a high school education.
  • You must meet at least one of these conditions:
    • Be POST certified and have 3 years of experience as a full time sworn police officer or other sworn law enforcement position.
    • Associate’s degree (or equivalent hours) and POST certification and 2 years experience as a full time sworn police officer or other sworn law enforcement position
    • 3 years of active duty military service with an honorable discharge
    • Bachelor’s degree in:
      • Business or public administration
      • Criminal justice
      • Science
      • Social Services
      • Technology or a field that is closely related

Preferred qualifications include one of the following:

  • Bachelor’s degree in one of the fields listed above and POST certification and at least a year of having been in a sworn law officer position full-time
  • 3 or more years of active military service as an awarded Combat Arms, Military Police, or Special Forces specialty and an honorable discharge

Step 2. Written Examination and Physical Agility Test

Once you have met the basic qualifications, you will be notified by Human Resources about the date and location of the written examination you have to take.  This test will measure your interest in becoming a police officer, along with your abilities in the following areas:

  • Observation
  • Common sense and judgment
  • Reading maps
  • Interacting with people
  • Reading comprehension
  • Reasoning

After you have passed the written examination, you will be screened by a test of your physical abilities.

Step 3. Interviews and Personality Assessment

Once you have shown that you have the physical prowess and endurance to become a police officer in Hoover, you will be interviewed several times to ensure that you are a good fit for the department.

After you have had successful interviews, a psychologist will assess your personality to ensure that you have the mental fortitude to handle being a police officer in Hoover.

Step 4. Medical Evaluation

Once you have been cleared by the psychologist, you will be examined by a physician to make sure that you are healthy enough for police work.

Step 5. Attend Police Academy for Training

After your evaluation by a doctor, you will be receive APOSTC training to become a police officer in Hoover.  The department contracts with four different training academies in Alabama.  The choice of academy depends on the time of year that you will be getting trained.

To meet the standards of the state of Alabama, you will have coursework in criminal law and police procedures.  You will also have hands-on training in driving emergency vehicles and using weapons such as batons and firearms.

Becoming a Police Officer in Huntsville, Alabama

The Police Department of Huntsville, Alabama protects its citizens with a number of specialized units, including a bomb squad, SWAT team, and a WMD coordinator. If you’ve got what it takes to join the ranks of this distinguished department, review this step-by-step guide on how to become a police officer in Huntsville.

10 Steps to Become a Police Officer in Huntsville:

  1. Meet the Basic Qualifications
  2. Submit Your Application
  3. Physical Agility/Ability Test
  4. Video Entrance Examination
  5. Background Check
  6. Interview Board
  7. Pre-polygraph Interview
  8. Polygraph Examination
  9. Psychological and Medical Examinations
  10. Attend Police Academy for Training

Step 1. Meet the Basic Qualifications for Huntsville Police Officer Candidacy

There are certain requirements that you must meet to be considered for Huntsville police officer jobs:

  • You must be either a high school graduate or a recipient of a GED.
  • You must have a valid driver’s license.
  • You must be a U.S. citizen.
  • You must be at least 20 years old when you apply and 21 by the time you graduate from the Academy.
  • You must have been honorably discharged (if applicable).
  • You cannot have any of the following convictions:
    • Felony
    • Misdemeanor involving domestic violence

Step 2. Submit Your Application

You must submit your application online by 6:00 PM on the closing date when a vacancy has been posted.

Step 3. Physical Agility/Ability Test

Once you have been chosen based on your application, you will have to take a physical test that simulates activities that a law enforcement officer would have to do routinely.  This involves four events that measure agility, endurance, strength, and coordination:

  • Timed push-ups (22 in 60 sec)
  • Timed sit-ups (25 in 60 sec)
  • 1.5 mile run within 15:28
  • Five tasks that must each be completed in 90 sec:
    • Pushing a patrol car 15 feet while in neutral gear
    • Running 150 feet, then climbing a fence
    • Running 150 feet, then climbing through a simulated window
    • Running 75 feet, then walking on a balance beam for 15 feet, then jumping to the ground
    • Running 75 feet, then moving a 165 lb dummy for 15 feet

Step 4. Video Entrance Examination

After you have passed each of the events in your physical test, you will take a pass/fail video entrance examination that is administered by the Human Resources Department.  This test has four multiple choice sections based on a simulated video roll call and several simulated video scenarios.

Step 5. Background Check

Once you have passed the video exam, you will have to complete a long Supplemental Information Packet.  Internal Affairs will thoroughly investigate your background, based on the information you have given them.

Step 6. Interview Board

You will be scheduled for an interview by a Board once your application and background information have shown that you are a qualified candidate.

Step 7. Pre-polygraph Interview

Once the Board has decided that you are a candidate suitable to become a police officer in Huntsville, you will be given a conditional offer of employment.  You will then be interviewed again in preparation for your polygraph examination.

Step 8. Polygraph Examination

After both interviews have given satisfactory results, you will be given a lie detector test.

Step 9. Psychological and Medical Examinations

Once you have passed your polygraph examination, you will be given a psychological examination, followed by a medical examination.  The latter will include a screen for drugs in your system.

Step 10. Attend Police Academy for Training

After you have passed your final set of examinations, you will complete 18 weeks of basic training at the Huntsville Police Academy.  Your training will involve areas such as:

  • Communication skills
  • Community oriented policing
  • Defensive tactics
  • Emergency vehicle operations
  • Firearms
  • First aid
  • Law
  • Managing aggressive behavior
  • Police and community relations
  • Police Spanish

Your training will also involve rigorous physical fitness, and you are advised to embark in a fitness program ahead of time to prepare yourself for the rigors of the Academy.

Once you have completed your Academy training, you will be trained for 12 weeks in the Field by riding along with your Field Training Officer.

Your salary will range from $37,814.40 to $57,720 a year.

Becoming a Police Officer in Mobile, Alabama

More than 500 highly trained police officers enforce the law in Mobile, Alabama.  The department handled 15,252 crimes in 2011—a 3.8% drop from 2010.

Use this guide to learn how to become a police officer in Mobile:

  1. Meet the Basic Qualifications
  2. Submit Your Application
  3. Written Examination
  4. Physical Agility Test
  5. Medical Examination
  6. Interview
  7. Attend Police Academy for Training

Step 1. Meet the Basic Qualifications for Mobile Police Officer Candidacy

There are certain requirements that you must meet to be considered for jobs as a police officer in Mobile:

  • You must have an e-mail address that you check regularly.
  • You must not have had the following convictions:
    • Felony as an adult
    • Domestic violence
    • Using or manufacturing illegal drugs within the past year.
    • DUI within the past year
  • You cannot be on probation, except for minor traffic violations.
  • You cannot use any tobacco products, including smokeless ones.
  • You must have a driver’s license valid in Alabama.
  • You must be 20 years old.
  • You must have a high school education:
    • Diploma
    • GED

It is preferred that you:

  • You have had some college coursework in law enforcement or criminal justice.
  • You have had some experience working with the public.
  • You have a combination of experience and education equivalent to these.

Step 2. Submit Your Application

You must apply on-line through the JobOpps site at the Personnel Board website. Paper applications will be returned.  You must provide your experience and educational background on the application.  Resumes will not be accepted. When you apply, you must attach required documents, including:

  • Driver’s license
  • Certifications (if applicable)
  • College transcripts (if applicable)

Step 3. Written Examination

Once the Department has reviewed your application packet and chosen you to proceed further in the hiring process, you will be notified of the date of your written examination.  You will need to show a photographic ID and can expect the test to take 2 to 3 hours.

Step 4. Physical Agility Test

After you have passed your written examination, you will have to take the Mobile Police Department’s Physical agility test.  The department has made the standards of the test available.  There are three phases.  In phase I, you must:

  • Push an occupied car for 15 feet
  • Run 50 yards, then climb a 6 foot fence
  • Run 50 yards and then go through a window frame
  • Run 25 yards and walk along a 15 foot balance beam
  • Run 25 yards and pull a dummy (165 lb) for 15 feet

Phase II consists of:

  • Push-ups (22 in 1 min)
  • Sit-ups (25 in 1 min)

For phase III, you will have to run 1.5 miles in 15:28 or less.

Step 5. Medical Examination

You must meet the medical and physical standards designated for a police officer in Mobile.  To determine this, you will need to be examined by a physician who has been designated by the Personnel Board.  You will have to pay for the medical exam.

Step 6. Interview

After your medical examination, you will be interviewed by members of the department to help ensure that you are suitable for police officer candidacy in Mobile.

Step 7. Attend Police Academy for Training

Once you have been chosen to become a police officer in Mobile, you will be scheduled for one of the two Mobile Police Academy classes that are offered each year.  The academy will give you more training than is required by the state.  You will receive 600-700 hours of training, almost double that which the state of Alabama requires.  Your coursework includes:

  • Combat training
  • Criminal and civil law
  • Defensive tactics
  • Driving instruction
  • Physical training
  • Traffic law
  • Weapons training

You will receive 80 hours of training in handling difficult situations:

  • Domestic violence involving weapons
  • Difficult pursuits
  • Felony traffic stops

The starting salary that you will receive depends on your level of education:

  • High school diploma:  $29,361
  • Associate degree:  $30,848
  • Bachelor’s degree:  $32,410
  • Master’s degree:  $34,050

Becoming a Police Officer in Montgomery, Alabama

The Montgomery Police Department employs over 500 sworn officers who practice a community-based approach to protecting the citizens of Montgomery, Alabama.  In 2010, the department handled over 12,000 criminal offenses with a high degree of professionalism.

Follow these steps if you’re interested in learning how to become a police officer in Montgomery.

7 Steps to Become a Police Officer in Montgomery:

  1. Meet the Basic Qualifications
  2. Submit Your Application
  3. Psychological Screening
  4. Background Check
  5. Polygraph Examination
  6. Interview
  7. Attend Police Academy for Training

Step 1. Meet the Basic Qualifications for Montgomery Police Officer Candidacy

There are certain requirements that you must meet to be considered for Montgomery Police Officer jobs:

  • You cannot have any felony convictions.
  • You cannot have any misdemeanor convictions for moral turpitude or violence.
  • You must have U.S. citizenship.
  • You must be at least 19 years old.
  • You must have a high school diploma or GED.
  • You must possess a valid driver’s license.
  • You must be able to obtain a driver’s license from Alabama.
  • You must be living within an hour of Police Headquarters by the time you graduate from the Academy.

Step 2. Submit Your Application

There are several sources for applications to become a Police Officer in Montgomery.  You can obtain an application from the Personnel Department or the Recruiting Bureau.  You can also download a pdf application.

Step 3. Psychological Screening

Once you have been chosen among the applicants, you will undergo psychological testing to ensure that you are mentally suited to become a Police Officer in Montgomery, Alabama.  You will also be screened for drugs in your system at this point.

Step 4. Background Check

After you have been found to be a suitable candidate, the Department will thoroughly investigate your background.  This will involve examining your history as it relates to:

  • Credit
  • Driving
  • Finances
  • Criminal
  • Employers
  • Personal references

Step 5. Polygraph Examination

Once you have been cleared by your background check, you will take a polygraph examination to ensure that you accurately reported all of your information to the department.

Step 6. Interview

After your successful polygraph examination, you will have an interview with a panel of Police captains and majors to ascertain whether or not you have what it takes to become a Police Officer in Montgomery.

Step 7. Attend Police Academy for Training

Once the panel has approved your candidacy, you will take part in 480 hours of training at the Montgomery Police Academy.  After graduating from the academy, you will be placed in the Patrol Division and work with a training officer for your period of probation, which lasts a year.

Your annual salary during training is $35,403.  Once you have graduated from the academy, your salary range is from $36,534 to $45,573 a year.

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