What Personality Traits Do Pre Employment Psychological Screening Checks
Law enforcement officers are expected to be highly ethical and have moral standards therefore, criminal justice agencies look at certain personality traits in the pre-employment psychological exam that a potential officer should have.
According to Dr. Gary Fischler, who works as an assistant professor of psychology at the University of Minnesota and a forensic psychologist. He evaluates the potential law enforcement officers in pre-employment psychological screening. According to him, these traits are mostly looked upon in the evaluation process and how it affects the hiring process?
Impulse control is the candidate patient enough? Does he show any signs of irritability when asked similar questions multiple times?
General intelligence how much is the applicants IQ? Is he able to respond quickly with unique ideas?
Judgment what is the judgment pattern of the candidate? Is he quick to analyze the situation in a broad spectrum?
Dependability can the agency depend on the applicant on severe high-risk crimes? Will he continue with the task if a backup is not available on the spot yet? Is he self- confident?
Courage how brave is the contestant to take risks without harming no one?
Honesty and integrity two are essential traits a cop should have. How truthful was the candidate during the whole screening? Did he make up lies to cover something?
Personal bias or lack of bias will the applicant be an honest cop or any personal preference will interfere in his job?
What Is The Police Personality Test
There are a variety of testing companies that offer personality tests. The police department you are applying with should let you know ahead of time the specific test you will take. There are similarities between most of the exams.
You may take your test on a computer or using a pencil and paper, but the format is the same either way. Questions are multiple-choice with the answers on a scale of five options:
- Strongly disagree
There are often at least 100 questions, and some tests have up to 500. You will have a relatively short time to complete the assessment, such as 15 minutes for 100 questions. The quick test time is a purposeful way to ensure you are honest and dont deliberate too much over your answers.
Some of the questions might seem repetitive or like the same question re-worded multiple times. This strategy is also a way to ensure honesty as the test scorer will be able to see if your answers are consistent.
The personality test typically measures five main traits or factors, which are often called the Big Five. These traits are indicators of success in a public safety job, such as police work.
Some exams focus on additional traits, including some or all of the following:
- Emotional resilience
Preparing For The Police Psychological Test
Many candidates ask the question how should we prepare for the police psychological test?
The reality is that theres not much you can do. After all, the truth is the truth and how you perform will depend on what questions you are asked. As we have urged, you should not at any point lie during the test. You need to remain alert throughout the exam and understand what you are saying. Always correct yourself if you have accidentally said something wrong. Perhaps later in the interview you realize you made a mistake. If so, then take the opportunity to tell the interviewer and explain the reasons why you believe you made a mistake. Again, this is about building a relationship of honesty with the interviewer.
To remain alert throughout the exam at this high level, you must sleep well the night before the exam. If you dont sleep well, you will be groggy and may inadvertently mark wrong answers in the written part of the exam. These mistakes may come up during the interview assessment. These are avoidable mistakes and so its essential that you sleep well on the night before the police psychological exam. Always arrive to the exam hall on time, 30-minutes before the test. Know how to get to the center in case of any emergency.
Study and Pass the 2022-2023 Police Officer Exam!
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How Should I Study For The Tcole Licensing Exam
This is a lengthy and comprehensive exam, so you will need to review the essential concepts and procedures from all of your training material. Your best friends as you prepare for the exam are going to be the notes you took during training, the Mometrix Study Guide, and the Mometrix Flashcards.
The study guide provides a comprehensive overview of the core concepts from your training that you will definitely need to have memorized and ready to go on test day. The flashcards will reinforce your memory and improve your ability to recall the relevant information quickly and accurately. Because the questions are randomly generated, make sure to review all the material thoroughly and address your weaker subjects.
Police Psych Exam Format
The exact format of your exam will depend on the department to which you apply. However, there are generally three parts to the psychological exam:
- Self-Evaluation: Some departments will ask you to start the exam by taking a self-evaluation survey. This consists of questions about your background, previous work experience, educational history, strengths and weaknesses, and history with ailments such as substance abuse.
- The next stage is the written test. This exam contains several statements that you must respond to on a scale of strongly agree to strongly disagree. In addition to evaluating your personality and behavioral traits, this section of the exam also assesses your consistency, integrity, and honesty as it asks the same question repeatedly in different ways. Youll have 15 minutes to complete 100 questions on this exam.
- In-Person Interview: You may be asked to complete an in-person interview. This face-to-face conversation will be with a psychologist who will ask several questions to determine if you are a good fit for the role. In addition to your background and personality traits, they may ask questions about your medical and psychological history and expectations for the position.
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Regulations Rules And Policies
Government Code Section 1031 requires peace officer candidates to be found to be free from any physical, emotional, or mental condition, including bias against race or ethnicity, gender, nationality, religion, disability, or sexual orientation, that might adversely affect the exercise of the powers of a peace officer.
PSP adheres to the POST Psychological Screening Manual and its set of ten Peace Officer Psychological Screening Dimensions when conducting evaluations and determining the suitability of peace officer candidates.
What Is A Psychological Exam
A psychological or personality test is an important step in the police recruitment process.
Each Law enforcement agency uses it to measure a variety of job-related behaviors and personality traits, and pick only the best applicants fit for a job in law enforcement.
The police personality test questions delve into your personal lifestyle, behavior, and measures your personality, motivations, preferences, attitudes, interests, and values.
Personality tests and psychological evaluations are also used in other law enforcement positions, such as 911 dispatchers, FBI Special Agents, and more.
The exam is usually taken as the last/one of the last steps in the police recruitment process, and is the last major hurdle you must face before becoming a police officer.
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How To Prepare For The Police Personality Test
First, remember that the purpose of the test is not to determine whether youre a good person or how rational or stable you are. Instead, the purpose is to determine if your personality is a good fit for the specific demands of police work.
Current police officers who have passed their personality test report that you should avoid giving too many extreme answers, i.e., strongly agree and strongly disagree. These answers can imply that you are stubborn, submissive, or too much of a risk-taker. However, this doesnt mean that you should never choose those options. Be honest about how you feel.
While you should answer honestly, that doesnt mean you cant prepare for the personality test. Understanding the format of the questions and knowing what to expect will help you avoid test-day anxiety.
Practice personality tests are an excellent way to prepare. Taking online practice tests will give you a chance to think about how you want to answer different kinds of questions about yourself. Many practice exams feature questions that are very similar to those youll see on the actual exam. These practice tests also help you prepare for the practical aspects of taking the test, such as time management and paying attention to details.
On any practice tests and the real test, make sure to read the questions and answers carefully. Dont assume that strongly disagree will be first and strongly agree last, or vice versa, as the response order can vary.
Who Is Eligible To Take The Tcole State Licensure Exam
The exam is open to anyone who meets the following eligibility criteria:
- Be a US Citizen of at least 21 years of age. Under certain circumstances, you can become eligible before you are 21. Contact a TCOLE representative to learn more.
- Possess at least a high school diploma or equivalent
- If you have served in the armed forces, you must have been honorably discharged.
- No record of conviction for a Class B misdemeanor or worse within the last ten years.
- Not currently being charged with a criminal offense which, if convicted, would make you ineligible.
- No record of conviction for an offense involving family violence.
- Possess a valid, unrestricted drivers license.
- Not prohibited under state law from possessing firearms or ammunition
- Completed a physical exam by an approved, licensed physician. The physician must declare you physically sound and capable of performing the duties of a peace officer.
- No trace of illegal drug use .
- Completed a psychiatric evaluation by an approved, licensed psychologist. The psychologist must declare you psychologically and emotionally fit to handle the demands of the job
You will need to provide documentation with your application in order to prove that you meet the above criteria. The application process will involve getting a background check, a physical exam, a psychological exam, and a drug test. So you have to be prepared to share a good deal of personal information in order to be determined eligible.
Check Out Mometrix’s TCOLE Study Guide
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What To Expect In A Police Psychological Exam
The overall psychological assessment will generally be a combination of at least two of the following:
- A self-assessed questionnaire
- A written psychological test
- A one-to-one psychological interview with a qualified and appropriately licensed psychologist
For instance, the NYPD psychological assessment of candidates entails the written test and the one-to-one interview.
The exact specifics of the written psychological exam may vary from US state to state.
The test is either paper or computer-based and consists of questions that ask you to answer within a five-point range from strongly agree/like me to strongly disagree/unlike me.
The time limit for the written psychological test will vary depending on the US state but it may take several hours to complete the entire psychological assessment.
The police psychological exam is generally based on the NEO Personality Inventory test , also known as the Big Five personality test, or the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory .
How Is The Psychological Test Carried Out
First, candidates face a written examination. You will be asked a series of questions some of which may come across as odd. But these questions are asked for a reason. Sometimes, questions are asked to examine your response to them. Some questions may even invoke anger in a candidate. Thats precisely why these questions are asked to knock you out of your comfort zone and to see how you respond.
Honesty is another important factor. Always answer questions honestly. If, during the later phase of the police psychological interview you are found to have misled or even lied, this will not be taken lightly. If you are willing to lie about small things, why not lie about larger, more important things? The question is trust comes into the equation. You do not want to be considered as an untrustworthy candidate. That impression must not be allowed to even enter the examiners mind.
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Police Personality Test Online Preparation 2022
A job as a police officer can be satisfying and rewarding, and give you a chance to make a difference in your community. It also involves a high amount of stress, long hours, and making difficult decisions. Part of the hiring process is an evaluation to determine if your personality is a good fit for the demands of the job.
There are usually three aspects to the personality evaluation. The first is a questionnaire about your experience, beliefs, strengths and weaknesses, and background information. Next, you will take a written personality test, which is described in more detail below. The third part is a psychological examination in-person with a trained professional, usually a psychiatrist or psychologist.
During the in-person evaluation, you will likely be asked to give more information about your answers to the questionnaire. The psychiatrist or psychologist will also ask questions that determine various personality traits. Dont be surprised to hear questions that seem very personal or even intrusive. Remember that the goal is to determine if you are an appropriate candidate for police work, not to judge or critique you as a person.
Several candidates are often evaluated at the same time, so when you arrive for your screening, you can expect to meet other people who are going through the same process. Your psychological evaluation will be private with just you and the examiner in the room.
How To Pass Your Police Pre
While it’s unlikely youre going to enjoy the exam, there are some things you can do to help it go as smoothly as possible
Q: Ive been a police officer at a small department for about five years and I recently applied to a larger agency that requires a pre-employment psych screening as part of their intake package. Ive heard horror stories about perfectly normal guys and gals getting burned on these exams and denied employment or branded as psychos for no good reason. Im not asking you to give away any professional secrets, but is there some advice you can give this poor, hardworking police applicant so I dont feel like the mental deck is stacked against me from the get-go?
A: Ive heard the horror stories, too, and its a damn shame because a pre-employment psych screening shouldnt be more mysterious or intimidating than any other aspect of the application process. Hell, if it were me, Id be more scared of the background check. So Im going to offer some general recommendations for keeping your sanity while having your head examined and to help you give the most accurate representation of your abilities and personality during the exam. And Im not going to teach you any dirty tricks or violate any trade secrets to do it.
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On The Day Of Your Psychological Screening:
- Dress in business attire.
- You must bring your scheduling notice and a valid photo identification to your interview, such as a drivers license, military ID, government ID, or passport. If you do not bring valid photo identification, you will not be admitted to the screening.
- Occasionally, treatment records from previous providers are required before scheduling the screening interview. If you do not provide the requested information by the due date, your process may be delayed.
All psychological interviews are by appointment only. You have two options to complete your psychological interview:
Essential Things To Know About The Law Enforcement Psych Evaluation
The psychological evaluation tests for law enforcement can be an overwhelming exam. Therefore, it is essential to know what you will be expecting on your psych evaluation day. It will make you less anxious and relieve some stress.
It is crucial to understand that this test is not your interrogation, nor is it a therapy session, but perceive it as a conversation about your life and your preferences in general.
You should be expecting several candidates in the waiting area as they will be having their screening at the same time as you.
Initially, you have to fill out a survey form that asks questions about your personal life, previous profession, education, interests, strengths, and weaknesses. After that, a multiple-choice assessment is given, which asks you to express your feelings on a particular thought.
The last and final step of the police officer personality test is a face to face interview with the psychologist who mostly asks the same question. Still, their presence makes the interview more intimidating.
You will also notice that some of the questions will be repeated. This is to check your honesty, integrity, and consistency. Therefore, observe the pattern and answer carefully and accordingly.
Your agency will provide you with a sample question booklet before the final test. Its better to prepare before the evaluation. You will become familiar with the formatting, and answering tricky questions will become easier.
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What Happens If You Fail The Police Assessment
Candidates are permitted two attempts at any one part of the assessment process within a 12-month period. However, you must repeat the assessment in full, regardless of your performance in other areas. You must also wait three months between attempts.
Enjoy what youve read? Let others know!
May 11, 2022
It was a very good test, really enjoyed it!
It was a bit challenging but I managed to get a few answers right. The time was so little I couldn’t do all the questions.
Interesting and enjoyable
I enjoyed the test very much. It gave me a lot to work with, and the questions were straightforward. The practice test allowed me the time to calculate and work through my findings, which helped me a lot.
Where to improve
The page could be more tablet friendly as the screen could not be zoomed enough to encapsulate the whole page graph and info
Francisca Mawusi Avuletey
May 23, 2021
Hmmm,it was a bit challenging
I like the fact that I at least tried the test and the questions were not what I expected