The recruitment process is made up of 8 different stages, all of which you must pass to be invited to your induction event at the Police College. Following this, you will then start your exciting journey of becoming a police constable! Take a look at the short video and click into the different pods to get more information on each of the stages of the recruitment process.
Before you apply, ask yourself... Can you commit?
Below is a screenshot from the Application Form.
With your application form now successfully submitted, you will be invited to complete the online Initial Selection Test (IST). You will receive a unique individual link for you to access the test to the email address you provide in your application form. You will receive this link by 24th November 2021.
The IST is made up of two assessments designed by Deloitte for this recruitment process; a situational judgement test and a verbal reasoning assessment.
You have only ONE OPPORTUNITY to complete the test per campaign so we would advise you to wait until you are fully prepared before starting your IST.
You should also be aware that the IST may be re-tested at Assessment Centre. For access to a detailed briefing on the IST please click here.
To have a go at some practice questions then please click here.
When completing your application you will be asked to confirm that you can provide full and final evidence of your eligibility in relation to the Education Eligibility Criteria when required.
Later in the recruitment process, you will be required to upload your evidence via an online Evidence Uploader.
During this recruitment campaign, only candidates who are successful in the Initial Selection Test will be required to present evidence using the Evidence Uploader.
Detailed instructions will be provided to guide you on the use of the Evidence Uploader.
The online Evidence Uploader will be available from 4th January to 13th January 2022. You must ensure that you submit your evidence within this timeframe as it cannot be accepted after the deadline.
You must be able to provide evidence that you have attained:
If you have lost your original GCSE (or equivalent) certificates we recommend that you contact your examination board NOW, in order to request either replacement certificates, or a final certifying statement of results.
While candidates may present school reports, ‘results-day’ information slips or other similar documentation as evidence, we encourage the use of formal certificates or a Final Certifying Statements of Results.
The certification deadline for this campaign will be 13th January 2022 (for the completion of qualifications).
In exceptional cases, where the qualification has only recently been completed (e.g. during late 2021 / early 2022), but not yet certified, exceptions to the certification date may be considered, providing formal supporting evidence is available.
Please refer to our Education FAQs for information on preparing to show evidence in relation to the Education Eligibility Criteria.
Below is a screenshot of the Online Initial Selection Test
If you pass the Initial Selection Test and your education evidence has been accepted you will be given an appointment to attend an Assessment Centre. The Assessment Centre is set in a policing context and requires you to take on the role of a constable. It consists of a number of different exercises, including written exercises and role plays. You may also be asked to complete a re-test of the Initial Selection Test for verification purposes.
The Assessment Centre is designed to assess you against the Competency Values Framework for Policing Professionals* (CVF).
Competency Clusters / Behaviours:
*Source: College of Policing Ltd.
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The Assessment Centres are held in locations in and around Belfast. The majority of sessions are held during weekdays and consist of morning and afternoon sessions.
For more information on how to prepare for the assessment centre and assessment centre scheduling please click here.
You are required to be vetted as part of the recruitment process.
You will be asked to complete vetting questionnaires, which must be returned within two weeks of receipt. If you fail to adhere to this your application may be discontinued. You can ensure that the process is as smooth as possible by ensuring that you complete the vetting questionnaires and answer all the questions in full.
The success of the vetting process depends largely on your honesty, therefore you are advised to disclose all information as required within your vetting application. Failure to disclose relevant circumstances or information can be regarded as evidence of unreliability and will be taken into account when assessing your suitability.
Vetting is a complex process and involves various checks to be completed. This includes everyone declared on your vetting applications as well as your wider extended family and other close associates. All applications are considered on their own individual merits. Dependent on your personal circumstances your vetting may take longer than others.
All applicants are required to have a three year checkable history, and if you have spent time in the last three years outside the UK or Republic of Ireland you should be aware that you may be required to provide a copy of any criminal record you have received in another country.
If the Police Service of Northern Ireland cannot carry out the necessary checks your vetting application may not be processed further.
Detailed information regarding Vetting (including examples of the certain types of offences that mean you will not be considered for appointment e.g. motoring offences, drugs offences, cautions, and financial) can be found in the Guidance for Applicants.
For FAQs regarding vetting, click here.
…in other words, the fitness test!
The PCA is made up of a number of different activities such as running, crawling, climbing, balancing, lifting, carrying, dragging and weaving.
These activities are incorporated into a circuit or obstacle course which need to be completed three times in 4 minutes and 30 seconds during the recruitment process. (You must complete the course three times in 4 minutes during the Student Officer Development Programme.)
If you do not pass the PCA you will be invited to complete one re-test twelve weeks after your initial PCA. You will also be given the opportunity to attend five PCA Support Sessions prior to completing your PCA re-test.
Want to see how the course is laid out to help you prepare? Click here for a diagram of the obstacle course.
We would advise you to think about starting to prepare for the fitness test now!
This part of the recruitment process might seem like a long way off, but starting training now will set you in a better position to tackle the course on the day.
If you would like some help with training, click here for an example training schedule.
You can also watch the following video to see the PCA in action.
For more information on the PCA please refer to the Guidance for Applicants booklet.
You will be required to undertake and successfully complete approximately 16 hours of eLearning material within a 4 week period. The modules you will cover in the eLearning package include:
You will be required to meet some key medical standards as part of your application to be a police officer. Click on the tabs for more information:
If you have a hearing loss of more than a total of 84 dB over 0.5, 1 and 2 kHz range, or more than a total of 123 dB over the 3, 4 and 6 kHz range in both ears, you are unlikely to meet the standard.
When one ear is affected or when aids may overcome the difficulty, further assessment by Police Service of Northern Ireland’s medical team will be required to identify possible adjustments.
If you have a disability you will be considered individually on your merit. The Police Service of Northern Ireland's Medical team will consult with you and consideration will be given to whether there are reasonable adjustments that can be made to enable you to do the job now and for a reasonable time.
You will have the option to seek an adjustment in the recruitment process when completing the application form.
Substance Misuse Manager - Email: email@example.com
Please note that the Health Assessment and Substance Misuse Test are assessed independently, and you must pass both assessments in order to progress!
Once you have successfully progressed through the 8 stages of the recruitment process you’ll receive some exciting news… You’re appointable to Police Service of Northern Ireland. Well done! Appointable candidates will be invited forward in merit order.
Now it’s on to your induction, and soon, your training. You’re well on your way to achieving your goal of becoming a police constable.
Before you start in the Police College, you will be invited to attend an induction event where you will meet with your training team and representatives from the university who will explain course requirements and support services available to you.
You will receive a tour of the Police College and will be measured for your uniform and other items of police equipment. Information will be provided on a number of topics relevant to your future career as a police officer including Occupational Health and Wellbeing, Personal Security and Human Resources. Importantly, you will be introduced to the standards and ethics which apply to everyone in the Police Service of Northern Ireland. There will be an opportunity for you to ask any last minute questions you may have. You will also be informed of which Policing District you will be attached to on completion of the Student Officer Development Programme.
After Induction you will be required to undertake and successfully complete the Pre Entry Knowledge Course before commencing the Student Officer Development Programme. This material takes approximately 20 hours and must be completed in order to commence the Programme. You will be given access to this information at your Induction Day. This will provide you with information and context to support your development as a student officer within the Police College.
Training takes place at the Police College, Belfast over a 21 week period. You will participate in the Student Officer Development Programme. This Programme is university accredited and results in the award of an Advanced Diploma in Policing.
Further information on the learning and development journey you will undertake and the academic and pastoral support arrangements available are available within the Guidance for Applicants (see the section entitled 'Your Learning & Development in the Police College'). Also check out our video which introduces you to life as a Student Officer.
On successful completion of the student officer programme, you will be formally attested as a Probationary Constable.