Missouri Police Academy Requirements and Qualifications

The Missouri Department of Public Safety is always looking for great new law enforcement officers to add to the force. The government agency oversees selecting and training new recruits. They have what’s called the Peace Officer Standards and Training Program (POST). It sets the rules and the training requirements for entering the profession in Missouri.

What the Career Offers

A law enforcement career in the State of Missouri has a lot to offer. There are rural areas and big cities, and each location comes with their own challenges. Peace officers in the state need to act professionally and in accordance with their training at all times, in order to maintain public confidence in their work.

Prior Experience

If you have prior experience in law enforcement, there is a special procedure to use when you apply to the State of Missouri. In that case, you use the Veteran Peace Officer Application and its associated procedures. The same is true if you have prior military experience.

Requirements to Enter Training

For first timers, Missouri requires applicants to the police academy to meet basic requirements. There is also an entrance exam that you have to pass. Here are the requirements:

You must be at least twenty-one years old. Your age is measured on the day that you graduate from police academy training. Educational requirements are that you have finished high school or you have to have a GED. In addition to that, you must also have either some college credits or some military experience. The typical cut offs are two years in the military or sixty college credits.

You have to be a resident of the State of Missouri. They look for your residence as of the date that your training starts at the police academy. You also have to be a citizen of the United States. Once you finish training, you have to agree to move anywhere in the state that you receive a job.


In the State of Missouri, applicants have to meet requirements that address physical appearance. That means you can’t have any objectionable tattoos. Besides controversial or offensive tattoos, you can’t have any tattoos on places that are visible like your forearms, neck or head. This keeps peace officers looking uniform and professional.


Personal character is another key requirement for joining the force in Missouri. For this, they mostly look at your criminal history. If you have felony convictions or any crimes that reflect on your morals, it might stand in your way. Examples of things that can knock you out of contention are domestic violence convictions, assault, battery, or any crime involving a weapon.

Physical Fitness Requirements

You must be in good physical health. You can’t have any disability that interferes with your abilities to perform the fundamental duties of the job. There are physical tests that you have to pass that are a lot like tests you might have had to take in gym class.

Physical testing includes vision screening, too. You have to be 20/20 with corrective lenses and 20/40 without correction. You have to see in color and your eyes have to be healthy and free of disease. Officers use peripheral vision so they test that too, and you also need good depth perception.

Hiring Process in Missouri

When you express interest in a career in Missouri law enforcement, first you take the written entrance exam. If you pass that, they assess your fitness for duty and give you a lie detector test to make sure you’re telling the truth about what you put in your application. Next come the background checks and interviews, followed by physical and mental exams. These tests include drug screening.

Police Academy Requirement in MO

Make it through everything and you’re welcomed to police academy. In Missouri, this training lasts twenty-five weeks. You might pay the $5,000 fee, or the agency that hires you might pay it. There is financial assistance available in some cases if you have to pay for it yourself. If you’re lucky enough to have the agency you’re going to work for pay for it, you might even get paid to attend the police academy training, too.

To do well in training, you need to get started as soon as possible. The people who finish at the top of the class don’t wait until the first day of training to begin learning their new profession. Instead, they read about it from the experts, long before they ever set foot in police academy. For people who are the most serious about standing out, there’s Prepare For The Police Academy.

Prepare For The Police Academy is a book that serves as a primer for people entering the police academy. It includes what you need to know in order to get off on the right foot during training.

You learn what you need to succeed in all aspects of your training. It teaches you about search and seizure laws, Miranda rights, and how to lawfully perform an arrest. Learn take down procedures and study the parts of the constitution that apply to law enforcement work. Find this book and begin your journey at PrepareForThePoliceAcademy.com.